March 18th, 2010 by bryansoderlind

Do you recognize this guy? Daniel Lovett was a Florida wakeskater who burst on to the scene years ago with his varial flip and his wake to wake kickflip behind a pontoon boat. Even though some people wouldn’t give the kickflip credit since the wake was pretty tiny there was still no denying the guy had some skills. He even managed to land himself a part in the legendary wakeskate film by Justin Stephens, Asterisk. After that Daniel’s wakeskating career seemed to fade away.

I happened to run into Daniel a few weeks ago when I was shooting a professional MMA fighter who is a friend of mine. I asked my friend to bring someone to grapple with for the photos and that person just happened to be Mr. Lovett.

Daniel said he doesn’t wakeskate much anymore but he did a few months ago and he still had some of his old tricks. Daniel now works at the country bar, Jesse Black’s (George Daniel’s favorite hangout), and spends his free time training to be a professional MMA fighter. I wasn’t too big into wakeskating when Daniel came onto the scene but I do remember him being kind of the first guy to come out of nowhere and really prove that wakeskating was a sport that was open to anyone and not just the rich kids whose parents could afford 70,000 boats.

Of course since Daniel is now training in MMA I had to pose the question, “Would you be willing to take on Rusty? He’s all about this stuff.” Daniel seemed pretty excited about the possibility saying, “He’s a pretty big guy, but man I’d really like that.” Be on the lookout for the match up, Rusty said he is down and we are going to make this happen.

27 Responses to “Where Are They Now: Daniel Lovett”

  1.  
  2. max Says:

    id pay to watch it

     
  3. adam silcio Says:

    that’s funny. believe it or not, i did that exact opposite… did mma and brazilian jiu-jitsu in high school before it was the cool thing to do. back then they considered people fighting in their underwear to be gay. so they made fun of us. and now, ‘everyone’ is a fighter.

    then i found wakeboarding in college. needless to say, it was the better transition.

     
  4. whiskey Says:

    can’t stand mma.

     
  5. Parky Says:

    This guy is the reason I started wakeskating… seeing him ride behind that pontoon boat! Glad hes doing well

     
  6. Gus was here Says:

    does he paint his toe nails?

     
  7. BILLY Says:

    parky sighting!

     
  8. haha Says:

    ^^^woah

     
  9. Devils Advocate Says:

    How is this sad?
    What’s sad is all of the douchbags trying to hold onto wakeboarding just for the party and the lifestyle. Most of these guys don’t even really enjoy it anymore. What is going to happen when the Pointless guys are all 35 with kids? It looks to me like this guy found something else he grew a passion for and is into it. That’s awesome.
    The people that wakeboard and wakeskate just for the sake of being able to continue to hold the “rider” title is f%$#ing stupid. This sport is so cannibalistic and closed off to any new talent or new direction that it is going to fade away just like skiing did and become a sport that had it’s “era” and we’ll see a few dudes rocking grey mohawks just trying to hang on to the glory days. How is this sport growing? Within the past 5 years the only real “growth” has been kids winching across ponds for 10 second little hits and we are so starved for progression and development that it has been marketed as a “new direction” or “growth”. It’s pathetic. How long is doing shuvits over mall fountains really going to be cool?Other than Danny Harf everyone is just rehashing the old shit. Even then, sweet, lets all do wrapped spins now….progression? Lets face it, unless some people start doing double corks(double Pete?) in their run or someone other than Lyman grows some f-ing balls and we start playing with the wake to rail stuff to the point of being able to actually incorporate it into our sport beyond just leaving it hang out to dry becoming a stunt someone did one time . We are just going to fade to dust and become the joke that rollerblading is. Enjoy the cheap drinks at “Other bar” while you can boys. Because shortly your just gonna be the same dudes standing around making each other feel cool and sucking each other off getting beat up by “regular Joes” for being elitist ass-monkeys. If this sport had anything in it other than a bunch of spoiled spoon fed little stuck up rich kids….we might have a chance.

     
  10. Spit Fast Says:

    why is the devil’s advocate even on this site if he doesn’t like the sport… Must be Daniel himself!

     
  11. Lake Monkey Says:

    take it easy hot rods. this isnt a complicated topic. if you love to ride, then ride. if you dont, do something you are passionate about. age, money, progression. all of these things should have nothing to do with your decision. but at least be a man and support others to pursue their passion.

    San Dimas High School Football Rules!

