If you didn’t get to the Hermosa Beach Pier early on July 22, you would have been too late. There would have been no seats left, nowhere for you to watch the first clash of the Crabbs, Taylor and Trevor, brothers and former partners turned, it seemed, bitter rivals.
This wasn’t even the final – that would be a day later. This was the quarters, an oft-ignored round, one normally you’d sit and watch should you be there but not one to schedule your day around. And, yet, of course, this was no ordinary quarterfinal. This was a can’t miss match, on a Saturday, one whose attendance would vastly outnumber both semifinals a day later.
A large reason can be effectively summed up in two words: Trevor Crabb.
You may not like Trevor. You may love him. There’s a better chance you’re in one camp or the other, and not in the gray area in between, which is as much a societal trend as it is one regarding the elder of the Crabb brothers.
He likes that it’s quite possible he’s in a similar – relatively speaking – popularity category as Draymond Green of the Golden State Warriors or Travis Kelce of the Kansasy City Chiefs: sublime athletes who are as liked as they are disliked, whose talents are oftentimes discussed after their behavior, or in spite of it. He digs how much attention his verbal digs get – sand-throwing fools and goggle-wearing fools, hungover fool — everyone’s a fool.
His mouth has earned him almost daily jabs on social media from Ty Loomis (the “sand throwing” fool) and the on-court animosity of his brother, Taylor (the “hungover fool”), who reserves stare downs across the net almost exclusively for Trevor. Maddison McKibbin was at his most vocal when he and Loomis played Trevor and Sean Rosenthal in Hermosa Beach on July 21. It wasn’t much of a match, with Crabb and Rosenthal winning 21-16, 21-13, and yet the interest in it never waned, so close were the possibilities for explosions.
Thanks, in large part, to the fuses that Crabb had lit.
He did not invent trash talk on the beach.
But Crabb has done what we can to revive it in what has been a largely amicable half-decade for the AVP under Donald Sun.
He still laughs at the attention it gets, because when you think about it, what, in the wide scheme of sporting trash talk, has Trevor Crabb really done? He called Loomis a sand-throwing fool, though Loomis is the first to take immense pride in his quirky celebrations, in which he is, indeed, making himself as sandy as possible, either by showering himself with it or rolling in it. Crabb called Slick a goggle-wearing fool, and indeed, Slick does wear military-grade goggles to shield his eyes. Taylor Crabb’s hard-partying ways are hardly breaking news.
All three give it right back, too. Most of this is good-natured. Some of it flirts with the line of going perhaps a touch too far. When his partnership with Rosenthal was announced as over, he posted on Instagram that Rosenthal “is a legend of the game. I wish him the best as he pursues a career on the LPGA Tour.”
Too far? Maybe. Maybe just far enough. He’s not altogether concerned either way.
“That’s what makes it fun,” Crabb said on SANDCAST: Beach Volleyball with Tri Bourne and Travis Mewhirter.
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