MkLeo and Hungrybox take home gold at Genesis 6

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Last night, Leonardo “MkLeo” Lopez Perez won Genesis 6 from loser’s side, resetting the bracket against James “VoiD” Makekau-Tyson in order to take first place at the first Super Smash Bros. Ultimate super-major. This title, the first to be considered for the first edition of the Smash Ultimate Panda Global Rankings, was a return to form for the Mexican swordsman, who finished in a disappointing fifth place at Glitch 6 two weeks ago.

VoiD was unable to prevent MkLeo from winning his third consecutive Genesis title, but the Californian’s run was impressive in its own right, featuring wins over players such as Ezra “Samsora” Morris, Zackray, and Eric “ESAM” Lew. For his own efforts, Samsora earned a third-place finish, using his blistering combo game to overcome MkLeo in winner’s semifinals.

Samuel “Dabuz” Buzby placed fourth at the event, unable to face down MkLeo’s onslaught of Ike combos in their loser’s semifinal set. To get there, he had to defeat Zackray, a fifteen-year-old Japanese prodigy who turned heads at Genesis with his effective Wolf play. Tying with Zackray at fifth place was Paris “Light” Ramirez, who defeated ESAM in loser’s eighths. ESAM was joined in seventh place by his Panda Global teammate, Brian “Cosmos” Kalu.

Notably absent from Smash Ultimate finals at Genesis was Gavin “Tweek” Dempsey. The Wario main, seeded first at last weekend’s event, suffered upset losses to ESAM and Dabuz to finish in a disappointing ninth place.

In Melee, first seed Juan “Hungrybox” Debiedma took first place, to nobody’s surprise—though he had to overcome game-five last-stock challenges from both Justin “Plup” McGrath and Jeffrey “Axe” Williamson in winner’s finals and grand finals. Axe, who defeated Plup in a stunning loser’s final upset, was the breakout star of the tournament, alongside his fellow low-tier hero Masaya “aMSa” Chikamoto, who defeated Joseph “Mang0” Marquez 3-0 on his way to a fourth-place finish.

After losing in pools to up-and-coming Louisiana Falco main Sasha “Magi” Sullivan, Mang0 managed to claw his way through loser’s bracket for a fifth-place finish.

“Desperately trying to figure it out,” tweeted a disappointed Mang0 after the tournament. He was tied at fifth by Kevin “PewPewU” Toy, who rode a wave of enthusiastic hometown support all the way to winner’s semis.

Melee top 8 at Genesis was rounded out by Johnny “S2J” Kim and Avery “Ginger” Wilson, who tied for seventh place.

With Genesis out of the way, there won’t be another major-level Smash tournament until late spring—but that doesn’t mean there won’t be plenty of regionals for tryhards looking to up their Ultimate or Melee game in preparation for this year’s Summer of Smash. And as Melee and Ultimate players continue to mingle and experiment with each others’ games, this year may be the Smash community’s most cohesive year in a long while.