Last Week in E-Sports: E3 Invitational, CEO, CWL Anaheim, and more

Who had the big idea to hold so many e-sports tournaments in one week!? Between E3 Invitational, CEO down in Florida, CWL Anaheim, and many more, the e-sports world was stretched unbearably thin last week.

Top players and teams had to pick and choose which tournaments they wanted to attend, leaving some with weaker showings than they would have liked. Still, the prize money was flowing. Let’s see where it went.

All of the Results!

CEO 2017

  • Darryl S. Lewis aka Snake Eyez took home CEO’s Street Fighter V tournament with his trademark Zangief, triumphing over Victor “Punk” Woodley.
  • In a strange turn of events, CEO’s Injustice 2 tournament did not go to Sonic Fox. Instead, it went to Nicolas “Whiteboi” Andersen, who showed off some impressive Scarecrow play. Most notably, he took advantage of chip damage to the fullest extent, something you don’t see often in a tournament finals match.
  • CEO’s Tekken 7 tournament went to Choi “Saint” Jin Woo from Korea playing Jack-7, a character that had an unexpectedly high showing in the tournament’s top 8. He actually faced off against fellow Echo Fox team member HunJin Kim, aka JDCR, in the finals.
  • Gonzalo “ZeRo” Barrios took home the CEO Smash crown for Team Solo Mid, maining an oldie but goodie Diddy Kong.
  • The Melee championship went to Juan Manuel “Hungrybox” Debiedma, a crowd favorite and star player for Team Liquid.
  • CEO also saw a “revival” of sorts in the Pokken Tournament scene. Christian “Suicune Master” Patierno came out on top maining Lucario. Fans are hoping that Nintendo’s recent choice to re-release Pokken Tournament on the Switch will give the game a second wind in the e-sports scene.
  • Ryo “Dogura” Nozaki took home the gold in Guilty Gear XRD REV 2, showing us all how high-tier Raven could be. Dogura continues to rep Cyclops Osaka, a small team in the grand e-sports scheme, yet his results don’t lie.
  • CEO also proved that Killer Instinct is alive and well, with Nicholas “Nicky” Iovene taking the gold for Circa eSports. It was recently announced that Killer Instinct will be seeing a Steam release, and while the professional community has been slowly shrinking after season 3 wrapped up, there is hope the Steam release will keep it alive just a little longer.
  • Ryan "RyanLV" Romero won the CEO UMVC3 championships with his unorthodox team of Chun-Li/Morrigan/Phoenix. He went up against ChrisG, one of the more famous UMVC3 players, and countered his keep away game simply by running away. This forced ChrisG to come in, which was exactly where Ryan’s Phoenix and Chun-Li wanted him. This was one of the last UMVC3 tournaments before MVCI takes its place. The very last UMVC3 major will be held at EVO 2017.
  • CEO’s BlazBlue Centralfiction tournament went to PG|SKD, to no one’s surprise. He continued to dominate with strong Izayoi play, maining the character he himself considered to be borderline broken.
  • Finally, CEO’s tournament for The King of Fighters XIV went to Xhuojun “Xiaohai” Zeng running three separate teams of Kula/K’/Iori, Kula/Luong/Iori, and Kula/Benimaru/Iori.
  • Because CEO was happening this weekend, E3’s Twitch stage was somewhat bare. While many professional players were in attendance fighting exhibition matches, the tournaments themselves were filled primarily with random con-goers, giving them a taste of that it was like to live the e-sports lifestyle.

DreamHack Summer 2017

  • Dreamhack Summer also held a number of tournaments last weekend. Their Street Fighter V tournament went to Fujimura “Yukadon” Atsushi.
  • Dreamhack also ran tournaments in Pokken and Super Smash Bros Melee, which saw Fabilous and |Armada coming out on top, respectively.

