About halfway there
With three out of five weeks of RLCS league play behind us and the next round starting this weekend, let’s take a look at how teams have done so far. While we had a week one recap, we haven’t yet reported on the following weeks. All eight Rocket League teams play seven series in league play. Some teams have played just three so far, while others have played five already.
Last season’s top dog of North America started their RLCS campaign strong, going 1-0 in series in the first week and continuing that run into week two and three. At least, at first. While NRG was clearly the strongest team last season, they’ve looked less dominant this season, having been brought to a game five by Ghost, and losing 3-1 to Evil Geniuses in their very last match-up of week three.
While NRG is obviously still an almost guaranteed LAN candidate and perhaps even a world championship favourite, they failed to continue their lossless streak from last season. They currently stand at a 3-1 series score and are third in the league, not enough for straight qualification. However, with Cloud9 playing G2 this weekend, it means they have a good shot at leveling the playing field, going 4-1 alongside one of the other two. That is, if they beat Rogue themselves, of course.
C9 look to be the best. With a 4-0 score on top of the league, they seem confident and driven to finally claim the RLCS world championship to bring it back to North America, where it hasn’t been since Season 1.
They will have to play a formidable foe this weekend in G2, though. If they can take the series against them, they will most likely be 6-0 in the league, as they play FlyQuest—a relegation candidate—earlier in the day.
C9 is rising to new highs, giving mechanical master classes as usual. If there’s a season where they take that world championship, this season has to be it. Unless they, of course, get even better next season.
Still one of the strongest in North America, G2 is looking dangerous. They ran over teams like Allegiance and FlyQuest, beat Ghost in game five (this seems to be a trend for Ghost), and soundly defeated Rogue in their last game of week three.
They, like Cloud9, are now 4-0 in League Play with a +8 win rate, enough, for now, for second place and straight qualification. But here’s the kicker, as mentioned before: they play Cloud9 this weekend. G2 doesn’t have an easy schedule from here on out with C9, Evil Geniuses, and NRG coming up, the three teams that are currently straight below them. They will have to stay on top of their game to keep that spot in the green zone.
With their debutant Chicago, EG is showing they’re serious. 3-1 is a respectable record, enough for a playoff spot just below NRG (who has the same series score, but a better win rate with +3 against +2). EG, however, is the only team to defeat NRG this season so far. They won’t just roll over for the big three, though they did get swept by C9.
Having played two out of the top three means they “just” have G2 left. They are not likely to take a spot for straight qualification, so a third or fourth place is an excellent position to be in (provided that the top three remains the same).
While the record isn’t great with 1-3, it is enough for fifth. Allegiance was expected to be a relegation candidate, but with Rogue’s poor performances and Ghost’s (arguable) bad luck, they find themselves in fifth with four matches played.
But it wasn’t just because of other teams’ results. Allegiance are showing that they’re an RLCS caliber team, having only fallen to the top three. They defeated fellow debutants FlyQuest, but otherwise already have the hardest part behind them. This week they will play Rogue and Evil Geniuses and will be aiming to end up 3-3. While Rogue should be beatable in their current form, Evil Geniuses is going to be a tough task. We’ll see if they can do it.
Ghost has had it rough, bringing all five series they played to game five and losing four of them. That leaves them with a 1-4 record, having defeated only Rogue. Ghost has been plagued with server issues, game pauses, and single goal difference losses in game fives. They were on track to sweep NRG when they confidently went up 2-0 but got reverse swept to lose yet another series that went all the way.
Despite that, Ghost find themselves in sixth place, enough for a playoff against the third place. While they’re far from qualified, it’s also far from over. With just FlyQuest and Allegiance left, they will be aiming to finish higher than sixth, which would give them an easier time in the play-offs.
No one expected Rogue to do so badly. They looked like the worst team after week one, but picked up the pace in the following two weeks, bringing Ghost to game five in week two and losing to G2 in week three. They improved their performance, but it wasn’t enough to finally put that first win on the board.
Rogue has four more matches ahead of them, which are absolute must-wins if they want to avoid the relegation zone. Their schedule isn’t kind to them, though. Allegiance and NRG are up next for this weekend, and they finish league play against Evil Geniuses and FlyQuest. If everybody keeps up their form as it is, Rogue looks to be playing in the promotion/relegation tournament soon.
As many expected, FlyQuest is in the relegation zone. Not just because their abilities were doubted, but simply because the other teams were rated just a bit higher. PrimeThunder was their best player in RLRS are expected to do well, but it was not enough to keep his team from going 0-4 in League Play, ending up in last place.
