The Academy playoffs are returning after an absence in the spring split. Although, this time around they don’t mean as much since the big prize for these teams lie in the Proving Grounds Summer tournament. The six playoff teams from Academy have already locked up spots to the big event, but bragging rights and seeding make up the prizing for the Academy playoffs.
The single-elimination tournament kicks off Aug. 5 and will run through Aug. 19. Here are brief primers of each of the six Academy playoff teams to get spectators ready as the amateur scene heads towards its exciting post season play.
Despite the main roster for FlyQuest struggling to make it into playoffs, it’s not a shock that their academy is heading into playoffs as the No. 1 seed. After starting the split shaky, ever since Week 4 FlyQuest has looked like the best team in the Academy league. Their performance even got them a main roster promotion half way through the season with some the members sticking to the main roster. The current roster has only dropped one set in the last five weeks and that was to second-place Team Liquid Academy during the last week of the season with the No. 1 spot already locked up.
Team Liquid Academy
Team Liquid Academy has a roster filled with veteran talent who easily qualified playoffs. The second seeded squad did barely edge out 100 Thieves Academy for its seed during the final week giving them a first round bye. After a shaky Week 8, TL Academy looked good in the last week of the season as they picked up 2-0 wins against top seed FlyQuest Academy and playoff bound Immortals Academy. With Jonathan “Armao” Armao coming back to Academy after a brief stint on the main roster, TL Academy looks like a completely different team heading into playoffs.
100 Thieves Academy
100 Thieves Academy has kept their roster the same throughout the entire summer split. They have been awarded with a 7-8-3 record, which was good enough for the three seed in the summer split Academy playoffs. Despite owning the three seed, 100T Academy hasn’t looked like it as they have only one series win in the last four weeks. However, they have a winning record against every team in the playoffs except for FlyQuest and Team Liquid, making a third place finish likely.
Cloud 9 Academy
Cloud 9 Academy has also kept their roster the same throughout the entirety of the summer split. Despite Darshan “Darshan” Upadhyaya making ridiculous plays, Cloud 9 only owns the fourth seed heading into playoffs. The Spring Proving Grounds runner-ups have not looked as good in the summer split. C9 Academy has been shaky as of late as well. Although they ended their regular season on a high note after sweeping TSM Academy, they haven’t had a win over a top three team since Week 2. They may need to reclaim what made them great in the spring during this final tune-up playoffs if they want to get back to finals of Proving Grounds for the second straight split.
Evil Geniuses Academy
Evil Geniuses Academy are the epitome of average. The squad went 18-18 in games played during the summer split, which was good enough for fifth place. With their average record, EG surprisingly have held their own against many of the top teams including a winning record against Team Liquid Academy. Unfortunately for them, they drew the wrong side of the bracket as they have to face off against Cloud 9 Academy – and if they win – FlyQuest Academy, two teams that EG has not been able to win a series against.
Rounding out the playoff teams are Immortals Academy. After Team No Org won the Spring Proving Grounds tournament over Cloud 9 Academy in the finals, Immortals picked up the top and jungle duo of Omran “V1per” Shoura and Andy “AnDa” Hoang to strengthen their Academy roster. The move has produced mix results, however. AnDa and V1per have been towards the middle of the league in Kills/Deaths/Assists numbers at their positions, leaning towards the bottom half. Unsurprisingly, that has led Immortals to a similar fate as their 17-19 game record was just barely good enough to squeak into playoffs off of tiebreakers between them and TSM Academy. They face 100T Academy in the first round of playoffs.