On January 21, PG Plup edged out Liquid Hungrybox 3-2 in the second set of grand finals at Genesis 5 to take his first ever super-major. While Hungrybox appeared to dominate Plup in the first set, carrying over momentum from losers bracket to cleanly 3-0 him, Plup adjusted his play, slowing down the pace of the match and controlling the neutral with strong movement, clutching it out in a last-stock-last-hit scenario. This victory comes hot on the heels of the 2017 SSBM Rank list, placing Plup at 5th for the year, and Hungrybox at 1st. Plup’s monumental win represents the first time in the history of the Genesis series that the tournament did not have a grand finals featuring C9 Mango and Alliance Armada. Furthermore, it sets the year off to a good start for Plup, having only won five sets of out the 24 he played against Hungrybox last year.
The rest of the tournament was equally as exciting, featuring many upsets. Toronto Fox main and 96th ranked player Moky took down 11th ranked player Liquid Chudat in a commanding 2-0 showing, demonstrating a master class on how to edge-guard Ice Climbers. Japanese Yoshi main and 24th ranked player VGBC Amsa went on a tear in winners bracket, knocking 9th and 8th ranked players CLG SFAT and Frys Wizzrobe into losers. So-Cal veteran Dignitas Lucky defeated MVG FOX Mew2King for the first time in seven years, showing that old foxes can still learn new tricks. In a breakout performance, unranked Philadelphia Marth player SS Stango took out 44th ranked player Alliance Android, 30th ranked player SS Colbol and 56th ranked player Sir Abate, all but already earning him consideration for the top 100 next year.
The next major tournament in the Melee calendar is Full Bloom 4, which will be held in Bloomington, Indiana on March 24-25.
Image Source: @TischPhotos