Pro Playoffs Starting TONIGHT!
June 21st, 2018 by Silva
Tonight is the start of the AGLA SML18 Pro Playoffs, and it’s a double header! Number one seed One Hit Wonders will face off against pre-season favorites Xbox Record That, and Grammaton Clerics will battle it out against underdogs Elevate. You’ll be able to watch both series live on Twitch!
The first matchup is OHW vs XRT kicking off around 8:30pm EST.
From my polling, 66.7% of the community believes that OHW has this in the bag, but as OHW found out their very first season, you can never be so sure in playoffs. Here’s what Xknight had to say about the matchup.
“OHW wins because Crusader is the goat. OHW has way better playmakers, a way better defense, has better chemistry and better leadership/playoff experience. Jea is an underrated tank, KDSkill and Crusader are underrated runners/hybrids, and Sab is one of the best defenders and a solid support. OHW has also been dominating most teams this season and beat GC the number one team. Crusader happens to be one of the few very rare players that makes himself and the team around him play better. Crusader also balanced between having tanking power and having players that fit his scheme.”
One Hit Wonder’s captain Crusader also sounded very confident, stating the following when asked how he felt going into tonight’s games.
“It’s been years since Grifball made me really nervous :)”
Will his overconfidence be OHW’s downfall? Will the fact two of their players lack Pro playoff experience hurt them? We’ll have wait until tonight to find out.
One Hit Wonders is definitely the clear favorites here being the number one seed and ranked at either first or second when asked who the best team in the league is. Still, playoffs are a different time, and XRT has no shortage of playoff experience sporting grizzled vets like Invayda Zim, DIGITAL PAIN, and Man Canon. PoisonxPoptart has had a breakout season but I believe lacks any Pro playoff experience, so tonight will be his true test.
This will be a hard series for XRT to win either way. Though, despite the odds, there may be some hope for them. During the regular season in their first series against each other, XRT actually beat OHW 5-3. Though, the next games they went on to lose 5-0 and 5-1. However, this was a while ago now and XRT had a different roster. In more recent times, XRT managed to bring OHW to 4-4 in one game of their series (the first game being 5-2, still closer than the previous series losses) with Mungo Pungo in place of their sometimes-star player DIGITAL PAIN. So between their two previous matchups, XRT has proven that they can hang with OHW. I think if they actually come determined and focused tonight, we could see a great series from them. Canon has improved a ton over the past few weeks, and as long as Poptart performs well we should have a great series on our hands.
That brings us to the second series of the night, Grammaton Clerics vs. Elevate kicking off around 10pm est.
Again, about 60% of the community says that Grammaton Clerics, the second seed, is going to walk away with this one. Team captain InfiniteRainge certainly thinks so.
“I’ll just quote Saintz by saying, ‘I’m winning the ship’.”
However, Xknight isn’t quite so sure.
“Elevate will win because of both Larry’s and Rage’s playoff experience. Elevate will also win because of Rage’s Leadership. Elevate has dominated in customs and dominated Galv’s team which on paper is the best tanking team. Elevate has also been on a hot streak and have improved significantly in the 2nd half of the season. BCN and Rage are underrated tanks and defenders and they can run the ball better than most people in the league. BCN and Rage are also some of the smartest players and best support tanks in the league. BCN and ThumpingHawk have underrated/some of the best sword skills in the league. ThumpingHawk is also an underrated runner and defender and has improved immensely on teamplay, positioning, running, and tanking. Elevate is a one of the best Tanking teams and are the best Sword and one of the best running teams as well. Elevate also has a solid defense but they have struggled against OHW West Coast Styled Offense. The point is that BCN, Rage, and Eastbrook are all top 10 defenders and ThumpingHawk is Top15. The only downfalls of this team are the lack of team tanking power although their individual tanking power is solid and lack of scheme fit. Rage and BCN have shown great chemistry same thing can be said about Larry and Rage. The problem with this team is the lack of identity, they didnt choose to build around Larry or around BCN or even ThumpingHawk. This team has to rely on pure defensive and tanking ability to win because they are neither a OHW-Esque team or an XRT Styled Team either. […] All in all I still think Elevate will win because I feel like they are a hungrier and have better chemistry than GC. GC I feel like are a team of Strong Individuals but I feel like their egos will be their downfall. Having Ace be the runner hurts their tanking line alot and its going to be the reason they lost since UniqueRose or DCleak are the best options at runner for this team. I feel that with StopKillingMe while they are a more skilled team with him, having rose instead would improve the passing plays, the chemistry and defensive ability at the sacrifice of tanking power and running ability. To sum this up, Elevate have better chemistry and are better teammates but lack the skill and experience of GC. Elevate matches evenly with GC in regards to tanking but have a much superior running and pass rushing lineup on paper. However GC have the better passing game and redzone defense. Its going to be a great series but in order for Elevate to win they are gonna have to box out their pass defense to minimize pass goals from GC and they are gonna have to aggressively pass rush/push back the other team and then force Ace to make mistakes. Elevate also has to play for possession and maintain ball control and have to quickly snag the ball from GC to win.”
And there may be some truth to his prediction. Previously in the season, EV managed to beat GC 5-4 the first time they played each other. Similar to XRT vs. OHW, they lost the next two games 5-0 and 5-1, but a win is a win, and counts as proof that you can beat a team. A few short weeks later they lost to GC again, but the games were much closer being both 5-3. GC has not played EV since then, which is good for EV. They’ve been improving over that period of time, beating both old and new XRT, as well as Notorious (RIP Diablo). Plus, as xKnight said, EV has some serious championship-winning players on their team with Rage and Larry. Speaking of Rage, he had this to say about the upcoming series.
“I’ve kicked Ace out of playoffs like 30 times, this season will be no different. Rain will get to watch it happen from mid court while he goes positive though so everyone wins.”
Going to the other players on EV, BCN has been dominating this season in tanking, close behind Rain in K/D spread. The real question will be ThumpingHawk and if he can perform to his potential. We’ve definitely seen spurts of dominance from Hawk this season, the question is will we see him play to that same potential tonight? If Elevate has all four players clicking, it’s definitely possible for them to take the series against a potentially overconfident GC.
Whatever the outcome of each series tonight, we’re bound to see some excellent games, so be sure to tune in to the AGLA Twitch channel starting around 8:30EST to catch the action!
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