SSBMRank 2016: 61-70

Rising stars make their first appearances in today’s SSBMRank. What does their future hold?
SSBMRank 2016: Day 4 © Melee It On Me
By Daniel "Tafokints" Lee

Welcome to day four of SSBMRank 2016. This year we have partnered with Red Bull to unveil the list.

As a quick reminder, the SSBMRank panelists comprise of a large group of players, figureheads, and community volunteers that rate the placers. Voters rated players based on the following criterion:

Given the quality and quantity of work in 2016 (From Genesis 3 to UGC), if everyone entered 100 tournaments, who on average would place the best?

Panelists voted on a 1-10 scale with the best player receiving a “10” and the worst player on the list receiving a “1”. Ballots that were not scaled properly were rescaled using an algorithm to place the best player at a “10” and the worst player at a “1”. With over fifty panelists this year, we also decided to remove the two lowest and two highest ratings before taking the average in order to reduce the variance.

Rank 70: Kage the Warrior © SleepyK

Rating: 5.566
Last Year's Rank: 44
Other Placements:
5th: Eclipse 2, 13th: Canada Cup 2016, 1st: Battlegrounds 2, 3rd: Frozen Phoenix

While he may not be performing at the same heights he once was when he double eliminated Mango at Revival of Melee 2 in 2009, Roustane "Kage the Warrior" Benzeguir has kept himself in contention with the top and continues to push the meta forward as a Ganondorf main. Wins against benchmark players such as Android, Plank, Trifasia, and Fuzzyness propelled him to solid results and net him a spot in the Top 70.

Written By: Jack McDonald
Edited By: Henry Fellner

Rank 69: Squid © Robert Paul/@tempusrob/

Rating: 5.571
Last Year's Rank: N/A
Other Placements
2nd: Socal Colosseum #5, 7th: Rewired 2016, 5th: SSS: Blood For Blood

One of the stars of the "60 Frames" mini-doc, Jeremy "Squid" Deutsch rose to new levels in 2016. The Falco fiend has looked strong at local tournament: wins on Westballz, Lucky, S2J, MacD, MikeHaze, and more placed him 9th on the latest edition of Southern California's Power Rankings. While Squid's national results have been up and down, 2017 could finally be his breakout year.

Written By: Michael Forde
Edited By: Anokh Palakurthi

Rank 68: ESAM © Thomas Tischio

Rating: 5.588
Last Year's Rank: 81
Other Placements
4th: Low Tier City 4, 2nd: Gamers Fight Cancer, 5th: The Smash House

A player with excellent skills across several Smash games, Eric "ESAM" Lew's sharp and stylish Samus brought him moderate success this year. He placed 4th at Low Tier City 4 with a win over Wobbles, and defeated Westballz and Zhu at Super Smash Con 2016 to finish 13th. He has said that he won’t be focusing on Melee very much in the future, but that doesn’t take away from a solid 2016 for ESAM.

Written By: Luke Romeo
Edited By: Henry Fellner

Rank 67: Syrox © Matt Seal/Juggleguy

Rating: 5.591
Last Year's Rank: N/A
Other Placements
3rd: Rewired 2016, 3rd: Fastfall or Nothing, 1st: Flatiron One

A resident of Greely, Colorado, the 18-year-old Justin "Syrox" Burroughs exploded onto the scene in 2016 with his impressively technical Fox. He placed 25th at The Big House 6, where he took down Lovage and Infinite Numbers before eventually losing a close set to Chillindude. A 3-0 win over Gahtzu at Rewired 2016 set Syrox up for a big showing at Eden, where he would take sets off S2J and Colbol and finish 5th.

Written By: Kyle Appelquist
Edited By: Matt Knutson & Andrew Nestico

Rank 66: Zain © Matt Seal/Juggleguy

Rating: 5.717
Last Year's Rank: N/A
Other Placements
1st: Smash @ Xanadu Wednesdays 5/25

Zain “Zain” Naghmi truly had a breakout year in 2016. After debuting on MD/VA’s Power Rankings in March, he quickly climbed the ranks to become a national threat. In addition to top 64 placings at Pound 2016, Evo 2016, and Super Smash Con, Zain ended the year with a very solid 17th at The Big House 6, where he took out Tafokints, KJH, and most notably, Plup. 2017 will be a very interesting year for the one many are calling “the best Doc Kid”.

