IEL SEASON 9 PROSPECT PLAYOFF PREVIEW

The wait is finally over for the Prospect fans, the Prospect Playoff is here! In this article, we will cover everything you need to know ahead of the action this weekend, with team writeups for every team competing, and our very own predictions which are not to be taken as fact.

The Playoff will take place from Friday (today) to Sunday and will be streamed on our Twitch. Make sure to tune in at 6 PM BST to catch the action!


GROUP A

Written by andasAP

Zero Fox Gaming (Seed 2)

Zero Fox Gaming have had a spectacular League Play, winning 14 out of 16 games. They actually lost in Week 8 when they met Skorch Esports who are also strong contenders for the Playoffs. They have a record of 4-2 against other Playoff teams which is very impressive.

In their first game, they face either Bad Karma or Disconnected, both of which they should beat. If they win that game, they are through to the Final Bracket.

Predicted Finish: 1st

Ignite Esports (Seed 3)

3rd seed is Ignite Esports who have been outstanding during League Play. With the best defensive record in Prospect, they finished 1st in the Mu conference with an impressive record of 13-3. They have a record of 4-1 against other Playoff teams which shows that they should be feared heading into Playoffs.

In their first game, they face either Skorch Esports or eNightmare. Skorch Esports is a very strong team and will be a tough challenge if they are to meet. Ignite lost to eNightmare in Week 6, which could also mean that facing them would be challenging.

Predicted Finish: 2nd

Skorch Esports (Seed 6)

Somehow finishing 4th in the Omega conference with a record of 13-3 is Skorch Esports who have been stellar during League Play. If they were in the other conference, they would be in 2nd place and have a bye in the first round. They won 8 of their last 9 games, only losing to RL Ireland during that run. They went 5-2 against other Playoff teams which bodes very well.

In their first game, they face eNightmare in a game where they should be favourites to win. If they beat eNightmare, they face Ignite in a game that could go either way.

Predicted Finish: 9th-12th

Bad Karma Esports (Seed 7)

Finishing 3rd in the Mu conference with a record of 11-5, Bad Karma have had a convincing League Play. Winning 6 of their last 8, they’re on a hot run of form, too. They went 2-3 against other Playoff teams during League Play, which can be a worrying side ahead of Playoffs.

The roster consisting of HunterSam, Minorca, Oliwer and Ryan will face 10th seed Disconnected eSports in their first game, a team that has won 7 of their last 8. If they get past an intimidating Disconnected side, they will have to face Zero Fox Gaming.

Predicted Finish: 7th/8th

Disconnected eSports (Seed 10)

Coming in as the 10th seed is Disconnected eSports who finished 6th in the Omega conference with a record of 10-6. Being 10th seed may be misleading as they have won 7 of their last 8 games, more than the 1st seed RL Ireland who they beat in Week 6. They have a record of 2-4 against other Playoff teams where all of the losses were in the first half of the season, and all of the wins were in the second half. Based on this, Disconnected must be considered a real threat for anyone in their way.

For their first game, they face Bad Karma who have also been on a hot run of form. If they are to defeat Bad Karma, they face Zero Fox Gaming, which could be a chance to take revenge on a close 3-2 loss earlier in the season.

Predicted Finish: 5th/6th

eNightmare (Seed 11)

The only wildcard qualifiers to come out of the Mu conference is eNightmare who just crept in with a record of 10-6, finishing 5th in the Mu conference. They aren’t on an amazing run of form, winning 5 of their last 8. Despite being 11th seed, they have a record of 3-2 against other Playoff teams and appear to have an ability to beat out top teams which will certainly come in handy.

In their first game, they face a scary-looking Skorch Esports who they lost to in their cross-conference match. Should they win, they will face an even bigger opponent in Ignite Esports who they actually beat in League Play.

Predicted Finish: 9th-12th

PREDICTIONS

Predicted by Yeast


GROUP B

Written by Yeast and andasAP

RL Ireland (Seed 1)

The second day of playoffs sees some more heavy hitters, including RL Ireland, who for the second time in two seasons, are the number one seed. Looking at their stats, their form against other top teams is also something that should be feared. They have played against a total of 7 teams who are in playoffs and they show a very successful 5-2 record, where they have only lost against Ignite Esports in the first seeded cross-conference game, and losing to Disconnected Esports. They have the highest win percentage in prospect with 72.88%, that’s almost a 3-1 win on average. Compared to other teams in the Omega Conference, they don’t seem to score that many goals, with Zero Fox Gaming having 191 goals, Aardwolf Esports having exactly 200 and Skorch Esports, all of these being higher than the 169 that RL Ireland have to show. 

