Not really watching the Olympics this time around, but it was on in someone's house we were visiting and I happened to catch a couple competitors' names: One guy had the last name Yamamoto, and I kid you not the full name of another dude was...Logan Martin! Bassin's everywhere!! 🀯 🀣

Summer pro tourneys now = lotsa smallmouth tourneys. Anyone miss the summer deep-crankin'/wormin' fests? I do. Hear those probably won't happen anymore because of fish care...? Gotta be a way to make that work, maybe like they did at this year's Classic: Weigh 'em all at check-in and return 'em right away except maybe for 2 for holdin' up on stage, then weigh 'em all the last day. Not talkin' alotta tourneys so maybe?

Examples: Would we even know about David Fritts and would we have his great crankbaits without summer tourneys? How 'bout KVD Classic wins? Rick Clunn, Takahiro Omori, etc?
Today's Top 5
Lookit these fat brownies!!!! 🀯
Can't stop looking at this pic, dang! Zack Birge with a couple golden mooses:
I can feel 'em "thunk" like a fish made outta concrete, then zip up to the surface like they were 'lectric-shocked!

Don't think I deserve anything but at some point I hope someone gives me that for my birthday or Christmas...😁...please forward this to my wife...πŸ˜†
Top 10 baits breakdown from the Oneida, NY Bassmaster Open.
Won by NY's Bill Perkins who I think was fishing his first Open? Led every day and won by 2 lbs at what ended up being a super-windy event the 1st 2 days. He said:

> "I haven't slept, I haven't eaten, I've been losing my mind, but it was all worth it. Thank God – He blessed me this week and He's blessed me time and time again."

> ...targeted rocky bottom structure in about 14-20'. "I was fishing a drop shot with a 2.8" Keitech Easy Shiner and a 1/4-oz tungsten weight, and a 1/6-oz Z-Man Ned Head with a Z-Man TRD in the 'goby Bryant' color. I had to go heavier on my weights to keep the baits on the bottom."

Dropshot = 70% – Berkley MaxScent Flat Worm 20%

Ned = 20%

Crankbait = 20% – Rapala DT8 and Strike King Series 5

10% each = Bladed jig (JackHammer), Flip plastics, Jig, Swimbait, Carolina rig


1. One of Mike Iaconelli's clones finished 4th. I think this was the clone that only drives full speed no matter the conditions...😁

2. Brandon "Top 10" Palaniuk finished 9th.

3. Jacob Powroznik finished 10th, sounds like he's gunning to get back on the Elites.
Top 10 baits breakdown from the St Lawrence MLF Pro Circuit.
Heartbreaker for AR's Joey Cifuentes who had a big lead going into the last day but ended up 3rd. Winner was VA's Cody Pike who says he's not much of a smallmouth guy?

> Pike's spots were tucked away in between the islands near Eel Bay whereas Cifuentes utilized areas more along the main channel down near Clayton.

> "I was fishing rockpiles about the size of my boat. I was casting right to the rockpiles, and I'd get bit my first cast to it because they could see my bait if they were on that rockpile. So, I didn't need to sit there and beg them to bite. If I didn't get bit I could just move to the next one."

> ...he was throwing just about the same thing everyone else was – a green pumpkin Berkley PowerBait MaxScent Flat Worm on a dropshot....

Dropshot = 80% – MaxScent Flat Worm 60%, Berkley Gulp! Minnow 10%

Hair jig = 20%

Jerkbait = 20%

10% each = Spinbait, Ned rig, Jig/Jighead, Wacky rig (Berkley MaxScent The General), Carolina rig, Swimbait


1. Some dudes named John Cox and Skeet Reese finished 6th and 7th respectively.

2. Loved this line about LA's Justin Cooper (9th): "Justin Cooper doesn't do finesse...he put a 'big boy rod' in his hands and dragged a Carolina-rigged V&M J-Bug (gp)...."
Heck yeah bassin' bro! πŸ˜‚ Also looks a little like Cliff Crochet??
Some ICAST wanderin's.
Random stuff for ya:

1. ICAST industry breakfast speaker dude was good, but said new anglers "want awesome and easy." Well, fishing is already awesome. Good luck with that easy deal!

2. He also said 61% of new anglers are "casual" – which makes sense because how could they be serious right off the bat? But either way, still the folks most into it are the ones spending the most $$. Also, with all the boat sales I'm bettin' all new fishermen can't be new – because how many new folks buy a boat?

3. Once again a smaller attendance this year but more lithium battery companies than I've ever seen in one place before. I've never run those kinda batteries but I hear they're all different and have chips in 'em?

4. Found an entire table of bass-heads – was the only full bass-head table I saw but then again I was running pretty wide open. Anyhow, appreciate 'em takin' the time to talk.
From my left – any spelling or other errors I apologize for, my bad typing 'em in:

- NPFL angler Jake Chauncy of Texarkana, TX
- NPFL angler Courtland Williams of IL
- LA 'yak angler Kalon Johnson – fished Bassmaster, KBF and Hobie
- GA MLFLW fisherman James "Jay Striker" Barnett
- Isaac Payne, designer of baits and way more, based outta GA
- MD's Ray Heredia, tourney bass fisherman and founder of Latin American Bass Anglers (could not find a link for that)
- GA's Angel Padilla (I think? Sorry Angel, can't read my notes man), also a tourney angler, has a real cool battery thing going I hope to out at some point!

