NA HCS Pro League Fall Season Finals: OpTic Gaming Team Preview
OpTic Gaming is one of the greatest esports organizations not only the game of Halo, but in the esports business at large. They are the biggest influencers of console esports, and even if they don’t have a horse in the League of Legends race, they are still one of the best in the world.
With the organization picking up an ELEAGUE Counter-Strike: Global Offensive title and buying out the best Gears of War team who rolled through Columbus, there is simply no way to break down the #GreenWall.
And in Halo, it’s no different. Why is that? Let’s take a look at the team going to Burbank:
- Tony "LethuL" Campbell, Jr
- Paul "SnakeBite" Duarte
- Mathew "Royal 2" Fiorante
- Bradley "Frosty" Bergstrom
- Coach: Chris "Royal 1" Fiorante
- Overall: 11-3 (36-19 Map Count)
- Vs. nV: 2-6
- Vs. TL: 6-3
- Vs. Str8: 6-0
- Slayer: 12-7 (+91 +/-)
- Eden: 0-1
- Plaza: 2-3
- Regret: 4-2
- The Rig: 6-1
- Strongholds: 12-6 (+512 +/-)
- Eden: 4-1
- Empire: 4-3
- Plaza: 1-0
- The Rig: 3-2
- CTF: 12-6 (+18 +/-)
- Coliseum: 1-0
- Fathom: 3-4
- Truth: 8-2
- K/D: 1.09
- KDA: 1.79
- Damage/D: 131.8
- Perfects/Game: .571 (16th in League)
- Royal 2
- K/D: 1.41
- KDA: 2.19
- Damage/D: 175.7
- Stronghold Defends: 40 (9th in League)
- Flag Captures: 10 (T-8th in League)
- Perfects/Game: .553 (18th in League)
- K/D: 1.01
- KDA: 1.79
- Damage/D: 134.1
- Flag Returns: 19 (T-4th in League)
- Perfects/Game: .625 (10th in League)
- K/D: 1.08
- KDA: 1.80
- Damage/D: 141.2
- Strongholds Captured: 96 (7th in League)
- Flag Returns: 24 (T-1st in League)
- Flag Captures: 13 (T-3rd in League)
- Perfects/Game: .732 (4th in League)
How They Got Here:
The better question to ask is how OpTic, the esports organization and not the team, got to the HCS Fall Finals. They were the worst team in the Pro League over the Summer, barely qualifying out of relegations. So how did they turn around so fast?
Well, if you can’t beat the best team in the league, you buy them.
A massive deal was announced mere hours before the very first Fall Pro League match, sending the entire Counter Logic Gaming roster to OG. To this day, the exact fee for this transfer is unknown, but OpTic did not pay peanuts for the best in the business.
CLG was known for only dropping one match in the Summer Pro League, and for being the greatest Halo franchise in 2016 when they took home a $1 million payday for winning the 2016 Halo World Championship.
This year, OpTic Gaming may have dropped three games, two to Team EnVyUs and one to Evil Geniuses, however, most of it can be blamed on Royal 2’s Canadian internet connection.
That is because at HCS Orange County, OpTic Gaming rolled up and steamrolled past the competition, defeating Team Liquid with a 3-0 sweep and taking nV down three times (two 3-1 victories and a hot 4-0 in the finals) en route to a $7,000 payday. With that victory in mind, OpTic Gaming technically is still the best team in Halo due to their LAN play.
How They Can Win:
They just need to play their game.
Technically, they were dealt a tougher spot with their second place finish, having to face Team Liquid. However, with an online 6-3 record to go along with their Orange County victory, all OG needs to do is forget any online matches and play as they did on LAN at Orange County.
As for its competition, while EnVy has a string of No. 1 finishes to speak of, OG had a couple of solid wins on LAN against this team. OpTic is a dominant team on Strongholds, defeating the No. 1 team in the league on Eden 100-35 in the OC, and with the amount of momentum given from their close 3-2 win to start the Grand Finals, all OpTic needs to do is take home that Game 1 victory to start rolling.
In terms of individual skill, Snakebite has the greatest accuracy out of all the players coming to Burbank, leading all teams going to Finals in perfects per game with a perfect in every three out of four games. And the OpTic team in general is one of the most accurate teams as a whole, with all four members in the top 20 for that statistic.
Needless to say, if their shots are on and this is the good old OpTic team that we saw in October, then they should be the consensus favorites heading into Fall Finals despite their No. 2 seed.
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James Mattone is a journalist for GAMURS and can be contacted on Twitter -@TheJamesMattone.