John John has entered the Pipe Masters

Stu Nettle
Form Guide

This morning, while watching the Vans Pro kick off in swiftly rising Sunset surf, I did a double take on the commentary.

I'm not sure who was on the mic, but so understated was the delivery that I almost missed it and thank heavens for the little scroll back button.

"Even the turtles are enjoying the surf today!"

Too far. Scroll forward a little.

"News coming out locally is that John John Florence has entered in all three of the Vans Triple Crown contests."

And sure enough, there he is entered into the Round of 64 at Haleiwa and at Sunset. Must've put his entry forms in either yesterday or the day before as his CT rank is recorded as No. 8.

It's not a sure thing, he may chock his name in the draw then see how his knee feels on the day, however three days back he posted this to Instagram: 

"...back home and the knee is feeling great. I’m excited for the opportunities ahead, Pipe Masters and Olympics right around the corner."

Keep in mind the top ten ranked surfers on the CT automatically go to the Olympics, and though he's at eighth he could easily slip out of the mix.

There's also the fact that he's never won the Pipe Masters despite being the greatest Pipe surfer of his generation.

And if he does compete think of the drama should he go head to head with one of the title contenders.

I'm reliably informed by a Swellnet commenter whose name and medical qualifications are unknown, that a ruptured ACL takes eight months to recover from. The Pipe Masters starts just six months after JJF went under the knife.

Let the speculation begin...

Comments

Bnkref's picture
Bnkref's picture
Bnkref commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 3:04pm

This is excellent news. As long as he's not coming back too early, that is.

ringmaster's picture
ringmaster's picture
ringmaster commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 3:21pm

He might have had the LARS procedure. Shorter recovery time but is it as reliable as the standard op?

indo-dreaming's picture
indo-dreaming's picture
indo-dreaming commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 3:43pm

You would think he would just do pipe, if its true pipe for him it would be a cake walk take off pull in pull out, no need for turns or airs.

AFL players these days often seem to get back after ACL in record breaking time.

dewhurst's picture
dewhurst's picture
dewhurst commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 4:06pm

Best news!

fitzroy-21's picture
fitzroy-21's picture
fitzroy-21 commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 4:18pm

Hahahahaha, imagine what is going through the minds of the top 5.

derra83's picture
derra83's picture
derra83 commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 4:20pm

I had exactly the same thought. Things just got a whole lot hotter.

stan1972's picture
stan1972's picture
stan1972 commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 4:22pm

I was enjoying John on the socials. Guess that's over now.

zenagain's picture
zenagain's picture
zenagain commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 5:08pm

I hope he knocks Medina out.

He beat JOB on the buzzer a few years back in the Volcom. That was a great contest. I reckon he'll be a pipe master one day.

Watashi wa metabo oyagi desu.

goofyfoot's picture
goofyfoot's picture
goofyfoot commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 6:03pm

Like actually drops him on his arse Or just out of competition?

ojackojacko's picture
ojackojacko's picture
ojackojacko commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 6:17pm

i wouldn’t mind seeing both goofy. the internet shit storm that followed it would be pretty entertaining too

goofyfoot's picture
goofyfoot's picture
goofyfoot commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 6:30pm

Heheh yeah true, jjf far too nice a guy for that though I think

zenagain's picture
zenagain's picture
zenagain commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 6:37pm

John John's not a fighter, he's a mummies boy. His actions in and out of the water speak volumes.

JJF would have to be one of the coolest of cats.

I just think it would be funny to see him come back for pipe and rain on Gabs parade.

Watashi wa metabo oyagi desu.

fitzroy-21's picture
fitzroy-21's picture
fitzroy-21 commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 6:43pm

Rain on his parade.....I hope it's a bloody monsoon.

ojackojacko's picture
ojackojacko's picture
ojackojacko commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 7:12pm

golden shower

Island Bay's picture
Island Bay's picture
Island Bay commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 5:11pm

Gabriel vs John John in the final, please. In pumping waves.

Don't care who wins.

jetson.rover's picture
jetson.rover's picture
jetson.rover commented Wednesday, 30 Oct 2019 at 4:48pm

If you want that final then Medina wins the world title.
You don't care who wins the world title either i guess.
I'd go for JJ he's quite long overdue for his 1st Pipe masters trophy by now.

jasper99's picture
jasper99's picture
jasper99 commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 5:24pm

The fact that he's still 8th in the rankings and has missed essentially 5 and half events (pulled out early in Brazil) speaks volumes of his strangled hold on this years world title race!
Imagine he got to surf pumping J Bay, heavy Chopes,heaving French beachies and even the mechanical wave pool? Would the other 5 even be in the conversation?

Surfalot67's picture
Surfalot67's picture
Surfalot67 commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 6:44pm

Yeah mate - he would have had it sown up before Europe!

