Zain Smash Con

Zain is crowned champion at Smash Con 2023

By Olivia Richman


Aug 14, 2023

Reading time: 3 min

Smash Con 2023 is one of the biggest Smash community events of the year and this includes some high-level tournaments that bring all the top players together in one hype venue. This year, Zain Naghmi defended his title as the best Melee player in the world when he beat Juan “Hungrybox” DeBiedma in the Grand Finals. 

The Super Smash Bros. Melee Top 8 was completely stacked, making it one of the main events of the weekend. Melee Gods Hungrybox and Joseph “Mang0” Marquez found themselves in the Top 8 along with Fox extraordinaire Cody Schwab, the red Yoshi from Japan Masaya “aMSa” Chikamoto, and the number one ranked player Zain. 

Zain had an incredible run in the Top 8, steamrolling through opponents on the Winner’s side. His Winners Semi-Final match with Canadian pro Kurtis “moky” Pratt ended 3-1 in his favor. 

He then went to face Cody Schwab in the Winners Finals, which was predicted to be a pretty close match since Zain is ranked number one and Cody is number two on the SSBMRank for this season. But Zain ended up wiping Cody 3-1. 

Zain was then face to face with the Jigglypuff master Hungrybox, who had climbed through Loser’s side very convincingly to get to the Grand Finals. Hungrybox had won against Mang0 3-0 despite Mang0 choosing a surprising Dr. Mario, wiped moky right after, and then had an intense 3-2 match with Cody Schwab to knock him out of the tournament. 

Hungrybox seemed to be cruising through opponents, hitting almost every rest with ease. He was a menace on the ledge per usual and danced around opponents with frustrating elegance. It seemed like if anyone was going to be able to take Zain down, it’d be Hungrybox. 

Zain beats Hungrybox 3-2 to win Grand Finals

It was a strong start for Hungrybox, and it seemed like Zain was fumbling left and right. But Zain soon caught up, and the stress could be seen on Hungrybox’s face as he hesitated to pick the next stage at one point. Zain was proving why he’s considered the best in the world, but it was Hungrybox’s own mistake that led to his demise. 

At one point, Hungrybox attempted to rest Zain but missed ever so slightly, leaving him sleeping just long enough for Marth to load up a smash attack and send him flying to his untimely death. The crowd stood up and screamed, knowing they’d just witnessed Zain win yet another major Smash tournament. 

Super Smash Con is held in Virginia near DC every year. Zain is from northern Virginia, so it meant even more to him to win at an event that’s so near and dear to his heart. Smash Con even tweeted that Zain’s first-ever major was Smash Con back in 2015. At that time, he placed 33rd, but this time, he came out on top. 

This was definitely a Melee Top 8 to witness. Despite Zain being the undisputed best in the world, there were still a lot of jaw-dropping moments and incredible skills from all of the Top 8 competitors. It won’t be long until someone comes for Zain’s title, but for now, the Marth main is relishing in his heartwarming victory.