Let's protect our pros!
Let's protect our pros!

Safety: Time for the Owen Rule!

Let's force our beloved pros to wear pillow ballon helmets!

In October of 2009 the National Football League commissioner Roger Goodell was called before the United States congress to answer questions about the League being potentially negligent in its protecting its players from concussion and chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE).

A lawsuit by ex-NFL players was filed in 2011 that was settled in 2013 for $765 million but a federal judge overturned the deal on the grounds that it would not be nearly enough to provide for the players covered under the suit. In 2015 the cap was expanded to at least $1 billion.

The Will Smith film Concussion also opened in 2015 and dramatized the true story of Dr. Bennett Omalu who fought the National Football League’s alleged suppression of his CTE research.

The scandal is ongoing and may someday cost the NFL multiple billions.

Which brings us to the World Surf League (WSL).

Owen Wright’s brain bleed from what he says was a duckdive out at plus-sized Pipe, coincidentally in 2015, puts the WSL in massive potential danger. Owen said in a recent interview, “If you try and duckdive a 15-foot second reef Pipe wave, you’re only going to be a foot under water with 15 feet of wave coming down on you. Something is going to give… and I gave.”

Pipeline is not the only heavy reef wave on tour breaking in shallow water or featuring shallow sections. The Box, Cloudbreak, Teahupo’o are all very dangerous and Kelly Slater claimed he nearly drowned at the last Bells event due the exposed rock shelf on the inside.

Are the professional surfers on today’s tour, plus all the tours since professional surfing has been a thing, due billions of dollars for potential brain bleeds?

Should the professional surfers on today’s tour probably wear helmets?

Owen Wright never claimed to hit his head on either board or reef. It is a truly unprecedented injury. The sort of injury that a helmet is not known to prevent. But wouldn’t a helmet help dissipate the shock of the duckdive? Or couldn’t a helmet be developed, maybe larger like an oversized pillow or ballon, that encapsulates the professional’s head?

I think our surfer’s head health is worth the unfortunate aesthetics! But maybe it’s cool to wear a pillow ballon on the head while surfing! The Inertia published 5 reasons why surfers should wear a helmet in 2013. When the original NFL concussion lawsuit was settled.

Does the WSL have multiple billions to give potential brain bled surfers?


I will be following up with the World Surf League when offices open Monday.

I am the new Ralph Nader.

Don't call him a tweaker!

Kai Hing Jumps to the Dark Side!

Julian Wilson weeps...

If there’s one historic quote Metal Neck can get behind, it’s Fuck the WSL.

Their core crew of Andrew “Droid” Doheny, Ford “My dad is Matt” Archbold, and Colin “The Goose” Moran, haven’t touched a sanctioned jersey in years. When you add their friends Christian Fletcher, Ozzie Wright, Creed McTaggart, Lee Wilson, and the king himself — Noa “Fuck the WSL Deane — to the list, it’s clear that Metal Neck’s priorities veer slightly from those of Kolohe Andino.

That’s why I was surprised to see Kai Hing, Sunny Coast superstar and J-dub protégé, hanging out with Metal Neck in a recent clip. Like many of the guys listed above, Kai’s career developed with one goal in mind — making the world tour. But after an impressive junior career, Kai has failed to capitalize on the QS. Last year, in nine events, Kai never placed better than 17th. Those are the kind of results that turn competitors into… freesurfers.

Because let’s face it, 99% of your favorite freesurfers are nothing more than failed jersey-jockeys. Aside from Dane, none of the Ozzies, Creeds, Craigs, and Noas of the world retained the necessary skill set to make it on the QS, let alone the CT. Go ahead and ask them — if they’re being honest, they’ll tell you the same thing.

With all of this in mind, it’s hard to ignore the significance of a Metal Neck tattoo on Kai Hing’s adolescent bicep.

Could Kai, who is not yet 20-years-old, have already sold his (or his parents’) childhood dream of bunking in the big leagues? If yes, I hope it’s because a lifestyle of indifference and debauchery makes him happy, as opposed to being discouraged by poor results and settling for Plan C.

On a brighter note, watch the kid surf! Ees good!

Contest: Show us your tits!

And win something out of your wildest dreams!

I stared at the ceiling, awake, most of last night burning inside. How did it happen? How did Surf Europe, affectionately called The Old Man in the Sea by long-serving surf journalists, get busted by a British tabloid for being too racy? How did they beat BeachGrit to that punch?

We pride ourselves on having the worst values in the space. We wake up each morning with one, and only one, driving principle, asking ourselves the question. “Is this anti-depressive?” And then, “Is there further down we can go, like, morally n shit?”

And feel we let you down by allowing Surf Europe to reach a “whole new level of gross” before us. Their contest, having women send in pictures of their bottoms in order to win a trip to a Russian owned Sri Lankan surf camp. That’s pretty gross but want to know what’s grosser?

