In what was to be a victory skate around for Nyjah Huston, Sean Malto played spoiler. And he wasn’t even to be in the competition. By virtue of other riders bowing out from ankle injuries and mother nature sending a hurricane to the east coast, Sean Malto secured the Street League title upending the easiest vegas bet in years Nyjah Huston.
“I feel great,” Malto said. “I wasn’t even supposed to be here, that’s what’s tripping me out. Torey was supposed to be here but he rolled his ankle and then Tommy made it in. Tommy rolled his ankle and then I made it in. I can’t believe I made it here. I’m psyched.”
It was in the tech section where Ryan Sheckler pulled a full caballarial to backside lipslide on the A-frame rail sending him to the top of the leaderboard with a 7.3. Chaz Ortiz shocked everyone and dropped Sheckler in the process, landing a nollie bigspin heelflip backside lipslide, a trick we had not seen out of Ortiz the entire season. Sheckler’s score didn’t hold up at all and he was eliminated.
The line section was the deciding portion of the competition. If you wanted to win at Street League you needed huge lines and smooth riding. Cole, Ortiz and Malto were battling back and forth. Cole linked together difficult rail tricks and unique bump-to-ledge tricks, including a 5-0 kickflip out. Malto landed every trick that he tried and with 100 percent consistency moving into the final section in the lead. Nyjah Huston, who had won every Street League stop leading up to the championship as well as the recent X Games Skateboard Street contest, was surprisingly in the fourth spot but made it through eliminations to the final round.
The final section, loaded with rails and hubba ledges, was where the return of Huston took place. Huston came back strong with heavy tricks including a nollie heelflip backside lipside down the 11-stair rail. Despite Huston’s big push at the end, he didn’t earn enough points to take the win away from Malto.
Sean Malto nollied into tricks on the hubbas and backside over-crooked down the rail in the final section to push just ahead of Cole. When Cole fell on his final trick attempt, the deal was sealed. Malto then casually backside 50-50ed down the hubba ledge and into the arms of his celebrating friends.