Scramble Gauntlet Addition:
With the End of the Regular Season, I’d like to extend congratulations to the 5 confirmed playoff teams:
Astro Andromeda, Oasis NADS(insert Obama giving himself the medal meme), The Lemons, Goon Squad Gaming, and FTD Blue.
Oasis unfortunately had to forfeit to Astro in the match that would have determined the 1st seed last week but stuff happens. Hopefully we’ll see the marquee matchup in the finals.
A few thoughts of mine about the playoff teams:
The 3rd Seed: As my dear readers may or may not know, the 3rd seed gets their selection of opponents between the Gauntlet Winner or FTD Blue. This is really big because the expected winner of the gauntlet: Rawr, is most definitely a top 4 team in the league at the moment. GSG suffering a competitive ruling means that they actually lost out on a potential point which means they lost the 3rd seed selection, which means they don’t get to avoid Rawr in the quarters. The Lemons, on the other hand, thank GSG for their smurfing ways and will more than likely choose to face off against FTD Blue. Not doing so will likely require an investigation from Feathers about potential wintrading going on.
Infernal Flame: As I’m sure everybody is aware, Infernal dq’d out of the league for being big babies and ffing every series. This is really sad as they were actually a really decent team that had a shot of pulling off a potential upset. Instead, the likelihood of an upset happening in the gauntlet/quarters is significantly reduced. On the other hand, LSNceid, the old captain of the team, can still be seen recruiting players for their org in various discords. Unfortunately for them, the Infernal organization will likely never be allowed in ZGG again.
Goon Squad’s Fall: GSG has not looked like a good team these last few weeks. I’d probably rate them as the weakest team in the playoffs at the moment and somewhere around 7th overall. However, they still get to avoid the gauntlet and sit pretty at the 4th seed spot because of their early season wins. Unfortunately GSG look a bit hopeless at the moment, rosters are locked and the one they have now don’t seem good enough to win their quarterfinals match against likely opponent Rawr much less win the whole thing.
FTD Blue: This is a team that has finally started to fulfill their players potential. I dont know if it’s because of a coaching staff change, the roster swaps, or if the team just clicked one week in scrims but they are looking scary for once. They have 3 straight convincing(kind of) wins over FEA, RGBH, and Abyssal, which means they are a step ahead of the gauntlet teams at least. If they can make another step I wouldn’t be surprised to see them challenge the lemons. The damper here is that they did get 2-0’d last time they played The Lemons a week before their 3 game run.
Gauntlet Power Rankings:
1) Rawr – Rawr is obviously the strongest team in the gauntlet by far. Unfortunately, early season struggles means they have to win back to back bo1’s in order to be able to qualify. This means that even though you’re one of the better teams in the division now you could still fall to a random cheese strat or a poorly done draft. Rawr, however, isn’t some invincible juggernaut. They’re primarily a jgl/top carry team with mid being a solid player every game. Their bot lane, on the other hand, hasn’t really impressed me.
Priority Picks: Galio. Rawr seems to put a high high priority on Galio and I’ve seen their mid laner say in one of the chats that he thinks Galio is S tier champion. Which, I mean is kind of true, but it shows Rawr’s value on the pick. Either ban it or have an answer for it.
2) Far East Asians- Scramble has been, for good or worse, very predictable this season. There’s a very clear hierarchy of which teams are contenders, which teams are good, which teams are mediocre, and which teams suck. FEA is firmly in the mediocre slot. However a very interesting phenomenon happens within the FEA team in that their star mid laner AsianSe0ul is insanely coinflip. One game he’ll look like the plat player smurfing on noobs that he is but in the next he’ll get smurfed on and go 0-10. I haven’t been examining this team too extensively but this usually means he’s quite susceptible to jungle ganks/tilt. Additionally, FEA’s top laner is a very clear liability. The draft strategy vs this team is very clear imo. Ban out the top laner’s Maokai and then AsianSeoul’s comfort picks and watch them tread water. However, on the bright side, FEA’s bot lane has been extremely consistent this season. Seemingly unaffected by their mid laner’s cosplay of 2-face.
Priority Picks: — ???
3) RGBH – RGBH is probably the most slept on team I’ve ever seen. Yes they’re 1-7. Yes they esub random people every week. Yes, Feathers has said that their team is a meme team. And yes, they have to run the whole gauntlet in order to make the playoffs. But every week you can see hints of RGBH actually being a great team. Taking a game off of the Lemons, 2-0’ing FEA, giving Astro the most trouble they’ve had all season. This team is primed for a Schalke level run to the playoffs(and maybe further?). League admin Feathers and Fur is ready to prove to ZGG fans everywhere that the league is, in fact, rigged.
Priority Picks: — Unfortunately, as good as Feathers is, he’s basically an Urgot/Illaoi/Malphite 3 trick. And it’s not like the rest of his team has must-ban champions. You can maybe drop the Urgot/Malphite bans but please for the love of god don’t let Feathers get Illaoi.
4) Abyssal Black – If you guys have been reading my PR, I said in my very first edition that Abyssal is my darkhorse for this season. Well the horse is really really dark right now. On the bright side, their team did pull off a 2-1 victory over RGBH. On the not so bright side, they got beaten by every other team in the gauntlet. To be fair, that’s only 2, but to be not fair they got beaten by Rawr before they got their good roster. Picking up Swaggy P was a good decision, in my opinion, and their roster is honestly quite solid. However, things just haven’t worked out for them recently and there really isn’t a whole lot of upside either.
Priority Picks – Zac/Sejuani. Take Swaggy off of his enablers and this team will be significantly reduced in effectiveness.