It’s Official: Swindle, Palaniuk Returning to Elites

Some big news came out of the professional bass fishing world on Wednesday afternoon. Major League Fishing emailed a press release listing its 2020 Bass Pro Tour roster. Notably absent from the roster, however, were two superstar anglers: Gerald Swindle and Brandon Palaniuk.

Neither angler will be returning to the Major League Fishing Bass Pro Tour. Instead, they will return to the Bassmaster Elite Series for the 2020 season. They have qualified via the B.A.S.S. Legends Exemption.

In a Bassmaster article by Jim Sexton, both Swindle and Palaniuk released statements explaining their decision to return to the Elites.

Gerald Swindle

“My reason for wanting to return to the Elites is simple – it’s my home, it’s all I know, it’s what I’m comfortable with, the format, the weigh-ins, the tournament schedule, etc. I miss all of it. 

“I’ve spent most of my adult life learning how to fish a five-bass limit and manage fish and the different related techniques. So I want to continue that learning process. It’s pretty simple – I love to fish. That’s what led me down this road – a big love for a little green fish – and that love hasn’t died. I’ve missed the fans and the stage and I really look forward to coming home.” 

Brandon Palaniuk

“One of the toughest things to live with in life is regret. Now, let me stop everyone right there. I don’t regret the last year. Not even a little bit. I’m actually thankful for 2019 and the things I learned from it. I learned about this industry, I learned about business, I learned more about catching fish, and most importantly I learned a lot about myself. 

“That last one is the reason I’m back fishing with the Bassmaster brand. What I didn’t realize about myself was that I spent 15 of my 32 years chasing the highest level B.A.S.S. has to offer and then spent another eight years fishing the Elites. So, you could say I spent 23 years of my life, or 72 percent of it, living and breathing B.A.S.S. I underestimated how much all of those struggles, chasing my dreams and sleeping in the ‘Tundra Suites,’ contributed to my happiness and that the brand itself was such an important part of my life. I didn’t feel complete without it. So I’m back with a full heart and love for the game.”

You can learn more by reading the full article on