Palaniuk the veteran Bassmaster Elite Series pro
Whenever the term veteran pops up around professional athletes, there is often a stigma of old guy. Perhaps even a less-than-top-shelf player who comes in as a role player. The term veteran, in the case of Abu Garcia pro Brandon Palaniuk, references his time on the water as a Bassmaster Elite Series pro. It's a term out of respect, maybe even complimentary.
Okay, Palaniuk is still in his mid-twenties and is certainly not the image of some grizzled pro with decades of battling bass for cash, but the time he has put in as a pro has changed him into the effective bass catching machine he is today. And certainly one of the top veteran players on the bass field.
Palaniuk learned efficiency with his time on tour.
"Because of the way my career has gone, I really needed to learn to become efficient with my time," said Palaniuk. Time during a tournament, time during practice, etc. With my sponsor work, appearances and other things, I am a lot busier with projects other than actually fishing."
Learning to be efficient has allowed Palaniuk to keep zeroed in on what needs to be done for his career on and off the water.
"I am certainly different now in the way I approach fishing tournaments and the fishing business," said Palaniuk. "My focus is much stronger now when I am fishing, whether it is specific techniques or learning to follow my instinct. I know what to do with my time and effort and know what it takes to perform at this level.
"That also translates into becoming better at the business side of the sport. I understand more now and provide what is necessary to both my business relationships and my efforts on the water."
So, will 2015 be Palaniuk's time to capture the coveted Bassmaster Angler of the Year (AOY) crown?
"Every year I feel like I'm in the AOY groove," said Palaniuk. "Really, you never know how it will play out until the season starts. Some little things can happen that might not allow you to win.
"I always plan on winning every event I fish. I want to win everything. Of course, it doesn't work out that way."