Legendary Cup #5 Grand Finals Breakdown
It seemed like a lock for Daddy & The Daycare in Legendary Cup #5.
After edging their way to the winners finals, they took down Contagious 4-1 to reach the grand finals and guarentee a top-two spot. It was pure irony that this side, created by Dillon "Randa" Randa after his Ego Rangers side was officially disbanded by PGL, was facing Contagious, who some pros believe should have met the same treatment as the Rangers.
Regardless of the drama, these two sides faced off in the grand finals after CONT beat out another favorite, Most Wanted, in the losers finals. With Contagious having to win both series in order to take home gold, it was statistically in D&TD's favor to win the Legendary Cup.
Let's take a game-by-game look at this matchup:
Series One, Game One: CTF - Coliseum
This dominating CTF victory was done in three mintutes for Daddy & The Daycare, as Tristain "Brainstrm" played ridiculously well with the scattershot. He finished with a 6.00 K/D, and his play pretty much was at a solid pivot point in the map. It allowed his team to run multiple flags, and he played a crucial role in the final flag relay.
Also, Daddy Randa and Tyler "TireIron" Mara both almost goosed here, as the former teammates could only find one kill in this one. While it was just a fluke game for TireIron, this did tip a concern for the Daycare in this series.
Game Final: D&TD 3 - 0 CONT
Match Score: D&TD 1 - 0 CONT
Series One, Game Two: Slayer - Eden
Contagious was able to bounce back by way of power weapons in this one. Jason "Scaryotic" picked up the sniper with the help of his team, and with a solid pivot on the red side of the map up to catwalk, he went on to have some nice clips while Contagious extended their lead.
He also had some solid scattershot and rockets play, and finished the game with 16 kills and four headshots with the sniper.
D&TD were being more than doubled up, 30-13, by the time Scaryotic was dead, and the lead was just too much to take back. CONT was just too good on their power weapon rotations, and it payed off to tie the series at one.
Also, Randa dropped off yet again here, only getting two kills. Maybe it was "unfortunate circumstances," but he needed to turn around his play fast.
Game Final: CONT 50 - 35 D&TD
Match Score: CONT 1 - 1 D&TD
Series One, Game Three: Strongholds - Empire
With Randa in the spotlight, he hit three mistakes for his first death, including a mistimed ground-pound.
His whole team was able to take The Pit, and got 36 straight points before Contagious contested with a rotation and stole a few points. One temporary total control later, D&TD was able to shake the other side enough to get a dominating performance for early part of the game, rotating around The Pit to keep resetting their strongholds.
A late push and total controls from Contagious did make things interesting, but Daddy & The Daycare made a crucial move with the anti-Pit Strongholds set-up. Taking both bases and avoiding The Pit, Randa and company were able to get a few points to get them within one point of the win at 99-50...
But Contagious was able to get a clutch total control, and pretty much made the comeback of the century to win by a single point.
This let's me explain the other side of the anti-Pit set-up: It leaves you wide open to get trapped by one strong push from one base or the other, thereby causing some panic and allowing the opposition to fight back. It's great for a late-game push when you only have a few more points to win, but the Daycare may have acted too soon on this strategy and paid the price.
Regardless, a 50 point comeback was one for the ages, and Contagious took a dagger into the confidence levels of D&TD.
Randa finished with 17 kills, but was still last for his team.
Game Final: CONT 100 - 99 D&TD
Match Score: CONT 2 - 1 D&TD
Series One, Game Four: CTF - Truth
Contagious got the counter-cap from TireIron to start the fourth match, riding off momentum from the previous comeback.
Scaryotic then got a solid return, killing off Jonathan "Renegade" Willette and allowing his teammate to get the second cap. With one last double pull from both sides, all four members of the Daycare went down, prompting the full sweep in this game of CTF.
This match was pivotal for Randa, who finally got his shot on, getting a game high 14 kills.
Game Final: CONT 3 - 0 D&TD
Match Score: CONT 3 - 1 D&TD
Series One, Game Five: Slayer - Regret
But, Randa's performance last game was just an omen for the game mode that requires nothing but kills.
While D&TD started off slow and trailed Contagious for most of the early game, a double kill from T3ct 9 was able to spark this team for a solid run of kills. He would end the game with 15 kills.
Saiyan fought back with a killing spree and then some, thanks to grabbing his overshield, but Randa had a clutch splinter grenade that ended the streak and kept the lead alive. A few choice kills off Tom "q Saiyan p" Wilson, who took advantage of some of Contagious' mistakes, and the Daycare was back open for business with the final kill coming from Brainstrm flanking the entire team.
