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PMRank 2018: 40-31


Photo Credit: Tram Tram

PMRank 2018 continues with ranks 40-31! Many players in this section have seen quite a bit of movement up and down the rankings since last year.

PMRank is a panel-based Power Ranking of the top 50 Project M players worldwide. Players, commentators, and tournament organizers within the community had the opportunity to apply to be panelists, and we ended up with a little less than 20 panelists by the time of the project's conclusion. Initially, 93 players were qualified to be ranked based on their placings and attendance at major Project M events throughout 2018. Only 50 highly skilled players made the final list.

PMRank staff collected and organized data from dozens of Project M events from the past year, seeking out tournaments with inter-regional competition. Panelists were tasked with reviewing this data and rating each player on the nominee list from 1-10, with the lowest ranking player given a 1 and the highest a 10, scaling it appropriately. For each player, the highest and lowest rating on all panelists’ lists were removed when averaging votes to reduce variance. After an initial ballot, panelists were given time to discuss the aggregated results and move closer to consensus in the case of players with high standard deviations. Then, panelists submitted a second and final ballot.

Please note that the listed set counts do not include sets from locals, with the exception of locals that included significant out-of-region competition.

This project would not have been possible without the dedicated volunteers who helped us engineer spreadsheets, track down tournament data, construct head-to-head charts, create and revise ranking ballots, write and edit player summaries, and gather photographs. A number of photographers have given us permission to use their high-quality photographs of Project M players for the purposes of this project as well.

40 - Noghrilla.png

Photo Credit: Tram Tram

Score: 4.78

Noah “Noghrilla” Sundook, long known for his brash online personality, emerged from Florida this year to back up his fiery words against all comers. Wielding an unorthodox yet deadly DK punish game, he first showed his prowess at the invitational House of Lz by defeating 2017 PMRank player Dingo. In July, Nogh travelled to The Even Bigger Balc and beat Jose V before flaming out at 25th. Later in his summer of travel, Nogh beat Filthy Casual at Low Tier City 6 to secure 13th place. Finally, at Blacklisted 4, Noghrilla made it out of pools on losers’ side after a close match with Twisty. Once in top 48, he was eliminated by Narq. Nogh clearly has impressive potential, but his consistency has yet to catch up.

Written By: Pegthaniel

39 - emukiller.png

Photo Credit: Princess Hyrule

Score: 4.84

Michael “EmuKiller” Silbernagel, a famous competitor dating all the way back to PM 3.0 days, had a bit of a down year from 2017, where he placed in the top 15 on PMRank. Despite traveling less than before, Emukiller secured solid wins at almost all his major appearances, with the exception of a disappointing 65th place performance at The Even Bigger Balc thanks to pools upsets by dank? and Shokio. At We Tech Those 3, he defeated Goode in winners and Luck in losers en route to 13th. At Smashadelphia 2018 he had to fight through losers’ bracket in top 16 after an early defeat at the hands of lloD in pools. After Emu defeated Llama Lag, he narrowly lost 2-3 to BaconPancakes to place 9th. At the pre-EBB Busters and Bandits, his best placement, Emu defeated Mr. Watch & Learn and Envy to reach Sosa in Winners Semis. While he lost to Sosa and subsequently DrugFreeChu, he ended with a lofty 5th place finish. Emukiller has shown that while his gameplay hasn’t evolved quite as much as other top players, he and his Meta Knight/Mewtwo combination remain a sharp threat.

Written By: Pegthaniel

38 - jose v.png

Photo Credit: ExHale

Score: 4.86

Jose “Jose V” Villasana is an interesting case, partially due to the evolution of his rivals and partially due to his reluctance to travel. While he may have fallen from his top 10 peak in 2016, he can still perform better than most when he does attend events. His most notable run this year was at F*** It, One More Balc, where he made it past $limChang and Ca$ino Wolf in winners side before falling to Blank, rallying to defeat LoyaL and Quandiverous, and winning the runback against Blank before losing to Sosa in Grand Finals. While his overall attendance this year was relatively low, the infamous Ness main was able to earn wins such as Ivayne, Wyld, Cloudburst, Dr., and Nyx where he did travel. However, his losses to players such as Wfycat and $wift kept him from reaching higher in the rankings. If Jose V attends more events in 2019, there is definitely potential for him to return to his former glory.

