IEL SEASON 8 MASTER PLAYOFF PREVIEW

The Master Playoff Preview is here, and so are the Master Playoffs! The prestigious Playoffs will start tonight at 6 PM BST with Group A kicking off the action on our Twitch. This article features all of the information you need before watching.


GROUP A

Written by Matty and andasAP

Auto Celerity (Seed 2)

Auto Celerity are coming into the playoffs as the highest seed from the Gamma Conference, after going 14-2 in League Play, only losing out to Override Esports and Dexterity, both relatively early on in the season. Since then though, Auto Celerity have been on a tear, winning ten series in a row to secure the second seed for the playoffs this season. Their potential first-round matchup could be against last season’s champions Reflux, which could be a key series in determining how successful their run in the later stages of the playoffs is, considering their cross-conference series went 3-2 in favour of Auto Celerity. Their alternate first series could be against Built By Us, and when the two teams played in Week 3, it was Auto Celerity who came out on top in a close 5 game series.  

Predicted Finish: 3rd/4th

Zero Fox Gaming (Seed 3)

The Zero Fox Gaming roster have come into this season with a roster capable of achieving great things and they have consistently proven this throughout the season, only losing out on the top spot in league play due to a less favourable win percentage compared to Auto Celerity. In the final week of league play, ZFX managed to bounce back from their surprise 3-1 defeat to Overture in Week 7 by beating close rivals Dexterity in Game 5 to secure an important Top 2 spot in the Gamma Conference. In the first round, ZFX will either play RL Ireland or LA Gaming, two teams that will have previously been untested in a competitive environment by ZFX due to them being in the opposite conference. I believe that this ZFX roster has the potential to go all the way to the grand final due to the talent of their roster, however, we’ll have to wait and see if this proves to be true or not. 

Predicted Finish: 1st

LA Gaming (Seed 6)

LA Gaming started off their season extremely strong, by winning their first six series in succession, however, a shaky middle of the season meant that LA Gaming’s charge to the top ended abruptly, ending their season with 11 wins and 5 losses. RL Ireland await LA Gaming in the first round of the playoffs, and when the two teams met in Week 2 of League Play, it was LA Gaming who were able to sweep the series in a convincing fashion, and despite their recent woes, I believe that LA Gaming will be able to recover and progress forward into Round 2 to face Zero Fox Gaming.

Predicted Finish: 5th/6th

Reflux (Seed 7)

After having a League Play season that may have dipped below their expectations, Reflux will be wanting to prove their worth in the playoffs, just like they did last season, where they went on and won the whole division. Only General Manager Rubenofski and RonJayy remain from the victorious Season 7 side, and so they’ll know how to guide two-time finalist NuggeT towards their second consecutive victory. In the first round, they’ll play against Built By Us, who, due to being in the Gamma Conference, will be a new challenge for this Reflux side to conquer in order to move through into the second round to face Auto Celerity. 

Predicted Finish: 7th/8th

Built By Us (Seed 10)

Built By Us come into the Playoffs as the 9th seed following, just making it in on goal difference with a record of 9-7. They didn’t have the strongest first half of League Play as they went 4-4, however, since then, they’ve picked up the pace and managed to win 5 of their last 7 games. Throughout the season, they haven’t beaten a single Playoff team which could be worrying for them, however, they managed to go to Game 5 in all of those games which proves they are a hard team to break down.

In the first round, they face the reigning Master Champions, Reflux, who’s team looks a little different from last season.

Predicted Finish: 9th-12th

RL Ireland (Seed 11)

RL Ireland come into the Playoffs with a record of 9-7, finishing top of the wildcard spots in the Alpha conference. RL Ireland have been a little up-and-down throughout the season, showing signs of both promise and weakness. The only Playoff team they’ve beaten is Reflux, and the Playoff teams they’ve lost to are LA Gaming, Shadow Esports, Skorch Esports, Fort Templar and Galamo Esports. This shows that they may struggle in Playoffs, however, as we’ve seen time and time again from the RL Ireland Masters, they may very well end up doing better than expected.

In the first round, they face LA Gaming who have had a slight dip to the end of League Play, which RL Ireland could use to their advantage.

