UGC Plat Highlander Season 19 – Week 8

July 27th, 2016

UGC Plat Highlander Season 19

Playoff Panic

by VoxDei


At this point in time, there are only 3 teams still guaranteed a spot in the playoffs for UGC. Venture a guess? Yup, it’s .knd, dK, and bote. If you didn’t see this coming from a mile away, you must not have been paying close attention.

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2-0, 2-0, 2-0, 2-0, 2-0. *Yawn*

(Home team vs Visiting Team)

Goof Ducks vs The Kids

Predicted outcome: The Kids win 2-0

Final Result: The Kids won 2-0

Match length + Logs: No logs?

I don’t think anyone deserves any credit for predicting this outcome correctly. Goof Ducks have been on a surge lately with 3 straight wins (one was a BYE) and found themselves in a #4 spot that matched them up against .knd which ultimately ended with a loss.

I’ve checked a number of players’ pages and have not found any logs but I have a prediction. Syath and barycenter did the best they could, but the overall more prepared and coordinated .knd team won with stellar performances by slemnish, Etney, and feint. Also, Daynife top-deathed. We’ll see if this prediction rings true.

Kid Warrior: Reborn vs Dunning-Kruger Effect v4

Predicted outcome: dK wins 2-0

Final result: dK won 2-0

Match length + Logs: 41:53 // http://logs.tf/1476639

Again, not much to be said about the outcome of this match. dK takes the victory over Kid Warrior. The first thing I see in the logs however is that the first round win by dK, their offensive time was 13:07. I don’t know if there was a pause at any point, but it’s surprising to me to see dK take so long to pummel through a ~6-8th ranked team. The frags that round fall in favor of exile and milk who did a good job trying to keep their team in the fight, but ultimately dK wins out.

The frags, of course, fall in dK’s favor, with the top 5 fraggers on the server all being on their side. Timeless looks to have shed his rust from last week and Karl and corsa laid it on thick. Karl took the most heals with 23%, but considering his 44-24 performance and the even heal distribution, it looks like skeez did a good job setting up Karl for his success.

The Knotty Buoys vs Chill Penguins

Predicted outcome: bote wins 2-0/1

Final result: bote won 2-0

Match length + Logs: 41:32 // http://logs.tf/1476648

Cast: Sigafoo and VoxDei: https://www.twitch.tv/sigafoo/v/80013725

So bote hammers the final nail into Bv, resigned to a 4-4 maximum once again. Of course, Bv still has another game ahead of them, but the point is, they can’t top their usual record, which could reach its 5th straight season.

bote dominated this game at the hands of fuzion and bo4r who both put up massive point totals. Fuzion managed to drop 30 frags in their first round of defense, but wasn’t able to match those totals in the shorter rounds that followed.

bo4r found himself with a lot of free room to do what he came to do, picking up 49 frags with 45% accuracy on the day. Try as he might, SGC couldn’t match those point totals, but did his best keeping up, narrowly winning the SvS 11-10.

It seemed like Bv needed a lot to change to take this victory. There was very little focus on the power players of bote, a lack of consistency in their combo when deciding to play passive or aggressive, and of course, just good ol’ fashioned DM.

Bv had some moments where it looked like maybe some momentum was building, but it was quickly shut down at the hands of bote. Wait- were we talking about the match or the season? Sorry Chicobo 😦

Man Crush Monday vs EVL Gaming

Predicted outcome: #mcm wins 2-1

Final result:#mcm won 2-0

Match length + Logs: 36:16 // http://logs.tf/1476656

Cast: Atwas, Mario, and Jeer on EVLTV: https://www.twitch.tv/evltv/v/80011857

We see our fastest game of the week come with this #mcm vs evl matchup (until we see the .knd logs.)

#mcm quickly dispatched EVL with a 6:11 cap time in the 2nd half not even allowing them to cap 4th in the first round. #mcm seemed to have a plan and executed it to their liking, despite the fragging for either side ending relatively evenly.

