While Super Smash Bros Melee has grown significantly in the last few years, the growth has been unbalanced in terms of the distribution of large-scale tournaments. Compared to other regions, the East Coast has lacked a consistent tournament series that qualifies has a "super-major", one where many of the MIOM Top 100 as well as the Gods are in attendance. While the Shine and Super Smash Con series are proving to become stable and consistent annual events, the loss of the APEX and POUND series in 2017 has made for a quiet first few months of the new year for East Coast smashers. Thankfully, Royal Flush hosted by Tropicana was announced for May 12-14 and the event is shaping up to be one of the most extravagant majors held on the East Coast.
Royal Flush in Atlantic City boasts a $10,000 pot bonus which has attracted numerous top players, to be exact, 38 Top 100 level players are coming, including four of the five Melee Gods, Adam "Armada" Lindgren, Juan “Hungrybox” Debiedma, Joseph “Mang0” Marquez, and William "Leffen" Hjelte. With these many top level players coming, there are a plethora of storylines going into Royal Flush but none is as big as the legend of "Mother's Day Mang0".
1 Armada Mang0 2 Hungrybox Leffen 3 ChuDat SFAT 4 Ice Shroomed 5 S2J Lucky 6 dizzkidboogie Nintendude 7 The Moon Druggedfox 8 KJH Colbol 9 Professor Pro MacD 10 Captain Smuckers Slox 11 Mafia Ryan Ford 12 Hugs Crush 13 DJ Nintendo Android 14 Zhu Chillindude 15 Cactuar Drephen 16 Phil HomeMadeWaffles 17 4% Milkman 18 Alex19 Reno
Mother's Day Mang0
For newer people in the Melee scene, "Mother's Day Mang0" is a weird phenomenon that happens once a year, where Mang0 regardless of his recent performances or being sent to losers early, is able to win whatever major that is held on Mother's day weekend. It first started in 2014 when Mang0 took Get On My Level 2014. It looked like a routine win as he went through Winner's side beating Jason "Mew2King" Zimmerman and Hungrybox. What is far from routine was next year at Press Start 2015, where Mango was DQ'd to Loser's side from the start due to him arriving late to the event. He then proceed to run through Loser's bracket, beating Jace, Weston "Westballz" Dennis, Aziz "Hax$" Al-Yami, Leffen, Dajun "Shroomed" McDaniel, Joey "Lucky" Aldama, Hungrybox, Jeffrey "Axe" Williamson, and reset the bracket on Jeremy "Fly Amanita" Westfahl to win the whole event.
This amazing loser's run is hard to beat but in 2016, Mang0 managed to trump it by winning DreamHack Austin 2016 by beating Mew2King in losers and reseting the bracket on Hungrybox to take his first major win of the year. What makes DreamHack Austin 2016 an amazing win is that since the start of the year, Mang0 struggled against Hungrybox losing in every tournament they both entered since Genesis 3 in January. Then suddenly Mang0 goes on and beats Hungrybox in 2 sets back to back is something that almost seemed scripted.
Going back to Royal Flush, Mang0 has suffered some poor performances including 9th at Smash Summit Spring 2017 and 7th at Smash Rivalries. While he recently got 4th at DreamHack Austin 2017, Mang0 still looks shaky, however, as the past has shown us, "Mother's Day Mang0" is a force to be reckon with. A Mang0 win at Royal Flush would by far by his greatest Mother's day victory to date has he will likely have to best Armada at least once to take home the gold, something he has never done in the past Mother's day events due to Armada's absence.
Mang0 getting DQ'd at Press Start 2015
East Coast Representation
Another storyline going into Royal Flush is the sheer amount of East Coast players in attendance. It will be tournament for the New England, Tri-State, and MD/VA regions to showcase their more unknown players. These East Coast hidden bosses are less known compared to their West Coast counterparts, but are equally skilled. They can put in some work causing some surprising upsets early in bracket. Players like Devin "Zealous5000" Ou, Nick "Stango" Stango, Nico "Ryobeat" Rodriguez, and Kilmer "mayb" Varela are excellent examples of players who have taken sets from several Top 100 players and are bound to take more names this weekend.
In addition, Royal Flush will sport an East Coast-heavy crowd. This is important as it can change the atmosphere of the room, as the crowd will favor and support East Coast players. How will players like Ryan "The Moon" Coker-Welch, Sami “DruggedFox” Muhanna, and Alex "Captain Smuckers" Cottrell react when the crowd is cheering them on as they fight farther and farther into the bracket.
Where and When to Watch?
With a top tier TO team of Will "Reno" Hsiao, Mike "Nintendude" Brancato, and Tantalus, it will be exciting to see what they pull out for this event. Hopefully, this can become a repeating tournament series for every player to look forward to before the Summer of Smash starts. Don't miss all the action starting May 12-14. You can tune into VGBootcamp or MeleeEveryday to watch all the sets and track the progress of your favorite players on smash.gg.
Day 1 (Friday, May 12)
Time (PST) Event 1 10:00 am Event Start (Singles/Doubles) 2 9:00 PM Day 1 End
Day 2 (Saturday, May 13)
Time (PST) Event 10:00 a.m. 1 2 12:00 pm Top 64 (Singles) 3 6:00 pm Top 8 Qualification Matches 4 9:00 PM Day 2 Ends
Day 3 (Sunday, May 14)
Time (PST) Event 1 4:00 pm Melee Doubles Top 4 2 6:00 PM Melee Singles Top 8 3 9:00 PM Event Ends
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How to Watch Royal Flush Melee feat. Mang0, Armada, Leffen, and more