     
  12. Shoe Says:

    MMA is legit. Wakeboarding is my number 1 love. If it wasn’t for Matt Hickman, I would not have a boat and not be a wakeboarder today. As someone who practices both sports, I have to say that Daniel may have potentially taken a very good risk in his life with his decision. MMA athletes are some of the best in the world. We are talking Olympic athletes, NCAA all-american wrestlers, world’s strongest man competitors, boxers, kickboxers, and former pro football players. Not just benchwarmers and arena has-beens, but actual starting NFL drafted players. I know that boarding falls and even just riding big and frequent can be very hard on the body. I have scars on my head and legs, a lump on my arm from where I caught my arm through the handle on a fall and tore my bicep and tricep, as well as frequently sore knees to prove it. However, I still say that mma is physically more demanding on the body, especially to be pro. You have to practice so many disciplines, build an intense cardio, power lift, cut drastic weight in a short time period, as well as get the crap beat out of you on a daily basis. Deep cuts on the face are very frequent.

    Financially… no question, mma is definitely more profitable. Look at all the exposure… yeah… WAY WAY WAAAAY bigger than wakeboarding. Don’t get me wrong, I own tons of wake vids, got the subscriptions, and if it were not for the wakeboarding media I would not be wakeboarding today. Simply, facts are facts. Look at all of the coverage: Spike, VS, MTV, Fox sports, ESPN, HDnet, Showtime, CBS and now NBC and Telemundo are about to get in on the action. CBS plans to show mma commercials for the next Strikeforce event during the NCAA tournament. Has there ever been a wakeboarder on the cover of Sports Illustrated or ESPN mag? I have yet to see a wakeboarding event crowd turn-out come close to one of those UFC pay-per-view events and wakeboarding events are ridiculously cheaper if not free.

    You have to look at the crossover possibilities as well. 1. Film/TV shows. Rampage Jackson is freakin B.A. Baracus in the new A-Team movie. Cung Le was in Fighting w/ Channing Tatum and Terrance Howard, Pandorum w/ Dennis Quaid, and coming out in the Tekken film. Roger Huerta is also coming out in the Tekken film, Tito Ortiz was in an episode of NUMB3RS, an episode of Mad TV, and The Apprentice. Forrest Griffin was in an episode of Law and Order and, not to mention, the first season of very popular nationally televised reality show The Ultimate Fighter and the legendary fight with Stephan Bonnar that put in the finale that put mma on the map. Chuck Liddell was in an episode of Entourage, How High with Method Man and Redman, Drillbit Taylor, a Simpsons episode, Dancing With The Stars, multiple late night talk shows, and he got Punked! Randy Couture has done tons of acting and has a major role in the new Sylvester Stallone feature film The Expendables with Sylvester, Jet Li, Jason Statham, Bruce Willis, Stone Cold Steve Austin, the late Brittany Murphy, Mickey Rourke, and Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to name a few. 2. Advertisements. Rampage is in the new Nike commercial. Rashad Evans was in the “I’m a PC” commercial by Microsoft. Randy Couture had been in a Nike commercial. GSP is in Under Armour ads and a commercial. Uriah Faber is in that new AMP energy drinks commercial.

    Another point: payouts. Some of these fighters are walking away from a single fight with $100,000 from just the fight alone, not including sponsors, regularly. If you get knockout, submission, or fight of the night you could earn a bonus of 30 something thousand, 40 something thousand, 50 something thousand. Hell, you could lose a fight and still walk away with $10,000, $30,000, $50,000, etc. Even in the smaller regional promotions fighters still walk away with a several thousand for a fight. Also, do yall see all those damn sponsors they have on their clothes as they make their entrance? And they don’t just get tossed free equipment from those companies. They get paid serious dough and sometimes even receive a certain percentage of revenue from clothing sales.

    Finally, and I think most importantly, are yall really ragging on a very extreme sport when not to long ago people were ragging on wakeboarding and calling it stupid and just a passing fad. Look at Rusty, arguably the best in the world, a huge fan. Gray Maynard, one of the top lightweight UFC contenders, loves wakeboarding. They were in Wakeboarding Mag together. If anything I see lots of opportunities with wakeboarding and mma combining forces. MMA is huge in Florida and huge in California. Aren’t those the two biggest wakeboarding scenes? Imagine if we got Kimbo Slice in on wakeboarding. That would be huge publicity and hilarious. Seriously though, Donald Trump has partnered with the Affliction promotional company. Imagine if wakeboarding could bring in the Trumpster… a lot of money and a lot of publicity would be coming wakeboarding’s way. MMA has some great businessmen in the industry and that could be very beneficial for wakeboarding were the two sports to work together. Wakeboarding is still fighting for legitimacy and exposure, too, and, honestly, more so than mma. I’m not ragging on wakeboarding. I love landing a smooth tweaked out grab, rolling and getting steazy on the rails. I started boarding way before fighting and when I’m done fighting I will still be boarding. I’m just saying let’s not be hypocrites yall. We should appreciate athleticism for what it is and, also, not rag on people who are just doing what they like to do.

    Yes I’m from Texas… hence the numerous yalls

    Yes, I have way too much time on my hands… college… boring classes.

