PUEBLO, Colo. - This week's injury report reads like a who's who
of world title contenders.
Valdiron de Oliveira and Guilherme Marchi are in the draw for the Pueblo Invitational after a pair of serious wrecks last week in Idaho.
Oliveira escaped relatively unharmed after being stepped on in a wreck similar to the one that fractured his left eye socket two weeks earlier. The top-ranked bull rider in the world, who was advised to wear a protective helmet but chose not to, had a glancing blow off his left shoulder that drove him face-down into the dirt.
Rockie Smooth steps on Valdiron de Oliveira after bucking
off the world leader in the championship round of the 2012 PBR BFTS
Boise Invitational in Nampa, Idaho.
Marchi, another rider who competes without a helmet, took several shots to the head from Midnight Mood in the opening round.
After covering Midnight Mood for 87 points in Round 1, Guilherme Marchi sustains a concussion when he takes a shot from the bull at the 2012 PBR Boise Invitational in Nampa, Idaho.
He was unable to finish the event, and missed the 15/15 Bucking
Both men said they would be fine for this week's Built Ford Tough Series event, the final competition leading into a two-month summer break before the Series resumes in Tulsa, Okla., in mid-August.
As reported earlier this week, J.B. Mauney is out of competition due to a bad hip, and a swollen left arm that is likely related to the broken hand that forced him to switch to riding with his right hand for three weeks.
Mauney, who exchanged wedding vows with Lexie Wiggly last week, was planning on tying the knot a few weeks earlier, but had to wait for the swelling in his hand to subside in order to slide the wedding ring on his finger.
Professional bull rider J.B. Mauney was married last week in North Carolina.
Now he's experiencing swelling from the middle of his forearm
all the way up to his shoulder.
Mauney is ranked fifth and hoping his 285-point lead over Marco Eguche is enough to stay in the Top 5. Had he not ridden three bulls in the past two weeks - two of which were in 15/15 Bucking Battles - he would have fallen to eighth, and be in jeopardy of falling out of the Top 10.
Douglas Duncan, who is 14th in the world standings, is out of competition after undergoing surgery to repair to an injured left hip that has gotten progressively worse over the past two years.
PALERMO ON THE MEND: On Wednesday, the Brazilian riders gathered at Marchi's ranch outside Ferris, Texas. All but Robson Palermo will be heading back to Brazil after this weekend. Palermo, who spent the better part of four months there while recovering from shoulder surgery at the conclusion of last season, is the only Brazilian planning to remain stateside for the summer.
He'll be training with Tony Cruz in Tyler, Texas, and is slated to compete in a few events over the break. He'll be at Chad Berger's Touring Pro Division event in Bismarck, N.D., on June 15 and 16, as well as the Calgary Stampede in July.
Palermo was cleared to return this week. He was reexamined by Dr. Tandy Freeman on Tuesday morning. An MRI proved negative after Will James stepped on his right leg. He was fine in Montana, but experienced swelling and pain after returning home to Texas.
SWOLLEN PAW: Last week, during the Built Ford Tough Championship Round, Ryan Dirteater took a vicious shot under his shin that also hit him in the neck. He also slapped the backside of his right hand off the bull's horn.
He has no recollection of the injury, but Freeman likened the incident to an NFL player hitting his hand on an opposing player's helmet.
Ryan Dirteater doesn't quite remember the details of this encounter with Stanley FatMax in Nampa, Idaho, but his swollen free hand tells the tale.
Freeman told Dirteater "not to freak out" when it swelled up and
turned colors. By Monday afternoon, when he flew home to Oklahoma,
his hand was swollen to twice its normal size. The palm of his
right hand was deep purple.
Dirteater said he wasn't worried about the injury, as his right hand is his free hand.
DISARMED: Nathan Schapper has decided to forego competing in Pueblo this weekend. He had considered riding one last weekend before undergoing surgery to repair a torn biceps in his left arm. Schapper attempted to ride in the Built Ford Tough Championship Round in Idaho after sustaining the injury in Round 3, but was unsuccessful. He has elected to have the procedure performed by a surgeon in North Dakota. No other information is available at this time.
MATCHUPS: For a complete list of this weekend's 15/15 Bucking Battle matchups, click here.
TV GUIDE: Friday's opening round can be viewed at the PBR Live Center beginning at 10 p.m. ET. Round 2 can be seen Saturday night on CBS Sports Network at 10 p.m. ET. On Sunday, the 15/15 Bucking Battle will be aired on CBS at 2 p.m. ET., and followed by the final two rounds, which will air on CBS Sports Network at 6 p.m. ET.
DEBUT: "Dangerous Game: Inside PBR," an hour-long roundtable discussion, will premiere on CBS Sports Network on Sunday at 3 p.m. ET. The discussion features nine-time World Champion Ty Murray, Luke Snyder, Shorty Gorham and two-time Stock Contractor of the Year Jeff Robinson. Craig Hummer moderates topics such as the growth of the sport, its danger factor, safety issues and the popularity of bucking bulls.
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