PGRU Area 51 reveals first ranked Smash Ultimate players
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The Super Smash Bros. Ultimate ranking season has begun with the reveal of the Summer 2019 PGRU Area 51. This ranking consists of five Ultimate players who barely missed the cut for top 50 in the world. While each player is notable enough to be an honorable mention, the skill difference between each player is not significant. As a result, all of them receive the honorary ranking of No. 51.

The first set of players inducted into Smash Ultimate’s Area 51 were revealed today, on July 22. These included Brett “8BitMan” Esposito, Alan “Gen” Soriano, Laith “SDX” Hamdan, Leon “Sonido” Green, and Zack “ZD” Darby.

The official top 50 rankings of the PGRU will begin later today. After that, the Summer 2019 PGRU will alternate reveals with the Summer 2019 MPGR. This means a set of either ten Melee players or ten Ultimate players will get ranked every weekday for the next two weeks. The reveal schedule is as follows:

  • July 22: PGRU – Area 51 & No. 50-41
  • July 23: MPGR – No. 50-41
  • July 24: PGRU – No. 40-31
  • July 25: MPGR – No. 40-31
  • July 26: PGRU – No. 30-21
  • July 29: MPGR – No. 30-21
  • July 30: PGRU – No. 20-11
  • July 31: MPGR – No. 20-11
  • August 1: PGRU – No. 10-1
  • August 2: MPGR – No. 10-1

While the PGRU Area 51 reveal came in the form of an article, the rest of the PGRU will be revealed in a video format. Conversely, the Summer MPGR 2019 will see its reveals made via articles published by Red Bull.

The first PGRU Area 51

One of the most surprising members of the Summer 2019 PGRU Area 51 is ZD. ZD was one of the earliest strong contenders in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. He had top 8 finishes at pre-season events like Let’s Make Moves and Glitch 6. However, his national results during the PGR season were not nearly as impressive as these early results.

ZD failed to place higher than 25th at any of the majors he attended this season. In fact, he placed 33rd at four major tournaments: GENESIS 6, Pound 2019, Smash’N’Splash 5, and CEO 2019. Even so, ZD has beaten the likes of Gavin “Tweek” Dempsey, Sota “Zackray” Okada, and William “Leffen” Hjelte.

SDX is another interesting member of the first PGRU Area 51. SDX has actually retired from Smash Ultimate, and he has not entered a tournament since February. Even so, he boasts respectable placings like 2nd at No Fun Allowed 3, 17th at GENESIS 6, and 33rd at Frostbite 2019. SDX has wins over Saleem “Salem” Young, Eric “Mr E” Weber, Yuta “Abadango” Kawamura, Tyrell “NAKAT” Coleman, and Bharat “Lima” Chintapall.

Dylan Tate is an alumnus of the Hussman School of Journalism and Media at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is a gaming journalist with a love for Nintendo esports, particularly Super Smash Bros. and Pokémon.