Statistically, RL Ireland are going to be looking towards Finbarr to be an in-game leader as he is their highest player when it comes to the race for MVP.  Although he is 20th overall, he is still a very strong player, with 35 goals and 50 saves averaging 1.3 saves a game. Deus is also a strong player on RL Ireland. Playing every game, he averaged 0.87 goals and 1.38 saves per game.

Looking at the games RL Ireland have to play, they only need to win their first game and they’re into Sunday, they play the winners of Auto Celerity and Valor Esports. Considering RL Ireland are first seed they’d be heavy favourites to make it through this match and qualify for Sunday. 

Predicted Finish: 3rd/4th

Aster (Seed 4)

Aster are here attempting to retain their title. Goal difference and Game differential proved so important here as they’ve snuck into that 2nd spot and 4th seed by 5% in win percentage. This is thanks to their final 4 weeks in this they went a mental 7-1, only losing to Austrian Force in Week 5. Aster went 1-3 against other Playoff teams which shows that they could struggle this weekend.

In their first game, they face either Aardwolf Esports or Zero Mercy. Chances are they will face Aardwolf who look very strong on paper. This game could prove a real challenge for Aster who will be keen to get into the final bracket.

Predicted Finish: 9th-12th

Aardwolf Esports (Seed 5)

Aardwolf Esports finished 3rd in the Omega conference with a record of 13-3. Interestingly, they have the best goal difference in Prospect (95), and the most goals scored in all of IEL (200). They were brilliant throughout all of League Play and never looked like falling out of the Top 4. They went 3-3 against other Playoff teams, most recently being swept by 1st seed RL Ireland.

In their first game, they face 12th seed Zero Mercy which on paper should be a win for them. They beat Zero Mercy in Week 7. If they beat Zero Mercy, they will face 4th seed Aster who have a worse record than Aardwolf. They will be confident heading into that game as Aster’s star player is on unavailable for Playoffs.

Predicted Finish: 3rd/4th

Auto Celerity (Seed 8)

Auto Celerity are a team that might have been expected to have done worse, but where they now doesn’t have anyone complaining, they hold the 8th seed with a 10-6 record, the last team in Mu to have been guaranteed a playoff place in 4th place in that conference. They haven’t exactly had the smoothest of runs into playoffs. We start in week 7 where Auto Celerity face Silverbacks and Override Esports. You would think going 2-0 against these teams isn’t a problem but both games were forfeited, which means they have to rely on week 8 to get into good form for playoffs. They got off to a terrible start losing 3-1 to Ignite Esports, however they did bounce back to beat Fort Templar, which in theory knocked them out of playoffs. 

CaptainQuark leads Auto Celerity in the race to season MVP, but it’s a similar situation to RL Ireland, where quark is only 21st in the race for MVP. Quark is the only Auto Celerity player in the top 45 for league rating so he is going to be extremely important when we hit Saturday. 

They start of against Valor Esports, an extremely strong team who have lost a few of their games recently but have good reason with one of their main players being away. This looks to be an extremely game and could go either way in deciding who will play RL Ireland in the next round.

Predicted Finish: 7th/8th

Valor Esports (Seed 9)

Finishing 5th in the Omega conference with a record of 12-4 is Valor Esports. They were outstanding during League Play, having a slight drop in form in the last two weeks where they lost 3 out of 4 series. This drop in form can be explained by Valor having unavailability issues during those two weeks.

In their first game, Valor face the 8th seed, Auto Celerity who have a significantly weaker record at 10-6. If they beat Auto Celerity, they will go up against the 1st seed RL Ireland which could prove difficult.

Predicted Finish: 5th/6th

Zero Mercy (Seed 12)

Coming into Playoffs as the last seed is Zero Mercy. They finished League Play 7th in the Omega conference with a record of 10-6, just edging out Zero-G in the other conference on win percentage. Zero Mercy have had a week second half of League Play, only winning 2 of their last 6. They went 1-6 against other Playoff teams.

In their first game, they face a much stronger-looking Aardwolf Esports which will be a tough challenge. If they upset the odds and win, they will meet 4th seed Aster in the second round.

Predicted Finish: 9th-12th

PREDICTIONS

Predicted by Yeast


FINAL BRACKET PREDICTIONS

Predicted by Yeast

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