Vinny did what he could for his squad topping the frags column, if only by 2, but it seemed like the rest of EVL didn’t really have their heart in it. Let’s first take a look at the Medic deaths. Couches died almost half as much as Alto, with most of his coming shortly after ubers, which likely explains how Cap$ize ended up with the most Med kills for his team. Alto, however, found himself dying several times to the Pyro, Scout, Demo (and so on) outside of uber fights, which says to me that maybe there needed to be a bit more combo protection. These small things seem to snowball, and it did for EVL with this disappointing loss.

The DeLisi Experience vs {Dragon Tales}

Predicted outcome: DeLisi wins 2-0

Final result: DeLisi won 2-0

Match length + Logs: 40:14 // http:// logs.tf/1476651

Deaft.

I mean, I almost considered leaving my write up at that. It’s just silly. It’s almost laughable that a Spy could put up these point totals in Platinum. Then again, you’re talking about a Top 3 Spy against a would-have-been-Gold team, but still- damn.

Outside of Deaft’s stunning performance, phone, Max and syath (ringing this week) put up some great numbers, weeding through the entirety of {DT} in this lop-sided victory. crab_f, try as he might, managed to keep it even with syath, ultimately earning more deaths probably because the remainder of his team was outmatched.

{Dragon Tales} have admitted they’re phoning it in at this point, but it was a hard stat line to read.

Apolodosh vs BYE

Despite earning the win over the winless “BYE” Apolodosh found the match took too much out of them and have dropped from scheduling.


VoxDei’s probably incorrect, biased, and terrible power rankings:

  1. Kids Next Door [0]
    • 2-0 victory, no need to move them.
  2. Dunning-Kruger Effect v4 [0]
    • 2-0 victory, no need to move them.
  3. The Knotty Buoys (bote team) [0]
    • bote lost bo4r. A problem? Yes. Does it mean that another team has a chance at topping them in the Power rankings? No.
  4. Chill Penguins [0]
    • Bv implode this week against bote but they won’t move anywhere just yet. I had DeLisi moving above them due to their newfound strength, but with Deaft gone, I don’t feel the same way.
  5. Man Crush Monday [+2]
    • Although #mcm performed admirably, I don’t think Bv’s loss deserves to drop them a rank. I initially had #mcm lower on the list, but I’ll get to that in the next one.
  6. The DeLisi Experience [-1]
    • So, DeLisi initially had my #4 spot (followed by Bv and #mcm) because I felt with the pickup of Deaft, they had a very solid chance of beating Bv and the potential to top #mcm. However, since Deaft will no longer be playing for them, the edge goes back to those two teams.
  7. Goof Ducks [-1]
    • :> were just the next in line to play .knd. This doesn’t affect my opinion of them at all however. They lose a rank not because of their own struggles, but because of #mcm’s triumph.
  8. Kid Warrior: Reborn [0]
    • I will admit, I was struggling to place kW and EVL, but that first round kW had against dK where they held for a respectable amount of time really puts it in their favor.
  9. EVL Gaming [0]
    • EVL struggled to compete with #mcm in their latest affair. Letting up a 6:11 cap time and not managing to cap 4th will not look good for the camera.
  10. {Dragon Tales} [0]
    • {DT} are handed another loss and are in danger at having the worst record this season unless they can topple EVL.

Playoff Placement, Predictions, and Positioning:

Here I’m just going to talk about what each team will need to do to find themselves with a playoff berth. Remember the Top 6 teams will enter the double-elimination tournament.

.knd – Keep the status quo and you’re 1st place. This should be easy considering the matchup they have in Week 8.

  • .knd – Earn the #1 seed with a win.

dK – Similarly to .knd, it’s business as usual. Your only chance at 1st place lies in another team’s hands. If there wasn’t a roster lock you could donate some of your players to #mcm to give them a fighting chance.

  • dK – Earn #1 seed with a win and .knd loss.

bote – bote is confirmed for 3rd place. There isn’t a way they can be moved from the position, sitting at 5-2 for the season. Even with a 4-0 win by any team below AND 4-0 loss (unlikely) no team below them can match their MP.
With a 4-0 win and a dK 4-0 loss, they’d still be behind in 3rd, again, because of MP.