Island Bay's picture
Island Bay's picture
Island Bay commented Wednesday, 30 Oct 2019 at 3:56am

Or maybe not?

He was absolute dogshit at Kelly's pond, and starting on a tear does not necessarily mean you can keep it going.

Everybody thought Medina was going to win France and Portugal and finish it all before Pipe, but he didn't.

Very hard for even the most dominant surfer to maintain excellence throughout the season.

jetson.rover's picture
jetson.rover's picture
jetson.rover commented Wednesday, 30 Oct 2019 at 4:56pm

It's innuendo and conjecture.
Especially as he's never won any of those comps except i think maybe France one year.
Never won Chopes or the Pipe masters yet despite being considered the best at those waves for years now.
Free surfing those waves he's the best but in a CT event Medina owns them.
Ditto for Cloudbreak when it was on tour too.
He was far enough ahead though that 3rds or 5ths would have been plenty good enough anyway i guess.

jasper99's picture
jasper99's picture
jasper99 commented Wednesday, 30 Oct 2019 at 10:03pm

Agreed. That’s what I was implying. He didn’t need to win those events to grab the title but given the waves I think he would have had good results at those events he missed.
Yeah may not have won these events in the past but hey he hadn’t won at bells either and snapper hasn’t been great to him either and got results there so why not at the ones he missed?

If he had continued on the tour I think most others would’ve been so rattled at his form that he would have sown it up very early on but I guess we will never know.

It does however make you think about the 2 years he’s missed and how his absence may flatter most of his rivals (apart from gabby).
Can’t wait to watch pipe though. Hope it’s solid....

Sam Mozaffari's picture
Sam Mozaffari's picture
Sam Mozaffari commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 5:31pm

On another note Kelly's olympic hopes are even slimmer now.

zenagain's picture
zenagain's picture
zenagain commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 7:08pm

Nah, you watch- Kelly will be juiced into the Olympics with some sort of backroom shenanigans. Maybe a special 'Olympic Ambassador' concession under Article nine, section four, sub-section 32 of the Olympic constitution.

Watashi wa metabo oyagi desu.

Sam Mozaffari's picture
Sam Mozaffari's picture
Sam Mozaffari commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 9:29pm

Maybe, but that would cause some conflict over a surfer who earned their position. And if they want to let Kelly and John in together, they would have to add another surfer to even it out.

zenagain's picture
zenagain's picture
zenagain commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 9:50pm

True, but tell that to the CT surfer (i forget who) that missed the tour because of Kelly's dubious injury wildcard. I reckon when it comes to the GOAT there's no shortage of leeway.

Watashi wa metabo oyagi desu.

Sam Mozaffari's picture
Sam Mozaffari's picture
Sam Mozaffari commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 10:03pm

Yeah fair point, I guess we'll see how it plays out.

shoredump's picture
shoredump's picture
shoredump commented Wednesday, 30 Oct 2019 at 7:09am

It was Caio can’t take a trick Ibelli, but they moved him to first replacement instead of Ethan Ewing, who became the real loser. Caio surfed every event thanks to the injury list, and is set to requalify thanks largely to Medina gate. So Ewing qualified according to the rules of the sport, thanks to this years injury list, but lost his career anyway. You can’t script this

zenagain's picture
zenagain's picture
zenagain commented Wednesday, 30 Oct 2019 at 9:47am

That's exactly right. You had to feel for Ethan, who never really found his feet on his one year on the CT.

Speaking of Medina gate- have you seen the dribble Ripcurl just dropped on Youtube? Pottz and Steph talk Medina, something like that. Perfect opportunity to address the Caio incident but reduced to a screengrab completely airbrushed over. Just how Gabs is such a sweet big loveable puppy-dog on land but the most formidable and complete contest surfer the world has ever known.

Kind of part true I suppose. Except not.

Watashi wa metabo oyagi desu.

jetson.rover's picture
jetson.rover's picture
jetson.rover commented Wednesday, 30 Oct 2019 at 5:03pm

Gabs the most formidable and complete contest surfer the world has ever known? Currently yes.
In the last 5 years probably yes.
Ever?
Errr no.
If he gets another 10 world titles and over takes the GOAT you may have some merit in what you say though.

zenagain's picture
zenagain's picture
zenagain commented Wednesday, 30 Oct 2019 at 6:26pm

They're not my words Jetson, Steph Gilmore can claim those.

