What a big snore the whole “Inside” opening segment is; total waste of air. It’s PBR’s attempt at an NFL pre-game show. Epic fail. A half hour of b.s., and all the chatter up front didn’t even mention João Ricardo Vieira as a possible winner. They covered Guilherme Marchi, Renato Nunes, Silvano Alves, J.B. Mauney, J.W. Harris. “I think all roads go through Silvano Alves,” was Ty Murray’s assessment. Yeah, but he also said, Asteroid’s trip with Silvano at the Finals was one of the bull’s weakest.
- It’s Asteroid’s last out, and the boys stage-managed another draw: Mike Lee was the last cowboy on Bushwacker, and now he’s the last one on Asteroid. PBR just loves these storylines. Lee was Asteroid’s 49th buckoff—and went somersaulting over his head. Score: 46. Guilherme Marchi’s take on Asteroid: “He’s a kind of little bull, but has a big heart.” Sweet!
- Shepherd Hills Trapper & Jack Daniel’s After Party are being retired. Waaah! Trapper is 10 for 65 right now; he made J.W. Harris his 17th straight buckoff.
- Loved the shot of H.D. Page scratching Shepherd Hills Tested, who acted just like a doggie, not one of the toughest bulls in the PBR.
- This was the first out for Just Push Play, from the Navajo Nation, who was invited when Cody Lambert showed a phone video to Justin McBride. Lachlan Richardson couldn’t ride him here, and João Ricardo Rivera couldn’t ride him in Fresno next week. (The one advantage of writing in retrospect is that you always predict the future correctly!)
- David Neal’s people need to keep a camera on the bulls after they’re done with the riders; some of them are P.F.F. In fact, I think PBR should add a new category at the Finals: Best Post-Cowboy Performance by a Bovine. California Sports Coat stumbled around, Valdiron de Oliveira melted off his side, then the bull’s big ol’ head went sliding along in the dirt. CSC capped that act by fleeing everyone who was after him—even after he got roped, he was still scampering around the arena until it was the next bull’s turn.
- Adriano Moraes’s guest appearance, talking about Kaique Pacheco: he’s got a 56+% riding percentage, and is quieter than Silvano?!
- “You want to be a champion bullrider, watch this film,” said Ty, who finally got with the program. João Ricardo Vieira scored 90.50 on Bruiser by staying up front, making adjustments, allowing daylight between his seat and the bull’s back as Bruiser tried slinging him around.
- J.W. Harris on Cowtown Slinger, for 86.75. I almost don’t care about the score; I just love watching him constantly adjusting while he keeps his eyes down on the bull’s shoulders. That’s how you’re supposed to ride, boys!
I’M JUST SAYIN’…
- As usual, PBR (this time in the guise of J.W. Hart) claimed the arena was full, in spite of people saying all over Facebook and Twitter they couldn’t get there because of the terrible weather.
- Cody Lambert’s explanation of the re-ride “option” was completely contradictory and incoherent. The PBR is still trying to talk out of both sides of its mouth. Says Cody, citing Alves’s riding percentage, “This is about riding more bulls than anyone else here.” Uh, not really, dude.
- Yet another interview with J.B. Mauney at the top of the show. The PBR clearly is unaware that there is any other cowboy on the planet. Cody Lambert and Justin McBride did the honors this time: “The stage never gets too big for this guy,” oozed Justin. Hummer’s contribution: “He wants to be not just bad to the bone, but badder than the rest of them.” Gag! Note: J.B.’s riding percentage: 43.48%. Nathan Schaper’s: 48%. I don’t see any Schaper worship going on. Guilherme Marchi has a 48.15% riding percentage and 533 rides on the BFTS. Need I say more?
- PBR hired Olympic gold medalist Michael Johnson as a trainer, and showed a video of him torturing Matt Triplett. As if the reason for this move is “to help the athletes battle the bulls”! It’s to help the American athletes battle the Brazilian athletes, because the Killer Bs have always trained, and gee, do ya think that might have something to do with what asskickers they are?
- A 4-way tie for first place is kinda ridiculous; I don’t know what the judges thought they were doing with the scoring.
“St. Louis, I didn’t ride very good, so I needed to refresh my brain.”—J.B. Mauney.
L.J. Jenkins rode Winter Jack for 87.50. “Some signs of life from L.J.,” Craig snarked.
NOTHING NEW HERE
“Right now he’s riding great,” says Ty about Stormy Wing, as Stormy gets thrown off.
“Matt Triplett is the new J.B.”
Mike Lee was very solidly stuck on Kiss Animalize and nailed an 85.75. Slight problem: the arena’s the biggest one in the country; he would’ve passed out from exhaustion on his victory lap. He cut it in half by running onto the stage and up to the locker room.
STOP THE PRESSES!
J.B. Mauney was given a Silvano Score (81.75) for his ride on Earl. Craig Hummer of course looks at this as Mauney’s first step toward regaining his 2012 Iron Cowboy title. Um, and what step would this be for Vieira, last year’s winner?
WILL YOU PLEASE WEAR YOUR GODDAMNED HELMETS?!! DEPARTMENT
A whole lotta people were clustered around Renato Nunes at the chute; it wasn’t clear what the problem was, but Redneck’s head was roped in place, so obviously he was no calm customer. “Redneck with all that power is going to have the Brazilian black and blue,” was Hummer’s nitwitticism. The buckoff slammed Nunes down against the chute, landing him on the back of his neck and head. He was one hair away from a broken neck (and head!).
AND EVEN WITH A HELMET…
Rubens Barbosa, back on the BFTS for the first time in 3 years, was roughed up by (unridden, with 11 straight buckoffs) Smooth Operator. (Oh, yes I did. I had to say it because Craig didn’t. Or at least I wasn’t paying attention.) Rubens took a shot to the facemask, then was slung around, briefly hung up and dragged. He looked a little shocked at the blood running down his face.
WAS THIS CRACK REALLY NECESSARY?
Robson “Spiderman” Aragao is on the tour (for now), and had to deal with Crystal Pistol acting up in the chute. The Booth Boys did a bitchy little high school burn, telling us (millions of us, presumably) that Aragao isn’t confident in the chute, but he sure is in the locker room. That sucks, guys. It’s really hitting below the belt.
YOU’RE JOKIN’, RIGHT?
Once again, Craig claims that the cowboys aren’t in this for the money. We’re supposed to believe they’re coming from all over the world to risk their necks just for the glory. Ty, who kinda has a handle on these things, reminded him about the $180,000 waiting for the winner.
IRON COWBOY AGAIN
J.R. Vieira won, courtesy of Crack the Whip. They’ve each won one matchup, and Vieira broke the tie to become the back-to-back event winner, moving from 26th to 9th in the world standings by earning 900 points. “I am happy, I am Iron Cowboy” was his interview with Leah Garcia. That’s his improved English, she says. Where the hell has the translator gone??
“…and you can bet the celebration of the green and gold will continue long into the night in Texas,” says Craig Hummer, once again waving the red flag at the pinheads who don’t yet understand that bull riding events are not an us-against-them national rivalry.