When Vash, Mack, Strongside and Defy united following MLG Chicago, many questioned whether the team deserved to be ranked fourth – a ranking earned primarily through points gained by Strongside and Defy on their former teams, Carbon and Str8 Rippin, respectively. Legendz stumbled in their debut tournament in Orlando, falling to Storm Ventures, Vanity Gaming, and FBI GamerGraffix.com. With an eighth place finish, the questions only intensified. Putting these doubts to rest and proving they deserved their spot in the Playoffs was the main objective of the team heading into New York.
In the opening moments of the Playoffs, however, the doubts continued to surface, as Legendz started out slowly. They dropped the opening two games against XiT Woundz in lopsided fashion. Mack described, “I was personally kind of down because we had banked on winning Midship TS. It’s one of our strongest gametypes.” The team’s underwhelming performance continued in Game 3, as Legendz appeared unable to find an answer to XiT’s objective focus. “We couldn’t beat them on that map. We couldn’t get into the Library,” Vash explained. The tide turned, however, when Legendz employed an unconventional approach to the game type, taking the ball away from XiT’s stronghold defense at the BR Tower and into Bottom Blue. “We usually aren’t good with the ball in Blue,” stated Mack. However, the team soundly fortified the position and rallied to a five-second Game 3 victory, thanks in large part to a late triple kill by Vash, which thwarted XiT’s final assault.
Legendz have developed their team chemistry incredibly quickly since their recent formation, and have some very aggressive goals for the National Championships.
As a team highly influenced by momentum, Legendz rode the wave of their Game 3 comeback into the final two gametypes, CTF Warlock and TS Beaver Creek. “After we won [Game 3], I felt like we would definitely win the series,” noted Mack. The display was a testament to how far the team had progressed since Orlando. If the community wondered whether this new team could produce results, the answer seemed to be an emphatic yes. The squad’s confidence was buoyed by the result, and they will look to repeat the performance in a rematch against XiT Woundz in the opening round of MLG’s National Championships in Las Vegas. “We plan on putting some division between us and XiT this time,” declared Vash. The Vegas encounter will open to CTF Warlock and TS Beaver Creek, Games 4 and 5 of the New York meeting. Legendz will look to take the gametypes once more and ride the momentum into Game 3 of the series to produce a sweep over fourth-seeded XiT Woundz.
Despite their opening-round heroics against XiT Woundz in New York, Legendz then faced a daunting two-series stretch. After the win they were bounced by number-one Final Boss and then had to face third-seeded Str8 Rippin in the Losers Bracket, thanks to Storm Ventures upsetting Str8 in Round 1. Legendz seized an early 4 – 2 lead over Str8 in Midship CTF, but were unable to capitalize on the advantage and ultimately surrendered the game type 5 – 4. “We are momentum based, so we needed that game. We had the lead, and then we lost it. After we let them come back it was all downhill,” described Vash. Legendz could not regroup after the discouraging result, dropping Games 2 and 3 and, ultimately, the series.
“We’re not going to the Losers Bracket. We are beating Final Boss in Round 2.” – Mack
The team, however, is well aware of how momentum affects their results. “In Vegas we won’t let single games affect us so much,” stated Mack. Additionally, Legendz gained valuable information about Str8 Rippin’s tactics in their New York encounter and feel they have identified keys to victory. Should they face Str8 Rippin in Vegas, Legendz will look to neutralize Tsquared by denying him access to the power weapons and to contain Foulacy’s aggressive play style. “If we shut down T2 and Foulacy, we can easily beat them. Anarchy and Fonzi are as predictable as night and day,” Vash explained. Additionally, the team will approach a potential meeting against Str8 Rippin with an increased objective focus to capitalize on their slaying advantage.
However, the squad intends to evade Str8 Rippin entirely by securing a top-three finish with a win over Final Boss in the Winners Bracket Semi-Finals. “We’re not going to the Losers Bracket. We are beating Final Boss in Round 2,” Mack boldly declared. Legendz have been inspired by Carbon’s recent victories over Final Boss and feel confident in their ability to replicate the feat. “They don’t look as invulnerable. They aren’t the same Final Boss in my eyes,” Vash stated.
Strongside has grown remarkably as a team player since joining Legendz, and is constantly getting closer to realizing his full potential.
Although ambitious in its aim, the squad’s confidence is not completely unwarranted. Despite being swept by Final Boss in the Playoffs, Legendz produced respectable results against the top-ranked team and feel that crisper late-game execution could have turned the series in their favor. Legendz pulled ahead in all three game types, but notably squandered a 38 – 30 advantage in Lockout Slayer and a 1 – 0 lead in Beaver Creek CTF. “We seem to always have the lead against teams, and then we choke. We start making careless moves when we’re up,” noted Vash.
Lacking the experience of their peers, the young team’s play style has been marked by inconsistency and a relative lack of mental fortitude. Legendz will look to rise above these traits in their preparation for the National Championships and find a way to play with unyielding intensity. During their two tournaments together, however, Legendz have greatly developed their chemistry and have gained considerable ground on the competition since their eighth-place Orlando debut. At the National Championships, the squad will look to dispel the notion they are merely a team with unfulfilled potential. Legendz have set their sights high for Las Vegas, and will not accept anything less than a third place finish.
Check out more of our National Championships coverage!
Nationals Preview – 1st Seed – Final Boss
Nationals Preview – 2nd Seed – Carbon
Nationals Preview – 3rd Seed – Str8 Rippin
Nationals Preview – 4th Seed – XiT Woundz
Nationals Preview – 5th Seed – Legendz
Nationals Preview – 6th Seed – Storm Ventures
Nationals Preview – 7th Seed – ShooK on3 Gaming
Nationals Preview – 8th Seed – FBI GamerGraffix