Watashi wa metabo oyagi desu.

jetson.rover's picture
jetson.rover's picture
jetson.rover commented Wednesday, 30 Oct 2019 at 5:31pm

If surf team USA are serious about winning a gold medal at the olympics who do you think they would prefer surfing those (likely) small crappy beachbreaks in Japan?
A bloke pushing 50 that is many years now past his best and rarely makes finals rounds these days or a 20 years younger more recent dual world champ that was most likely going to be in the olympics as the current 3 time world champ if not for his knee issues?
I think Medina and Ferreira (they'll likely be the 2 Brazzos in the olympics after Pipe) would be a better chance for gold than JJF, but JJF will be a much better chance for any medal than Slater.
With Slater it'll be about himself and the history books saying he was there it won't be about the USA winning a gold medal.

truebluebasher's picture
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truebluebasher commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 5:31pm

WSL Top 10 mens are top tier for Olympic qualification but not automatic qualifiers.
ISA handshake sets the minimum nomination requirement for Olympic qualification.

ISA Eligibility & Nomination requirements - Olympic Surfing Event Tokyo 2020

5. The Surfer must have fulfilled the minimum participation requirement in the ISA World Surfing Games during the Olympic Cycle by satisfying the following requirements.
a)The surfer must make himself available for their respective national team for participation in the 2019 (and) 2020 ISA World Surfing Games.
b)The Surfer must accept the nomination of his or her National Federation to take part, and must actually take part, in any or all of the above ISA World Surfing Games.

This being a Provisional Olympics many qualifications will be tested as this one.
Did National Federation nominate JJF
Did JJF accept the nomination before excusing it!
Did WSL or National Federation excuse injured JJF from ISA.
Was JJF to promote & involve with ISA Games in best capacity.
If JJF enters 2020 ISA will it count enough for NOC
Only WSL Lawyers & Kelly know if JJF can qualify...

Yes! There is a long clause for injuries. Too long for here but obvious...
6) ISA (Star chamber exercises discretion & are satisfied JJF will wash their cars)
Full version...
https://isasurf.org/ISA_Olympic_Eligibility_and_Nomination_Requirements_...

The simple fact that JJF's ISA breach already triggers a Royal Inquiry is a black mark.
JJF must do everything by the book if he's to have a hope in hell in qualifying.
Not enough Corona Spray or WSL pool promos then he's well & truly out of Olympics.

Olympics Games are just that & Courts decide. re: California's equal surf comp law.
https://www.theinertia.com/surf/california-ab-467-equal-pay-equal-play-d...

andosbf's picture
andosbf's picture
andosbf commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 5:50pm

It is a shame that JJF got injured this year, he had the title in his hands. At least he will make the whole thing more interesting, a super heat with any of the contenders would be never wracking

Surfalot67's picture
Surfalot67's picture
Surfalot67 commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 6:42pm

Gabe, Filipe and Italo just vomited a bit in their mouths. Please, please can it be pumping, and not decided by endless one move spins...

jetson.rover's picture
jetson.rover's picture
jetson.rover commented Wednesday, 30 Oct 2019 at 5:05pm

And Jordy didn't?

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 7:02pm

Is the Vans Pro at Sunset, on now, part of the Triple Crown or is it a QS round, qualifying guys for a later WCT Sunset comp?

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 7:04pm

Not part of the Triple Crown. It's a QS 3,000 and qualifier for the TC.

We don't usually run live pages for lesser QS comps but considering the forecast figured we'd switch this one on.

ilikelamb's picture
ilikelamb's picture
ilikelamb commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 10:24pm

Thanks for that, I enjoy watching sunset, it’s somehow relatable to me, kind of like a large beachie season... Big outside peak then deAth or glory on the inside.
Good stuff.

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 7:03pm

And Stu there is probably a really good article somewhere about turtles.

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 7:19pm

Gimme a clue, VJ. I'm not feeling it.

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 9:19pm

You know, how they are pretty cool and happy characters, how they stick their head up and look you in the eye, how not to run over them, different types, how they lay eggs on beaches, all the baby turtles

but I won't hold my breath for that article :)

AndyM's picture
AndyM's picture
AndyM commented Wednesday, 30 Oct 2019 at 4:11pm

My favourite thing about turtles is how they ride the East Australian Current and speak in a Californian drawl.

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Wednesday, 30 Oct 2019 at 6:42pm

hahahaha! Mr Crush is my father, dude!

Edit: some of my family do the turtle tagging with their kids up in the NW, they reckon when the mums lay their eggs you don't go swimming in the water as there are big tigers loping around in quite shallow water! Then every crab and bird wants to eat them as soon as they hatch.
Poor turtles, it's a lonely life with all the beasties out to get them.

crg's picture
crg's picture
crg commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 7:09pm

Re: The Olympic qualification.
He could just be doing a Kelly to Kelly.
A few little mind games perhaps....?

I'm not cheap,
But I'm free.

lostdoggy's picture
lostdoggy's picture
lostdoggy commented Tuesday, 29 Oct 2019 at 8:37pm

The ACL experts aren't really confident until 12 months and then 18 months to be certain.
People return earlier than this as we all know,
You can pass all the tests but the risk of re-injury following return to sport isn't fully reduced until that 18 months is up.

