Problem X Stages Incredible Comeback to Win Red Bull Kumite Las Vegas
Red Bull Kumite crowned a new Street Fighter V champion in Las Vegas last weekend as Benjamin “Problem X” Simon placed 1st at the prestigious event. The UK’s most renowned player took home his second major trophy in Sin City after winning EVO in 2018. It was Problem X’s first offline tournament victory since Sonic Boom 2019 over two years ago. He is also the second straight European player to win Red Bull Kumite after France’s Nathan “Mister Crimson” Massol won the London event last May.
A Run for the Ages
Problem X entered the tournament as an established veteran with one of the best resumes in the Top 16. Still, he was being largely overlooked as a favorite to win the event. Many were looking at America’s top two players, Victor “Punk” Woodley and Derek “iDom” Ruffen, as most likely to win. Not only were they on home soil, but iDom is the reigning Capcom Cup champion and Punk has won more Street Fighter V tournaments than any other player in history. Problem X proved that he was up to task on proving the doubters wrong in the most convincing way possible.
MOUZ’s (formerly mousesports) lone fighting game player drew Pool C for the group stage of Red Bull Kumite Las Vegas. Using both M. Bison and Alex, he got off to a quick 2-0 start. Despite dropping his final round robin match to Goichi “GO1” Kishida, Problem X finished at the top of his pool with at 2-1 record. He advanced to the Top 8 elimination stage, but a lethal road to Grand Finals lies ahead.
In the quarter-finals, Problem X found himself on the same side of the bracket as American titans Punk and iDom. What’s more is his first opponent in Top 8 was none other than Punk, Street Fighter V’s most successful player. Many expected a back-and-forth set, but Problem X knew he couldn’t give Punk even an inch to spare. Playing M. Bison in a favorable matchup against Punk’s Karin, Problem swept his American adversary 3-0 and advance to the semi-finals. Even in defeat, Punk showed great sportsmanship and gave an inspiring message to anyone thinking of joining the fighting game community (FGC).
The semi-finals would pit Problem X against another of America’s top gladiators, iDom. Fresh off the ink drying on his sponsorship deal with XSET, iDom was eager to win for his new team. He also finished 2nd at Red Bull Kumite London, making him especially hungry to lift the trophy. In a battle between main characters M. Bison and Laura, the two traded games and were tied 2-2 early. Problem X the made the necessary adjustments to stifle Laura’s rushdown tools. With a slow and patient playstyle, Problem X took the next two games off iDom to win the set 4-2. With the whole EU on his back, Problem X punched his ticket into Grand Finals.
After defeating the two American heroes in the tournament, Problem X was looking like an unstoppable force. In Grand Finals, Korea’s Sim “NL” Gun was the last foe in Problem X’s path to victory. Playing Alex at the start of the set, things got rocky for Problem X fast and early. After dropping the first game, he switched to E. Honda, a character he hadn’t played all day. That choice didn’t work out either, and he dropped the third game even after switching to his main M. Bison. In a blink of an eye, Problem X was facing a 3-0 deficit with no momentum in his favor. NL would have already been crowned victorious had it been standard tournament rules. Fortunately for Problem X, the first-to-5 format in Red Bull Kumite’s Grand Finals kept his hopes alive. What followed next will live forever in Street Fighter history.
In an inexplicable turnaround, Problem X won the next two games in rather convincing fashion to get himself back into the match. An extremely intense sixth game ended with NL nearly winning off a powerful combo that left Problem X at just a pixel of health. The EVO champion maintained his composure and pulled off the comeback with just a sliver of life to tie up the set 3-3. Problem X had found his groove, and NL had no answers for the onslaught. The next two games were dominated by the UK representative, winning four rounds straight. Problem X won five straight games to cap off one of the most epic comebacks in the history of fighting games. With that legendary performance, he is the seventh Red Bull Kumite champion.
You can check out the full results of Street Fighter V at Red Bull Kumite Las Vegas below.
Group Stage Results
Winner – ChrisCCH
Runner-up – JB
Uzura (Ryu) defeated NL (Cammy) 2-0
Yossan (Juri) defeated RonaldinhoBR (Nash) 2-0
Yossan (Juri) defeated Uzura (Ryu) 2-0
NL (Cammy) defeated Ronaldinho (Nash) 2-0
RonaldinhoBR (Nash) defeated Uzura (Ryu) 2-0
NL (Cammy) defeated Yossan (Juri) 2-0
MenaRD (Sakura) defeated JB (Rashid) 2-0
Big Bird (Ken) defeated iDom (Laura, Poison) 2-1
MenaRD (Sakura, Birdie) defeated Big Bird (Ken) 2-1
iDom (Laura) defeated JB (Rashid) 2-0
iDom (Laura) defeated MenaRD (Birdie) 2-0
JB (Rashid) defeated Big Bird (Ken) 2-0
Brian_F (Balrog) defeated GO1 (Menat) 2-0
Problem X (M. Bison) defeated Mono (F.A.N.G.) 2-0
Problem X (Alex) defeated Brian_F (Balrog) 2-0
Mono (F.A.N.G.) defeated GO1 (Menat) 2-0
Brian_F (Balrog) defeated Mono (F.A.N.G.) 2-1
GO1 (Menat) defeated Problem X (M. Bison) 2-1
ChrisCCH (Sakura) defeated Oil King (Rashid) 2-0
Punk (Karin) defeated AngryBird (Zeku) 2-0
Punk (Karin) defeated Oil King (Rashid) 2-1
AngryBird (Zeku) defeated ChrisCCH (Seth) 2-1
Oil King (Seth) defeated AngryBird (Zeku) 2-1
ChrisCCH (Sakura) defeated Punk (Kolin) 2-0
Group Stage Standings
[UYU] NL (2-1)
[XSET] iDom (2-1)
[Bandits] MenaRD (2-1)
[NASR] Big Bird (1-2)
[MOUZ] Problem X (2-1)
[EQNX] Brian_F (2-1)
[RR] Mono (1-2)
[CAG] GO1 (1-2)
[UYU] ChrisCCH (2-1)
[Panda] Punk (2-1)
[NASR] AngryBird (1-2)
[UYU] Oil King (1-2)
Top 8 Elimination Stage Results
NL (Cammy) defeated MenaRD (Birdie) 3-1
ChrisCCH (Sakura) defeated Biran_F (Balrog) 3-2
iDom (Laura) defeated Yossan (Juri) 3-0
Problem X (M. Bison) defeated Punk (Karin) 3-0
NL (Cammy) defeated ChrisCCH (Sakura) 4-1
Problem X (M. Bison) defeated iDom (Laura) 4-2
Problem X (Alex, M. Bison) defeated NL (Cammy) 5-3