• Shivers, bouncing back outrageously from his earlier debacle, rode Cat Man Do for 89 points—but it should’ve been a 90. That was a spectacular ride.
• Dustin Elliott’s happy hoot into the camera lens after he rode Paleface for 87.25.
• Girls are competing as Wool Warriors. Maybe someday they’ll be allowed to ride bulls.
• L.J. Jenkins looked like he did a head stand on Lil’ Red Kat just before he bucked off. Normally a buckoff wouldn’t be a Highlight, but that maneuver was pretty amazing.
• Marchi on Priceless, earned a 90. Talk about dominating a bull–that’s how he was riding before he hurt his wrist. His victory dance was as silly as Ben Jones’s footwork.
• Renato’s great ride on Soulja Boy got him an 89; he knew he did a great job, and threw his hat even before he left the bull, but those judges clearly are begrudging him anymore 90+ rides—in the first 4 rounds of the Finals, they gave him 3 89s and an 89.25—but it didn’t stop him from winning. Renato smiling is such a happy sight!
• Austin’s wild ride on Secretary of Soul: he hung on every which way; everyone thought he was off the bull at least twice, but that cowboy was more determined than anyone else. His ride reminded me of J.B.’s first trip on Code Blue. Leah Garcia asked Meier how he got himself back to center the first time he looked about to buck off. His answer: “If you get off, you got no chance of gettin’ back in the middle.”
Interesting: more than half the time, the announcers were talking about bulls rather than riders.
• A lot of bulls were banging and bucking in the chutes, including Pure Smoke. Skeeter’s bull, Misunderstood, jumped the railing and got halfway over! Marchi’s bull, Priceless, was also rambunctious. Nobody’s Business was majorly fussing and fuming under Wimberly.
• Everyone thinks Kabookie is a bull guys should ride, but dumping Wesley Laurenco is no mean feat—and doesn’t an 82.1% buckoff rate say this isn’t a bull guys should always ride?
• Top Notch hesitated twice, didn’t kick high, and the score is 87?
• Supposedly there was a separate set of judges watching the bull’s performance—is the PBR actually listening to all the fans who have been strongly suggesting this on blogs?
The boys in the booth are behaving stupider than usual—are they all bombed? Toward the end of the round, Hummer’s eyes looked like he was on drugs. He sure sounded like it.
• Hummer spewing his loose-cannon hyperbole, talking about “the shocking demise of J.B. Mauney” and “redemption and glory,” and comparing Renato to Rembrandt. WTF??
• This time it’s McKee climbing inside Austin Meier’s head: “Now he’s wondering if he can pull it all together, is there enough time?”
• I am sick to death of Hummer’s canned patter, trying to be clever with the bulls’ names and what they did to the cowboys.
• The Bummer describing Dr. Tandy: “a very dry personality.” Uh, you mean a very dry wit?
• Hummer talking about guys who weren’t front runners: “They don’t have a chance to catch the Renatos, the Guilhermes, the Laurencos…” How much did he drink to be seeing double?
• The Bummer, after Renato’s 89-point trip on Soulja Boy: “The victory parade continues—will it become a procession, not just a coronation?” WTF???
• Why can’t Justin McKee say “Di Oliveira?” Come on, Justin, try it—it’s a very small word.
• “In order to win you have to learn to lose.”—was that Dustin Elliott’s profundity?
“There’s not enough ‘o’s in ‘smooth’ for Frank Newsom.”—G. Man
• Ben Jones is having a terrible time. As McKee put it, “His morale is as low as a snake’s butt in a wagon rut.”
• Paolo Lima’s PCL tear in the knee obviously isn’t healed enough for him to be riding, and when Pit Boss bucked him off, Lima landed on that knee. He needed more time off.
• Seeing Lostroh bucked off by Power Line in 4 seconds shows he’s still feeling his surgery.
• Somebody do something about Austin’s hair! It is just the worst hat/helmet hair on the BFTS.
• The clip of Meier talking about hunting. There are many reasons people hunt, but killing bears has no reason. He’s not eating the meat or using the fur for warmth in an Arctic winter.
• Robson Palermo’s horrible wreck, courtesy of Paycheck: landing hard on his head, being put in the collar and strapped onto the stretcher.
• Valdiron coming unglued from Super Duty at 7.2 seconds.
• J.B. deserved a re-ride when Shepherd Hills Trapper stumbled, but didn’t get one, which destroyed any chance of moving up from the #3 slot. The crowd was booing and so was I.
• Four live video feeds, and the judges still screw up??
STOP AGGRAVATING US, GUYS:
• More Jack Daniels “girls”—it’s depressing to witness this Neanderthal exploitation, and the sappy-happy looks on their faces, as if they’ve accomplished something. Their names are “Tiffany” and “Cash”—could it be any clearer? A classic hooker name, and what she gets for her work. Practically rhymes with Tits and Ass.
• The PBR Twitter ad: a guy commenting on a McKennon Wimberly ride, with a laugh in his voice: “What a wreck! Did you catch that?” More of that moronic notion that people watch bull riding to see cowboys get hurt, and enjoy it when they do.
• The Bummer’s verbal diarrhea, constantly jabbering about Meier and Mauney, while Ross Coleman’s getting ready in the chute…then talking about Ross until Aaron Roy bucked off.
• Even worse: Hummer wouldn’t stop running his mouth while the medical crew was with Palermo; he was babbling right over Tandy’s conversation, and actually said, “You can’t say enough…” (presumably about Tandy)—believe me, Craig, you CAN. Try it. STOP.
• A J.B. interview continuing (with Justin McBride there to boost his morale) while Chris Shivers is in the chute, ready for his re-ride after his horrendous wreck.
• Would it be too much trouble to keep the bull’s name up there in the score box with the cowboy’s, until the ride is scored (or not)? Home viewers have about a one-second chance of catching the name before the ride starts, and unless the commentators mention it, the only way to find out the bull’s name is on the PBR web site—which isn’t entirely accurate, as there are sometimes last-minute substitutions.
CUSSIN’ ALL THE WAY TO THE BANK:
New York’s favorite badmouth, Denis Leary, must’ve made six figures every round; NBC ran that Built Ford Tough truck ad 50 times in two days. Now he can finance another season of “Rescue Me.”
CODY NANCE FASHION ALERT:
Ensemble for this round: green and yellow chaps, with a white hat.
No challenge, Cody: Ryan McConnel’s Op-Art straw hat and Dustin Elliott’s green shirt (or maybe he borrowed Mike Lee’s).
I WAS JUST WONDERING…
• One commentator talked about Renato’s “pre-ride ritual”–the camera showed him rocking like a disturbed animal down in some dark place. Wonder what other riders’ pre-ride rituals are?
• Is the PBR event crew all white?
• J.B. is a mess: ice, tape, plastic on his leg, knee, shoulder. Is he getting special treatment—Lambert picking a bull J.B. can ride without raising his free arm so high? Would Cody do that for other riders?
• Why does Wish List have a green horn?
Leah Garcia asked Marchi why the Brazilians do so well in Las Vegas, and he said they were “hungry.” Usually that word means someone seriously on the make, someone who desperately wants to succeed. But when you come from a country where the three-time World Champion bull rider grew up in a dirt-floor shack, you might take that word literally. The Brazilians try harder because for them the win means more. That’s why half the top ten riders are from Brazil.