The other day, I was surprised to receive a reply to a tweet I posted almost a year ago.
The inquirer was responding to a post I made sharing a profile of Jack “Crush” Hoyt that I wrote for ESPN last December. They asked what had happened to him.
There’s only one correct answer to this query: that Crush has retired from professional Super Smash Bros. Melee competition. But after I saw this tweet, I realized nobody had ever actually declared this outright, or at least written it down anywhere. There was no Twitlonger, no announcement or explanatory video—Crush just decided to stop playing.
I Google searched “crush melee retired” and got these results:
These results were both confusing and amusing. There was nothing officially declaring Crush’s retirement, but the pages listed included:
Crush’s SmashWiki article (which does not mention his retirement);
Aziz “Hax$” Al-Yami’s Twitter;
An article about Adam “Armada” Lindgren’s retirement;
Armada’s post on Smashboards announcing his first retirement in 2013;
My ESPN profile (you really should check it out if you haven’t); and
A few very confused Reddit threads.
So let’s make things crystal clear. Yes, Crush has stopped going to Melee tournaments. He hasn’t publicly stated his reasons for quitting, and I haven’t asked him—I know he values his privacy and I doubt he’d give me a straight answer if I did. I’ve asked around, and sources of varying closeness to Crush have given me a few potential reasons. Most sources agree that his primary motivation was a desire to focus more on school (he’s pursuing a computer science degree at Northeastern University).
I believe that Crush’s retirement was also at least partially fueled by the decrease in motivation that came with the knowledge that he had done everything he wanted to accomplish in Melee. He defeated a “god,” was ranked top 12 (and will likely still be in the top 20 of the 2018 year-end Melee Panda Global Rankings), and utterly dominated New England locals for years. At some point, Crush may have realized that going any further in Melee would have required him to compete full-time, a commitment that the young Fox main may simply have been unwilling to make.
Regardless, Crush is now retired, and he hasn’t entered a tournament since New Game Plus Ultra 34 in early June. My only hope is that this article will make it easier for curious Crush fans to find out what happened to New England’s fastest Fox.
And who knows? Perhaps he will return one day. Nobody can ever truly retire from Smash.