Having men send in pictures of their tits to win a pair of Billabong x Metallica boardshorts (size 32) in white.

Post a picture of yours in the comments and also on Facebook so a tabloid can see and get angry. Must be 18 or over to enter. And a man to cause appropriate sexist stir.

Just in: Surfing more dangerous than NFL?

Are we all in major brain trouble?

The cover up the new Surfing World magazine features a stunning shot of professional surfer Owen Wright standing tall in a thick lip’d barrel. The title screams OWEN in bold oversized font. A pull quote from Mick Fanning declares, “One of the greatest sporting comebacks of all-time!”

The featured story, written by iconic surf journalist Sean Doherty promises to reveal “His miraculous journey from total darkness to world number 1.”

Owen’s story is truly remarkable and has been covered by news organizations around the world, though the specific details are jumbled. He suffered a brain injury while paddling out to Pipe in December of 2015 and was helped to the house he was staying in and either fell asleep or was seen by a World Surf League doctor. Later, he went to the hospital where his condition was diagnosed and it was revealed that he had a brain bleed.

He told Sean Doherty, “If you try and duckdive a 15-foot second reef Pipe wave, you’re only going to be a foot under water with 15 feet of wave coming down on you. Something is going to give… and I gave.”

Owen does not claim to have hit his head on his board nor the reef. He says a duckdive caused his brain to bleed. This has never happened in the history of surfing. Ever. Or at least has never been recorded by anyone. Ever.

Does Owen’s injury point to a dangerous and never revealed side effect or our favorite pastime?

I paddled out to plus-sized D street in Encinitas today. It wasn’t 15-foot Pipe but… it actually wasn’t even close but took a good number of set waves straight on the head since I can’t duckdive properly, not even a foot under water, since my shoulder pops out if I try. I’ve also taken too many proper waves on the head even good 12-foot sets at Off The Wall and worse 20-foot Bastendorff, Oregon sets which also happened to be freezing cold. Is my brain set to bleed? Are all our brains set to bleed? Are they already bleeding? Are the surfers out at Jaws and Mavericks one poorly timed duckdive away from brain explosion?

Is this surfing’s concussion-gate?

Is this why I can’t remember anything?

So far my enquiries to Rip Curl have been rebuffed but I’ll keep on and keep you informed!

Who can imagine a more pristine insertion?

OuterKnown Sponsors Fiji Event!

Old man Slater has one last trick up his sleeve!

It’s true! Slater-brand OuterKnown has just signed a three-year deal with the WSL to become naming sponsor of the Fiji Pro. The OuterKnown Fiji Pro! Oh, and there are so many angles to this revelation…

The money

The first thing that struck me about this announcement was… where’s the money coming from? Rumor has it events take 3-5 mil to run on average, but Fiji is an outlier. Because there are no real spectators, the WSL doesn’t have to build an infrastructure, which will certainly cut costs.

Still, let’s assume it costs a mil to sponsor this event. How many $80 beanies is Kelly selling to cover that kind of spread? Math says 12,500, but I’m not buying it. I guess this is a (highly questionable) long-term investment on their end, or…..

The conspiracy 

You know I can’t resist a jab at the King! Here’s the highly unlikely, somewhat comical theory behind this move: frustrated by his early-2017 performance, Kelly is looking for something, anything to get him back in contention. With his odds slim in Brazil, Kelly knows his only chance is to blitz the mid-season holy trinity — Fiji, Jbay, Chopes — and finish strong on the backend.

Sure Kelly’s capable in his own right, but a little pocket-greasing never hurt! With the WSL on Kelly’s side (thanks to a healthy donation from his company), Slater will get the nod on all of those Medina-at-Snapper close call situations. A win at Fiji will put him right back in the race, and the WSL will triple-down on the Slater v. John screenplay. Everyone wins!

Also, should he leave the tour after 2017, Kelly’s guaranteed a wildcard into the Fiji event for the next two years. Right?


Signing three-year deals is not a bad sign for the WSL’s future. It sure as hell doesn’t guarantee anything, but it’s a step in the right direction. Despite losing their title sponsor for 2017, the WSL now has a major backer for every event, which has gotta help keep the lights on. Long live Speaker’s inbred spawn!

The women

Is the WSL sexist? I like to think no but time and time again they prove me wrong. Of course they can always tie their sexist actions back to economics and they’d be right but still sexist.

And how have they plagued the women this time? With a seriously abbreviated waiting period! While the men get a savory 13-day window, the women are forced into a corner with just six. Granted it takes only two days to finish the women’s event and (I think) four for the men but still! I feel your pain Coco, Laura, and Silvana.

Bula vinaka OuterKnown!