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Tough Guys Dance, with Bobby Martinez

From Stab issue 62: One year since his televised career suicide, Bobby reflects on life as a recreational surfer and boxer.

Words by Derek Rielly, photos and video by Morgan Maassen.

If I’m going to be honest, I’ll admit I would’ve thrown Bob Martinez on both covers and on both introductory pages. Even in this world that we inhabit where it ain’t worth anyone’s time unless it’s a Big Spin or a 25-foot paddle-in at FrankenJaws, Bobby feels just a little different.

For one, he comes at us from such an obtuse angle. Mexican, but not exactly born in Mexico, like a third-generation American, and, second, he’s just so anti…anti…it’s hard to exactly pinpoint where the fever comes from, but it’s there. Maybe it’s just that homeboy is a homeboy and he never really wanted to leave the upper westside in Santa Barbara.

The only reason he ain’t on page one, surf, as well as every other page on the wish list, is ‘cause, well, he doesn’t surf for the cameras often and when he does, like four weeks ago when his hometown point, Rincon, lit up, he caught two waves, and then beat it back to the beach and the arms of his gal Cleo and paws of his last-dog standing Rio.

What we do have photos of is of Bob’s love of boxing. And, boxing ain’t nothing but style. You can UFC all you want, but when it comes to the dance, in the ring, between two tough guys, that shit is magnificent.

So, you ask Bobby about boxing and he gets a little poetic, too: “I love the fact that it’s there’s so much to it. All those tiny little movements you just don’t see make a big difference. The way that people move and the things they do with their body to generate power and to generate speed. I feel like there’s so much depth in doing these little things that it’s endless.”

And, the will to survive, he says, there ain’t nothing like it it. Here, let him explain: “For me, when I got hit really hard in the head, it was like you go black for a minute, then you wake up. And, after the blackness your whole body is tingling. It’s like a floating sensation from your head to the bottom of your feet to your fingers. And, then, when you get hit in your body, when it’s a shot you feel, it sucks the life out of you. You just want to curl up in a ball and you can’t move. The pain those guys, the best boxers, go through, there’s no other sport like it. No other sport, whatsoever. No one knows, only the guys know who participate in it. I don’t even know it to the extent of what those guys are feeling! But, what I’ve felt is… is… fucken…

Even Bobby, who trains four days a week, 90 minutes non-stop each sesh, can’t explain it…

“I feel like to b a great boxer you have to be very poor. I feel like fighters who are fighting for something, there’s something deep down in them that just make ‘em tick. They’re fighting their own pain in a sport filled with pain. I just don’t see a normal civilian doing it who has a great life. I’ve never heard of a middle-class or rich person wanting to put themselves through that much pain to get somewhere in life. It’s never been like that and it never will.”

Full interview coming soon…

  • bobby

    oh god

    • GG

      Ladies and Gents of the Jury: This is as big of a joke as when Richie Collins said he was quitting to be a pro golfer. This kid is not a “planner” in life and he flys by the seat of his pants. He is off the tour because he is an idiot and his tennis comparisons were as well thought out as the business plan behind FTW.

      • merc

        and you sir sit and judge him on the internet. who is the troll now?
        GG… looks like you need to go to the market to get the vaseline jar and get back to what you do best .. lubrication.

        • Creem

          You don’t need us to lubricate anything, you’re ready to host a whole train with its whole cargo. And you like it when it hurts, mmh?

    • choppa

      That shirt he is wearing is quite possibly the ugliest thing to ever step foot in santa barbara. I would rather watch chop hops all day…

  • Awwww mannn

    what, I gotta pay for the rest?

  • zs4tb

    that dog is cool

  • F. Vargas Homes

    Thug life

    • hunter s

      drug life

  • Scared

    Brrr, I’m so frightened, what a baaaaaad boy!

  • Scared bis

    ” I’ve never heard of a middle-class or rich person wanting to put themselves through that much pain to get somewhere in life.”

    That sentence only shows that Mr Martinez should read a bit about boxing…Floyd Mayweather Jr wasn’t poor, Roy Jones Jr wasn’t poor, and there are plenty of them, but Martinez loves the so-called romatic idea of being poor and boxing for a better life…The reality of boxing is far from such an image, but giving what I see, Martinez is also far from being a boxer too! And BTW: “For me, when I got hit really hard in the head” Gimme a break! When was it? I never saw this guy with a single mark on his face, and he is supposed to be sometimes “getting hit hard in the head”?

