SiLLY: "Online should not be the key to seeding"
It's no surprise that eUnited turned around their pro point situation in the new year, taking home first in last Sunday's 2K tournament, and second place in the first one of 2017.
After a disappointing Las Vegas trip that had this organization booted out in the final open bracket losers round, Justin "SiLLY" Fargo-Palmer found himself as the cornerstone in the team's rebuilding process. Picking up Alec "Arcitys" Sanderson, Preston "Prestinni" Sanderson, and Pierce "Gunless" Hillman from The Gosu Crew, SiLLY and company immediately started clicking, especially thanks to some previous experience playing with each other making the transition period non-existant.
"I honestly don’t feel like there was much of a transition period with this team," SiLLY said. "I had played with them in late Black Ops III, so I was already accustomed to their playstyles."
As the co-GM of eUnited, Matthew "Burns" Potthoff recalls his reasoning for eUnited's post-Vegas moves. It was a decision made to immediately remedy poor placement, and it has already payed dividends for this organazation in the short-term.
"After a 21st-24th placement, we felt it was best to move in another direction," said Burns. "Pacman, Legal, and Accuracy are great players, but I feel our team couldn't perform due to many unfortunate circumstances. I'm a true believer that eventually you have to get over that hump, and you can't sit in the same spot with no progress. After seeing GosuCrew place 12th and being in a great position to earn more pro points, myself and @thisisclerkie thought it was the right move to make."
With this new squad, eUnited took down Luminosity, Fury Gaming, OpTic Gaming and FaZe Clan in order to earn 8,000 pro points in total on Sunday. SiLLY credits that play to how well the chemistry is on his side, and the willingness of his team to have him take the lead on strategy.
"I absolutely LOVE playing with my team online, I've never been with such a talented set of guys before," SiLLY said. "I believe our success is just us meshing well together in game, also everyone on our team has the clutch factor to close out games. I love taking on the leader role of my team. It is always a plus when your teammates listen to your input without question and try to execute it."
From an organizational standpoint, Burns spoke on behalf of eUnited after the team's recent success, and had nothing but praise for his players.
"All I can say is eUnited is extremely proud of the squad," said Burns. "A lot of players have overlooked the combination of Gunless, Prestinni, and Arcitys for sometime, but I feel this is their year to prove the CoD scene can add new blood to the pro circuit and not recycle pro players all the time. Also, after playing against them at the end of Blops3, I had a gut feeling they were going to do big things in IW."
Even though SiLLY is pleased with how well his side is doing in terms of pro points, he is not afraid to admit that the current system is flawed. With several pros speaking out on behalf of changing the system, and especially with Daniel "Loony" Loza posting several tweets about his disdain for the system, SiLLY definitely shared the general feeling among pros.
"I placed pretty poorly at Las Vegas but my three teammates did not do terrible," said SiLLY. "I agree the system is flawed, but obviously we are going to take advantage of it as much as possible. There is a lot on the line this year. Online should not be the key to seeding, but it is. I’m sure MLG will have a fix for the system pretty soon."
"They are happy with where they are seeded but they aren't staying complacent," said Burns, adding to SiLLY's comments on the current pro point situation, "which is the most important mindset to have in my opinion. Compliancy kills teams."
No matter what the current online situation is, LAN events are still crucial to qualifying for the CoD World League, with a heap of pro points on the line. And with that fact in mind, SiLLY and the rest of eUnited are preparing for what is to come, and he expects nothing short of success.
"We’re preparing the same way everyone else is. Slaving away playing GB matches, and playing scrims as the 2K approaches every Sunday," SiLLY said. "I do believe we will be in pool play for Atlanta. With how good we’ve been online recently, I think a top-four finish is mandatory to prove that we aren’t just an online team."
"Heading into ATL and Paris, I feel the squad has put more then enough time on building chemistry and I see them doing big things in a few weeks," Burns added. "I'm extremely confident that they will be able to take their performance online and parallel it with their gameplay on LAN."
eUnited has two more 2K tournaments and days of grinding the pro point ladder before then, but with a comfortable 2,000+ pro point lead over the next team outside of the top-five, they are more than prepared to enter Atlanta in pool play. eUnited has definitely proven lately that they are a team to watch, as they look to take home the MLG Atlanta Open title in the beginning of February.
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James Mattone is a journalist for GAMURS and can be contacted on Twitter -@TheJamesMattone.