MKLeo: The King Of Smash

ESPORTSREPORTER.COM / FRANK FILIPPAZZO – STAFF WRITER / JULY 11TH, 2021 /

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Leonardo López Pérez (born January 20, 2001), also known as MkLeo or Leo, is a Mexican professional gamer and considered by many “The King Of Smash,” the number one Super Smash Bros player in the world. Leo was born to be a gamer. His brother ran local events and his cousins were top players in Mexico City.

It is very little unknown when he started gaming competitively, but it is implied he’s been doing it since 2008. In 2009 he won his first tournament at the Anime Expo Mexico TNT at the early age of 8. He started growing fame outside of the US from competing in Smash Factor tournaments in Mexico.

The Rise of MkLeo

In Smash Factor 3 he came really close to winning but ended up losing to his cousin Sege, only to garner second place. Leo’s first big national win was at Smash Factor 4, a regional tournament held in Puebla, Mexico, from July 24th to July 26th, 2015. It was the second-largest Mexican Smash tournament which made Leo a local Super Smasher overnight. His main character was Metal Knight, which wasn’t that popular due to it being nerfed down.

International Fame

Leo started going international when his visas were approved for travel. In 2016 he entered the Get On My Level (GOML) tournament in Ontario Canada. It was the third tournament of the franchise and the first of many internationals for the 16-year old child prodigy gamer. Leo ended up registering late due to his visa delays but was allowed to due to widespread community approval. At the age of 16, Leo went on to defeat some of the top players in the world at smash giving him a lot of attention.

ZeRo

During the time of Leo’s rise in popularity, he will continue to battle against many professional smash gamers. One of his most well-known and frequent rivals was Zero, a seasonal Chilean champion regarded as the best in the world in Super Smash Bros 4.

His back-to-back rival, ZeRo was a force to be reckoned with as the two will continue to battle each other throughout the years. Their first tournament together was at the GOML in Canada where they faced each other in the loser brackets. Leo didn’t win, but he did very well for a newbie placing 5th.

Once Leo got his US visa approved he met up with ZeRo at the  KTAR XIX Smash tournament where they had their rematch. This was Leo’s first match in the US. The two battled for the number one spot, however once again ZeRo came out on top winning the tournament while Leo placed a respectable third.

Their third meet and final meetup was in Las Vegas at the 2GGT: ZeRo Saga tournament, which was aptly named after his nemesis, ZeRo. Despite being sent to the losers brackets he would eliminate many top players where he would eventually be faced with ZeRo for the third time. This time MKLeo beat Zero with an impressive 3-0 victory. After all that time and hard work he finally beat someone who appeared to be undefeatable. With his victory, he became the youngest person ever to win a Smash 4 tournament.

His victory at the 2GGT: ZeRo Saga helped him catapult to stardom placing him number 8 on the Panda Global Rankings v2, a list of the top 50 smash players around the world.

Super Smash 4 vs Super Smash Ultimate

When Smash Ultimate came out in 2018, he was quick to start dominating the game as well. MkLeo is the best Super Smash Bros Ultimate gamer out there and Zero was the best Super Smash 4 gamer, up until he retired. Back before Leo was the number one gamer, Zero held a dominant presence. Once Leo defeated Zero not just once but multiple times then it was decided that Leo is the next Zero.

Tweek

One of Leo’s greatest gaming moments was at the 2019 Evo tournament. In the tournament, Leo made possibly one of the greatest comebacks in eSports history. Leo was losing badly to Tweek, a New Jersey gamer who is considered one of the best pokemon players in the world. Tweek only needed one more game to secure the title for the world cup. Which meant if Leo wanted to stay in it, he would have to win the next 3 games. Right when Tweek was about to win Leo started his comeback streak by barely winning the third round which gave them a fourth and fifth game to play. Leo would hold on to his title pushing Tweek to the second-best spot.

Legacy

There is no denying the greatness of this ch.. chi..chil…MAN, because that is what he is. He is someone who surpasses the average and boundaries and breaks through them. He is an inspiration for many of what pure skill can accomplish at such an early point in one’s youth. He is an example of doing something you love for a living and making it a passionate career.

Whenever MkLeo wins a fight he doesn’t get up and overly boasts, instead, he thinks about what his opponent and what it would be like to lose and acts upon it. Leo empathizes with their failure because he knows that it is not a good feeling. And that’s a legacy to leave behind.

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