    • Reality

      Ha ha! Way true, there are a lot of boxers that aren’t poor, but that whole idea romanticizes the a mans struggle to rise up from adversity, and kick ass to success. I love rich people waxing poetic on poverty. Bobby signed that big contract with Gotcha at like 15, and that was that. I dig Bobby cause he is opinionated and speaks it, even if there is some acting going on. The dude still rips hard, and sticks to his guns/

    • middle class yo

      bobby watched “The Fighter” too many times. He probably watches Mark Wahlberg clips before paddling out.

    • delbaz

      floyd mayweather jr. didn’t grow up poor? He lived with his mother in NJ with 6 others in a bedroom with intermittent electricity–at least according to him. You have a pretty high bar for what is considered “poor.” And Roy Jones grew up the son of an abusive black hog farmer in the south. Not exactly glamorous. I wouldn’t say he had it easy. I think Bobby’s point is that you probably wouldn’t subject yourself to a boxing career and the dangers and physical ailments it presents if you have a lot of alternatives. And, I think that’s a fair point. Most people are not deciding between getting paid to fight and getting paid by NASA.

  • LZR

    Brilliant lil clip. Maybe its the piano though. That second wave was butter! Bobyb is the man and I cant wait to read the rest!

  • Brand Promise


    Excellent film work. Morgan has loads of talent!
    But Bobby hits the bag like my 7 year old son …. was the boxing stuff a joke?

    And love that fuckin bull dog.
    Just watch …. Hurley will sign it up next and
    then hopefully they can unload Mr. Coffin.

    OK i’m gone.


  • pamela

    he was ripping. rincon is better than snapper i think. steeper wall.

    • rattone

      it is.

      • Sandy Banks

        It is if you prefer turning to tube riding.

  • Leftist

    I thought he’d have been a southpaw at boxing…

  • Sören

    what about the sponsorship with that lame company ( FTW or what it was called)?

    • Back in the Day

      F**k The World…FTW. Started by another guy that grew up middle class.

  • johnny

    a “Mexican” that can not speak spanish, really isn’t a Mexican

    • Jose

      Que lastima!

  • Bob

    Great backhand, reads a wave real well by the look of it. If one had to be critical, he gets slightly stuck on the top of some turns, but could be board choice. Would still kick some CT butt at any location on tour, that’s for sure

  • jjj

    scharlping rincon, he doesn’t stop turning. nice to see some good rail work. keep ripping bobby.

  • Rafeal Nadal

    i miss this guy. I think that Oneill sticker looked good on the nose of his board. Now that they have more cash after letting John-John go, it would be nice to see them bring Bobby back on board. FTW was a mistake

  • gayjesus

    he has a stake in FTW you idiots..

    and Rincon is not better than Snapper, you people are fucking crazy

  • diddly

    Bobby rips and I wish we saw more of his surfing. He just doesn’t fit in with the what the world of surfing has unfortunately become: a bunch of fakeass instagram chuggers struggling to be the best at being the same as everyone else.

  • paul

    dog on the skim board was wicked.

  • anotherwannabe

    where do i start (or do i?)

    Stab writer. You don’t know shit all about UFC if your making comments like that.

    Bobby, are you really talking to yourself in all those clips?

    I have a tip for you. rather then do some half arsed boxing in your sponsors garb, try actually training in light weight gear that isn’t going to have you gassing out after a few minutes.

    Now stab if you are going to actually do something like this then perhaps do it properly and talk to Richie Vass. a. he is an aussie. b. good humble guy who is off with the fairies c. actually knows what he is talking about.

  • anotherwannabe

    sponsored by monster and stab. too funny.

    2 waves that day? obviously really enjoys his surfing if he only wants to be in water for two waves on a day when it’s pumping.

    still, he probably needs to get back to his disillusional boxing career

  • thommo

    when´s the thommo feature?

  • guise

    wait, where’s the content? this is lazy

  • johnwayne

    where were the guns and cash ? disappointed …. tbc

  • sosad

    Dude just keeps getting lamer at like warp speed. Fuck bro, never go full retard.

  • 7

    how badass is that pup skimming at 2:00

  • Jon

    The more Bobby Mar talks, the more idiotic he sounds.

  • Kolohe & Julian

    Bobby has earned alot of respect amongst us Californians. He lives by his own rules and dances to his own beat. Black wetsuit, white board, no nonsense & surfs for himself. Core as core can get. Unfortunately that doesn’t equate to a lucrative surf career these days.

    To be marketable nowadays, you gotta put on a neon colored wetsuit, bend over as Nike/Hurley puts their wang up your rear end while attempting a lame air reverse. Then put it all on Instagram.

