Since the 2012 season, Europe has tended to have a stronger scene than North America. The best teams in Europe haven’t necessarily been better than the best teams in, but the follow-up teams have. For example, while Cloud 9 stood head and shoulders above the other NA last season, there was a 4-way tie for second in EU, and one of those teams ended up taking first place in the playoffs. This week around, Europe is in tumult. Find out more, after the break!
The last two weeks have been weeks of complete upsets. Fnatic lost 4 games in a row. SK unseated both Fnatic and Gambit. Supa Hot Crew took down Gambit as well. There are a lot of reasons we can give for the failure of Fnatic, not to mention Gambit Gaming’s tepid showing. SK Gaming without Ocelote is starting to rampage. Even SHC has recovered after a rough start. In typically Europe fashion, I’m going to ditch a straight up power ranking, and break the teams into tiers
Worlds Tier – Fnatic/Gambit Gaming/ROCCAT
If it were the summer split, these three teams would go to Worlds.
It would be all-too-easy to read too much into the recent losing spree of Fnatic. But Fnatic only went 25-21 in the 2013 summer split before taking 1st place in the 2013 summer playoffs, and the real difference between Fnatic and other teams has always been their performance under pressure.
Gambit Gaming is much the same as Fnatic, but they also have played somewhat steadily recently.
ROCCAT is a new team that has taken down Fnatic and looks to take down a weakened Gambit roster today. But they have managed to take the top record in Europe.
If I overvalue records, I’d say ROC>GMB>FNC
If I overvalue past performance, I’d say FNC>GMB>ROC
If I try to value both, I’d put FNC>ROC because of their experience. But then I’d put GMB>FNC because they aren’t on a 5-game loss streak. But then I’d put ROC>GMB because GMB hasn’t looked nearly as dominant as they have. That is, it’s easy to dismiss Fnatic’s losing spree when comparing them to ROCCAT, because ROCCAT hasn’t done anything big yet. But it’s hard to dismiss Fnatic’s losing spree when comparing them to the well-storied GMB.
For now, I’ll put them all in a tie.
Safe Tier – SK Gaming/Supa Hot Crew
These two teams shouldn’t have to worry much about relegation at this point, as they’ve managed to take some wins against the top teams.
SK have showed themselves to be kingslayers, taking down Gambit and Fnatic. Sure, those teams were in a slump, but they are still great teams.
SHC have really heated up in the past weeks, beating out all of their competitors.
It’s hard to see these teams breaking into the top three, however. Once Fnatic and GMB right themselves, look to see them take revenge on SK and SHC.
Relegation Tier – Alliance/Copenhagen Wolves/Millenium
If the season ended today, 2 of these teams would have to face the Challenger Series teams to survive. Alliance is starting to build up synergy, so I like them to avoid relegation.
I’m only going to discuss a few of the important games.
Millenium vs Copenhagen Wolves
Gambit Gaming vs ROCCAT
If they weren’t running subs for almost every spot, this would be an exciting match. Instead, look to see ROCCAT widen their lead.
Supa Hot Crew vs Fnatic
SHC took down Gambit last week. If they can take down Fnatic too, we may have to worry about them breaking into the top 3. I’m expecting some sanity from Fnatic in the near future
SK Gaming vs Alliance
Fnatic vs Copenhagen Wolves
Fnatic needs this win.
Gambit Gaming vs Supa Hot Crew
Were Gambit Gaming’s roster around, we emight expect this grudge match to go well for Gambit Gaming. As it is, expect SHC to have a good chance of taking another game off of them.
ROCCAT vs SK Gaming
Can SK Gaming continue their kingslaying spree? While it would make for a good narrative, ROCCAT simply looks too good to lose right now.
Millenium vs Alliance
Mattias “Gentleman Gustaf” Lehman is a big time nerd-gamer who has been involved in both SC2 and LoL. He has ranked as high as Diamond 1 in solo queue and Diamond 3 in arranged 5s.
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