Dec 7 2016 - 9:08 pm
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NA HCS Pro League Fall Season Finals: Str8 Rippin Team Preview

Meet the #4 seed going to the Halo Championship Series Fall 2016 Finals: Str8 Rippin.
Journalist for GAMURS
preview

Str8 Rippin is to Halo as the Los Angeles Lakers are to the NBA.

Both organizations are well known in their respective communities as one of the biggest franchises to exist in the sport, hosting some of the greatest players to grace their respective scenes. Both have gone under their fair share of struggles in recent years, but ultimately, these sides provide a devoted fanbase wherever they go.

With a national championship and several major wins in the franchise’s rich history, can the revitalization of an old school powerhouse bring back the “golden era” of Halo?


The Team:

Aaron "Ace" Elam, Bradley "APG" Laws, Kevin "Eco" Smith, Richie "Heinz" Heinz

(Coach: Emanuel "Hoaxer" Lovejoy)


The Stats:

Team:

  • Overall: 7-7 (25-30 Map Count)
    • Vs. nV: 0-2 (2-6)
    • Vs. OG: 0-2 (0-6)
    • Vs. TL: 2-0 (6-4)
  • Slayer: 9-10 (-19 +/-)
    • Eden: 0-1
    • Plaza: 2-1
    • Regret: 3-3
    • The Rig: 2-4
    • Truth: 2-1
  • Strongholds: 9-11 (-277 +/-)
    • Eden: 3-1
    • Empire: 3-4
    • Plaza: 3-2
    • The Rig: 0-4
  • CTF: 7-9 (-6 +/-)
    • Coliseum: 2-1
    • Fathom: 2-3
    • Stasis: 1-0
    • Truth: 2-5

Individual:

  • Heinz
    • K/D: .89
    • KDA: .58
    • Damage/D: 131.8
    • Strongholds Captured: 103 (3rd in League)
    • Perfects/Game: .607 (13th in League)
  • ACE
    • K/D: .95
    • KDA: 1.68
    • Damage/D: 138.4
    • Stronghold Defends: 42 (6th in League)
    • Flag Captures: 10 (T-8th in League)
  • APG
    • K/D: .96
    • KDA: 1.67
    • Damage/D: 128.6
    • Strongholds Secured: 42 (9th in League)
    • Stronghold Defense: 48 (3rd in League)
    • Perfects/Game: .589 (14th in League)
  • Eco
    • K/D: 1.0
    • KDA: 1.60
    • Damage/D: 133.4
    • Strongholds Captured: 98 (5th in League)
    • Perfects/Game: .621 (11th in League)

How They Got Here:

Phoenix

ˈfēniks/

noun

  1. (in classical mythology) a unique bird that lived for five or six centuries in the Arabian desert, after this time burning itself on a funeral pyre and rising from the ashes with renewed youth to live through another cycle.
    • a person or thing regarded as uniquely remarkable in some respect.
  2. See also: Str8 Rippin (AKA LOL, the team, not the acronym).

The four members of this team have basically been around for five or six “centuries” in Halo, and have seen themselves burnt out in the first few weeks of the HCS Pro League.

This team’s former organization, OpTic Gaming, announced the release of the entire team on the first day of the HCS Pro League, and that allowed Nick "MaNiaC" Kershner to retire from professional Halo to shift to a content creator role for OG.

Immediately, LOL plunged to the bottom of the table, losing to Allegiance in week two, along with having two tough games against OG and nV. The team did win a game five against Team Liquid in week three, and had a brief period of resurgence, but the bottom half of the league was too tight for them to dig out of the relegation zone come week five.

Then, the name change happened. LOL was no laughing matter anymore, as they became Str8 Rippin in week six and didn’t look back from there. With clutch wins over Liquid for their second meeting of the season, as well as a decisive victory over Enigma6, they pulled off an incredible run to go from relegation to the finals in two weeks.

Like the phoenix, this team rose to the occassion, and now must face their final test of the year in three other powerhouse organizations.


How They Can Win:

Well… They could somehow upset OpTic, right?

In all seriousness, Str8 Rippin has not won a single game over OG during the season, and after looking at their scrims, they haven’t won a series over them in scrimmages yet. It’s near impossible to look over this fact when determining their path to victory.

Only facing OpTic once, or not at all, would be in this team’s best interest, as their best matchup is against Team Liquid, a team they beat twice, and with two close matches against nV during the season, they do have a shot against these sides in Burbank.

On a good day, Str8 can fight with the best of OG and nV, and maybe it’ll just take a bit of reliance on the crowd for some energy, as well as some other intangibles that words cannot describe, for Str8 to bring the name of Str8 Rippin’ back into the golden spotlight. Their best shot would be to upset nV in the first round, have OpTic lose to Team Liquid and nV, and take down both of those sides (or Team Liquid twice) to get the title.

Needless to say, if there is a Money Matches bet on finals in general, expect to see Str8’s odds be the lowest to win out. It’s not impossible, however, there is just a lot of talent between nV and OpTic who made this into a two horse league.


For all your Halo and esports updates, make sure you are following us on Twitter, @GAMURScom.

James Mattone is a journalist for GAMURS and can be contacted on Twitter -@TheJamesMattone.

Statistics are courtesy of Halo 5 Arena (Team Stats), Halo Data Hive (all individual stats) and HCS Stats (Perfects/Game).

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