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf commented Wednesday, 30 Oct 2019 at 3:43pm

Yep that is what mine took back in the dark ages when they pulled your whole knee apart and stuck you in plaster for 6 weeks. A lot of AFL players came back after 8 months and it snapped again. Now the pull them out for a minimum of 12 months.

jetson.rover's picture
jetson.rover's picture
jetson.rover commented Wednesday, 30 Oct 2019 at 5:09pm

JJF will be wearing the thickest stiffest best quality knee brace on the market in those comps i would imagine.

Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean commented Wednesday, 30 Oct 2019 at 12:05am

Go John! Great to see little buddy is doing better.
He's probably pretty motivated to get back in the water.
14 months in Hawaii and not be able to surf, I couldn't do that .......

The MIDdleman.'s picture
The MIDdleman.'s picture
The MIDdleman. commented Wednesday, 30 Oct 2019 at 10:51am

I had a total knee recon as an active fit teenager who was trying his hardest to get well and I couldnt surf for 10 months at least...in very much non pipe conditions.

I'm now a 37 yo ...3 months into post surgery acl recon on my other knee and I ain't catching waves for a year.

6 months scares me...even with him being an elite athlete his knee wont be fully ready....its just a physiological time thing for the ACL to re knit to the bone.

I wish him well but also wish he'd wait.
I like his surfing.

Signature.

jetson.rover's picture
jetson.rover's picture
jetson.rover commented Wednesday, 30 Oct 2019 at 5:19pm

Yes his knee is much more important than an appearance in the olympics.
He's young enough to get chances for the olympics again in the future.
Just let the old GOAT get his final crowning glory of his career, even though it's highly unlikely he'll be winning a gold medal.
Slater wants the status of being the greatest surfer ever to surf in the inaugural olympics for surfing.
JJF should value a 100% fully fit knee again over a medal.
At 6 months after he reinjured it 90 or 95% won't cut it without taking a significant risk.

The MIDdleman.'s picture
The MIDdleman.'s picture
The MIDdleman. commented Wednesday, 30 Oct 2019 at 10:55am

Also just a suggestion JJ.
Now that both my shoulders and knees have been fully reconned...

Goat Boats are due for their inevitable resurgence get your sponsors onboard and start a paddling.

Signature.

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf commented Wednesday, 30 Oct 2019 at 3:45pm

Geez did you step on a black cat or something. What a bitch.

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Wednesday, 30 Oct 2019 at 6:39pm

Actually a bit worried for JJF after reading all the knee info...

I've really enjoyed his surfing in recent years, he brought rail back to pro surfing like at Margs 2016 and I got to watch him live in 10ft Bells, incredible stuff.

bradleyyoung's picture
bradleyyoung's picture
bradleyyoung commented Wednesday, 30 Oct 2019 at 11:27pm

Not all doom and gloom for JJF. Had my medial and acl recon 20 years back using hamstring tendon and was playing professional sport again inside 6 months. Modern medicine and treatment with a good rehab could have him in better shape than most might think. Would love to see him compete and tear Medina and co a new one in pumping big waves. Hard to go past him at his best. Know I’ve got my fingers crossed for it

B

kang's picture
kang's picture
kang commented Thursday, 31 Oct 2019 at 8:24am

Its 2ft onshore at pipe, Medina does a shitty spinny thingy and snaps his ACL in the seeding round. The next day its 15ft bombs, JJF wins pipe over Jordy who claims the world title.

A gal can dream....

Johnyuleanderson's picture
Johnyuleanderson's picture
Johnyuleanderson commented Friday, 1 Nov 2019 at 9:31am

Hope he's not coming back to early just to get in the Olympics. Yahh I won Gold for surfing a shitty 2 foot beach break in Japan! At least he won't need to do airs at Pipe to win if it's pumping

Sprout's picture
Sprout's picture
Sprout commented Friday, 1 Nov 2019 at 4:19pm

-

D-Rex's picture
D-Rex's picture
D-Rex commented Friday, 1 Nov 2019 at 8:10pm

Yeah, no one at swellnet gives a hoot about pro surfing.

Vic Local's picture
Vic Local's picture
Vic Local commented Saturday, 2 Nov 2019 at 9:16am

Modern medicine doesn't change the fact that it takes a year to fully recover from a ruptured ACL. Returning to a twisting sport such as skiing, football, netball, and surfing after 6 months is just asking for another round of ACL surgery.
I can actually imagine JJF's surgeon and physio rolling their eyes at this announcement. I hope I'm wrong, but don't be shocked if JJF's knee crumbles again.

"angry online, smiley in the brine"

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Friday, 22 Nov 2019 at 2:39pm

JJF didn't surf Haleiwa, and his name's also not in the draw for Sunset, however three minutes ago the wozzle posted the event PDF for the Pipe Masters with JJF in Heat 8.