Top figures within the Smash community are conflicted on if they should attend offline majors.
Following a series of Covid announcements by a considerable amount of attendees at the Smash World Tour 2021 Championships in Orlando, Florida, elite players such as Zain Naghmi and Cody "iBDW" Schwab have expressed their concern over attending future big tournaments such as Genesis 8.
Tournament organizers have taken stringent protocols to prevent the spread of Covid since the reintroduction of offline tournaments earlier this year. There were some cases reported at other events such as Riptide 2021, but the amount of public cases announced at SWT has created more concern. Large community figures that have already confirmed their infection include Kris "Toph" Aldenderfer, Luke "KirbyKid" Richmond, and Sierra "moxi" Lund. An official report of public cases has not yet been made available.
The news comes after a spike of Omicron variant cases throughout the United States. SWT organizers took several measures to prevent the spread of Covid — requiring all attendees to show proof of full vaccination or a negative Covid test taken no earlier than Dec. 12, 2021. Additionally, masks were required during the duration of the event. After learning that some SWTC attendees contracted the virus, SWT's social media urged other attendees to get tested for Covid.
Several community figures and tournament organizers have already been taking measures for the safety of future events. Max Ketchum — one of the main organizers for Let's Make Big Moves 2021 — encouraged other tournament organizers to increase their standards to combat the spread of the virus.
"Recent negative test + full vaccination requirement + mask mandate", Max stated in a tweet. "All majors should follow these guidelines going forward, I’ve seen a lot of them requiring just one of the first two. If tournaments are still gonna happen, it’s gotta be like this. No more half measures."
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