I've written extensively about esports. My portfolio includes longform journalistic articles, beat reporting, thinkpieces, op-eds, and humor pieces. The majority of my esports writing has focused on my favorite title, Super Smash Bros. Melee. However, I have reported on every major esport, including League of Legends, Street Fighter, Overwatch, and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive—and I’ve covered most of the smaller ones, too. The samples below are a small cross section of my work in this field. See here for a chronologically ordered list of all of my published works.
In September 2019, I talked to Super Smash Bros. professionals at three levels—elite, journeyman, and hometown hero—to write a comprehensive breakdown of the financial opportunities available to Smash competitors for Policygenius.
I’ve also covered the logistical and cultural issues preventing many Super Smash Bros. major events from turning a significant profit. This article was part of ESPN's lead-in to Genesis 5.
In December 2017, I profiled Jack "Crush" Hoyt, one of Melee's rising stars, for ESPN Esports. The article reached the top of both major Smash subreddits and went viral on Twitter. I’ve also profiled up-and-comers such as Zain “Zain” Naghmi and Sasha “Magi” Sullivan, the first trans player to qualify for Melee’s year-end top 100.
In June 2018, I extensively researched trends in the Melee scene and talked to tournament organizers and community leaders in order to write a thinkpiece for HTC Esports about the way that Melee netplay has changed—and will continue to change—the structure of the community. The piece was widely discussed within the Smash community and continues to influence the way that some tournament organizers approach the scene.
I have written ESPN's coverage of almost every Super Smash Bros. Melee major since September 2017. That month, I wrote ESPN's recap coverage of GameTyrant Expo. The piece stayed on top of r/smashbros for well over 24 hours and received over 50 retweets on ESPN Esports' official account.
In February 2018, I worked with HTC Esports to publish From Game Over to Global Exposure: An Oral History of The Melee Games. To complete this project—a comprehensive history of the past, present, and future of the world's first collegiate Smash league—I interviewed a number of the individuals involved in its development, including the league's founder, its current directors, and a high-level competitor.
Reporting in and out of the game
I think it’s important to report on important events in the world of esports, both in and out of the game. To that end, I spoke to Panda Global founder Alan Bunney in order to report on the allegations of domestic abuse leveled against the organization’s Street Fighter champion, Seonwoo “Infiltration” Lee. See my report on ESPN.
In March 2018, I wrote an op-ed arguing that the administrators of popular subreddit r/smashbros were overstepping their bounds by stifling the discussion of well-known and verified instances of sexual misconduct by top players and community figureheads. The op-ed reached the top of the subreddit and was widely read by members of the community. I've also written detailed reports to break the news on such instances.
I am a regular contributor to the official Super Smash Bros. Melee top-50 and top-100 world rankings. In July 2019, I wrote blurbs for the Melee Panda Global Rankings describing the accomplishments of Leffen, Swedish Delight, KJH, Michael, and Magi during the first half of the year; In January 2019, I wrote blurbs for 2saint, Crush and Armada . As Crush and Armada retired in 2018, my blurbs were a send-off for these players describing their careers and legacies as a whole.
My summer 2018 blurbs include: Overtriforce, Captain Faceroll, Bladewise, MikeHaze, Trif, Syrox, ARMY, Ryan Ford, Westballz, and aMSa. In addition to my writing contributions, I edited an additional six blurbs for other blurb writers.
In late 2017, I wrote eleven of the 100 blurbs used in Red Bull's year-end rankings, including those of Leffen, La Luna, Lucky, Crush, ChuDat, Colbol, Amsah, Prince Abu, Abate, Junebug, and Drunksloth.
In November 2017, my Bad Melee humor piece reached the top of both r/smashbros and r/ssbm.
In July 2018, I analyzed the unique doubles strategy of Javier "JAVI" Ruiz and Jorge "Twin" Ruiz.