     
  13. pwieland Says:

    man this awesome! crossover events or partner ships between mma and wakeboarding could be great for wakeboarding. Im down to see it happen.

     
  14. brotastic Says:

    classic message board. good for daniel. go sideline hate on transworld

     
  15. Hmm Says:

    why hate on transworld?

     
  16. John Jackson Says:

    @spitfire.

    How did you get that devils advocate hates wakeboarding from that. Sounds to me like he cares a lot about it. I liked his suggestions for change. Right on!

     
  17. OTT Says:

    Good for you DL!! Keep it up!!

     
  18. Hello Says:

    Why didn’t anyone address the inaccuracy of this article? Its totally wrong and almost puts down a rider that really paved the way for most of us. Get your damn facts straight before you write an article!

     
  19. wow Says:

    If this sport had anything in it other than a bunch of spoiled spoon fed little stuck up rich kids….we might have a chance.

    quoted for truth….. the only way to become good enough to be noticed is by being lucky enough to have rich ass parents

     
  20. legit Says:

    @ John Jackson here is a quote from the devil’s advocate:

    This sport is so cannibalistic and closed off to any new talent or new direction that it is going to fade away just like skiing did and become a sport that had it’s “era” and we’ll see a few dudes rocking grey mohawks just trying to hang on to the glory days.

     
  21. The Dude Says:

    Wow! Can’t people just be possitive.

    And Devil’s Advocate. What the crap dude? Your harshin my mellow. I mean snowboarding, skating, and surfing isn’t doing that bad. I think your attitude might be why you feel wakeboarding is closed off. Sorry, no buddy is doing double pete’s in order to amuse you. But that not what it is about. Its about self expression thru sport.

    MMA is awesome, and Wakeboarding is awesome, and life is awesome. I try to support all of it. Work hard Daniel Lovett, and have fun.

     
  22. The Dude Says:

    And who started this notion that you have to be rich to wakeboard.
    I know a lot of broke a$$ dudes that buy season passes to the cable or stand on the dock with twenty bucks and get alot of riding in. If you think you have to be rich to do anything. Then son your just not willing to work hard enough.
    You might just start with a job and see how far that takes you.

     
  23. Shoe Says:

    I don’t believe the notion that you have to be rich to wakeboard is true. However, I believe a couple of the reasons behind that simply put notion are these:

    - More people tend to shy away from pursuing and investing their interest in wakeboarding than other board sports due to the money issue. The ocean is free. Park benches, ledges, public skate parks, and streets are free. Snowboarding has a more tourist attraction appeal than wakeboarding as well. Children usually get to ride for free. Gas is a big deal regardless of how much a boat cost.

    - Also, if you look at the majority of the big pro riders (I’m not saying ALL) most of them come from families of fairly comfortable financial standing.

    I personally feel that if wakeboarding needs to stop focusing on extravagance and push cheaper items and methods. I understand innovation is key with any sport, but at this stage of wakeboarding’s youth the best thing for exposure might be quantity rather than quality. Spread the love. Wakeboarding equipment has gone nowhere but up. If this gear were considerably cheaper I know at least 40 more of my friends would pursue wakeboarding on a regular basis. I can’t tell you how many times people are shocked when I tell them how much my board or my bindings cost… and I grew up at a high school stereotyped as a “rich kid” school.

    Cable parks could also tone down the extravagence. I feel like if cable parks toned things down a little bit to allow for cheaper prices then it would spread the interest among the public. The majority of riders do not need perfectly sculpted rails and ramps to enjoy them. We don’t need all this other stuff going on at a cable park. I definitely feel that the System 2.0 is a big step in the right direction and there are many ways that haven’t even been thought of yet to utilize this innovative creation. Indoor cable parks are probably going to be the next big thing. Nobody likes cold water and even once you are out of the water there’s the cold air that comes next. Wetsuits and drysuits are expensive.

     
  24. The Dude Says:

    You have a point. I don’t agree that wakeboarding is any more expencive than snowboarding/skiing. Unless of course you buy a boat. But a season pass at the cable is usually cheaper than a lift pass on the hill. and lets just be real a wakeboard set up is no more expencive than a surf board or a even close to a snowboard or snowskis. Plus, in snowboarding/skiing to live there and ride all the time you got to have jacket, pants, gloves, goggles, underclothes and good socks. If you plan on hitting rails you need at least two board or sets of skis a year. And if you want to get into it you can spend a 1000.00 on a pair of ski boots alone. If you add all that stuff up, plus rent in a ski town. Dude, it makes wakeboarding cheap. But, yes System 2.0 are probably going to be a deal. But, its hard to make money on the cable system. They all make their money from the shops. Board and boat sales. And then people want to whine about pricing. Everyone has to make a living. So we can all do what we like to do. The only possible way this stuff will get cheaper is for more people to buy stuff. Not sit on the couch and whine about it.
    Get out there kids. Quit buying video games and movies. Go buy a board save up twenty bucks and lets go ride. You can get a pull at my place, no problem.

    p.s. A winch is the cost of two wakebaord set ups. And will run all year on ten dollars in gas.

