The 7-week groupstage of WED is complete, and the matchups for the first round of playoffs are ready. I’ll use this opportunity to reflect on the power rankings and the actual performances of the teams, starting with the teams that didn’t make the cut, before we head into the playoff bracket.
Out of Reach
With 16 of the 20 teams making playoffs, only 4 unfortunate teams couldn’t make the cut.
Fancy — Disband
A team I originally rated at tier 3, with the note that I could see them doing both worse and better than that. Unfortunately, they ended up disbanding after Darba did Darba things, followed by the captain of the team being banned from the league. Unfortunate.
A team as underwhelming as I had originally predicted, it was pretty unavoidable that this team would place low, considering the strength of other teams.
A team I placed in tier 2, I did so somewhat reluctantly. On paper, it made sense. Nsphere, Blackjack and Fantasy should make for a very decent foundation in theory. It just so happens that this doesn’t translate into practice.
Booty Lizard, 17th
The admin squad just ended up seeming subpar, and many of their losses were quite convincing. Bright side, the WED admins are free for playoffs, right?
The teams are listed with their captain’s name, followed by their final group stage position and their original tier in my power rankings, with my prediction for the playoff afterwards.
Anstar (1st, 1) vs 3005/YaBoi (16th, 1): 2–0
What looks to be the most straightforward game, with the first placed team against the last one, Anstar’s team was unphased by less replacing Boelens, winning every single game except a single match against my team (with the second one being a forfeit). Meanwhile, the seemingly very strong lineup of YaBoi’s team underperformed throughout the season, and there’s little reason to think that’s going to change. Still, they have some strong players, who could definitely take a game off of anyone, but I feel like this might just be a convincing 2–0.
Haraway (8th, 3) vs Tautology (14th, 2): 2–1
A matchup I’d say is pretty close, I believe that the overall stability of Haraway’s team in the offlane and support roles will assist Omegasaw in taking the win over this series. Look Alive is a strong core who can most definitely take over a game, but I think that the overall teamplay, strategy and communication will favor Haraway’s team, and these are the factors I think are crucial at this point.
Rinkusaur (3rd, 3) vs Brainy Gonzo (13th, 4): 2–0
Rinku’s team has managed to outdo expectations, ending up in third, and I believe that the team’s overall consistency will once again shine through against Gonzo and his team. Overall, I think there’s a gap in the quality of these teams, and unless they pull something out of the bag, I don’t see Brainy Gonzo and his team taking a game off here.
Muffinsan (7th, 4) vs Kalisdar (15th, 4): 2–1
Ness has proven once again that he can never be discounted. Putting in great performances week after week, I think he’ll be the deciding factor in his team winning the series here. However, I think there are certain qualities to Kalisdar’s team — namely, Cvaekt has shown a couple of times that he can definitely pop off and take a game off of much stronger teams, and I somewhat feel like that might be the case here, as they grab a game off what I expect to possibly be a draft mistake by Muffinsan’s team. In the end, though, Ness has outdone many people in RD2L and will likely do it again.
Madsen (4th, 1) vs moyo (12th, 3): 2–0
With the addition of Kodokano in TheGreenBin’s stead, moyo’s team might have to readjust, and this isn’t an ideal time to do so. My team has had some struggles, but I feel pretty confident in saying that, assuming we make no massive mistakes for Crayon to capitalize off of, we’ll take this series without too much struggle.
Thronplunder (6th, 5) vs Lokie (9th, 4): 2–1
Both of these teams exceeded expectations, with Judas stepping up on Lokie’s team, and the core duo of Frosty and Dota on Thron’s. I believe it’s exactly this core duo that’ll be the deciding factor behind this team winning the series, and I think they’ll be able to shut down Judas and his team. Still, Lokie’s team is in many ways more well rounded, and the added versatility and experience will provide them with atleast one win, in my opinion.
Myst (2nd, 2) vs Joll (10th, 1): 2–1
The over and under performer match, Myst’s team has Waloo going off week in and week out, which, together with a very stable team, shows pretty well why they’ve done as well as they did. The newcomers like Dolemite and Mango have done a great job as well. Meanwhile, the highly praised KTZ ElNino duo has done somewhat well, but 10th is pretty far away from the top 3 spots everyone expected them to occupy. Overall, I think the across-the-board quality of Myst’s team will secure them the series, but there’s no doubt in my mind that a loose Naga, DP, Pango or Sky can cost them a match if they’re given to KTZ and Nino.
Cory (5th, 5) vs GabePork (11th, 2): 1–2
A hard to predict series, with both teams having had roster changes, much might depend on how Moonchild and YrgelS perform for their respective teams. Still, I think that there’s a certain quality to GabePork’s team that has thus far gone unused, and I think the playoffs are where they’re going to pull this out.
Thanks for reading!