Tiger VS. Bear: Damien Hobgood and Matt Lopez

posted by / Video / September 5, 2013

In the second installment of Tiger VS. Bear, we head to the toilsome shores of San Francisco. Damien Hobgood and Matt Lopez sniff out treats as mighty as the Golden Gate itself. Damo’s is deep and steep, and he exhibits the kind of skill exclusive to WCT surfers. Matt’s is long and wild — he disappears even though the camera angle is looking into the tube. Both waves are modern marvels. Now feast your eyes and cast your vote.

Who won the fight: the tiger or the bear?

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  • daryl S.

    Obviously I am going for the guy who’s not the FL kook hoping someone on a wave like that. I just lost all respect I had for DH after seeing that. 5 star loser in my book he is…

  • sean

    let me start by saying damien is my favorite goofyfooter on the tour, but did anybody change their vote in favor of local matt lopez because there was a guy (probably a local) itching for the same wave as hobgood; but deeper

  • sean

    …because i sure did

  • Ice Ice Baby

    that dude barely made the drop and had no chance of getting under the lip

  • norkilla

    regardless of the fact damo burned a guy-he was definitely not going to pack that thing-Lopez’ wave is bigger and the barrel was deeper. Both guys disappear completely but Lopez’ wave was shot looking INTO the barrel. Use your heads and let an underdog have his day

  • LA Go Home

    WTF… Damien’s not a Tiger he’s a Snake. There are waves everywhere at OB. If you need to stuff someone to get a wave on a day like that is a snake. No question. Damien is a kook too. He was kooking out the day before at mavs. So pathetic that surfer mag shows this kind of behavior. No wonder LA and the OC are so f’d up.

    Shame on anyone that votes for the snake. At to those of you who think you can come up to NorCal and get away with that kind of behavior think again. BVB and OLB will take you down.

  • Jimmicane

    Florida kook? haha! You seriously just call Damien Hobgood a kook? That’s gotta be dumbest thing I’ve heard this week. And then the other guy backs it up by calling this Surfer Mag.

    I heard the back story behind that wave. The guy getting burned paddled straight around Damo as the set was coming in. So blatantly that Damien thought there was no way the guy was trying to go right. It turns out he’s also from Florida.

  • Barbara Burdick

    The unseen triumph is that Matt Lopez almost lost his left leg a few years ago after being hit by taxi in San Francisco: broken tib/fib, broken, nose, dislocated shoulder and thought dead. He developed compartment syndrome on the injured leg that is pieced together with rods and screws and lost half his body blood plus other complications. This feat is 10 surgeries and a lot of physical therapy later. The triumph of a body within a spectacular wave.

  • norkilla

    I can vouch for Jimmicane on this one. I was out there on both sessions with Damo, this one at Ocean Beach and the one at Mavs. First of all, it was crowded as fuck at Ocean Beach that day; mostly with amateurs that I couldn’t believe even made it out there. If Damo doesn’t burn the guy, that guy doesn’t have a snowballs chance in hell of making that barrel, let alone make a bottom turn. At mavs, no one really got any waves, the interval was 20 seconds+ and he was on an 8′ something board. That said… he burned me on a wave out there, but gave me plenty of room and we hi-fived afterward.

    Barbara Burdick’s story is also absolutely true. Matty was out at Mavs this past winter snagging bombs as well!!

    Bottom line: VOTE LOCAL !!!! VOTE FOR MATT LOPEZ !!!!!

    Damien Hobgood is PAID to surf. Matt Lopez has to WORK to surf. Matty’s also a grade A human being

  • matt

    Why is Matt Lopez Backside on both of the waves??Switchfooter???

  • Drew

    Remarkable waves both. Its a tie.

  • RT

    There was no way that guy was going to make that wave. Quit cryin’.

  • Myers

    Yeah Matty Lopez! Sick one homie! Bayy area… it’s like dat.