    Com’mon Man!

     
  25. Alpha Centuri Says:

    Daniel Lovett helped pave the way for no-name outsiders on a budget to come up and dominate in wakeskating based on board-riding skills. He rode behind a haggard pontoon boat and built his own rails.

    Wakeskating is cool because you don’t have to be the rich kid with a Nautique to get good or even to be the best. Just look at Ben Horan. I read on here that he never even hit rails behind anything but a winch until he won that Toe Jam. That’s awesome. I went to Ben’s house for the Nike 6.0 Raging Pull event and he is nowhere near your stereotypical “waker bro”. Backwoods Georgia, middle-class, has a sweet workshop in his garage where he builds winches and fins and rails and anything you can imagine. He rides winches 10x more than seadoos or boats, and is arguably pushing his image of wakeskating harder than anyone, in a sincere natural way of course. By that I mean he’s not out there talking about it. He’s out there DOING IT.

    That’s what I appreciate about Ben and wakeskaters in general. I think wakeboarders and wakeboarding are stuck in a circle of tail-chasing ignorance and without understanding of the natural motions of other boardsports it’s never going to lose it’s skijock image.

    Wakeskating is really fun, but Americans are dumb and are obviously going to generally want to watch people beat the living shit out of each other more than watch someone else enjoying themselves on the water or to watch a bunch of wakeskaters hang out for a day and see who can shred the hardest. Wakeskating is an inherently esoteric beautiful act of poetry in motion, not a spectator sport. I don’t even call it a sport at all. Tally these up:

    Watching fighting:Watching wakeskating
    Fighting:Wakeskating
    Fighing:Watching wakeskating
    Watching fighting:Wakeskating

    I like to watch fighting and to wakeskate.

    Wakeboarders really need to stop winching. They need to stop pretending they made it up. They need to stop pretending to be wakeskaters. Shredtown would have been cool for a regional update in the mag or a little highlight feature but the hard-on that Alliance has for these dudes is a spit in the face to wakeskaters and makes them look ignorant. Take off the tiedye shirts and find a fucking identity.

    -The Man in the Grey Suit

     
  26. Alpha Centuri Says:

    Daniel Lovett helped pave the way for no-name outsiders on a budget to come up and dominate in wakeskating based on board-riding skills. He rode behind a haggard pontoon boat and built his own rails.

    Wakeskating is cool because you don’t have to be the rich kid with a Nautique to get good or even to be the best. Just look at Ben Horan. I read on here that he never even hit rails behind anything but a winch until he won that Toe Jam. That’s awesome. I went to Ben’s house for the Nike 6.0 Raging Pull event and he is nowhere near your stereotypical “waker bro”. Backwoods Georgia, middle-class, has a sweet workshop in his garage where he builds winches and fins and rails and anything you can imagine. He rides winches 10x more than seadoos or boats, and is arguably pushing his image of wakeskating harder than anyone, in a sincere natural way of course. By that I mean he’s not out there talking about it. He’s out there DOING IT.

    That’s what I appreciate about Ben and wakeskaters in general. I think wakeboarders and wakeboarding are stuck in a circle of tail-chasing ignorance and without understanding of the natural motions of other boardsports it’s never going to lose it’s skijock image.

    Wakeskating is really fun, but Americans are dumb and are obviously going to generally want to watch people beat the living $#!7 out of each other more than watch someone else enjoying themselves on the water or to watch a bunch of wakeskaters hang out for a day and see who can shred the hardest. Wakeskating is an inherently esoteric beautiful act of poetry in motion, not a spectator sport. I don’t even call it a sport at all. Tally these up:

    Watching fighting:Watching wakeskating
    Fighting:Wakeskating
    Fighing:Watching wakeskating
    Watching fighting:Wakeskating

    I like to watch fighting and to wakeskate.

    Wakeboarders really need to stop winching. They need to stop pretending they made it up. They need to stop pretending to be wakeskaters. Shredtown would have been cool for a regional update in the mag or a little highlight feature but the hard-on that Alliance has for these dudes is a spit in the face to wakeskaters and makes them look ignorant. Take off the tiedye shirts and find a f***ing identity.

    -The Man in the Grey Suit

    (sorry for the profanity in the first one)

     
  27. BroHa Says:

    @Shoe
    Yeah some fighters get paid that. The good ones. This guy is a joke. His record is shit. So brag about mma all you want this cat clearly is not on the same level and nor will be at his age. He also needs to get his head out of his ass. Arrogant old has been.

     

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