For the last year, there’s been a whisper among Melee players. People asking themselves “Will Marth win a major?” and “Are consistent pivot tippers really feasible?” The reason for this can be explained in three words: Zain “Zain” Naghmi. Though he’s also notorious for his dashback grabs, the MDVA-based Marth main also pioneered using pivot fsmash consistently in game.
Now, all the haters have officially been silenced as Zain has won his first major in the form of Shine 2018. Nobody would have bet on the up-and-comer, but that’s what makes it such a perfect story.
Ryan “La Luna” Coker-Welch perfectly explained all the reasons that Zain’s win at Shine is such a big deal. Zain is a player who got into the game around 2013 due to the Melee documentary, which is big since so few people from that era are current top players. He also beat both Joseph “Mang0” Marquez and double eliminated world champion Juan “Hungrybox” DeBiedma on his way to the win.
It’s honestly hard to put into words how huge it is that he won. He got third at Smash Summit 6, which was the closest he’d come beforehand, but now he’s finally brought one home.
As he was being interviewed by the casters at Shine, he said, “It feels like a dream.” It would be great to be in his head when he wakes up tomorrow and the weight of the win really comes down upon him.
2018 Melee has been stellar, and Shine has delivered once again.
If I’m not practicing my Melee Falco, perfecting P.E.K.K.A decks in Clash Royale, or watching some esports tournament, I’m probably writing for fun or maybe trying to get a bit better at rock climbing. DBLTAP gave me a shot at esports over a year ago, and at 19, I’m still striving to improve my writing as much as possible.