August was one busy month for Smash. EVO, Smash Con, and Shine - that’s 3 big tournaments in 4 weeks. Ultimate’s biggest names and top players came to all three of August’s tournaments too. That made Shine 2019 pretty important. This would be the last chance for players to prove themselves in a while.
Team Liquid’s Dabuz was no exception. After a rough break at Smash Con and nerfs to his old main, Olimar, Dabuz had more to prove than usual, and prove himself he did. His first big challenge came in the form of yeti, Minnesota’s best player, ranked 34th on the PGR. After beating yeti in a close 3-2 set, Dabuz got revenge on LeoN, a hidden boss Bowser that upset him and Marss at Defend the North.
Dabuz battled his way into the Winner’s side of Top 8, where he faced Samsora. It was a battle of the princesses as Dabuz brought out Rosalina to face Samsora’s Peach. Dabuz would keep it close the entire set, bringing Samsora down to last stock, last hit situations but Samsora would take the set in the end. In Loser’s side Dabuz faced Nairo’s Palutena. Nairo would just squeak by Dabuz in a 3-2 set that was one of the closest in the tournament. Though Dabuz couldn’t find his big win, he placed 5th and the razor thin margins in his losses showed that he is still a threat to be reckoned with.
On the Melee side, things went even better for Team Liquid. Hungrybox tore through the tournament, beating S2J, Swedish Delight, and lloD on his way to a first place finish. This year’s Shine lacked Mang0, Zain, Wizzrobe, Plup, and Axe. That meant the biggest threat Hungrybox faced was iBDW, an upcoming Fox ranked 10th in the world, and the player that eliminated him in Summit. Hunbrybox got his revenge with a clean 3-1.
It wasn’t just Hungrybox that made it far. This time, ChuDat went on a run no one saw coming. He showed up to the tournament in vintage form, demonstrating unique techniques and handoffs in bracket. His solo climber - SoPo - looked deadlier than ever and let him take stocks without the wobble. In his run, he beat Captain Smuckers, Moky, Fiction, and Swedish Delight.
It was no easy task, since Swedish Delight is one of the game’s strongest Sheiks and even has a Peach ready to counter the Ice Climbers. Moky and Fiction are two highly ranked Fox mains and Moky already had a great tournament, eliminating Leffen just earlier. ChuDat’s hardest task would be beating iBDW and he’d fall just short, going 3-2 and placing 4th in the tournament.
Shine had one last surprise, and it was Armada’s return to Melee, this time as a commentator. Armada signed on with Vish to commentate the top 8 of the tournament and capped things off with a wholesome interview with Hbox. The two titans of the game talked about how much they pushed one another to play their absolute best.