Nintendo E3 2017 Invitational

  • Nintendo held an ARMS Invitational tournament at E3 last week, with Zerk coming out on top. Zerk then got a chance to play the game’s producer, Kosuke Yabuki, who proceeded to absolutely slaughter the recently crowned champion, using a variety of combos and high-level set-ups that were never seen before.
  • Nintendo also held a Pokken Tournament Invitational, but with so many top players competing at CEO and DreamHack, they had to pull on a different pool of talent: YouTubers. Each YouTuber was teamed up with a professional and they competed as a team unit. The winners of the tournament were Allister Singh and MatPat from Game Theory. They then went on to challenge director Haruki Suzaki and producer Masaaki Hoshino, who proceeded to demolish them. Man, Nintendo employees are ruthless.
  • Finally, Nintendo held an Invitational tournament for Splatoon 2, featuring teams from the U.S., Europe, Japan, and Australia/New Zealand. It was Team Deadbeat, playing for the U.S., who eventually took the gold. Unlike in Nintendo’s other tournaments, they did not then have to play Splatoon 2’s developers.

…And the rest

  • Luminosity Gaming has won their first major Call of Duty championship, taking home the gold in the CWL Anaheim Open and $80,000 in prize money.
  • Team Newbee defeated challengers Planet Odd in a decisive three game sweep to win the Galaxy Battles DOTA2 tournament and $150,000 in prize money. This is Newbee’s fourth major tournament placement in four weeks.
  • BIG, Penta Sports, and Team Dignitas have taken the final spots for the PGL Krakow Major Offline Qualifier, solidifying the event’s lineup.
  • Astralis defeated Virtus Pro in ELEAGUE’s CS:GO Clash for Cash in a practical replay of this year’s ELEAGUE Major in January.

The Roster Shuffle

  • While Team Red Bulls hasn’t been forced to give up any players, Riot Games has forced them to change their name to Team RB due to "certain formalities not yet being locked." This is likely because the Red Bull brand sponsors other teams in the League of Legends scene.
  • Leon "Lamabear" Krüger has left the Mysterious Monkeys and has decided to become a free LoL agent.
  • Alex "Xpecial" Chu is joining Phoenix1’s LoL team. “Xpecial brings a wealth of veteran experience that will be a huge benefit to our team,” said a statement on the official Phoenix1 Facebook page.
  • Super Smash Bros. Melee players Sami "Druggedfox" Muhanna and Justin "Syrox" Burroughs have recently signed up with a relatively new team, Balance Gaming. This will be the second game that Balance invests in after their acquisition of an Overwatch team last April.
  • Team Liquid has signed Super Smash Bros. Melee veteran Daniel "ChuDat" Rodriguez. "I am so honored that Team Liquid has chosen me to represent them,” Chudat said. “This is an amazing opportunity and I can't wait to start playing under their brand."
  • Team Liquid has picked up former Rhinos Gaming Wings player Kim "Fury" Jun Ho as a substitute tank player for their Overwatch team. "I'm extremely excited to have Fury working with us in the next couple of weeks," Team Liquid coach Dennis "INTERNETHULK" Hawelka said in a statement. "His raw mechanical skill and dedication towards the game is amazing, while his hero pool is exactly what we're looking for."
  • Another former Rhinos Gaming Wings player, Lee "envy" Kang-jae will join Immortals' Overwatch roster.
  • U.S. and Canadian teams for the Overwatch World Cup were announced at E3 this year.

The U.S. roster includes:

  • FaZe Clan tank Russell "FCTFCTN" Campbell
  • FaZe Clan support Shane "Rawkus" Flaherty
  • Cloud9 support Adam "Adam" Eckel
  • ex-Fnatic flex Matt "coolmatt69" Iorio
  • Selfless DPS Jay "sinatraa" Won
  • LG Evil DPS Jake Lyon

While the Canadian roster includes:

  • Renegades DPS Mangachu
  • Immortals DPS Brady "Agilities" Girardi
  • Yikes! tank Félix "xQc" Lengyel
  • Cloud9 DPS Lane "Surefour" Roberts
  • Cloud9 support Randal "Roolf" Stark
  • compLexity Gaming support Joe "Joemiester" Gramano
  • Ryan “Batchford” Batchelor has found a new home with exceL Esports’s Halo team after his release from Team Infused. 
  • After two years in the scene, Team EnVyUs has decided to leave Gears of War e-sports. Their entire roster has been transferred to Echo Fox, and they do not plan on fielding a new one.
  • Team Secret has parted ways with their all-female CS:GO roster. “ new team name will be announced soon,” said Julia "juliano" Kiran, the in-game leader of the former Secret squad.
  • Finally, Fnatic Academy has officially been rebranded as Ballistix to play at the PGL European Minor.