Article written by: John "JAYEL"
Only three teams remain in the ESEA Advanced Season 34 Playoffs. Thunder Logic, RBG Esports, and Third Impact. This group of players all believe they have what it takes to conquer Advanced and earn their auto-bid into MDL. Only one team will get this birth, and one team already has a map advantage to do so: Thunder Logic.
Thunder Logic booked their ticket to the Grand Finals when they swept RBG Esports 2-0 in the semi-finals of the Upper Bracket (Round 5) on Tuesday night.
The first map on Dust2 was completely one-sided, with Thunder Logic taking the first half 11-4 on T-side and then closing out the map 16-7 on CT-side. Brian2k and Inseaniac topped the charts for TL there, with Brian2k having 26 frags and 92.36 ADR and inseaniac with 20 frags and 95.77 ADR.
The second map fell on Train, which was a great back-and-forth between these two. RBG Esports were able to claw back up from a 10-6 deficit to make it 14-11 in their favor, but were unfortunately unable to close it out and allowed Thunder Logic to string 5 rounds in a row to close it out 16-14. Thunder Logic was able to overpower the outside A bombsite in 4 of the last 5 rounds in the second half of their T-side to finish the 2-0 series sweep.
Despite being in MDL last season, Thunder Logic was only able to take the #9 seed for playoffs. Not many people expected this team to make it to the Grand Finals, with only ~12% of our Challonge brackets (RIP to the Counter Nature Pick Em bracket challenge) having Thunder Logic in their top 2. People may not have noticed that 50% of Thunder Logic’s regular season matches were against teams who made Advanced playoffs this season.
Thunder Logic is rocking MDL experience, a battle-hardened regular season, and ZERO losses in playoffs thus far… They have won every single map in this playoffs… Thunder Logic is the perfect storm--for now. Will they be able to close it out against their Lower Bracket counterpart?
In case you didn’t fully respect Third Impact up until this point, you probably do now. This team has been earning its respect in this playoffs run. They have had wonderful results, and proved to be Thunder Logic’s most suitable foe--bringing both of their maps into overtime in the 3rd round of the Upper Bracket.
The only maps that Third Impact has dropped in this season’s playoffs came to Thunder Logic. They comfortably 2-0’d Addice Inc., Big Chillin, the hopeful Team Hyperrr, and the good-looking Lethal Divide. JoJo’s AWP has been HOT and Danejoris has been dominating in these recent playoff match-ups. Really, this team has been clicking and firing with confidence at the perfect time of playoffs. Having watched Switchy’s coaching POV stream against Lethal Divide, this team is having fun, hitting shots, competing, and solving team problems when necessary.
Third Impact deserves to have a chance at getting a rematch with Thunder Logic in the Grand Finals, and the team knows that they can do it. But first, they will need to get past a pissed-off RBG Esports in the Lower Bracket Finals…
RBG Esports, the Golden Child of ESEA Advanced. 85% of the Counter Nature Pick Em brackets had RBG Esports finishing in the Top 2, and nearly 100% of the brackets had them finishing Top 3. Mix that fact with their early-exit from playoffs last season and their reforming for Season 34 with only one goal: MDL or Bust. There is nothing this team wants more than to win Advanced and avoid any more possibility of missing out on MDL next season. No pressure--right?
This playoffs hasn’t been all smooth sailing for RBG Esports, having gone 3 maps with Team Hyperrr, a squad they struggled against during the regular season. They went into overtime with Lethal Divide, and got dropped 2-0 by Thunder Logic. However, that is the life of being the most highly regarded team in Advanced. All great teams have targets on their heads, and they will usually always get the best from the teams that they face. It comes with the territory…
Maybe RBG Esports needed a humbling experience to bring them to their pinnacle of play for this playoffs. KayJay will need to rally the troops and bring in the right game plans to get this team focused and full of confidence if they have hopes of taking the trophy. They will need to be perfect to top this Third Impact team--who are playing fearlessly. And they will need a new plan if they are to face Thunder Logic in the finals again.
It should be a great end to this playoffs in Advanced. I think everyone can agree that these three teams are the best possible choices, based on their play. Good luck to Third Impact, RBG Esports, and Thunder Logic! And, congratulations for making it this far.