Celestial Aim (2-6): Celestial Aim goes 1-1 in our third Super Week of the MEL Qualifier Division in matchups against two teams that were near them in the standings, Nonchalant VillainZ and Omnipotent Gaming. The team takes a strong 2-0 against Nonchalant VillainZ with round scores of 13-8 and 13-5 before losing 1-2 to Omnipotent Gaming in a huge matchup as both of these teams are currently out of playoffs, but can still obtain a spot by the end of the regular season. Though Celestial Aim’s record doesn’t look the best right now, they are only two games out of a playoff spot due to how tight the middle of the pack is currently. With an entire second half of the regular season to play, the team can still flip the script on their story.
Chosen 1’s (4-4): Three quarters of the league split their games this Super Week and Chosen 1’s is another one of those teams. They competed in our sole game on Thursday against second place Tone Gaming in an interesting best of three that has a lot to unpack. Game 1 went to overtime before Chosen 1’s lost 12-14. The next two games are where it gets interesting. After a close first game, one would imagine the series would be tight for the remainder, however Chosen 1’s bounces back in Game 2 with a 13-4 win, forcing the Game 3. With what I imagine would be momentum in Chosen 1’s favor, the result of the series decider did not match up with my expectation as Tone Gaming dominated Game 3, winning 13-1 and taking the series. Although it ends as a loss, it’s not a bad result as a team. Chosen 1’s not only started off the week for the QD, but also ended as they took on Emergence on Monday. The team wins 2-0, however round scores were closer than they would have liked against a winless Emergence. The team sits in playoff position right now, but it is pivotal that they perform within these last three games as Omnipotent Gaming and Celestial Aim are hungry to steal the spot from them.
Digital (4-4): Digital has been an interesting team to keep an eye on throughout this season, being known as the team with several players from different teams of our inaugural season. Digital took care of Emergence in their first game of the week before falling to Valor Esports. The Valor Esports series is the one I want to focus on as it was one of the closest series we have seen so far throughout the entire season. The round scores of the three games were, 15-13, 12-14, and 10-13. Not only did the first two games go to overtime, but even the series decider required 23 rounds to claim a victor. This matchup was a stinger for Digital as both teams were neck and neck in the standings and could easily be a preview of a potential playoff matchup in the postseason.
Emergence (0-8): Emergence remains winless through the regular season and was unable to pick up a map this week in both of their series. They did have tight round scores in all of their games this week, but given how the season had gone, full series wins were a must for the team. Interestingly, due to how close the middle of the pack is, both Emergence and NVZ have only just now been eliminated from the playoff race. It is a shame that Emergence couldn’t pull together some wins throughout the season as they have had endless amounts of close series and signs of potential to flip the script on their season.
Godalions (5-3): A rising Godalions had the toughest week on paper as they fought the first and second place teams, Hyperspace Dark and Tone Gaming. Though they lost in the first series, they proved they deserve to be considered a top team with an upset over Tone Gaming. They lose 0-2 to Hyperspace Dark, but both games were relatively close. The first game they fell 7-13, not great, but not bad either against a team as strong as Hyperspace Dark and followed it up by taking 10 rounds in the second game as well. Moving into the second series against Tone Gaming, the team fought hard for their upset as they took it in three games. The first game was a marathon, going to triple overtime before Godalions comes away with the win, 16-14. From there, they fall 7-13 in Game 2, but bounce right back with a win of similar fashion, 13-8, to take the series. Ever since that 0-2 first week, Godalions has shown nothing, but improvement as they continue to climb the rankings and prove they are a contender down the stretch as we head into the postseason.
Hidden Fang (6-2): Hidden Fang was one of only two teams in the Qualifier Division this week to win both series and they are in good company as the only other team, to no surprise, was Hyperspace Dark. This 2-0 Super Week wasn’t just important in tying for second in the standings. The two teams they took down, Valor Esports and Omni Performance Gaming, were tied with them heading into Week 5. To add to the significance of this 2-0, Hidden Fang also secured their playoff berth with plenty of time to compete for good seeding. It seems as though the team has hit their stride right at the perfect time and will definitely be a team to watch out for in the postseason.
