It takes an incredible player to win a RLCS game, let alone pull off an upset against the best in the world.
It’s been a week full of surprises on both sides of the pond, with both SpaceStation Gaming and NRG Esports falling to the lower bracket in the first North American Regional Event and AtomiK’s Team Queso being eliminated in The Grid EU Closed Qualifier.
These upsets were a culmination of strong team play and some players who usually go under the radar popping off when they’re needed most.
5. Martin “Freshness” Totev - Ghost Gaming
Ghost’s second series of the Regional was characterised by very low scoring games and a lot of missed opportunities by NRG Esports, but in the end, one of their players had to hold off the 14 shot onslaught in game five - Freshness got in the way of six shots to ensure Ghost had a chance of winning the game and taking the series, and also scored this beauty to tie up the scoreline with 11 seconds left.
4. Kurtis “Kash” Cannon - Redemption
We will never know whether or not Kash expected to qualify for The Grid with this new roster, but if he always plays like he did in the qualifier, he certainly should have. After an unfortunate loss to Dignitas in the upper bracket, Redemption won three games on the bounce, most notably against Team Queso, and they made it look so easy too.
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Kash was the top shooter in The Grid Closed Qualifier with over 4.4 shots per game and was one of the best setup men in the event too, with an average of one assist per game.
3. Michael “WondaMike” Santoriello - eUnited
The Regional is far from over, but WondaMike has been lighting up the pitch in eUnited’s wins over Down 2 Earth and The Peeps with eight assists and 35 shots across the two series he played. Setting your teammates up and maintaining pressure on offence is critical in making games more comfortable for you and your team. That’s not to say eUnited’s star man didn’t finish the job though, here was the final goal from the upper bracket round two match against The Peeps:
2. Josh “radoko.” Ruiz Radtke - Pittsburgh Knights
Taking down the Kansas City Pioneers is no small feat, but that’s exactly what radoko and the Knights did on Saturday - in fact, it was a total landslide. Radoko may not have scored a goal that entire series, but he directly prevented two of the KCP players from scoring anything with his four saves per game. Despite the appearance of that statistic, the Canadian did have quite the impact on offence too, providing an assist to almost half of his teammate’s goals (three out of seven) and taking eight shots over the course of the series.
1. Ole “Oaly” van Doorn - Wolves Esports
I'll admit I had my concerns about Wolves, but clearly, I should be worrying less and focussing more on how they're actually playing, and especially on Oaly, who, as far as I'm aware, is the only player in Europe to have averaged over one goal per game, one assist per game, one save per game and one shot per game in an event this week.
Like I mentioned before, having a high number of shots allows you to maintain pressure on your opposition, either by forcing savings or making space to collect the mid or far boosts. Oaly sent over 4.2 shots towards the net per game. As a reward for his well-roundedness, I am making him my second standout player of the week. Congratulations Oaly!
Oaly will be playing with Wolves Esports in The Grid tomorrow night from 4pm GMT. For more news, interviews and features, stay tuned at GGRecon!
Images via WorldGamingNetwork | ESL France