Written By: Motobug

37 - flarp.png

Photo Credit: Zack Gordon

Score: 5.02

For two years in a row, Zack “Flarp” Gordon has been on the rise in the Project M scene. Debuting at #45 last year, Flarp set out to one-up his previous placement with his wily Luigi. His 2018 had an explosive start at We Tech Those 3, where he defeated Rongunshu and Mask to land himself a solid 17th place. At Revival of Smashing Grounds, he earned wins over Aidan, Aimbot, and Silver to place 5th. Finally, at his last big event of the year, Blacklisted 4, Flarp was able to get 13th place, defeating Vaporeon, CP9, Goode, and Phresh. Flarp’s slippery and fireball-heavy Luigi has achieved regional wins over Twisty and Yung Quaff, helping him land at #3 on the current Massachusetts Power Rankings. If Flarp is able to continue gaining good wins and solid placings, we may see him slide even further up the rankings next year.

Written By: Motobug

36 - BOBBY FRIZZ.png

Photo Credit: Princess Hyrule

Score: 5.03

Although Robert “Bobby Frizz” Fraser has reigned over Kansas and terrorized nearby states for years, this is his first foray into PMRank status. His trademark is an agile Fox that also propelled him onto SSBMRank, and during matches his mouth tends to move just as expressively as his character.. While Bobby was not the most extensive traveller in 2018, he accumulated top quality wins at the events he did attend. At Smash n Splash 4, he defeated Ellipsis on his way to an electrifying win against Malachi, then earned a victory against Reslived before falling to lloD to end at a respectable 13th place. Bobby Frizz also got 13th at Midwest major Push More Buttons 2018 and 3rd at Kansas regional Meta Knight’s Revenge, behind only Dirtboy and Sothe.

Written By: Pegthaniel

35 - fearless.png

Photo Credit: Tram Tram

Score: 5.18

Making his return to PMRank, Shahid “Fearless” Jivani put on another strong showing in 2018, both in and out of Texas. The Houston native took home wins over Shokio and Studebacher Hoch at the Infinity and Beyond! 200 Shark Tank, and defeated Arsenals at DU or Die 5 in Colorado. At Smash N Splash 4, he upset Morsecode762 in pools before eliminating Boringman en route to a 13th place finish. While Fearless’s aggressive and technical style of Lucario serves him well in most matches, it also introduces inconsistencies into his playstyle that have allowed losses to players such as Strat?, Johnohue, and American Bowser at various majors throughout the year. Fearless still had a great year overall, and if he can avoid the kind of upsets that led to a reduced rank this year then we can only expect greater things from him and his signature black Lucario in 2019.

Written By: Sabre

34 - junebug.png

Photo Credit: Delta (Jeff Mahieu)

Score: 5.30

Even as Arjun “Junebug” Rao steadily improves at Melee, he still maintains a formidable presence in Project M. This year finds the MDVA legend ranked top 50 in both games, a testament to his lasting skill and ability to adapt to new challenges. He placed 9th at We Tech Those 3 early in 2018, garnering victories over Boiko and Kumatora. His Smash N Splash 4 outing saw Junebug take down both Mr. Watch and Learn and JJK, a major milestone considering June’s previous difficulties with the Game and Watch matchup. He would ultimately finish in 7th place after falling against rising star Rongunshu. The rest of Junebug’s summer didn’t quite match that peak, but he continued to put up respectable results, such as 7th at Smashadelphia 2018. He also picked up a win on Dingo at The Even Bigger Balc, powering through an early loss to The Doctor in winners’ bracket. June ultimately ended up at 17th place after falling to JFyst. Junebug’s competitive drive may have shifted elsewhere, but his skill (and his signature laugh) will likely stick around for a long time.

Written By: FlashingFire

33 - cala.png

Photo Credit: N/A

Score: 5.79

First gaining notoriety in 2017, Nicolas “Cala” Costa has become a rapidly rising star in the Florida scene. A solo Ivysaur main, Cala is most known for his consistently strong punish trees and cool demeanor in-game. These traits helped him start out the year strong with a 2nd place finish at House of Lz, beating Dingo, Jfyst and Noghrilla along the way. He followed this up with a solid series of out-of-state appearances, getting 13th at Smash N Splash 4 and Blacklisted 4, and 17th at Even Bigger Balc. Along the way he picked up several key wins over Sneez, Reslived, Yung Quaff twice, and Mr. Watch & Learn, proving that he is threatening even to players outside his own region.

