Top-seeded Raidel “Joke” Brito shut out Daniel “Dcroft” Mycroft for a 17-0 victory on Saturday to win the title at the Madden NFL 20 Bowl.
Joke claimed the first prize of $65,000 along with the 12-pound, gold-plated championship belt, which was presented virtually by Los Angeles Chargers safety Derwin James. The $220,000 event, which began last week with 16 players competing in a round-robin group stage, was forced online this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Joke, a 26-year-old from West New York, N.J., dedicated the victory to Taylor “SpotMePlzzz” Robertson, one of two victims of a shooting at a Madden tournament in Jacksonville, Fla., in August of 2018.
“I dedicated this tournament to him, and it’s just like — the fact that I won it, the tournament I was dedicating to him, I’m just happy, very happy,” an emotional Joke said afterward. “I’m not crying because I finally won, I’m crying because we miss him.”
It was Joke’s first title in his 11th EA major appearance. He entered the day having earned $195,525 in his career in the Madden Championship Series.
“It feels like I have the monkey off my back,” he said. “I finally won.”
Playing with the Tennessee Titans and broadcast live on ESPN2, Joke’s run to the title was fueled by defense and the run game, as he never attempted a pass. A day after he ousted defending Madden Bowl champion Drini “Drini” Djoka 12-7, Joke held off Pavan “Pavan” Lakhat 17-9 before shutting down Dcroft in the final.
On the first snap from scrimmage in the semifinals against Pavan — who played as the Raiders — Joke used Justin Reid to intercept Michael Vick in the flat, returning the pick 27 yards for a touchdown.
Early in the second quarter, Joke broke a 46-yard touchdown run by Gale Sayers to take a 14-3 lead.
With only three field goals on the board, Pavan drove to the 31-yard line with six seconds left. But a cornerback blitz sacked Vick, and the clock ran out.
In the final, Joke broke off a 24-yard run by Sayers to take a 7-0 lead in the second quarter against Dcroft, who played as the Cincinnati Bengals. He then tacked on a 54-yarder by Sayers late in the third quarter. On both plays, the virtual version of former Cleveland Browns star left tackle Joe Thomas was inserted as a wide receiver.
Dcroft’s attempt to rally was stymied with 3:17 to play, when Joke’s defense sacked Aaron Rodgers for the second consecutive play to turn the ball over on downs. Joke added a field goal, and the game was sealed.
Dcroft earned $25,000 for the runner-up finish. He had reached the finals with a 21-14 victory over Dwayne “CleffTheGod” Wood, who played as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
After taking the lead on a fumble returned for a touchdown by Frank Clark, Dcroft stopped CleffTheGod on fourth-and-goal from the 4 with 2:49 left in the game. Two plays later, Rodgers tossed a 93-yard touchdown to Marquise Brown, all but sealing the win.
Madden NFL 20 Bowl prize pool
1. $65,000 — Raidel “Joke” Brito
2. $25,000 — Daniel “Dcroft” Mycroft
3-4. $20,000 — Pavan “Pavan” Lakhat and Dwayne “CleffTheGod” Wood
5-8. $10,000 — Justin “Lil Man” Barone, Noah “Noah” Johnson, Shay “Young Kiv” Kivlen, Drini “Drini” Gjoka
9-12. $7,500 — Henry “Henry” Leverette, Wesley “Wesley” Gittens, Jordan “Millz” Thompson, Michael “VoLTeRaX” Bryant
13-16. $5,000 — Reginald “Boogz” Brown, Zack “Serious Moe” Lane, Mark “Schemin” Samuels Jr., Daniel “Rage” Loftin
—Field Level Media