While Brainstrm's K/D was under 1.00, his clutch kills kept this series from going into a total reset.
Game Final: D&TD 50 - 47 CONT
Match Score: CONT 3 - 2 D&TD
Series One, Game Six: Strongholds - Eden
With a lot to prove after their game three hiccup, Daddy & The Daycare gave the first control of the game to Contagious, allowing them to run up 38 straight points before wrestling back control... And giving up total control right back to their opposition.
This game was mostly a criticism of Daddy's side, who seemed to have the skill, but they weren't on the same page in terms of strategy. It opened up the wound from the last strongholds game, and Contagious was able to reset the bracket.
Game Final: CONT 100 - 9 D&TD
Series Final: CONT 4 - 2 D&TD
GRAND FINALS RESET
Series Two, Game One: Strongholds - Empire
Well, this is awkward.
The most crucial map of the last series was the first of this one, and Contagious was able to get things started with Pit control before getting back to their own base.
While CONT was able to cross the midway point, D&TD rotated well enough to get pit control and begin their comeback attempt.
It was good in theory and Contagious was getting outslayed, but they were able to get enough crucial kills to force total control, swing momentum, and take game one of the reset.
Also, can I seriously say I feel bad for Randa? In the production, they cut to his view just long enough to see him nade his own teammate and get splintered.
Game Final: CONT 100 - 44 D&TD
Match Score: CONT 1 - 0 D&TD
Series Two, Game Two: Slayer - Coliseum
Utilizing flanks and 1v1 play, D&TD outskilled CONT in the first half of play, which pretty much became their exact strategy at this point against Contagious. Jumping out to an early lead, they hit the halfway point up 25-21.
CONT was able to get rockets, which proved to be a solid move until Renegade JW got a hold of them...
But then he basically fell off the map, killing momentum for the Daycare and sending this one back to Contagious. Scaryotic led the way yet again for his squad, taking the MVP of this match with a 15-7-8 clip.
Game Final: CONT 50 - 44 D&TD
Match Score: CONT 2 - 0 D&TD
Series Two, Game Three: CTF - Fathom
After a few minutes of a position battle, Joe "TriPPPey" T's pickup of a railgun and camo scared off D&TD long enough for his teammate to get the first cap of the game.
Saiyan was able to finish off the second cap while his teammates got a return right outside their base, with TireIron getting two pistol double kills to fight off a counter-cap.
Daddy & The Daycare got some life after getting a solid pull, and Brainstrm was able to pull one after a crucial melee mistake by CONT. Unfortunately, TriPPPey was just too good at defending his teammate with Daddy's flag, and the aggressive push was just too little, too late for D&TD.
Game Final: CONT 2 - 1 D&TD
Match Score: CONT 3 - 0 D&TD
Series Two, Game Four: Strongholds - The Rig
With this being the only lost game from D&TD during the first four game series between these two sides (at the winners finals), this was just the final nail in the coffin put in by Contagious.
Daddy & The Daycare fought for their life in this one, trading control with Contagious in the early game, but eventually fell apart thanks to a few decisive kills and strong rotations.
A few trades of control later, and D&TD was able to take the lead with CONT a fifth away from sealing the series, but Saiyan's railgun play helped spark a reset of the nest for his side.
One final push from D&TD came up short towards the basement, and Contagious pulled off yet another comeback to sweep the series for the win.
Game Final: CONT 100 - 95 D&TD
Match Final: CONT 4 - 0 D&TD
What can we learn from this grand finals:
Where was this series lost? Game three, Strongholds on Empire.
Although D&TD was tied up 1-1 going into this game, there is something to be said of a 50 point comeback that can de-rail your confidence. After this match, D&TD went 1-6 in this double series, and Contagious just had too much momentum and teamwork to power through this side.
Granted, Randa brought together a legit contender, pretty much in the wake of losing a strong side in the 11th hour before this tournament started. They, of course, are not going to be as strong as a coordinated team like Contagious, but upsetting sides like 3sUp and SyA as a fresh team is impressive.
With that said, should they have had their seeding and point total nuked? Personally, if Contagious is still rolling as its own Ship of Theseus, then Randa should have his side in the top-four by this point. However, there is nothing the PGL can do now to fix it, and hopefully going forward, it can take into account player transactions in a fluid open circuit.
Contagious basically proved here that they are at the same level as 3sUp and Most Wanted, as they engineered an incredible comeback and their journey to the grand finals was not an easy one.
It'll be extremely difficult come HCS Las Vegas to see which two amateur sides come out on top with the current state of the open circuit standings, however it's great to see an Esports Minor League starting up soon to see these sides possibly compete more often.
Would you call this the greatest open circuit comeback of the season?
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