Hyperspace Dark (8-0): At this point, it should be no surprise that Hyperspace Dark has shown that they are the clear frontrunner to take first place in the regular season, and with that, secure a bye in playoffs. The team takes yet another 2-0, without dropping a single map, as they look poised to earn their promotion to the Valorant Premiership. Hyperspace Dark has taken care of most of the top teams in the league already as they look to close out the first ever undefeated regular season in the MCT Esports League in the last three games.
Omnipotent Gaming (3-5): Omnipotent is just outside of a playoff spot in the current standings as the team goes 1-1 in our third Super Week. Though they fall in what would have been a huge game for them against Omni Performance Gaming, they bounce back in an extremely important series against Celestial Aim. These two are the teams sitting just outside of playoffs, meaning that head-to-head matchup was a big one to take home. However, Omnipotent Gaming’s remaining games are interesting as they have to play first and second place, Hyperspace Dark and Tone Gaming, but then finish the regular season off against Emergence. On paper, Omnipotent Gaming is looking at two losses and one win to end the season, will that be enough to steal a top eight finish or will they need a big upset against one of the top teams in the league?
Omni Performance Gaming (5-3): Omni Performance Gaming has had a rollercoaster of a season as they hold the title for most games played thus far, along with Tone Gaming. OPG had the potential to secure their playoff spot if they had won both series, however they fall short and go 1-1 in an important week. The team goes up against a rising Hidden Fang in an incredibly close series. The team wins Game 1 in quadruple overtime, 17-15, making this game the longest one we’ve seen so far in the Qualifier division. Unfortunately, OPG gets reverse swept in two heartbreaking games as they fall in both, 10-13. The winner of this series, as long as they won their other game this week, would have secured a playoff spot, and Hidden Fang did just that. OPG played Omnipotent Gaming in their second matchup where they had a more interesting series than meets the eye. The team picks up a reverse sweep of their own. They started off the first game on a 7-round win streak before falling 9-13. In a surprising first game loss, the team showed some resilience as they battled back in games 2 and 3 with no problems, seemingly unshaken by dropping the ball in the series opener, winning 13-8 and 13-4.
Nonchalant VillainZ (0-8): NVZ is our other winless team that has unfortunately been eliminated from playoff contention. The team goes 0-2 against Celestial Aim and Hyperspace Dark in convincing fashion in nearly all of the maps. Similar to Emergence, NVZ showed countless moments of potential, but failed to close out a series and achieve that first win. The team will now have to battle in a qualifier in the offseason to fight for their spot back into the MEL Qualifier Division.
Tone Gaming (6-2): Tone Gaming remains in second after the Super Week, however they lose sole possession of it, now sharing the position with Hidden Fang. They open up the week in a strange series against Chosen 1’s where they ultimately find the win after three games. However, they fall in what I would consider an upset against Godalions in yet another three-game series. As discussed during the segment on Godalions, it seems as though this series was decided off of that first game that went to triple overtime. The team shouldn’t feel too worried about this loss as they have some easier matchups on paper to end out the regular season and could still potentially fight for first place with help from Hyperspace Dark’s upcoming opponents.
Valor Esports (5-3) (10-9): Valor Esports is our eighth and final team to have split their games in the Super Week. VE had two of the tightest series of the week against Hidden Fang and Digital. The team loses to Hidden Fang 0-2, but round scores were extremely close as they lost 9-13 and 11-13, respectively. Definitely not a bad result with no cause for concern, however they would have liked to have taken that win in their effort to solidify better seeding going into playoffs. Valor Esports then took on Digital in another close series, probably the tightest series of the entire season. The team displayed a tremendous amount of fortitude as they took the series in the end with round scores of 13-15, 14-12, and 13-10. In my opinion, series like these are super beneficial experience to gain before heading into playoffs, proving to themselves that the team has the endurance required to make a long run.
Current Standings (Overall Record) (Map Record)
1. Hyperspace Dark (8-0) (16-3)
2. Tone Gaming (6-2) (14-9)
3. Hidden Fang (6-2) (13-6)
4. Omni Performance Gaming (5-3) (13-10)
5. Godalions (5-3) (10-8)
6. Valor Esports (5-3) (10-9)
7. Digital (4-4) (11-8)
8. Chosen 1’s (4-4) (10-9)
9. Omnipotent Gaming (3-5) (9-12)
10. Celestial Aim (2-6) (7-12)
11. Emergence (0-8) (3-16)
12. NVZ (0-8) (2-16)