Every moment of the Oceanic Pro League split has been leading up to this; the final Super Week, where the fates of the final six teams still in the running will be decided.
Two teams are already heartbroken and unable to make it to the playoffs. That leaves just three more playoff spots left. With four teams eligible, it’s going to spell heartbreak for one of the teams yet to secure a place in the notorious postseason.
Without further ado, Snowball’s experienced analysts Emma van der Brug, Harry Taylor, Andrew Wray, and Super Week guest pundit Reece Perry break down their chosen featured matches for this critical week. Super Week kicks off at 4pm AEST on Friday.
Emma’s Feature Match of the Week: Legacy Esports (15–3) vs Pentanet.GG (11–7)
Prediction: Legacy win.
The pointy end of the season is finally here, and Pentanet have a chance to earn to lock their playoff spot up against Legacy, who have already clinched their own. The two teams sit on a 1–1 head-to-head record; this is the deciding battle.
For Pentanet to make the playoffs, they only need to win one of their final three matches. This would net them a 12–9 record, and lock Avant Gaming out of the running.
The last time these two Split 2 titans clashed, it was total domination from the PGG squad, with every member reminding the league they have what it takes to go the distance. James “Halo” Giacoumakis made his debut, however, and was still settling in.
Things went differently in their first meeting, all the way back in Week 3. Legacy, armed with championship mid laner James “Tally” Shute at that point, battled their way to a 40-minute victory over the Perth org.
This final match-up honestly could go in either team’s favour, but experience puts it squarely in Legacy’s court — it’s the defending champs’ game to lose. They have their spot secured, but they’ll want to lock first-seed too. If they want to stay ahead of Order, this is a must win.
Harry’s Feature Match of the Week: The Chiefs (11–7) vs Legacy Esports (15–3)
Prediction: Legacy win.
We end the Oceanic Pro League Split 2 regular season with the old OPL rivalry, the classic matchup, the El Clásico: Chiefs vs Legacy on Saturday night.
There are two key themes for both of these teams this week is the number ‘1’. For the Chiefs, one win this weekend will secure them the postseason, while for Legacy one win locks them first-seed, and puts them in the driver’s seat for a plane ride to Shanghai.
For both teams, this historical matchup is the important one they want to win. These two orgs will want to end their season right, taking any momentum they can get into the playoffs.
Coming out of Saturday, I expect Legacy will have claimed bragging rights in the iconic OPL grudge match. Exciting momentum from a six-game win-streak, as well as the 2–0 head to head over the Chiefs, gives them the history in Split 2 to take the victory.
The Chiefs have had flashes of quality this split, and even moments where they may have been the league’s best lineup, but too often they’ve fallen short again where it counted.
2020 has thrown up more than its fair share of curveballs, yes, so Chiefs could get the upset, but I wouldn’t be holding my breath; the champs will take the last game this split.
Andrew’s Feature Match of the Week: Chefs (11–7) vs Puppers (9–9)
Prediction: Chiefs win.
It’s almost poetic the Dire Wolves (editor’s note: the aforementioned ‘puppers’) will be closing their season out against one of their fiercest OPL rivals, the Chiefs (editor’s note: the ‘chefs’). It’s an unlikely scenario, but this match could hold the win the Wolfpack need to clinch a postseason campaign.
Both teams have probably underperformed to most pundit’s expectations, especially the Wolf Pack — last split’s grand finalists, I might add — who are languishing in fifth place as the Super Week round approaches.
For the boys in blue starting opposite them on the Rift, a poor run of form has scuppered any chance they had of a second-place finish. Now they’re stuck in a fist-fight for third.
For all the talk of what has been a tumultuous split for both teams, both are still threatening the competition’s elite at their very best. Each will be desperate to make their mark on the playoffs too, and entering with confidence is key to that ambition.
There are a plethora of key matchups for both squads that will show their team strength, and multiple win conditions to watch, but I’ll be keeping an eye on the top lane battle between the former league MVP Ryan “Chippys” Short, and mechanically-gifted Romeo “Thien” Tran.
I’ve back the Chiefs for this one. Despite their slump they’re still 2–0 over the Dire Wolves in the season record, and I believe they’ll make it 3–0 to finish out the split in style.
Reece’s Feature Match of the Week: Avant Gaming (8–10) vs Order (13–5)
Prediction: Order win.
I’m going to get the productive stuff out of the way early here. Despite all that you’re about to read, I think Order will win this game, and comfortably. They’re playing a better level in nearly every way, and the ladder reflects that quite accurately.
Avant needs to win the minimum of once to stay in playoff contention, and let’s be honest it’s at least twice because the Dire Wolves have Gravitas on the docket. Order is the only team Avant has beaten of the three on their slate, so let’s pretend it may just happen.
There are a number of things that went right for them, or specifically wrong for Order when Avant toppled them in Week 3, despite an early first blood and tower for the boys from Melbourne: Swip3rr loses early so their four-man core can’t frontline Avant’s R-button composition. This is made even more stark when LeeSA’s Graves gets a triple kill in the first major fight so he’s huge, and in the second Only takes the world’s worst Resonating Strike and eats Avant’s wombo. Papryze helped himself to a triple kill of his own, Order’s plan was undone, and the game was quickly closed from there.
The lesson we learned from the game is a familiar refrain for Avant this split. It’s one reinforced by even a cursory glance at their wins so far this split.
To beat Order, Avant must draft good teamfighting compositions, and be prepared to fight together early.
They do not need to get cute with tricky drafts – make things simple, have someone to start fights, get the Graves if you can, and plenty of damage for Violet. If you can find some peel for him, that’s good too. Oh, and play Violet.
The Oceanic Pro League returns this Friday.