Last night in Burbank, California, four more teams joined Counter-Logic Gaming and Evil Geniuses as six of the eight teams that will duke it out in the HCS Pro League. Renegades, Team EnVyUs, Allegiance, and Enigma6 have all secured their Pro League spots and have very little to worry about for the next couple of weeks. With all of this in mind, we’re back with another iteration of the Team Beyond HCS Power Rankings. Like always, lets take a look at the series and map count records for each of the teams.
Counter Logic Gaming puts another perfect week on the board by logging a 6-0 scrimmage record and 52-10 total game record. However, CLG did drop four games out of thirteen in scrimmages against Enigma6 and Evil Geniuses, which as ridiculous as it sounds, is where the bar has been set for an “impressive” scrimmage score against CLG in the past few months. CLG balanced those performances out with a 13-0 sweep of Team Liquid and a 12-1 romping of OpTic Gaming. Looking at the bigger picture though, the only reason to believe that other teams could close the gap on CLG is that CLG has not been able to play at a LAN event since the Halo World Championship (since their 1st place finish guaranteed them a spot in the Pro League), but even then it’d obviously come as a monumental surprise if any team were able to dethrone the “God Squad” of Halo.
Renegades continue their ascent up the power rankings by moving up another spot to #2. The team tore through scrimmages by taking down Allegiance (10-2), Liquid (8-5), and nV (10-3) in preparation for their trip to Burbank. At the qualifier, Renegades dropped their first series to the rising OpTic Gaming (2-3), but clinched their spot in the qualifier by taking down Denial (4-1) and then sweeping OpTic (4-0) in the final series of the night.
Shooting up the power rankings to the #2 spot (in our first ever tie) is Enigma6, who we said last week was “definitely a team that has the talent to do some real damage at the Pro League qualifier this upcoming weekend” despite being ranked #8. Several pros and forum members suggested that Enigma6’s performance at PAX was just a really bad day of Halo for the squad, and it seems as if that was the case. Throughout the past week, Enigma6 logged a 7-1 series record with a map count of 59-27, with their only loss being a scrimmage against CLG in which they were still able to pull four games. We’re definitely excited to see what the future has to hold for this young team.
It was certainly not a good week to be an Evil Geniuses fan. EG logged only three series against pro teams this week, and lost all three. Sure they took four games off of CLG in a scrimmage, but they also lost scrimmages against Team Liquid (6-7) and OpTic Gaming (5-8), and both are teams that have failed to qualify for the Pro League so far. On top of that EG only logged a total of 39 games last week, which is second least among the power ranked teams this week.
Heading into Burbank, Allegiance was the least practiced team with only two scrimmages to their name. It also didn’t help that those two series were rather convincing losses to Renegades (2-10) and Enigma6 (4-10). Despite all of that, Allegiance was able to flip the switch once they arrived in Burbank as they were able to qualify after only two series and a total of eight games. However, Allegiance might still be the biggest question mark in the HCS,as they arguably have had the easiest road to Pro League qualification after beating Ambush and God Tier to make it to Burbank and then beating unranked Soul Red (3-0) and #7 ranked Team EnVyUs (4-1) to qualify for the Pro League.
Leading up to Sunday, OpTic Gaming truly looked like the second best team in the HCS. In three of their four scrimmages in preparation for Burbank (the fourth being against CLG), they beat Team Liquid (11-2), Allegiance (9-0), and Evil Geniuses (8-5). In their opening series at the LAN qualifier, they beat Renegades (3-2) and were one series away from qualifying for the Pro League. Everything up to that point was looking great for the #GreenWall, and it all came crashing down with a quick losses to Enigma6 (1-4) and Renegades (0-4), leaving the OpTic squad short of qualification. Now this rollercoaster of a team will have to fight their way through the Last Chance Qualifier stage, where the final two spots of the Pro League will be up for grabs.
To be quite frank, if you are an nV fan you were probably very worried about their chances to qualify after seeing their scrimmage performance earlier in the week. Team EnVyUs headed to the LAN qualifier with a 0-4-1 scrimmage record, with losses to Enigma6, eLevate, and Renegades. Like Allegiance, this team is still a huge question mark. They beat unranked Crowd Control twice to make it to Burbank and then beat #8 ranked Team Liquid twice (3-0, 4-0) to qualify for the Pro League. Some think nV has turned it around and stepped it up ever since failing to qualify for the Halo World Championship, while others still remain skeptical.
The biggest drop in the power rankings belongs to Team Liquid, who truly failed to impress for the large majority of the week. Despite pulling a scrimmage from then-ranked #2 Evil Geniuses (7-6), Liquid finished out their Burbank practice regimen with brutal losses to OpTic (2-11), Renegades (5-8), CLG (0-13), and Enigma6 (2-8). At Burbank, Liquid dropped their first series to nV (0-3) and then needed seven games to beat unranked Soul Red (4-3) to have one last chance at qualifying. Unceremoniously, Liquid dropped the final series of their group’s bracket to nV (0-4) and currently sit outside the Pro League bubble looking in.
That wraps it up for this week. This upcoming week will be admittedly be a little uneventful as six of the eight pro teams have already qualified and the remaining hopeful pro teams who have yet to qualify will have to wait two weekends from now for the Last Chance Qualifier.
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