  • Ice Ice Baby

    if i were where damien was i would have gone too! that dude is clearly a barn and had NO CHANCE. thats not even considered a burn, thats just doing a good wave the justice of being surfed proper. if i pulled back for every kook that called it and then went straight my wave count would be very low

  • FoDaNinaz

    Sorry, can’t vote for some Florida “pro” who hassles and drops in on people in really heavy situations.

  • Chris

    LOPEZ!! Lost A LOT of respect for Damo!! The Local surfer, would have been able to draw a different line, had Damo not burned him, and may have gotten barreled. This shows how greedy pro’s can be, surf the best waves around the world and get paid to do it, and burn locals at their home breaks? WTF Bad Form! This is the lack of Etiquette that sets a BAD example for young groms!

  • michael andrew

    Damo didnt burn anyone. I was surfing that day there and that whole week. When its that stiff offshore your not “drawing a different line” Its not G-land people. That wave was square and Damo made it. Unfortunately that other guy made no effort to get under the lip or even scratch in early enough to make a case for being burned. He took the only line he was ever gonna take when he started paddling.

  • mrniceguy

    the guy that damo burned is a douchebag anyways. And yes, he had no chance in hell of making it. That said, Matt’s wave is begger and better and had a spit to put icing on the cake

  • Ben

    Matt wins, primarily because the wave was bigger. Regardless, what a heavy, epic session.

  • Castro

    Not sure it’s a great idea to call a guy from San Francisco a bear. That said, the bear takes it. Easy.

  • ItsOnlyAParkingLotWang

    Everybody, and I mean everybody has made a judgement call to drop into a wave if they think the guy closest to the peak is looking like he might not have proper position and line to make it. That poor bastards fate was sealed as soon as he got to his feet and was slowed down for a fraction of a second by the lip and the stiff offshore wind- his chance, which looked slim at best to begin with – was null and void as he made one hell of an balls out attempt on drop at 00.08 seconds into the clip. Damo was / is saavy enough to make that split second read and gathered what one man valiantly spilled, end of story. If I was that guy I would have been stoked for DH and the fact that I at least gave it hell. As for the winner I say Matty if a fucken hard charger but the degree of difficulty, dealing with the dude trying to make the same wave and tat last second pull in under that hamming lip gives Dam the slight edge over Matt. And to all the d-nozzels hating on Damien Hobgood, you have no flippen clue what a stand-up guy he is so shut your pie holes, you have no idea what you are talking about …

  • Big Dog

    Lope-nuts wins this battle. It was insane watching the pros dismantle those big waves that weekend. They surfed like nothing we usually see up here. But Lopes spun on that beast when Damo didn’t want it. That was my boys first wave of the day, “no warm-up, first try bitch”. Matt handles that behemoth like a champ. Best tube of the swell!
    Now that dude getting torched by Hob-nuts should be stoked. Whatever he would have done on that wave wouldn’t have come close to what damo did. Be stoked you were even in the frame of such insane surfing. I know I’d be.

  • Christy

    Matt, hands down, better wave, bigger wave, cleaner, deeper tube, better judgment, and aesthetically better to boot.

  • wtf happen?

    wow and some of you guys call that damo burned that surfer? that happens alot in hawaii because if you look real good there was no way that guy could’ve got in and get barreled. he just made the drop! which was an good effort but Lopez had the better wave. bear smash tiger

  • Dreaming

    Hats-off to both surfers for their killer barrel rides! I’d have to go out on a limb and state that Hobgood’s barrel was definitely more late and critical with the steeper drop and perhaps even the “against the grain-ness” of the rights during that swell (the lefts looked like they ran down the beach a little more).Hobgood was committed and narrowly avoided that heavy lip to the head where as dude behind him didn’t have a snowball’s chance in pursuing that barrel. Not to take anything away from Mr. Lopez…great barrel as well (maybe just with and easier entry) and an even better recovery story as mentioned in the comments above…this really IS a silly idea for a column SURFING…this whole Tiger vs. Bear thing…