Fun group and several are retired military πŸ‘Š good dudes!

5. The Auburn U bassin' team is smart! I know that's tough to believe what with the Lee bros and Steve Kennedy (😁 just messin' guys!) but for real now – the team had a booth at ICAST, I believe the first college team/club ever to do so, and from what they said they had a lotta interest. Paid for it out of club funds. Verrrrrrrry smart and helped 'em develop some biz skilz!

6. Lotta industry focus on new folks coming into fishing. Interesting because that amount of focus is entirely new. More coming on that.

7. Garmin's aviation division has tech that will land a plane with push of a button. How would that come to fishing? πŸ€”

8. Seems like SPRO is gunning to be one of the major bait companies, with tons of new SKUs including soft-plastics, lines and all kinda stuff.

9. $700 fishing pliers??? Someone said that's what they cost, couldn't find it online, must be for the high-dolla offshore crowd (like Jeff Kriet!).

10. Seaguar Tatsu fluoro is now in 17 and 22 lb – Here's the mystery man with 'em:
11. Meet Andre Newson, creator of the Swimming Snake. Andre's an ex college football player (I think he was in a pro camp), a large dude still and ate up with bassin'. He wanted to invent a bait and he said he'd "never seen a versatile worm on the market."
Here's what it does:
Believe it comes in 3 colors, one of which is "Holy Ghost white." πŸ‘Š

12. T-H Marine has a new thing going called "Boating Essentials." Pretty cool. Packages up the stuff we need to do something on our rigs – like this stuff, for wirin':
Looks like you can buy what you need instead of going to a big box store where you need to not have the exact stuff and buy like 50 of something instead of just 3.

13. Got a cab ride to the airport from "Junior," an immigrant from I believe Puerto Rico who said he'd rather live here and be poor than live in PR and have more money...for all the reasons we know to be true even tho certain parties seem to want to be denying that stuff now. πŸ€” Anyhow, Junior barely spoke English but still gave me his testimony, which for anyone who doesn't know God means his salvation story. Said he loves "Yeesus" – lol loved it!
Little fishin'/workin' on Candlewood Lake, CT yesterday.
Ol' bud and former Bassmaster pro Terry Baksay took my 19-yr-old son and I out. Fun day, typical fishing day (for me anyhow!) where it was like the dead see for like 5 hours and then they started biting:

1. We dropshotted, we cranked, we Keiteched, we flipped Tokyo Rigs...but nothing worked til the fish decided to bite, and then it was one (and a couple real nice yella perch) on a Rapala DT20 and the rest on either MaxScent Flat Worms or half a MaxScent Creature Hawg.

2. I lost 2 real nice ones 😑 and was still mad about it this morning! First one was the first bite after hours of no bites and I actually thought I was snagged (it was a nice'n!) and the second one came unpinned at the boat. Proved to me that a) I'd rather fish casting gear because I think I can get a took into 'em better and b) I suck! lol

3. Magical depth was the teens. Deeper was dead, shallower was dead for some reason.

4. Terry, who just got back from fishing the Oneida Open, is a big-time convert on the VMC Tokyo Rig (vid coming soon) and MaxScent. He was also digging the Abu Zenon MH flip stick I brought along. I thought is Spiralite spinning rod was real nice...for a spinning rod. 😁

5. I was tryin' out Smith Optics Guide's Choice shades in bronze/gold mirror. Really liked 'em. About the same price as Costa I believe, different technology and I think lighter in weight but I can't prove it without one of Garrett Paquette's scales...🀣 Long-time sports sunglass company, talked to 'em at ICAST, sounds like they might start courtin' bass-heads, let's see what happens.

6. Terry's Raymarine graph resolution and "matte" screen was real nice.

7. Guess CT is one of several Northeast lakes that has a speed limit on lakes?? We experienced enough zoo out there on a weekday, that's probly wise! The pontooners and ski boats I expected, but a young kid in an older bass rig idled straight across where we were casting – we were about 20 yards off the bank. Crazy. I wanted to say something to him but it wasn't my show....

8. We stopped by Paul Mueller's house, put some empty MaxScent bags in his mailbox then laid on the horn til he came out – then peeled outta there. HAHAHA! Just messin'...but I thought about it....

> "The flipping tube is a favorite of mine. It's fallen off the radar, but day in and day out, it's a phenomenal lure. And put it on top of their head – whether it's docks, laydowns or matted vegetation, just drop it right on them." how to be a better person 🀣 and:

> ...point the Mega Live at them to see how individual fish would react to a bait. That's a huge advantage over anything we had before.

> In the past I would've written those fish off as a big school of sand bass, but because of the clarity of the picture I knew exactly what they were.

Mike is gonna be the Realtree of fishin' pretty soon – meaning licensing. Good for him!

