Hey everyone and welcome to the Week 8 Power Rankings! With only two weeks left of the regular season, we are gonna be looking at how everyone stands right now and where they could possibly look to end after these next two weeks of play. Without further ado, pull out your foldy sheets, sit back, and read up on how every other team is doing this split. XOXO, Tanner.
#1 Oasis Nimbus (7-0) – Locked 1st
I am not gonna spend a lot of time here. Not a lot has changed for this squad as of late. Still the same core group with a few new subs joining the roster here and there. They comfortably sit atop the leaderboard in this division and as of their 2-1 victory over Imperial in week seven, have secured first place on the season with head to head over the two teams trailing them with both teams still yet to play each other ensuring no possibilities of a 3-way tie for first. They are starting to show some more flexibility and the strength of their subs in the last couple weeks which should be a good sign for this team and their play style as they approach playoffs.
#2 EXNOL (5-2) – 2nd-7th Possibilities
EXNOL is a team I have been really impressed with recently, winning four of their last five series after their rebuild before week three. With only a loss to Oasis over that stretch of time, this team has been very convincing with their play and I expect that to continue going into the final weeks of the season. With a head-to-head battle against Hyperion on the cards for week nine, this team has control of their destiny and can look to secure the second bye from this division if they win out and take second place in the division for themselves. With that being their upper potential, there are also possibilities for them to fall all the way to seventh place if the stars align. Granted this is a much smaller percentage outcome, with a 5-way tie for third being necessary for them to even have a chance at such a seeding, but nevertheless it is still an outcome on the foldy sheet and will thus be included here. More than likely, this team will comfortably secure playoffs with a win in one of their final two weeks and avoid a tiebreaker scenario that could result in a gauntlet trip for the team.
#3 Hyperion Updraft (5-2) – 2nd-7th Possibilities
Although they recently slipped in a surprise upset by DoV on stream, overall, I have still been very impressed by Hyperion throughout the season. This team has remained one of the top dogs throughout the season, coming in with a lot of veteran talent and high hopes, they have already started to live up to those dreams and have already strung together a strong season for themselves. Currently in a tie for second with EXNOL, this team has the potential to easily finish second in Royal if they can win out and makes for an extremely exciting matchup in week nine between Hyperion and EXNOL for the bye. With their own destiny in their hands for a second-place finish, they also have the power to run it down and find a 5-way tie for seventh just like EXNOL does to finish out the regular season. Granted, again, this is a small minority of the outcomes on our sheet, but it is a possibility. More likely than not, this team should be able to secure a finish in the top four after the regular season, even if it does go to a massive tiebreaker and I am excited to see what they bring to the table come the post season.
#4 Flash 2 Harass (3-4) – 4th-9th Possibilities
Flash 2 Harass is, to me, the strongest of the 3-4 teams we have in Royal, with a recent revamp of the roster under their belts, and back-to-back series wins since then, this team has come into the back half of the season swinging. With strong wins over Abyssal and Imperial in their last two weeks, and the middle of the pack being as close as it is, this team is positioned to make a massive surge in the end of the split if they can manage to win out. With the two teams above them set to face off, F2H can still crawl their way back from a 1-4 start and manage a tie for third, however, with head-to-head in favor of both Hyperion and EXNOL, they will only be able to manage a fourth place finish which would still be a great finish for any team, especially one that started with such a disadvantage halfway through the split. Having acknowledged their highest possibility, we also must look at their lowest possible placing. If things don’t go their way in these last two weeks, they could see themselves with a tie for ninth place at the end of the regular season with Anonymous. I must also mention that this team did make some recent changes so there is a possibility that they fall in the standings following their recent changes but for now I will give them the benefit of the doubts seeing how their last changes went.
#5 Imperial Gaming (3-4) – 3rd-8th Possibilities
Imperial is a team that has had be baffled over the course of the season. They came out the gates swinging and we had high expectations for this mostly unchanged roster which were initially satisfied, however some mid-season slumps combined with some of their harder matchups of the season has lead them to falling to 3-4 in the standings. Even so, they do still look like a strong team and might be able to find an answer to their problems as they continue to synergize with their new ADC as we close in on the post season. As for their possibilities on the foldy sheet, this team has a lot of opportunities to actually secure a tie in some capacity for third at the end of the season, and an even bigger chance of getting fourth to themselves as the season closes out in the next two weeks if they manage to pick up some wins in weeks eight and nine. If they don’t, however, they could still fall down to a tie for eighth that they would come out on top of with head-to-head over Anonymous. Regardless, I expect this team to put up a strong fight for fourth and should be a strong contender for avoiding gauntlet at the end of the split.
