So it is reading week for me at university and I am still yet to be set any actual work, love the second year :D. Anyway, here is me attempting to predict the final placements for the Season 8 ETF2L, you can all a buy me a drink at i42 when I am right. Just to clarify, it is currently unconfirmed how the relegation system will work in Season 8 for the Premier Division, with the only answer I could rustle up being that it depends on how many drops there are. So this article is written on the basis that places 1-4 will enter the play-offs for first place plus prizes and that tenth place will be relegated automatically and eighth and ninth will either play-off to see who is relegated or both be relegated. So on that basis let’s carry on…
I will start off with the simple and that is for Team Refuse to Finnish bottom (Sorry I had to). They find themselves in the fateful spot where they are too good for Division 1 but unable to properly compete at a Premier Division level. Despite some quality players who have played at the top level before, including Fluffy, olliii and dancing queen xzar, they have lost all 3 of their opening ETF2L officials and I am afraid I cannot see a reason why this trend would change anywhere in the near future and are destined to end the season bottom. While they have struggled to compete this season, they are still defiantly better than the majority of Division 1 teams and if they stick together I am sure they would bounce right back. Also if the relegation play-off system is used I foresee they will struggle against who ever their opponents are, never say never but I would not put any money on an upset here.
That leaves 8 teams fighting it out for the 4 play-off places and desperately trying to avoid being the team to fill the final relegation spot. Starting from the top down, I would be hard pushed to bet against Epsilon at the moment. All of their players are capable of round and game changing clutch plays at any time, couple this with their tactical creativity and the amount of they have played together as a team and it leads to a powerful combination. They have already played and beaten two of the other top4 teams and proven they are more than capable than beating the other with their victory over Dignitas in EMS. Taking everything into account I would be mad not to put them down as my favourites to top the Premier Division.
Moving down to second spot I would have to go for Power Gaming to be the closest team to Epsilon. They only missed out on taking 3 points of Epsilon , in ETF2L, because of a mix up towards the end of Gullywash that wasted their uber. However, they do have one of the most impressive rosters assembled in recent times and will undoubtedly prove too strong for the majority of the Premier Division. They have shown they can cope with high pressure situations with LAN victories, their death match has never been called into question and no one will want to face them in the play-offs.
TCM-Gaming possess an equally impressive roster on paper and despite a recent lull in form after their break in activity and the loss of main caller Haunter, they are still a great team. Let us not forget that not too long ago they were almost unbeatable. Even with the adjustment of Byte to main caller all of their players are more than experienced enough to outclass enough of the Premier Division on the standard maps to get themselves into a play-off position. They can only get better the more they play with their new line-up and caller, how much they pull themselves together will dictate how they perform in the play-offs.
The final play-off spot is really up for grabs, with pretty much any of those not previously mentioned in with a chance of grabbing it. Though honestly I think it is Blight’s to lose. They have been the team closest to the top4 for a long time now, despite fading into the background recently with a gap in activity and a reshuffle of their scout pairing. They recently beat k1ck pretty conclusively and look much more consistent that their closest contenders, Dignitas. Dignitas have slipped back into inactivity giving lacklustre displays and disappointing performances. They do, however, have the potential to be the best team in Europe, as we have all seen in the past. They are a big game team and I believe this means if they do prove me wrong and claw their way into the play-offs then they can have much more of an impact than Blight could.
Now, the best of the rest; Fakkel Brigade, k1ck and overGame Mister. An outside shot at the play-offs is a possibility but more realistically they will all be looking to avoid relegation. k1ck are the most consistent of these 3, with star man wltrs firing on all cylinders at the moment and plenty of skill and death match ability across the rest of the team. Unfortunately they are only consistently “ok” and quite often find themselves out classed by other teams team play and experience together. I am predicting narrowly avoiding relegation with a seventh place finish.
Mister have to be the most inconsistent team. At times they look more than capable of coping and taking maps off the best teams around but then get completely dominated by other teams around and below their level. Meanwhile, Fakkel Brigade has struggled for a while to turn PCW form into ETF2L points. It could really swing either way depending who can turn it on when it matters. I am going to have to vote with my heart though and predict Exfane’s men to pull it out of the bag and finish an almighty sixth. While this means Mister would find themselves in eighth spot and possibly have to play-off verses Refuse, I am confident in saying Mister would over come this hurdle though and stay in the Premier Division if the system works their way!
Thanks for reading, as always any feedback is appreciated, below is how I expect the table to look at the end if all goes to plan and there are no drops. Good luck to all teams competing.
Season 8 Final Standings:
- Epsilon eSports
- Power Gaming
- Blight Gaming
- Team Dignitas
- Fakkel Brigade
- Team Refuse
- By CommanderX
ps. 2ez-Gaming will win all their games in Division 3a and go on to also find Division2 2ez.