Closer Look- Street League Seattle

Reigning Street League Champion Nyjah Huston won the first stop of Street League DC Pro Tour 2011 in Seattle at the KeyArena in dominating fashion. Huston’s score of 104.6 was more than enough to take home the $150,000, as well as an automatic spot in the SLS Championship in Newark, NJ on August 28th.

If winning the $150,000 wasn’t enough, Nyjah won $15,000 for best trick on the last run of the contest after he had the win all wrapped up, Huston pulled a backside 270 to noseblunt. His trick earned him a 9.9, a near perfect score was the highest total in Street Leagues short history.

The new format made its debut in Seattle, starting with a last chance qualifier utilizing the entire course. Each skater was given five attempts and whoever landed the highest-scoring trick went on to face the top nine from Saturday’s qualifiers. Billy Marks made it through on top with a huge switch bigspin heelflip down the nine stair.

The second part of the new format was the 2-person elimination per section in the finals. It made for a more exciting television experience knowing each skater had to perform well on each section or they were going to be eliminated.

Along with the debut of the new format the concept of instant scoring once again proved to be the important element to watching at home. The ability to know what the skater received or what the skater needed for each trick makes it way more interesting to watch than the traditional jam format.

After the first stop of the 2011 season the overwhelming key to victory is trick consistency. To have any chance at winning, you must be consistent. After watching the live broadcast on ESPN, the word consistency must have been mention a thousand times. Add consistency with a couple of massive tricks and that’s the formula Nyjah used to win the Seattle stop.

If you tuned into the broadcast, you inevitably heard the commentators referring to a chart about the percentage of successful tricks. This types of stat is normally used in the NFL and NBA, not skateboarding but it actually seemed to be a really cool and telling stat line.

Nyjah landed 89% of his tricks, 2nd place Shane O’Neill successfully landed his tricks 68% of the time, and 3rd place Chaz Ortiz landed 79% of his tricks. 4th place Ryan Sheckler who landed some of the biggest tricks on the night, struggled with consistency only landing 63% of his tricks. Hopefully Sheckler who was one of the better skaters in Seattle will pay attention to this stat, mixing technical and safer tricks with his big tricks.

The next SLS stop is in Kansas City, MO on June 11th, where hometown kid Sean Malto will make his SLS return after knee surgery.

Check back for a fantasy review from Seattle and a fantasy preview for Kansas City.