ATLANTA, GA - MAY 26: Victor 'Punk' Woodley, of the USA, plays against Arman 'Phenom' Hanjani, of Norway, in the semi-final of the ELEAGUE Street Fighter V Invitational Playoffs & Championship at Turner Studios on May 26, 2017 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Daniel Shirey/Getty Images)

Victor ‘Punk’ Woodley, of the USA, in the semi-final of the ELEAGUE Street Fighter V Invitational (Photo by Daniel Shirey/Getty Images)

The Capcom Cup is the fight to prove who is truly the best Street Fighter pro of 2019. Its been host to some of the biggest upsets in recent FGC memory and is quickly rising through the ranks as an event that could Now that all the majors are done all that remains is the Last Chance Qualifier on the opening day of the event. The table is set. So to get you prepared here’s a look at who could walk away with the chip.

Usernames in Bold

The Front-Runners

Benjamin ‘Problem-X’ Simon celebrates after winning the Street Fighter V: Arcade Grand Championship during EVO 2018 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center on August 5, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Joe Buglewicz/Getty Images)
  • Victor “Punk” Woodley (USA)
  • Hajime “Tokido” Taniguchi (Japan)
  • Masato “Bonchan” Takahashi (Japan)
  • Benjamin “Problem X” Simon (UK)
  • Adel “Big Bird” Anouche (United Arab Emirates)

In 2019, we saw the resurgence of Punk. He’s been far and a way the most consistent throughout the year and well on his way to being on the Mount Rushmore of Street Fighter. However, he still doesn’t have that big super major victory under his belt. Problem X, Tokido and Bonchan have all won EVO since he’s been on the scene. And with a 700+ point lead on the next closest competitor, Bonchan, the pressure will be on Punk to take Capcom Cup. Big Bird is also a top player to watch, he took Bonchan to the brink at EVO 2019 going the full grand finals reset and will be looking to finish the year strong. A lot of Capcom Cup ’19 feels like EVO ’17. A red hot Punk and a focused Tokido, both seemingly destined for the Grand Final.

Ones to Watch

Fujimura ‘Fujimura’ Atsushi plays in the Street Fighter V: Arcade finals during EVO 2018 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center on August 5, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Joe Buglewicz/Getty Images)
  • Yusuke Momochi (Japan)
  • Kanamori “Gachikun” Tsunehiro (Japan)
  • Du “NuckleDu” Dang (USA)
  • Keita “Fuudo” Ai (Japan)
  • Fujimura Atsushi (Japan)

If this part of the list looks a little Japan heavy don’t be alarmed. Its more because of Japan’s under-performance in Street Fighter V. And by under-performance I mean not winning everything. Since Capcom Cup has ran Street Fighter V, only one Japanese player has won it. And this season, only Tokido has won majors consistently outside of Asia. Last year’s champion Gachikun hasn’t seen the heights he did in ’18 and veterans like Fuudo and Momochi have performed solidly but not to their legendary levels.

A major factor here is players like NuckleDu who haven’t traveled as much this year. He’s a consistent gatekeeper for his region making it harder for Japanese players to take wins in North America. He looked to be totally locked in at the North American Regional Finals and could be hitting his stride at the right time.

Wild Cards

  • Li-Wei “Oil King” Lin (Taiwan)
  • Kun Xian Ho (Singapore)
  • Ryo “Dogura” Nozaki (Japan)
  • Yeh Man Ho “Hot Dog” (Hong Kong)
  • Arman Rabiee “Phenom” Hanjiani (Norway)

The competition is incredibly fierce at Capcom Cup as evidenced by winners like MenaRD and KuckleDu who both used Capcom Cup as curtain raisers for their careers. While the prospect of a rookie taking the chip seems smaller this year, there are still some names that could play the spoiler. Hot Dog, in particular, is a major factor. He won the Open Event at the NA Regional Finals over KuckleDu and is the top ranked non Japanese Asia player in the CPT standings. But there are some veteran players like Dogura and Xian that could easily make runs in to the later rounds.

No matter what happens the Capcom Cup is sure to be exciting. There’s still tons of names involved that could make noise at the tournament and there is still the matter of the Last Chance Qualifer as well. Nemo out of Japan won the LCQ in 2017 and made a run all the way to the semi-finals finishing 3rd. So make sure you are tuned in on Dec. 14th for all the action!