(keep reading to learn what happened)
Season: 3 | View All Season 3 Episodes
Original Episode Air Date: March 9, 2014
The Bar's Original Name Was: End Zone Sports Bar and Grill
Houston Sports Hub Address: 15209 Westheimer Rd, Houston, TX 77082
Originally End Zone Sports Bar and Grill, Houston Sports Hub is the moniker that Jon Taffer chose to give the rebranded bar.
When he first got there, Jon witnessed a fight between two “muscle-bound meatheads” during his usual recon mission. Never one to shy away from conflict, Jon decided to go ahead with the bar rescue and try to save this bar.
The bar is owned by Justin Whitfield, who is a bodybuilder and former male stripper.
He needed help with the bar, so he got his friend Shawn, another male stripper (and MMA fighter) to lend a hand.
As you’d expect from a bar on Bar Rescue, there were all kinds of issues, such as bartenders getting drunk while working.
During the recon, they see gross hygiene when the chef is making the food. The bar is also generally gross, with sticky floors and generally poor hygiene.
Despite supposedly being a sports bar, there’s a male stripper performance during the recon, which I guess makes sense because the two people in charge are both male strippers.
Beyond the problems you see in the recon, there are also other issues with End Zone Sports Bar and Grill.
They’re also in huge debt – over $200,000 at the time of the episode.
With that being said, the bar does have a good location in Houston because it’s close to a lot of sporting venues, so it should have a good chance of success if Jon Taffer can turn it around.
As proof of that, the bar was originally making over $100k per month, so it definitely has a lot of potential.
However, they obviously weren’t doing as well as their glory days, which is why the bar is making an appearance on Bar Rescue.
To help with the rescue, Jon Taffer brought in Kate Gerwin, a mixologist, and Vic Vegas, a chef.
Kate trains the bar staff to make drinks faster and more consistently, while Vic trains the kitchen staff on hygiene and making a good quality burger.
However, this training doesn’t really pay off during the stress test, as Taffer has to SHUT IT DOWN because things are going so poorly.
After the stress test, Jon Taffer and his team got started on a 36-hour renovation.
When he renovated and relaunched the bar, Jon Taffer kept the sports theme, but he switched the name from End Zone Sports Bar and Grill to Houston Sports Hub.
He also gave the bar all new decor and equipment, such as new POS systems and Turbo Tabs for the beer.
So – was the rescue a success? Let’s talk about what happened to End Zone / Houston Sports Hub after the visit from Jon Taffer and his crew.
Houston Sports Hub Update - What Happened Next?
As of 2022, Houston Sports Hub is still alive and kicking.
They’ve kept the name Jon chose for them and appear to be doing well according to their Yelp page, though reviews are still less-than-stellar (only 3-stars at the time of writing this update).
One of the owners, Justin Whitfield, also gave an interview to the Houston Chronicle.
In it, he has choice quotes such as “It was like a bar boot camp”.
And while Justin thinks that Jon Taffer “is a really nice guy,” he still wouldn’t do it again because “I don’t like being yelled at. The yelling wasn’t so bad. It was the stress.”
So, I’m going to give this one a semi-success story.
Despite the poor Yelp reviews, it still seems to be a popular Houston spot that’s doing well.
Most of the Yelp and TripAdvisor pages still sport the End Zone Bar and Grill designation, but reading the reviews assures me that they have indeed kept the Houston Sports Hub name.
With that being said, I did see a post on Reddit from someone who said they visited the bar and the bar has gotten rid of all of Jon Taffer’s aesthetic changes.
That person also said the bar wasn’t maintained well and there were issues like peeling paint and sticky floors.
So, it appears like Houston Sports Hub has started to slide back to their old habits, even though the bar is still open as of 2022.
What did you think about the Houston Sports Hub Bar Rescue episode? I'd love it if you shared your thoughts on the episode in the comments below!
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Last updated: 2022-01-19 09:39