Once again, the Pipe Masters will decide the World Champion. But there’s more to pay attention to when the contest starts next week than just the battle at the top. Depending on the final results at Sunset, a handful of guys will look to make the final at Pipe to maintain their spots on the 2018 ‘CT.

Back at the end of 2004, Bruce Irons was in that exact position. Needing at least a fifth-place finish to keep his ‘CT spot, he scratched and clawed his way to the final, finishing fourth. At the time, Volcom was in the middle of filming “The Bruce Movie,” and in the course of one week, Bruce not only re-qualifed in spectacular fashion at Pipe, but he also won The Eddie just a few days before. We’ll have to wait and see if anyone on the current ‘CT bubble can pull a Bruce in 2017.