John John Florence! What the hell? In Round 4, with Mick Fanning having comboed Florence (and Sebastian Zietz) and surfing fantastically–circa early 2000’s–Florence unleashed his futuristic style where he mixes free- and contest-surfing seamlessly, throwing a gigantic alley-oop to save a heat win and move directly to the quarters.
This after he logged a high nine, going rail-to-rail and breaking combo. Martin Potter went nuts. Peter Mel was gushing. Barton Lynch didn’t know what to say (for once). The crowd was stoked. And John John actually claimed. That’s right, actually threw his fists towards the judges. A justified celebration, given that throwing an alley-oop in wonky, semi-flat Bells Beach conditions is well, efffing unheard of.