  • bote – Confirmed #3 seed, regardless of outcome above or below.

#mcm + DeLisi – These two games are more important than any other in terms of seeding. #mcm is going into a much, much more difficult matchup against .knd, which was something that changed due to Apolodosh dying after Week 7. Both teams sit at 4-3. #mcm with 21 MP and DeLisi with 20.75, so #mcm holds the advantage with just a .25 difference. This means that even scoring a round off of your opponent can set that team up for a #6 seed. Now that DeLisi is not going up against dK (since the AD drop) and is going up against a weaker Bv team, they have a very, very good chance of taking over #mcm. Whoever gets the most rounds this week will edge ahead. Good luck.

  • #mcm – Make playoffs with a win or earning >= DeLisi’s PF this week or a combination of 3 of these teams losing: kW, :>, EVL, Bv, DeLisi (again >=PF)*
  • DeLisi – Make playoffs with a win or with earning more PF than #mcm this week.

Bv and :> – Both have a solid number of match points, but Goof Ducks, similarly to #mcm, get ruined by Apolodosh dying. Goof Ducks now play dK which will likely spell disaster for their playoff hopes, since a loss puts a huge dent in their chances. (I’ve actually found a scenario where they can make playoffs with a loss.) For Bv, they have a more difficult matchup against DeLisi, but they should still be able to take a victory. It’s win and you’re in for both teams.

  • Bv – Make playoffs with a win
  • :> – Make playoffs with a win or EVL + Bv + kW loss

kW – kW find themselves staring down the barrel with bote prepared to pull the trigger. They’re pretty much out of it since a loss will put them at 3-5 and even a miraculous 3 round loss would keep them below some of the other teams who may be seeing a 3-5 season.

  • Make Playoffs with a win and :> + EVL loss

EVL – EVL may be masters of their own destiny with this one. A win puts them at 4-4 and above #mcm, provided they fall 0-4 to .knd. The #6 spot will be hotly contested, but EVL has a better shot at most with their match coming against {Dragon Tales} this week.

  • Make Playoffs with a win and kW + :> loss

{DT} – Dragon Tales can only play spoiler at this point. A victory over EVL though could mean a playoff berth for #mcm whose chances are dwindling. Does {DT} have the desire and skill to make this happen?

  • Unable to make playoffs

* I’m fairly certain that although it’s a mess, it’s correct. With so many teams poised to overtake with a win, #mcm needs at least 3 of those teams to lose. For example, if kW and :> lose (near-certainty) #mcm still needs either EVL or Bv to lose OR DeLisi to lose with less MPF in the match.


Week 8 Preview

So, as you’ve seen me mention earlier in the article, bo4r has left the bote roster for dK. I wasn’t planning on posting my little rant here, but I figure why not while I still have an ivory tower to sit in.

Can someone explain to me why bo4r left the bote roster to join dK?
Was it an amicable split with bote agreeing that bo4r deserved to get higher placement badge than 3rd? (P.S.: no) Or was dK just hungry to snatch up some better talent in the Sniper position for some kind of vindication because they accidentally rostered a cheater last season? Does this team want competition or just to hoard any rising talent so their namesake can finally say “TF2 HL NA Platinum 1st Place S19?”

It’s been a long standing issue of Platinum that teams cannot stay together. They live, they die, they’re reborn (try to place in Gold) and the cycle rinses and repeats. How is a “new knd” or “new dK” ever going to form when the team with the best chance gets their roster picked like a carcass by vultures.

Either way, it’s kind of funny to me that bote has lost Giraffe and bo4r to the two teams above them this season. I know less about the Giraffe situation, and he was only around for a week (maybe two?) but it goes along the same vein.
It’s even more hilarious when you realize that part of the waning interest for a few of these top players in Plat has to be the ease of UGC. There’s no competition for them anymore.

It makes the seasons dry to see the same two teams crush all in their path with few contenders each season. bo4r getting poached is actually a worse situation than Vlad being given up because bote actually had a fair chance to maybe find themselves in finals whereas aMw was about as far out as you can be.