Written By: John Craytor
Edited By: Henry Fellner

Rank 65: DJ Nintendo © Robert Paul/@tempusrob/

Rating: 5.806
Last Year's Rank: 41
Other Placements
1st: Nebs After Dark 36, 33rd: CEO 2016, 17th: EGLX, 17th: Clutch City Clash, 5th: Shots Fired 2, 4th: Apex 2016

A Melee legend known for his mastery of the game’s entire cast and colorful catchphrases, Hendrick "DJ Nintendo" Pilar has a steady and patient Fox that brought him decent results in 2016. Despite a few early losses in pools, clutch losers runs helped DJ Nintendo finish 17th at all of Pound 2016, GOML 2016, Super Smash Con 2016, and Shine 2016. He also boasts impressive victories over Hax, Wobbles, Crush, and Ryan Ford.

Written By: Luke Romeo
Edited By: Nick Buckman

Rank 64: Captain Smuckers © Matt Seal/Juggleguy

Rating: 5.838
Last Year's Rank: 99
Other Placements
2nd: Nebulous Prime Melee #64, 9th: Super Nebulous 4, 33rd: CEO 2016

Tristate's Alex “Captain Smuckers” Cottrell continued to improve and take names this year. Recently ranked 5th on the New York City Power Rankings, the Captain Falcon main finished top 32 at Pound 2016 and top 64 at Genesis 3 and The Big House 6. Along the way, he scored impressive set wins against The Moon, Slox, Connor, and Zgetto. If Captain Smuckers can keep improving, expect him to make a name for himself among the world's best Falcons.

Written By: Luke Romeo
Edited By: Andrew Nestico

Rank 63: Android © Thomas Tischio

Rating: 5.854
Last Year's Rank: 48
Other Placements
9th: Dreamhack Winter 2016, 7th: Eclipse 2, 9th: Heir 3, 5th: Dreamhack Summer 2016

Andreas "Android" Lindgren's recent signing with Alliance has given him the liberty to travel to more events with his brother and doubles partner, Armada. His solid fundamentals and movement rewarded him with strong placings at Eclipse 2 and Dreamhack Winter 2016, as well as a win over Ice, and he has cemented himself as a top 10 player in Europe. Expect Android to grow as a Smasher as he gets more chances to travel.

Written By: Daniel Lee
Edited By: Nick Buckman & Andrew Nestico

Rank 62: SmashG0D © SleepyK

Rating: 5.861
Last Year's Rank: N/A
Other Placements
17th: Olympus, 7th: Shots Fired 2

Rishi “SmashG0D” Malhotra had a strong year in both doubles and singles. Not only did he finish top 12 in every event where he teamed with his brother lloD, but he also placed in the top 64 of singles at Pound 2016, Evo 2016, and Super Smash Con 2016. This year, SmashG0D netted wins over Professor Pro, Fiction, DJ Nintendo, and HugS, and we saw him prove his Marth’s undeniable strength when he took Armada to the last hit of Game 3 at Evo.

Written By: John Craytor
Edited By: Henry Fellner

Rank 61: Zgetto © ssbmugshots

Rating: 5.902
Last Year's Rank: 73
Other Placements
3rd: Kickstart 11, 3rd: Avalon M-II, 2nd: Avalon M-III, 7th: Eclipse 2

Miguel "Zgetto" Rodriguez Penalva had a strong 2016, and has been climbing back up to the top echelons of European Melee. His distinctively aggressive Fox has never looked cleaner or sharper, and his play earned him impressive wins over Professor Pro, Trifasia, Android, Overtriforce, and Chillindude.

Written By: Julius Vissing
Edited By: Matt Knutson


Head Editor: Andrew “PracticalTAS” Nestico
Graphics: Desiree “TinyKasama” Macasieb, Matthew “Icarus” Harmon, Nick “DarkDragoon” Konstantino

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