Written By: Blink

32 - luck.png

Photo Credit: Princess Hyrule

Score: 5.85

Michael “LUCK” Provonsil proved that he runs a tight ship, as his PMRank 2018 ranking is identical to his 2017 one. Although his travel outside of Texas has been limited to We Tech Those 3, he has good wins from across the nation in addition to those he’s picked up in his home state of Texas. At We Tech Those 3, LUCK placed 17th, defeating both E2xD and Jason Waterfalls. At Low Tier City 6, LUCK beat Reslived and Ivayne to get 9th, while at the Infinity and Beyond 200 Shark Tank he defeated Arsenals, Birdman, and Fearless to get 3rd. Time will tell if LUCK can keep up this kind of consistency into 2019.

Written By: FlashingFire and Pegthaniel

31 - silver.png

Photo Credit: Princess Hyrule

Score: 5.98

Thomas “Silver” Manning, the man of many mains, travelled quite widely this year, leaving his mark on a bevy of national tournaments. While he suffers from a weak 49th place at We Tech Those 3, losing to L_Pag and Wilford Brimley, his other results remain strong. At regionals, Silver performed consistently: he earned 7th place at Resting Stitch Face after defeating JJK, 7th at Revival of Smashing Grounds, and 5th by defeating Kumatora and ~CP9~ at Down Fall 8. At PM national Flex Zone 3, he triumphed over Boringman in a nail biting 3-2 set. Later, he even took a game off of Sosa. In losers’ bracket, he beat Bongo before narrowly losing to Kycse and ending up at 7th place. Silver also claimed 13th at The Even Bigger Balc after a long losers’ run, courtesy of an early loss to Envy. He forged his own silver lining out of the situation by defeating Messi from CO, $wift, and Ivayne before meeting his match in Fuzz.

Written By: Pegthaniel

Other PMRank 2018 Articles

1/28/2019 - PMRank 2018: The Edge of Glory
1/29/2019 - PMRank 2018: 50-41
1/30/2019 - PMRank 2018: 40-31
1/31/2019 - PMRank 2018: 30-21
2/01/2019 - PMRank 2018: 20-11
2/05/2019 - PMRank 2018: 10-7
2/06/2019 - PMRank 2018: 6-4
2/07/2019 - PMRank 2018: 3-1

Last Year's Rankings

1/21/2018 - PMRank 2017: The Edge of Glory
1/22/2018 - PMRank 2017: 50-41
1/23/2018 - PMRank 2017: 40-31
1/24/2018 - PMRank 2017: 30-21
1/25/2018 - PMRank 2017: 20-11
1/29/2018 - PMRank 2017: 10-7
1/30/2018 - PMRank 2017: 6-4
1/31/2018 - PMRank 2017: Top 3
2/11/2018 - PMRank 2017: Recap

PMRank Staff:
  • Brennan “FlashingFire” Connolly
  • Devin “Reslived” Gajewski
  • Peter “Pikmon” Woodworth
  • Kyle “Pegthaniel” Guo
  • Courtney “Zesty” Coffman
Graphic Design and Character Renders:
  • Courtney “Zesty” Coffman
  • Paul "Motobug" Canavan
  • Jet "Jetfantastic" Breton
  • "waffeln"
  • Cosmetic Standardization Project (CSProject)
  • Brennan “FlashingFire” Connolly
Additional Editing:
  • Devin “Reslived” Gajewski
  • Alex “Darth Shard” Elert
  • Ryan "Sabre" Weinberg
  • Jet "Jetfantastic" Breton
  • Kyle “Pegthaniel” Guo
Last edited:


^Parenthesis detonates secondaries.

31st: Silver:falco:(:fox::metaknight:) -1
32nd: LUCK:diddy: +0
33rd: Cala:ivysaur: New
34th: Junebug:diddy:(:sheik:) -7
35th: Fearless:lucario: +1
36th: Bobby Frizz:fox: New
37th: Flarp:luigi2: +8
38th: Jose V:ness2: -13
39th: EmuKiller:metaknight::mewtwopm: -26
40th: Noghrilla:dk2: New
41st: JFyst:sonic:(:diddy:) -8
42nd: Captain Birdman:wolf:(:falco:) New
43rd: Ellipsis:gw: New
44th: Yung Quaff:metaknight:(:mewtwopm:) -10
45th: Bongo:falcon: +1
46th: JJK:gw: -6
47th: Reslived:ness2: New
48th: $wift:lucario:(:substitute:) New
49th: Punk Panda:wolf: New
50th: Nezergy:gw: New
HM: Sneez:rob:(:diddy:) New
HM: Dingo:charizard: -13
HM: Connor:roypm: New
HM: Bubbles:falcon:(:dk2:) New
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