Buy or Sell: #HGC NA – Week 6, Part 1, Phase 2 2018

Anne EliseNews

Buy or Sell is, hopefully, a weekly feature on Trolls.gg where I will play “Mad Money” with the current goings-on of HGC. These will be fun articles where I tell you whether or not I think a team is on the rise, a team is falling, or something else in HGC is going well or needs a little work. Please remember, these are tongue-in-cheek articles, no one is really buying or selling anything, and this is just to start discussion about how the pro scene is going for NA and EU.

I want to get right into this one:

SELL – NA LUL

Let’s start the crusade against this spamable meme of Twitch chat! Let’s tilt at this very annoying windmill at ramming speed! Who will be my Sancho Panza?

We need to start asking our community to be better behaved because, while this all-too-common spam may have been appropriate in 2016 and 2017, after BlizzCon (where all three NA teams made the quarterfinals) and the Western Clash (which saw impressive showings from Tempo Storm, Team Twelve, and HeroesHearth Esports), NA isn’t a joke any more. Our top teams are to be taken seriously, and they are respected by their peers, who prepare for them seriously.

So, when you see “NA LUL,” push back against it. Are you fighting a losing battle? Yes, but it’s a battle worth fighting.

Or, do what I do and close the chat when you are watching HGC. So much nicer that I almost wish Twitch would disable chat.

In short, if you aren’t excited for Part 2 of Phase 1 of NA HGC, you really should be. Last year, I might have had some savage things to say about the bottom of NA:

But, that is no longer the case! NA matches are a joy to watch, and Week 6 was no exception! We had a range of results with two 3-0s, two 3-1s, and two 3-2s, making matches exciting and unpredictable. We had drama as Khroen finally got revenge on GFE. And we saw the bottom team in NA, LFM esports, look damn good in defeat, meaning that they are really growing.

So, what am I buying and selling after Week 6?

BUY – Arthelon as NA MVP

Best player? No. Most Valuable? In the sense that he’s a complete mind-fuck for the other team to deal with, yes! From the intro video where he does his best sexy pose, to his amazing escapes against GFE, Arthelon was the best thing to watch this weekend:

It’s great for HeroesHearth because he’s not just winning: he’s forcing the other team to have to deal with an unpredictable element. HHE still has some growing to do as a team to really challenge for the top spot in NA, and a wild card like Arthelon can create enough chaos and confusion to allow them to steal matches.

SELL – Khroen Was The Problem

After the 2017 Summer Rosterpocalypse, chat memes of “Khroen was the problem” could be found during GFE games. These weren’t serious, as they were often directed at GFE when they made mistakes, but a casual observer of the meme might not get the sarcasm.

Well, getting the win over his former squad with his new team got the monkey off of his back, the albatross off from around his neck, and whatever other cliche image you can think of. More importantly, it solidified HeroesHearth as a top four teams, putting them 2.5 matches up over GFE. However…

SELL – Letting Khroen Cook A Steak

Thankfully, a lot of people jumped in to correct Khroen about his misconceptions:

BUY – Team Twelve as a global team

Not just their performance at the Western Clash, but they 3-0ed Team Freedom. Team Twelve and Tempo Storm are both head and shoulders above the rest of NA

SELL – Team Freedom making the Mid-Season Brawl

NA only gets three teams and Team Freedom is struggling to find their footing against the top teams. Yes, they destroyed No Tomorrow (formerly Spacestation Gaming), but the struggle is real for TF as they were then 3-0ed by Team Twelve.

BUY – Simplicity avoiding the Crucible

I really thought LFM had a good shot at taking down Simplicity:

But Simplicity turned me around during their match!

I don’t think Simplicity can gel enough as a team to make a run in the playoffs for a Mid-Season Brawl spot, but they are really showing up, and the pedigree of this team is something to watch heading into Phase 2 if they can find the right replacement for Erho.

I’m not going to talk about the Erho situation at all. Go look it up yourself.  

BUY – Spacestation Gaming parting ways with No Tomorrow

This hurts because NT/SSG is my NA team. My wife and I are both big fans of Equinox, and yes, it’s because of the bear picture, but, and I don’t know who left whom, I don’t think No Tomorrow is going to be around as a roster for much longer. Jason having to leave really hurt them, and I am hopeful that they can get a tank player to let Equinox stay on melee flex.

So, NA looks like a lot of fun; not as competitive from top to bottom in the way that EU is currently, but it’s a far cry from being compared to slimey, over-cooked veggies as I did last year.

Remember, no more NA LUL.

Predictions for Week 7

Friday:

  • Team Freedom over LFM 3-1
  • GFE over No Tomorrow 3-1

Saturday:

  • Team Twelve over GFE 3-1
  • Tempo Storm over Simplicity 3-1

Sunday

  • Tempo Storm over No Tomorrow 3-0
  • Team Twelve over HeroesHearth 3-2

Match of the Week:

Both of Team Twelve’s matches are must watch. The first because this is Gale Force’s last stand. GFE has to prove that they can still be a top team, and even if they don’t win, they need to deliver a message that they are still a threat. If they cannot do that, they might find themselves in serious trouble come Phase 2.

HeroesHearth needs to show that they can win against the top of NA. They need a victory here to try and stay out of the playoffs and get that second seed. They are half a match behind TT, and a win against the crying kitten emoji team will better position them for the MSB.

Not that any of that really matters. I think Team Twelve is going to take both matches. They aren’t looking past GFE or HHE, but Team Twelve is looking towards week 8 and their rematch against Tempo Storm. GFE and HHE are good practice heading into that match, so they will take both matches very seriously.