Luan Oliveira was on the top of the world winning Stop One of the 2015 Street League Skateboarding Nike SB World Tour in LA. Nyjah Huston was a fraction of a point behind in 2nd place and Chaz Ortiz rounded it out in 3rd.
The final was cut throat with the winners being decided by Best Trick attempts, wowing the USC's sold-out Galen Center. Ultimately, Oliveira, Huston and Ortiz may have won the competition, but Matt Berger won the DiamondLife Best Trick. It almost sounded like this was a bigger deal. "DiamondLife Best Trick is like skating with your homies, everyone's trying to get theirs and I guess it worked out for me today", said Berger. His flawless run consisted of a number of moves including a frontside smithgrind to pop over frontside boardslide down the rail.
The stakes were high with only eight out of 25 riders advancing to the final, and $225,000 total in prize money, plus a Golden Ticket that propelled the winner right through to the SLS Nike SB Super Crown World Championship in Chicago (you need that many words to describe something this big).
The course was actually designed by Oliveira, who made the most of it and really gave it all he had. In previous SLS competitions, big stairs and handrails accounted for most of the major points. This time, the focus was on technical moves and consistency over a giant centerpiece complete with banks, ledges, rails and a tall bump for catching those big flip tricks.
Just one single trick was awarded more than 9 points - clearly, success was defined by an early lead with two solid runs, made even better with creative technical moves in the Best Trick section.
Oliveira landed a switch frontside heelflip bigspin off the bump, just beating Huston by a fraction of a point. Huston could've won with killer moves that covered the entire course, like a bigspin frontside boardslide fakie down the rail and a kickflip frontside nosegrind on the bump to hubba.
Some other notable runs were put down by Chris Cole, Kelvin Hoefler and Shane O’Neill. Ryan Sheckler's fans were hoping for him to place, especially after injuries in the past prevented him from competing at SLS.
Huston's already pre-qualified for the Nike SB Super Crown Championships after winning the Ticket at the Barcelona Pro Open, so anticipation is high for Stop Two in NJ!