Let’s Make Big Moves, the first S-tier tourney of 2020, as well as the third PGRU season, kicked off the year in explosive fashion as the weekend was filled with upsets and oddities. Both the #1 and #2 seeds failed to reach the top 8, as Ezra “Samsora” Morris and Gavin “Tweek” Dempsey finished at 9th and 25th place, respectively.
We knew that a new year would bring new flavor to the Smash Ultimate scene, but to see so many varied mix-ups and changes of pace during the very first weekend of 2020 definitely came as a bit of a shock.
And while the weekend wasn’t particularly kind to those at the very apex of the seeding, the tournament left room for other players near the top of the professional scene to still make an impact early on in the formative stages of the 2020 campaign. When the dust settled, Nairoby “Nairo” Quezada triumphed over Samuel “Dabuz” Buzby. And while that might not sound like an unorthodox Grand Final matchup, it was how the rest of the bracket played out that came as a surprise.
Notably, the event saw the return of Jestise “MVD” Negron to prominence, who made his first top 8 at an S-tier event in nearly a year. Additionally, players like Enrique “Maister” Hernández and Rasheen “Dark Wizzy” Rose continued to establish their place in the current landscape of professional Smash. In a field that was incredibly open, players that had been either on the precipice of breaking out or struggling to return to the limelight had the chance to find themselves at Let’s Make Big Moves – they certainly didn’t squander the opportunity.
It’s also worth mentioning that Brian “Cosmos” Kalu, after not reaching the top 16 at any S-tier event during PGRU season 2, finished in 9th place at LMBM. In general, if you were a player looking to kick things off on the right foot in 2020, this tournament was certainly the place to do so.
Partly, that was due to absences and poor performances from some of the scene’s top pros. Let’s Make Big Moves was the first North American S-tier Ultimate tournament ever to not feature Tweek, Samsora, or Leonardo “MkLeo” Lopez in the top 8. And with arguably the three best players in the world sidelined in the tournament’s final stages, other players were given the chance to rise up and jump out to an early start in the race to #1.
Now, that race continues as the scene shifts its eyes to Genesis 7. So while it was nice to see many players get their chance to tune up heading into 2020, the game’s top pros will most definitely put each other to the ultimate test in 3 weeks in Oakland. Genesis presents one of the biggest stages in Smash, so it wouldn’t be shocking to see those who faltered at or skipped out on Let’s Make Big Moves show up with supreme force at G7.
Regardless, the future is bright for Smash Ultimate in 2020, as Let’s Make Big Moves served as the perfect keynote going into a massively important second year in the game’s competitive lifespan.
Photo Credit: Nintendo, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, EvenMatchupGaming