I've seen this leaderboard before. It was about a year ago on Lake Michigan out of Green Bay. Brandon Palaniuk was leading on the final day, and Jonathon VanDam was second. Palaniuk led by three ounces after three days, and JVD ran him down in the finals to claim his first Elite win.
A lot was different about that tournament. The biggest thing was the margin going into the finals. Palaniuk led by just three ounces. When it was over, VanDam had won by more than two pounds.
A lot was the same about that tournament, too. Most notably, it was a smallmouth event with lots of big catches. It took almost 80 pounds to win. Along with Palaniuk and JVD, Aaron Martens, Ott DeFoe and Bernie Schultz were in the top 12. They're all fishing again tomorrow here at the St. Lawrence.
As the finalists were about to take the stage and be announced to the big crowd on hand here in Waddington, I watched Palaniuk walk up to JVD, slap him on the shoulder and jokingly say, "Don't beat me this time!"