Maloof Money Cup... three words that have literally transformed the skate world in the last two years. This is the contest that makes guys like Marc Johnson and Torey Pudwill come out and compete. Sure, you can theoretically throw a $100K into the pot and sit back and wait for the fireworks, but sponsors and promoters know better than to merely assume when it comes to skating. The pros, and fans alike, can sniff out a fake. The brothers Maloof were wise to put everything in the skaters hands and just write a check when it was all said and done.
The party in Vegas last weekend was bananas. The Palms was first rate, and although they must have assumed that my camera guy and I were life partners (one bed in a suite, along with a bottle of Tesco champ?), the stories are too legendary and graphic in nature to type. One of the perks was being one of the first to play EA's Skate 3. This game is so real it's unreal. I played as Lizard King, because he was sitting next to me. Side note: I would have never played as Lizard King if he wasn't sitting next to me. The pure joy of playing this game is comparable to the first time you played Tony hawk Pro Skater on Playstation. If you're a gamer you have to go out and get it.
Another new wrinkle with this year's cup is adding Vans into the equation after two years of sponsorship with Sole Tech. This is pretty large for Vans as they really have been looking for a contest to brand with on a grand scale. Not since the Vans Triple Crown has the company had something like this on their plate.
So check out the videos and if you're in the Brooklyn or OC area this summer, there's no reason why you should miss THE GREATEST EVENT IN ALL OF SKATEBOARDING (per Joe Maloof).
Brando covers Action Sports for 710 ESPN Radio in Los Angeles and is host of 710's Late Night Action on Friday nights 9-10p PST.