2nd to last derby happening this week. Top 3 kinda tight:

1. Ott DeFoe – 352
2. Brent Ehrler – 342
3. Jacob Wheeler – 338
4. Bobby Lane – 311
5. Justin Lucas – 309

Assumin' you've seen it already, no new lakes though they are back at Oahe, SD and 1 still TBA.

8. MN: Randy Moss had a Straight Bass Classic at Minnetonka.

In memory of media guy Sid Hartman. Randy talkin' – can't link it, at vikings com:

> "The only thing he had to do was just continue to keep it real with the players, and I think that's what he was able to do. Where I come from, we call it 'keeping it real.' In common terms, you call it loyalty. He was a loyal man."

That is for sure rare on the media side, or anywhere for that matter. I'd also call it confident humility.

In this Jewel Baits tip vid, he said he likes Senkos and the bigger Jewel Versa Craw:

6 new ramps, parking for 180. Wonder if locals are pushing for 2 ramps and parking for 20...😁

"Leech" pattern? All of it sounds like smallie fishing in MN but it's green fish in TX:

> ...tossed his offering into the hole and let it slowly sink. As the fly fell....

> The 10 reservoirs that produced Legacy Class ShareLunkers entries – O.H. Ivie, Sam Rayburn, Conroe, Austin, Travis, Palestine, Coleman City, Fork, Eagle Mountain and Lake Tyler...all received stocking of ShareLunker fingerlings.

Due to low water.

If you drift over there...because of covid??

> ...since March 2020 those caught on the Canadian side have run the risk of having their boat confiscated and being fined by Canadian law enforcement officials.

School of the Year on the Bass Pro Shops college trail. Congrats! grow grassroots fishing.

Nitro, Ranger, Triton.

> Operating income of $371 mil, a 97% increase over the prior year quarter.

Marine was up 66% year over year.

> ...[net sales] up $567 mil from the 2nd quarter of 2020.

> Additionally, versus the 2nd quarter of 2020: Propulsion segment reported a 64% increase in sales...Parts and Accessories segment reported a 42% increase in sales...Boat segment reported an 80% increase in sales....

Couldn't quickly find how much debt Bass Pro has but this indicates it's a lot:

> S&P Global Ratings upgraded its issuer credit rating on Great Outdoors, the corporate name of Bass Pro Group, to 'BB-' from 'B+' as the retailer's performance "has been resilient with sales and EBITDA growth continuing through the 2nd quarter this year, ahead of our expectations."

> The rating agency also noted that Great Outdoors, which also owns Cabela's, is expected to close the nearly $800 mil Sportsman's Wearhouse acquisition later this year, which will bolster its scale in a cash-funded transaction.

> ...the company is redeploying about $800 mil of cash to acquire Sportsman's Warehouse, a chain of about 120 stores. This use of cash bolsters the business but comes with execution risks.

Headline of the Day

What's a Z-Man star?? And maybe they actually should give out a crown for this deal. Props to Bryan Brasher and Bassin' Times for this cover:
Is Seth yodeling there?? πŸ˜‚
On right now... 

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Tip of the Day

Interesting...and we were seeing bluegills in 15-20+ foot humps fishing in CT yesterday so....

> Thanks to the amazing technologies of side imaging and Humminbird's 360 imaging, we have since learned that different varieties of bream, including bluegills, spawn in deeper water – and deeper into the summer – than we once thought. In many states, bream will bed well into Aug and Sept. ...I've seen bream beds as deep as 15-17' in the middle summer, far off the bank.

> Deep "waffles" are the sunken treasures of catching bass in the dog days of summer. Those deep beds are like underwater ecosystems – I think of them as coral reefs in fresh water.

> Scanning around deep docks, piers and pilings are good places to start. Offshore places such as deep points, shoals, humps, flats or river bars in 10-20' are likely areas too. Having some kind of cover on those places is a big help: rock, shell, brush, scattered logs or laydowns....
Quote of the Day
"...they use as light a line as possible so the fish can't see it, meaning the line can easily break unless they put as little pressure on it as possible, patiently tiring the beast as they gently guide it boatside, at which point they frequently pluck it out with their hand."

- Chicago writer dude talkin' 'bout pro bassers. Seems like he has a decent understanding of smallie fishing, but obviously not largemouthin'! He does say the pros are athletes, which in some ways they are...which to me are endurance, hand-eye coordination and a few other things.

Post is kinda a lookback at the Chicago Classic....
Shot of the Day
How not to trailer...and guessin' these peeps had a heck of a loud vehicle sound system?? From JP DeRose's Insta:

Uh, why?? No thanks! We'll stick with meat...also some BBQ beans....

Ya got me!
Jay Kumar's BassBlaster is a daily-ish roundup of the best and funniest (sometimes worst) stuff in bassin', picked by me – Jay Kumar. I started, co-hosted Loudmouth Bass with Zona, was a B.A.S.S. senior writer and a bunch more in bassin'. The Blaster is the #2 daily read on any given day in the wide world o' bass so thanks for readin'!

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