Due to their performance during the North American Halo Championship Series: Pro League Fall 2016 Season, Enigma 6, who finished in second place in summer, are joined by Team Allegiance in the Relegation tournament where they will defend their place in the HCS Pro League against the top two amateur teams from the Open Circuit, 3sUP Enterprises and TMMT.
The top two amateur teams from the HCS Open Circuit get their shot at making the Pro League by being placed in a four team bracket alongside the bottom two teams in the Pro League standings at the end of the regular season. The top two teams from the four team bracket will advance to the Pro League. Last season, it was what was then known as OpTic Gaming and Team Liquid that had to fight for their spot against Denial and Team eLevate. Both OpTic and Team Liquid emerged unscathed, but will Team Allegiance and Enigma 6 have the same result?
Enigma 6 Group
Enigma 6 make their way to Burbank for the relegation tournament after a less than stellar performance throughout the season that bottomed out with an 0-4 record in the final two weeks. Unfortunately, their season seemed to be in turmoil from the beginning. Rumors of roster dissention came to light and a roster change took place that swapped out Stellur for Suspector during the roster transfer period.
E6 were able to take games from all but OpTic, Team EnVyUs, and Str8 Rippin which seemed to be enough to keep them out of relegations but the end of their season did them in. Three of the four series that they played in the last two weeks of the season went to Game 5 and their final series against Str8 Rippin was the sole exception, which ended 3-1 in favor of Str8. E6, being the higher seeded team, will take on 3sUP in the first round of relegation.
What would things have looked like for Team Allegiance if they were able to win just a handful of the many Game 5 losses they took throughout the season? A 2-4 record in deciding Game 5’s leaves much to the imagination. Nonetheless, this squad takes on TMMT in their first round of play. Team Allegiance most recently played at the HCS Vegas event where they beat Str8 Rippin and 3sUP on their way to a third place finish. Team Allegiance has shown they are a perfectly capable team on a LAN setting led by ContrA and PreDevonator.
All signs point to Team Allegiance being a much better team than their record indicates. Not only did they already prove they can beat the likes of Str8 Rippin on a LAN setting, but they were able to take Str8, Team Liquid, Luminosity Gaming, and Evil Geniuses to Game 5’s. Two of those four teams placed in the Top 4 at the end of the season, reinforcing the idea that they can compete against some of the top teams in the league. Team Allegiance will have to iron out their Game 5 block, or just avoid the series getting to that point altogether, to help their chances of making the Pro League next season.
The hot handed 3sUP heads into Burbank after an impressive run at HCS Las Vegas. The amateur team of Rammy, Prototype, Monstcr, and Renegade only dropped one game in the Open Circuit finals of the recent LAN and went on beat Bittersweet and Enigma 6 before losing a close Game 5 to Team Allegiance to finish 5-6th. In doing so 3sUP managed to outplace FAB Games eSports, the top EU team from the Fall Season, Enigma 6, their first round opponent at Relegations, and finished even with another NA Pro League team, Evil Geniuses.
Rammy burst onto the scene after subbing for a few top teams last season but fell short of making it to the Pro League himself after a disappointing loss to OpTic Gaming at relegations last season as a member of Denial. As good as Denial was last season, this team may be better and are well poised to challenge for that Pro League spot.
Rounding out the four teams in the Relegation lineup is TMMT. Formerly known as 6S Gaming, TMMT grinded through the grueling open bracket at HCS Vegas without dropping a single game. Moreover, the squad did not take a loss until they met fellow Burbank-bound squad, 3sUP where they were swept 3-0 in the second round of the Open Circuit Finals. TMMT continued their tear after that loss with a 3-1 win against Most Wanted, Pnda Gaming, and Dynasty to qualify for the relegation tournament.
TMMT were not able to take a series from any Pro League teams. They were swept by EU powerhouse FabE and lost to E6 3-1 in the championship bracket. TMMT dominated the Open Circuit bracket, but the fact that their losses came against E6 and 3sUP, both teams in the relegation bracket, does not bode well for this team on the hunt for a Pro League spot. That being said, a LAN setting often packs more than one surprise, and this team should not be taken lightly.
Months of work will come down to this final weekend. Enigma 6 kick off the do-or-die tournament against 3sUP at 10AM PST on Saturday, December 10. You can watch the show from home at twitch.tv/halo! Keep tabs on Facebook and Twitter for all HCS news and updates!