This past Sunday, your pals here at High Score teamed up with GamerSaloon and the Detroit Red Wings to put on what – in our humble opinion – was the coolest NHL19 tournament ever.
It started with 680 players competing in a series of online and live qualifiers. In the end, the 16 best NHL19 players in the US came together at Little Caesars Arena to face one another for the chance of winning their take of the $8000 in prize money and the championship.
The stage was set, the players warmed up their fingers, and the commentators readied their voices. A day of high stakes slapshots was ready to get underway.
The First Two Rounds
A crowd had gathered to see what all the fuss was about. Many who came to see the Detroit Red Wings take on the San Jose Sharks ended up finding some of the most exciting hockey was taking place not on the ice, but on the sidelines as the 16 gamers duked it out for their chance to be crowned champion.
As the pressure grew for our players, so too did the size of the crowd. Soon enough, the cheers from the crowd were almost drowning out the commentary provided by Arda Ocal and Jamie “Dirk” Diaz Ruiz.
Rickchel, who just a few short weeks ago traveled from Pennsylvania to win his seat at the table at the live qualifier at High Score, put up a hell of a fight, but in the end, Michigan’s own KingZadina came out on top. Texan EricFisher81 was able to beat out Michigan’s HelmetHead81 and move into the second round where he overcame KingZadina and move on to the semifinals.
JohnWaynee90 – traveling all the way from Alaska – beat out New Jersey’s KosmicEA. Ohio’s Top Shelf Cookie took the ‘W’ from Florida’s Luigi_x before losing out to JohnWaynee90 in the second round.
Kylen_39, hailing from Illinois, trounced New York’s BR_549er. Connecticut’s own HK beat out Missouri’s Daddy Padre, coming back from being down by 3 to force the game into overtime before winning it and moving on to round two. There, HK handed Kylen_39 a defeat, moving into the semifinals.
Fairing better than his Pennsylvania brother, JrPens91 beat Michigan’s Dabberburg in round one. Booya was able to get the win over DirtyDuster, and with both players coming from Michigan it gave the tournament’s home state another chance to compete in the second round. Sadly for the Mitten, Booya lost out to JrPens91.
A cool breeze wafted in from the rink, but the heat from the tournament easily canceled it out. Down to just 4 players, the crowd in the stadium continued to grow, and the viewers on Twitch followed suit. Adding to the tension was knowing that while 3rd place was guaranteed a cool $1000 and 2nd would walk away with $2000 – to say nothing of the $5000 for winning the whole thing – one of these four players was going to have come so far just to walk away with nothing more than a gift bag.
EricFisher81 and JohnWaynee90 faced off first, and while EricFisher81 didn’t make it easy, JohnWaynee90 walked away with the win.
HK and JrRens91 came up next, with HK taking the win.
EricFisher81 and JrPens91 battled it out for 3rd, with JrPens91 taking a win and $1000.
After all the action that had already gone down, everyone took a break to watch the Red Wings face off against the Sharks. Sadly, we didn’t get to see the home team win, but there’s no denying that Detroit’s own put up a fight.
Still, fans would be able to see the Red Wings win a championship when the tournament moved to the ice for the final match between JohnWaynee90 and HK. With the players set up in the Red Wings bench, fans were able to keep up with the action by watching on the Jumbotron!
JohnWaynee90 and HK gave it their all, but JohnWaynee90 didn’t come all the way from Alaska for 2nd place. Winning the championship and taking home $5000, JohnWaynee90 got the #BigCheck!
Your 2019 #RedWings Esports Face-off Champion: @Johnwaynee90 ???????? pic.twitter.com/r4lArTiBg4
— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) February 25, 2019
Congratulations to all 16 players – each of them showed that they had what it takes to be the best NHL19 players in the US! While only one person could go home as champion, there’s no doubting that each contestant has the blood of a winner coursing through their hockey-loving veins.
You can check out the stream here!
Photos Curtosy of Adam Antor
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