Florida's annual fighting game tournament, CEO, took place last weekend at the Wyndham Orlando Resort with Street Fighter V, Tekken 7, Injustice 2 and Super Smash Bros. were among the eleven games on display for fans to enjoy. With a capacity crowd in attendance and thousands more tuning in on Twitch, CEO 2017 was full of surprises and memorable performances. Juan Manuel "Hungrybox" Debiedma earned Smash Bros. Melee champion honors while Gonzalo "ZeRo" Barrios won the Smash Bros. WiiU tournament, Choi "Saint" Jinwoo took home the belt for Tekken 7, Nicolas "Whiteboi" Andersen upset the Sonic Fox in Injustice 2 and Darryl "Snake Eyez" Lewis conquered his demons for a Street Fighter V victory.
Here's a look at how each grand final played out.
Super Smash Bros. Melee
Orlando's own Juan Manuel "Hungrybox" Debiedma was the favorite to win this tournament thanks to his careful Jigglypuff play. He faced off against Justin "Plup" McGrath's Star Fox and Sheik in the grand finals. Like so many other matches in the top eight, Plup took the first match to Game 5 with calculated pressure to reset the bracket. It wouldn't be enough, however, as the Smash 'N' Splash 3 champion, Hungrybox, would go the distance with a decisive 3-0 victory. Plup joked on Twitter that he "wanted to sleep," as the Saturday evening tournament went until after 1 a.m.
Super Smash Bros. WiiU
The grand finals for Smash 4 would see Chile's Gonzalo "ZeRo" Barrios face off against Mexico's Leonardo Lopez "MkLeo" Perez, two of the top three finalists from Genesis 4 earlier this year, with the MkLeo winning that event. Things started off on a dominating note for ZeRo's Diddy Kong, pushing MkLeo's Cloud into a quick two-game deficit to start the match. A quick coaching session saw MkLeo switch to Corrin, a move that would give MkLeo his first victory of the set. Game 4 took an unfortunate turn for MkLeo as he would accidentally self destruct on his first stock, leading ZeRo to cruise his way to victory as the CEO 2017 champion.
Echo Fox has made a huge name for themselves in the fighting game community over the last few months, and they're well-represented in most major fighting games. Tekken's no exception with, Kim "JDCR" HyunJin and Choi "Saint" Jinwoo repping the orange and white. Indeed, it would be a team-kill grand finals at CEO with both fighters squaring off. JDCR's Dragunov was solid for two straight games, and it was looking like he was poised to take it all with Saint dropping combos and missing opportunities. But Saint's Jack-7 rebounded in style, forcing a Game 4 with a Rage Art and Game 5 in three straight rounds to be declared the Tekken champion.
Frank "Slayer" Perales fought for his tournament life in the top three, upsetting one of the best Injustice 2 players in the world, Dominique "Sonic Fox" McLean, to reach the grand finals where he would face Nicolas "Whiteboi" Andersen. Whiteboi's Scarecrow caught a lot of people off guard in the tournament, and it would be no different for Slayer's Aquaman. Though Slayer did manage to get the bracket reset with some environmental interactions and classic Aquaman chip damage, it wouldn't be enough to overcome Whiteboi's overwhelming Scarecrow assault. He seemed to land everything he wanted, getting massive damage when he needed it to win the Injustice 2 tournament.
Street Fighter V
CEO provided yet another dramatic Street Fighter grand final for the Capcom Pro Tour, this time with Darryl "Snake Eyez" Lewis looking for another shot at glory after his second place finish at Combo Breaker last month. His iconic Zangief would go up against none other than Victor "Punk" Woodley, widely regarded as the best Karin in the world. This set was a nail-biter from start to finish as neither fighter looked to have a clear advantage over the other. In Game 5, Punk switched off of Karin to Nash in an attempt to get a more favorable matchup, but his efforts would be stifled by superb reads by Snake Eyez as CEO 2017 came to an end with Lewis holding the Street Fighter V belt above his head.