#6 League of Dolphins (3-4) – 3rd-9th Possibilities
League of Dolphins, a lot like Imperial, came out of the gate swinging to start the season but stumbled a good deal along the way. LoD has been able to find some amount of footing though through the mid-season, including the possibilities of a ramp up into the post season with a win last week over BARF. With two more series on the table and ones that I would say should be very winnable series for this squad, I would not be surprised if this team made a push up the standings before the seasons close. They, like Imperial, have a chance at third if a 3-way tiebreaker were to occur however fourth or fifth are a lot more likely and very achievable for this team after these next two weeks. On the flip side, if they have a lot worse showing than expected, this team could round out their season at ninth place after losing a head-to-head against Anonymous just as Flash 2 Harass could. I am hoping to see this team crank things up going into the post season and push for a top four spot come post season.
#7 Abyssal Asphalt (2-5) – 9th-10th Possibilities
Given the forced FF’s at the start of the season, there is not much wiggle room for this team in the standings. With only Anonymous in reach in points for this team, this team will be facing a gauntlet birth and will have to run the gauntlet to secure a spot in the playoffs. However, I do think this is a pretty strong team and is appearing to be moving in the right direction towards a brighter future for themselves. Despite their low possibilities for the regular season, I hope this team takes the rest of the season seriously and build up a lot of momentum going into gauntlet because I do think they have a very real chance at making the run from game one to game four and fighting for a playoff birth.
#8 DoV Chaos (3-4) – 3rd-9th Possibilities
Although this team is 3-4 like much of the teams in Royal, this team has one of their wins off a forfeit and really has yet to impress besides one upset victory over second place Hyperion in week six. Given their upset, and the talent level on this team, they do still have a chance to secure themselves a third place finish, more so than many of the other teams at 3-4, given their head-to-head over Hyperion if they can win out and find a tie with Hyperion at the end of the season. On the flip side, this team also has the chance to find themselves in a tie for ninth that isn’t as trivial as a head-to-head tiebreaker. Given this, they could also easily find themselves towards the bottom of the gauntlet if they cannot find a way to power up going towards the post-season, especially with a difficult schedule ahead of themselves to close out the split.
#9 BARF Bravo (3-4) – 3rd-8th Possibilities
Like the rest of the teams sitting at 3-4, BARF are in a position to fight for third at the end of the season, and are also able to slip down to eighth or ninth before the regular season’s conclusion. BARF are one of the teams that do have one of the best chances at winning a tiebreaker against EXNOL or Hyperion for third with a matchup against Hyperion coming in week eight for the squad. If they can manage to pull out pull out back-to-back victories, they will definitely be in a strong position to take a top four finish given they would have head-to-head over a lot of the teams that would tie them for fourth. Given that head-to-head advantage, I believe they have also secured a placing above ninth so, even if they do lose out, they should still be able to ensure they start it the second game of gauntlet at the earliest. This team has made a lot of changes this season and have done so again recently, so they will have to pull together quickly if they would like to avoid a trip to the gauntlet but if they managed to turn it around quickly in week four, they can definitely look to do so again here in week eight.
#10 Anonymous Esports (1-6) – 8th-10th Possibilities
Anonymous is in a rough spot. They are, sadly, locked into the gauntlet at this point and are also locked into at best a game two appearance at the latest in the gauntlet. However, ZGG is a pioneer in that no team is truly out until they lose in post season so there is still time for this team to find a winning formula that works for them to turn around their season. Looking at the foldy sheet, they currently sit at ninth and can move into eight with a 2-0 finish to the season, forcing a tiebreaker against at least one other team in most scenarios. That said, they can also stoop to a last place finish if they lose a series and open the door for Abyssal to claim side select in the first round of gauntlet. Although it does not sound like much, momentum means so much at the end of the day and I do think this team still has a chance to turn everything around, find some wins, and ride their way as far as they can through the gauntlet.