It’s frustrating to see bote castrated this season and be even less likely to pull an upset over .knd or dK. It’s going to be another stale set of playoffs, but in fact, even worse this season since bote has less of a chance than m|M had last season (in my opinion.) Enjoy the medal.

Anyway, back to the article…

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(Home Team vs Away Team)

Man Crush Monday vs The Kids

Predicted outcome: The Kids win 4-0

#mcm has certainly run the gamut this season and have a good chance at missing playoffs due to the Swiss system of scheduling. Strength of Schedule- that’s what a lot of it boils down to, and #mcm has had the worst go of it so far. (Click here to see.)

Of course, it got worse. Since their win over EVL last week, they’ve come out of the frying pan and into the fire that Ender silently watches, eerily silent.

I can’t think that #mcm has much of a chance here. Earlier this season they lost 4-0 to dK on Ramjam so it’s hard to believe they can manage a round against .knd.

I think that watterson may have the chance to thrive, given the opportunity of safety by his combo and flank and we may see some cheeky plays come out of American, like a fly you can’t seem to nab. Regardless, #mcm is outmatched handily in this game with Etney sure to put up some big totals.

Dunning-Kruger Effect v4 vs Goof Ducks

Predicted outcome: dK wins 4-0

Goof Ducks also find themselves drawing an unlucky card with the Apolodosh death leading them into a match against dK. As mentioned previously, dK has been recently upgraded, adding bo4r in place of Axio for the remainder of the season, fortifying their roster. To add insult to injury, there is a lot of chatter by the :> players about not taking this match seriously or potentially forfeiting with a number of their players disappointed with their SoS (#3 overall) due to the Swiss system. The candle has burned out for Goof Ducks’ season here.

Kid Warrior: Reborn vs The Knotty Buoys

Predicted outcome: bote wins 4-0

Another “meh” matchup this week with bote going up against the #8 ranked kW. This is the furthest reach this week, with the #3 bote going halfway across the standings to find a team to play against.

Despite bote losing bo4r, it won’t affect this matchup at all. SmileZ will be a fine substitute, even if he lacks the firepower that bo4r brought to the bote roster. Although this match will end up over pretty quickly, with fuzion likely to drop over 2 Kills per minute, kW will have subtle success with meyy and 88 this match. It’s not enough to bring them a round, but it’ll make the logs look a little better.

Chill Penguins vs The DeLisi Experience

Predicted outcome: Bv wins 4-2

This is undoubtedly MOTW because of the playoff implications it holds. As you read earlier, if Bv wins this, they make playoffs. If Bv wins this 4-0, #mcm makes playoffs too. If DeLisi wins this, they are guaranteed a spot and Bv is knocked out. It’s also important to note that all 3 teams (DeLisi, Bv, and #mcm) can make it in if EVL loses as well (assuming kW and :> actually lose.)

Bv has a good chance to take this, SGC should provide a huge boost for them and I can see the combo of Paals and m66 doing a fair bit of work. DeLisi’s roster is going to look a lot different this week, specifically Jayden on Spy and crossfire on Soldier. I don’t think that this is the roster that will manage to take down Bv, but it should be enough to score a couple rounds and diminish #mcm’s playoff hopes further.

EVL Gaming vs {Dragon Tales}

Predicted outcome: evl.gg wins 4-3

The second most important matchup this week comes between the two lowest ranked teams. For {Dragon Tales} the season is over, but for EVL, this game decides if they make playoffs in yet another “Win and you’re in” scenario. The outcome of this game can also affect playoff chances for #mcm.

I can see this being a pretty close game, as {Dragon Tales} has been performing well, even with their losses the past couple of weeks. Their match against :> on Ramjam may provide some shades of what we may see, with keith and crab_f putting in some work for their team.

Vinny was feeling pretty good last week and managed a solid performance and we will hope to see Cap$ize and EVL’s flank combine for some heavy lifting to push their team towards a couple of close round wins. Since Jaaay left the roster it will leave a “?” in the Scout spot for now. Either way, we will certainly be seeing some exciting plays happen in both of these final two matchups.

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