Over the past couple of months, Leonardo “MkLeo” Lopez has shaken the scene. His consistency proves that someone can reach an extremely high competitive level in Smash Ultimate. However, he hasn’t been flawless. Even a player of his caliber feels threatened when other players chase after him. Recently, some breakthroughs happened and Leo had his back on the ropes. However, in godlike runs, he brought it back and won most of the sets. Yet the players that pushed Leo to the edge deserve to be acknowledged.
Top players like Gavin “Tweek” Dempsey, Erza “Samsora” Moris, and Tyler “Marss” Martins constantly improve from tournament to tournament. Some of them beat the champ before, and others are still trying to come out on top. In this scenario, they are all real threats to the EVO 2019 champion. Now it’s time to look at each player and see how they are catching up to the champ.
Whenever MkLeo isn’t in the building, Tweek is the best player in the venue. He is the most successful member of this list, constantly achieving victories at major tournaments. However, his biggest roadblock is Leo.
In EVO 2019, Tweek was one hit away from victory. Both players where at even percents and the stakes were high. Leo was down two games and was at the verge of losing. However, with a legendary run, he won six games in a row, taking the EVO 2019 trophy home.
A tiny gap rests between them. In the current time, it‘s hard to make Leo slip even a bit. Tweek gave him multiple runs for his money before, but Leo won almost all of them. Tweek tends to let emotion take the wheel, making his consistency drop. Before Leo picked up Joker, they were on equal footing. However, the champ doesn’t show signs of slowing down and neither does Tweek. Maybe in a couple of months, Tweek will figure out how to slay the demon. However, in the current moment, Leo seems out of his reach.
At Smash Factor 7, Marss beat Leo in two separate occasions and took home the trophy, yet that isn’t always the case. Marss is one of the few players has taken sets from Leo this PGR season. However, their set count favors Leo by a hefty margin.
Marss is a consistent player that keeps improving as time goes on. He single-handedly developed the Zero Suit meta and became a great player on the way. To add to this, he has only missed the top eight three times in the 16 tournaments he’s entered since April. Now, time will tell if he will evolve with the other players or fall behind into obscurity. Recently, he is only getting better and better so if he continues with this momentum, he’ll be in the top in no time.
Leo dominated Samsora in the previous PGR season. He won every set they fought and didn’t really show any signs of slowing down. However, at Super Smash Con 2019, Samsora showed signs of life. He managed to take a set from the number one player in the world and almost the championship. All this proved to the world that Samsora has the talent to take it all in the future.
His efforts are paying off. He is vocal about how Leo constantly beats him in bracket, but the situation is evolving. Just making Leo sweat is an accomplishment on its own. Now that Samsora made a breakthrough in figuring out Leo’s formula it’s only a matter of time till he manages to take it all.
Every esport needs some rivalry. It brings the thrill of competition to its peak. If these players continue to improve only good things will happen. However, the real challenge is Leo.
Some of these players beat Leo in the past, others are showing signs of life. However, if they keep putting in the effort they will only get closer to him. Eventually, managing an edge on the King of Ultimate.