Panda Global's PGStats team is kicking off 2018 with PGRv4, the fourth iteration of their bi-annual ranking series for Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. As always, they'll be revealing ten players per day until the full top 50 has been revealed.
Starting off the countdown at number 50 is Armando "AC" Castañeda-Villalobos, a Meta Knight main from Southern California. With wins against Wesley "6WX" Alexander, Kengo "KEN" Suzuki and Eric "Mr. E" Weber and a 9th place finish at 2GGC FE Saga, he's certainly earned a position on the Panda Global Rankings, though this is also notable drop from his previous rank of 45.
At 49th place is Dustin "Zenyou" Rice, another Southern Californian player and a newcomer to the Panda Global Rankings. With wins against Jamaal "Samsora" Morris at EVO 2017, Yuta "Abadango" Kawamura at 2GGC SCR Saga, Griffin "Fatality" Miller and Jestise "MVD" Negron at GameTyrant Expo 2017 and Rich Brown at IBP Masters SD, he's proven himself to be a strong contender in 2017.
48th place goes to Southern California's Shawn "K9sbruce" Bruce, returning to PGR after missing the cut for the past two iterations. While he's had strong results throughout the latter half of 2017, his main stand-out performance was at 2GGC MkLeo Saga, with wins against Shuto "Shuton" Moriya, Mr. E, Tyler "Marss" Martins, and Zack "CaptainZack" Lauth, followed by a 13th place finish.
New England's Paris "Light" Ramirez, another first-time ranked player, comes in at 47th. While he didn't attend many qualifying tournaments, his performance at the ones he did enter - all three of which were S-tier - was certainly strong. At Super Smash Con 2017, he beat both Rasheen "Dark Wizzy" Rose and Jon "dekillsage" Coello. At Shine 2017, he beat Mr. E, Jacob "JK" Johnson and James "VoiD" Makekau-Tyson and finished at 9th place, and finished the season off with a win against Tyrell "NAKAT" Coleman and a 17th place finish at The Big House 7.
Long Island's Vincent "Vinnie" Cannino returns at 46th. Making a comeback after his decline in results in 2016 and early 2017, the latter half of the year saw him scoring wins against Chris "falln" Rugg and Mason "Locus" Charlton at ARMS Saga, as well as a 9th place finish and a win against Leonardo "MkLeo" Lopez Perez at Dreamhack Atlanta.
Dacota "Ryuga" James comes in at 45th. Another newcomer to the Panda Global Rankings, he's widely regarded as one of the best Corrin mains in the world, with consistently strong results throughout the latter half of 2017 and wins against CaptainZack, Locus and Larry "Larry Lurr" Holland.
Takuto "Kameme" Ono comes in at 44th, a sharp drop from his previous rank of 27, largely owing to his lack of attendance at American majors and Mega Man's drop off in the current metagame. That said, he's still had strong performances throughout late 2017, with 9th and 13th place finishes at ARMS Saga and SCR Saga, respectively, and wins against KEN, Vinnie, Fatality, falln, and Yuta "Nietono" Uejima.
Coming in at 43rd is Wesley "6WX" Alexander. Despite the drop in rankings due to poor attendance, he's still one of the best Sonic mains in the world, and it shows. He placed 9th and Super Smash Con, where he scored wins against Brian "Cosmos" Kalu, Elliot "Ally" Carroza-Oyarce, Mr. E and Eric "ESAM" Lew. He's also performed well at B and C-tier events throughout the season, with a win against Nicholas "Ned" Dovel.
At 42nd is New Jersey's James "Shoyo James" Wade, another newcomer to the Panda Global Rankings. He made waves with his 7th place finish at Super Smash Con, beating MVD, Orion "Darkshad" Wolf and Aaron "dyr" Wilhite along the way. He also managed to take sets of Julian "Zinoto" Clarington and Mr. E at smaller events throughout the season.
Finishing off the countdown at 41st is Chris "falln" Rugg. Though he also had a noticeable drop from his PGRv3 rank, he's still had consistently strong results, with top 16 placings at Super Smash Con, 2GGC West Side Saga, FE Saga, and IBP Masters SD and wins against JK, Manny Medina and NAKAT.
Author's Note: What are your thoughts on the players who made 41-50? What are your predictions for the rest of PGRv4?