In the end, it all came down to the final exchange...
But when John John Florence and Jordy Smith headed out for their Quarterfinal heat Sunday morning, they jumped into what looked like very contestable conditions at Supertubes. The expected winds hadn't arrived yet and there was plenty of overhead sets coming through. Eager to make the most of a very dicey forecast Commissioner Kieren Perrow gave the official go-ahead.
Unfortunately, the minute the dynamic duo hit the water the ocean went flat. Smith and Florence got stuck playing the no-priority game, a cross between chicken and chess. A restart was given after 15 minutes went by without a wave ridden. Then, Florence blinked, and took off on a small closeout.
Jordy got the priority he desired, and used it to get a 6. But both surfers struggled to stick anything impressive in the tricky conditions.
But what started as a sleeper ended with a bang, as a flurry of waves were ridden in the final two minutes of the crucial heat. Florence was still down with under one minute to go, but pulled the proverbial rabbit out of the hat in the dying seconds. See how it all went down.