  • blahblahblacksheep

    It seems that Santa Barbara/Ventura pumps out alot of similar surf characters, guys who are icons in the sport while doing things they’re own way. Example: Tom Curren, Malloy bros, Dane, Bobby, (possibly Connor Coffin since he admitted he doesn’t care about world titles) etc.

    Around these parts, surfers tend to not sell their souls for a paycheck

  • jason j

    talk to richie vass about fighting and surfing, fight that is one thing the boy is magic at and surfing well he charges like a mad man but he cant do a turn to save his life. still takes off on waves im not going near but at least i can do a cutback. he would also be able to beat the crap out of me without blinking soooooooooooooooooo


    bobby is a medical marijuana patitent.

  • 123

    Overweight. Refuses to bend legs.

    • 321

      Non-articulate. Infuses negativity with fingers.

  • Morgan Maassen

    That video was amazing. Beautiful editing…

  • fuck the haters

    let him surf, box, and walk the dogs

  • j

    nice little clip, change of pace,timeless lines on his back hand, go bobby

  • Pussy

    I’m a boxer/surfer and I’m Mexican the look of Bobby’s jabs he has a career in jerking off little boys,,, that was pathetic

  • vc

    it is real funny all these internet tough guys who talk shit! these guys are the pussy’s who run for the hills when shits get tough but behind the computer they are as tough as nails……these guys need to get a life and stop being the toughest internet gangsters in the world! fuck yeah bobby! you the man!

  • vc

    your right the people who are talking shit cant surf as good as bobby and they will get beat the fuck up by bobby!

  • DALE

    who has better backside flair? no one

  • Robbie!

    Comment number 50! It’s me!

  • truth

    I think Bobby would surf better if he wore Hurley wetsuits and clothing. Just putting on a pair of $300 US dollar boardies makes everyone into superman. Yeah, Hurley bros.. .keep up the upper class surfware. Target market = not surfers, but rich moms.

  • cali underground

    FTW has Bobby and Kala Alexander. They should add Chad Compton to the squad. The kid still rips after recovering from that coma he had after a skateboard accident.

    • truth

      FTW should add Sunny Garcia.

  • vic

    no disrespect to the true mexican no47 but if u were a true boxer u would see that bobby is just dancing about a bit. i’m sure u can find out which gym bobby trains at and have a little sparring session. just for fun. and two waves was all bobby allowed of himself in a clip. he is no camera slut. he is not adept at media shit. never found true rhythm with sponsors except “monster”. he exists to have a simple life where time is at his will, not at the will of others. what i really give a fuck about is how vert’ booby can go off the bottom. its fucking timeless. his personality. his real self in the way the board flows from critical turns into critical sections as they present themselves. no bullshit. just whacking the fuck out of a lip. the true measure of any surfer. bobby is not affected by the new young crew who fly above the wave. but these guys can’t truly get it right when the pocket or section presents itself. it’s all preference. im an old cunt so i like power pocket surfing. JJ is the new idol but he can’t do critical on his backhand. he can’t vert surf on his backhand. not without a tail slide. he should hang with bobby. the kid is gonna need a bit of bobby fire soon enough too, or all the influences around him are gonna gobble up an awesome kid. and thank god for dane. he keeps giving perspectives beyond the boring.

  • Suffer

    His surfing is sharp as a surgeons knife. Fuck that dog is rad.

  • Archie


  • Knowbuddycares

    Bobby rips. But Thomo would knock dat ass out..

  • Kooks McGee

    Rincon has many faces, from high tide mush burgers to running fast barrels. I have seen a guy get 5 barrels from Rivermouth, through the call box

  • truth

    Get this chick a stripper pole, and have him dance around a bit. He could wear a boxing outfit. Play eye of the tiger as he strips down to his boardies.

  • dane

    that dog rules

  • Dave

    sounds like Bobby is a wanker,to turn down an opportunity of a life time and then whinge about it is mind numbing…good ridance.Lets see how poor Bobby goes boxing,if he had a brain he would be dangerous.

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    Opportunity of a LIFETIME! You too could be a part of this one time offer. Your very own timeshare! Over looking Cabo San Lucas. Don’t turn it down! You’re saying do I want to go to the same place on vacation every year? We’re saying have you seen the lunch time buffet?!? Act now or miss the boat. Free hat!

  • Who cares about your opinion

    haters gonna hate….lovers gonna love

  • Ian

    The guy still kills it. He has nothing to prove. Already won a wtc event or 2 . Not alot of people have.

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