Predicted Finish: 9th-12th

PREDICTIONS


GROUP B

Written by Brun and andasAP

Fort Templar (Seed 1)

Fort Templar have had an incredible season and were able to secure a top seed going into playoffs. They also had a roster change in the midseason, switching PeaKy, Azza and DLynch for Rizle, Kephi, Francesko and Crispy. After the roster change, the team seemed to be doing a lot better after only losing a single game in 4 series meaning they were able to go 4-0. This shows incredible signs for the roster as they have an extremely high win rate. This team has the potential to go a long way, but Auto Celerity and Zero Fox Gaming will be watching them closely and are by no means a long stretch away from them. They will have to play a strong-looking Overture team who managed to flip their record on its head or a strong looking Silverbacks who managed an incredibly good 11-5 record. After this, they will have to face either Dexterity, Galamo or Shadow in the upper or lower bracket.

Predicted Finish: 2nd

Shadow Esports (Seed 4)

Although this team has looked incredibly good during league play, it is a strong possibility they will be missing their key player going into playoffs – Tylacto. This means they will be forced to play LoopNova during playoffs who could definitely step up to the plate – but will they be able to face an incredibly strong Dexterity or Galamo? Due to these changes, we have predicted Shadow Esports to be knocked out in the lower bracket. Sniper, DeleteriousMac and LoopNova will be looking to show that they are good even without their key player and could still do well without him.

Predicted Finish: 9th-12th

Dexterity (Seed 5)

Dexterity has been a strong team overall this season, proving their worth against top teams and even perfect sweeping Auto Celerity, although they did lose out to Zero Fox Gaming in the final week. They also took an unfortunate loss to The Neon Flamingo which shows bad implications going into playoffs. Despite this, with the amount of wins Dexterity have under their belt we believe they will go far in playoffs, losing to Zero Fox Gaming in the semi-finals. Serve will be especially looking to change this prediction, as he looks to acquire his second master title in IEL as well as Capra and Bope will be looking to claim their first. Dexterity will have to beat Galamo Esports and Shadow Esports if they want to make day two, and look to do so as they approach their first match.

Predicted Finish: 3rd/4th

Silverbacks (Seed 8)

Silverbacks look somewhat strong going into playoffs after beating Hive Athens EC and Skorch Esports in the final week after an unfortunate week losing to both Override Esports and Overture, who they plan to get revenge on in their first round. That being said, Silverbacks have seemed to decline over the season, after going unbeaten until week 4 when they met a fierce-looking Zero Fox Gaming. This could be due to them believing they have made playoffs so may not be trying as much or they may just be being beaten by better teams. Hopefully, they can reach their former success as Jacksean, Andersn22 and Bryn hope to play above expectations and secure a Championship Sunday spot. However, we believe they will be knocked into lowers by Overture and will not make the final day.

Predicted Finish: 7th/8th

Overture (Seed 9)

Overture head into Playoffs with a strong record of 10-6 and a rather weak win percentage of 52.38% and goal difference of -6. This is likely due to a weak start to League Play where they went 1-5 after the first three weeks. Since then, however, they’ve turned things around, winning 9 of their last 10 and beating the likes of Built By Us, Zero Fox Gaming and Silverbacks on the way.

Going into Playoffs, the Overture boys will be hopeful with their recent hot run of form. In the first round, they face Silverbacks who they’ve beaten just a few weeks ago which be a confident-booster.

Predicted Finish: 5th/6th

Galamo Esports (Seed 12)

Galamo Esports have a similar story to Overture as they’ve recovered from a poor start. After 4 weeks, they were 0-4, however, since then, they won 9 of their last 12. In their final week of League Play, they beat both LA GAming and RL Ireland, two of the other Playoffs teams. This shows that they have recently been able to compete with some of the strongest teams in the League.

In their first game, they face Dexterity, which will surely be a tall ask with Dexterity looking convincing all season.

Predicted Finish: 9th-12th

PREDICTIONS


FINAL BRACKET PREDICTIONS

Table of Contents

PS5 Giveaway - Terms and Conditions

One entry per person. Entrants must have completed the following prerequisites to be entered into the draw taking place on the final day of Season X Master playoffs:

Entrants must remain in the IEL Discord server at all times following sign up until the announcement. Entrants must receive no more than one league play or server infraction during the season. If the winner is in a location where it is unreasonably expensive (>£700) to get a PS5 to them, we will provide the winner with a gift voucher for a relevant store for £650.