They have, however, already played one of the top three in Cloud9. If they manage a win against (unlucky) Ghost and (underperforming) Rogue, perhaps there’s still something in it for them?
The final boss of Rocket League is solid as usual. They are 4-0 in league play and have a whopping 12-1 record in games, having lost only a single game against Mousesports. They struggled against the newcomers a bit, but they pulled it over the finish line and were simply unbeatable in all other series.
The back-to-back world champions look like they are going for three in a row, and there don’t seem to be many teams that can stop them. They play (the slightly disappointing) CompLexity this weekend, and finish League Play against We Dem Girlz and Vitality in week five.
We Dem Girlz
WDG also look solid with a 3-1 record. They only lost to PSG in week two, but otherwise appear to be a contender for straight LAN qualification, currently in second place. They do have a difficult schedule ahead of them, though, but then again, there is no easy schedule, especially not in Europe. With Mousesports, Vitality, and Dignitas coming up in the final two weeks, WDG is going to have to step it up a notch if they want to keep their second place.
Another question that remains for this team is when they will be picked up by an organisation after having been released by Envy during the off-season. We have passed the halfway mark of RLCS and they are still org-less.
Mouz was never considered to be a high finisher, let alone a LAN contender. But they proved everyone wrong and are sitting in third place with 2-2 record. Don’t let those two losses distort the picture, though. Mouz is performing incredibly well, and one loss came from Dignitas, who they actually gave a run for their money.
Their weakest performance this season was against CompLexity, where they went up 2-0 but then got reverse swept when CompLexity woke up. They should, of course, have simply driven it home and swept CoL, but they lost two out of the following three games in overtime and ended up 2-2.
With PSG, WDG, and Flipsid3 coming up, though, they should at least be able to finish top four and comfortably avoid that dangerous sixth place.
Everyone had high hopes for the team that managed to sign Scrub Killa, but their first two weeks were incredibly disappointing and they looked to be a relegation candidate after going 0-2. Performances didn’t seem to improve and people dreaded a quick exit for Scrub.
While they promised they knew what was wrong and that they’d play better, not many believed them. It’d come down to week three, where they would play two series against PSG and CompLexity. This would either be the turning point or the definite downfall. Fortunately, they won both, sweeping PSG and finishing off CompLexity in game five after wins went back and forth. They seemed much, much better in week three and it’s something to build on going into week four.
Vitality was set up to go with a storyline, however, starting with the arguably weaker teams and building up to the more difficult ones. This means that they have a very tough schedule ahead of them, and if they want to make LAN, they are going to have to step up their game even more. Vitality plays Flipsid3 this week and finishes League Play in week five against WDG and Dignitas.
CompLexity is the third team in Europe at 2-2. With an 8-10 win/loss record, they are fifth and look safe from relegation. If they want a better shot at qualifying for LAN though, they’re going to have to step it up. Sixth place is dangerous and they play two series this weekend with Fnatic and Dignitas. Should they lose both of those, they will have to count on Vitality to beat F3 to stay in fifth place.
Of course, League Play won’t just end this week, and CoL plays Flipsid3 themselves in their last series.
One of the only two teams without a roster swap, F3 is trying to get back to the glory they’ve lost. So far, that doesn’t look likely. But F3 only played three series so far, so it’d be unfair to judge them on the losses they conceded against WDG and Dignitas.
They soundly defeated PSG and have four more series to play, starting with Fnatic and Vitality this week, and Mouz and CoL in week five. While it won’t be easy, they definitely still have a good shot at finishing higher than sixth.
Someone in Europe has to finish in the relegation zone, no matter how good they are. Fnatic was expected to be where they are in the red zone, but not because of their lack of skill. Europe is just that competitive. Fnatic had a very poor season five and didn’t look like they could keep up.
While they improved and picked up a good player with Mummisnow, it’s still looking rough for them in seventh place and a 1-3 record. But it’s not over yet. Their losses came against Dignitas, WDG, and Mouz, so it’s not surprising they aren’t at a perfect score.
Playing F3 and CoL this week, it’s not out of the question that they will end up somewhere in a playoff spot going into week five.
PSG is not looking good. While they defeated We Dem Girlz in a surge of good games, PSG isn’t performing very well. They have a 1-4 record and are sitting at the bottom of the league. At this point, they shouldn’t be focused on getting to LAN, but rather to avoid relegation.
The bright point in the team, however, is the revelation of Fruity. The newcomer is keeping up with RLCS and, regardless of what happens this season, looks to have a promising career ahead of himself.