This is a week not only facing some unique match-ups for Seoul but also qualification for the May Melee hangs in the air. Right now, the Dynasty is 1-1 with the opportunity to solidify their spot in the Melee or drop out of the running. Though the matches looked favored to the Dynasty there is no telling what might happen during the matches.
This isn’t technically a grudge match but is a match in which both sides want to prove themselves. The NYXL wants to show that they made the right decision in letting Jongryeol ‘Saebyeolbe’Park and Taesung ‘Anamo’ Jung go. Surely, the players also want to prove to their old organization that it was the wrong choice dropping them after Season 3. With Saebyeolbe being one of the main faces of the NYXL this is more a match for pride. Though, with only Seunghyeon ‘Jjonak’ Bang as the remaining member of the original lineup, it is less facing their old team than facing the old organization.
Prediction: 3:2 Seoul
Seoul Dynasty lost to the Philadelphia Fusion in Week one but looked strong against the Charge. That is the two extremes of the potential best team versus one of the weaker teams. The NYXL is formidable as they have components that, on paper, is seeming strong. This could easily go to a Map 5 depending on how prepared both sides are. The mechanics are for the NYXL team are there, but it is the decision-making component is off. The same could be said for the Seoul Dynasty.
To win the Dynasty needs to not allow the NYXL to get the rotations that they want. Seoul needs to push the newbie squad and push their way in to set the tempo and positioning. That means focusing on the supports and taking them down early. Don’t allow the NYXL to be able to set up with all the members and drain down the clock to force them to take a fight. Even though the NYXL team is made up of more fresh talent, doesn’t mean that they aren’t dangerous. This is a match that the Dynasty can’t afford to lose.
Player to Watch: Minjae ‘Friday’ Cho
Friday is a major factor in the Seoul Victory or loss. In the previous matches in which the NYXL played, Friday was being picked off first in many matchups. That made it so that Jjonak wasn’t allowed to pop off as he had to focus on healing to make up the difference. It also facilitated Jjonak going down more often than usual. If Friday and the NYXL have strategized to keep him alive more, then this match could easily flip. He is a lynchpin that helps Kyeongmu ‘Yakpung’ Cho alive when he charges in. Jjonak will not be able to do it all by himself. Keep an eye out on Friday and how he and the team plays to help him survive longer.
LA Valiant (4/18):
The LA Valiant is a team that has nothing to lose, which makes them all the more dangerous. So far the LA Valiant has lost all of their matches and is at a -5 map differential. That doesn’t mean that there aren’t strong parts of the team. The Seoul Dynasty does not want to be the team to give the LA Valiant their first win. Just like how teams in the inaugural season prepared extra hard for the Shanghai Dragons so they wouldn’t be the first to lose, it is a similar situation to the LA Valiant.
Prediction: 3:0 Seoul
If Seoul doesn’t win this match and in an impressive fashion, that will kick up the narrative that Seoul isn’t even in the middle top of the region. With the LA Valiant having faced the two strongest teams in the region the Philadelphia Fusion and Chengdu Hunters their true placement is skewed by the data. Their match against the Charge and then Seoul will give a more even sample to where they are at.
The Hunters lost King’s Row to the Valiant because of mismanagement of their ults and rushing in without regrouping. This is something that the Seoul Dynasty needs to avoid. The Valiant’s strongest factor is the DPS. Dongeon ‘FITS’ Kim and Junyoung ‘Profit’ Park need to shut down the Valiant’s DPS right away. If they allow either DPS to warm up enough, it could be a game where either pops off to carry the match.
Player to watch: Laio ‘MoLanran’ Yang
In their previous matches, MoLanran really tried his best to do a Fleta deadlift with what resources that he had. But he wasn’t able to breakthrough. He is a player that the Valiant could build around and empower as that early NYXL did around Jjonak. MoLanran is a player that when he is in the right position could really do some damage. It will be important to watch and see how he performs not only against the Seoul Dynasty but also the match before against the Charge.
These two matches should be easy wins for the Dynasty. They need to win this without experimentation with new comps or letting players come in for the experience. This is the time when they can stack some map wins to pad their differential when some harder matches come along. Hopefully, Tiger Nation will have a semi-relax full weekend watching the matches.
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