Code S Ro16: Group C Recap
Results from Live Report thread by pencil_ethics.
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Eyes on Five
- Four-time champion LG-IM_Mvp advances to the quarterfinals with victories over JYP and MKP, drawing Symbol in the Ro8.
Once again, Mvp rides into the final eight. We all know about his shortcomings, injuries, and sometimes inconsistent play in foreign events, but even with a damaged neck and wrists that should belong to a 90 year old secretary, Mvp was able to get through a group with a player of every race. It wasn't the most overly difficult group, EG.JYP.RC still having the stigma of being weakest Protoss against Terran, MKP being Mvp's personal win dispenser, and Curious coming down with the shakes whenever he reaches the Ro16. Even so, you can't take away the fact that Mvp took care of business like a champion.
JYP was able to take a game off of Mvp in their initial series, but Mvp was able to clinch the series 2 - 1 with a nice defense of the EG player's proxy gate in the final game. Even when Mvp is at his absolute worst and doesn't seem he can execute like he would want, his sturdy defense has always been able to keep him in games. Even if his opponent might be in better form than the injured champion, Mvp's ability to defend all-ins and pull off his own cheeses was the reason why he won the championship back in Season 2.
Going up against MarineKing in the GSL for the first time since November of last year, the same story unfolded. Unlike the Terran circle of Polt > MMA > Mvp > Polt that has actually been flipped on its head in 2012, MarineKing still doesn't know how to beat Mvp. Now, with Mvp's 2 - 0 victory over MarineKing, the four-time GSL champion now has a staggering 11-2 record against the three-time silver medalist in the GSL.
MarineKing got completely shutdown in the first game, his cloaked banshees getting smacked down by Mvp's predictive viking production. He tried to stay in the game after his build opening went as bad as humanly possible, but Mvp wouldn't let an advantage slip away. Going for delayed cloaked banshees of his own - something Mvp is known to do against players who open cloaked banshee against him - Mvp overwhelmed the weakened marine king by attacking him on all fronts.
The second game provided the best game of the night, with MarineKing and Mvp showing what makes them great. Mvp broke down MarineKing where he was weak, punishing MKP for his overextensions and lack of defense at home. Mvp was able to drop over and over again in MarineKing's main and expansions, ravaging his supply depots, add-ons and SCVs. When MarineKing would finally clean up Mvp's drop and push him out, he would neglect putting up a sensor tower or a ring of turrets, letting Mvp come back 30 seconds later and continue his onslaught.
MarineKing, not having the same patience and defense Mvp has, went for what he does best: innovative offense. When he couldn't break Mvp's wall of tanks, he picked up almost his entire army in dropships, maneuvered them past the siege line and went for a base trade. With the lack of defense at home, it was MKP's only chance at getting back and the game. For the first few minutes, it looked like it might actually pay off. He cleaned up a lot of Mvp's army, had a massive advantage in marines, and wrecked Mvp's main base.
The problem came down to the number of actual bases in the base race. After both mains were clearned out, Mvp still had a base up with 21 workers, while MKP had a few stray buildings and just two SCV's on the map. Even though MKP had a large number of marines, Mvp had too many leftover tanks protecting his remaining mining base. Being put in a checkmate position, MarineKing tried for one more desperate push with his army, but he was shredded by tank fire to bring the series to an end.
With advancement out of the group and only three series victories away from capturing an astonishing fifth GSL title, Mvp is inching closer to putting his legacy beyond the reach of any player in StarCraft II. Already the best player in the formative years of the game, Mvp's four titles mean he will be remembered as a StarCraft II legend even if he were to retire today.
Eight Feels Great
- MarineKingPrime goes beyond the Ro16 for the first time since the summer of 2011, beating Curious and JYP to take on Life in the next round.
Time to play Good News/Bad News with our contestant MarineKingPrime!
Bad News: You got beat down again by the guy who has given you nightmares since January 2011. If you make it to the finals and meet Mvp again, you might actually pass out before the games even start. You are now 2-11 against him in GSL, pretty much making yourself Mvp's win piñata.
Good News: You made the quarterfinals for the first time since the Super Tournament! Yeah, ST_Curious had the worst luck of any player in recent history, and JYPvT's might have been a bit over-hyped after his games against Supernova, but who cares? Round of Eight! Woooooooohooooo!
MarineKing might have not gotten the biggest monkey off his back, but he detached the second most annoying one, getting to the quarterfinals for the first time since his disastrous semifinal loss to MMA in last year's Super Tournament. Back then, MKP went up 2 - 0 against the SlayerS ace and was on the verge of his fourth finals, but he fell apart and lost three straight games to MMA (his teammate, Polt, would go on to win the only Prime championship in the GSL). Since then, he has bounced around Code A and Code S, getting through to the Ro16 of Code S and repeatedly failing to make it through in disappointing fashion.
This time around, the games weren't the prettiest, but he got the job done and that's enough for now. He got build order wins against ST_Curious in the first match of the night, got outplayed by Mvp in the winner's match, and then bopped JYP into oblivion in the final set of the night. All in all, it doesn't fill you with the greatest confidence that MarineKing has what it takes to make it all the way to the finals with the Ro8 shaping up to be the scariest it has ever been in history, but it's not like he was the most confidence inspiring player in the first place.
He was on fire in the early part of the year, winning MLG Winter Arena and Championship, but couldn't get it done in the GSL. MarineKing knows what it takes to make it to a final and even win a major championship, but nothing would match the happiness he would receive if he could finally win the big one in Korea. Continuing his journey to that dream, he will need to beat the one player that he did not want to face in the quarterfinal: ST_Life.
Life, in the past month, has gotten 2nd in TSL4, only losing to the equally young and scary Creator, gone 8-1 in Code S, and destroyed a recent MLG Online qualifier, going 10-1 as he tore through jjakji, Curious, Naniwa, Harrier and Keen. He is a player that is almost impossible to prepare against. He is not scared to six pool you five straight games and see what happens. He also wouldn't mind going into a 30+ minute game five straight games and having you lose to him in a macro game. A lot like MarineKing, Life brings a wealth of builds into their quarterfinal clash and won't be afraid of MarineKing's aggressive play.
- ST_Curious goes down to Code A with an unlucky 0-4 record, and EG.JYP.RC falls to two Terrans, putting his JYPvT Revolution on hold for now.
ST_Curious: He still can't make it to the round of eight. This really seemed to be the season he would finally do it, beating MarineKing in the first round of this season's tournament, but it just didn't happen. He got smacked by a bunker rush in the first game, and his own baneling bust got shutdown in game two when MarineKing's hellions cleaned up all of his early zerglings. Then, he was lost 0 - 2 to JYP in the losers match, losing an early hatchery to cannon-rushes in both games. All in all, it was possibly the worst night in Curious' GSL career. Now in Code A again, he will try to qualify for Code S next season, do well in the first group stage, and repeat this process all over again. More likely than not, we'll just copy/paste this section next season when he suffers another Ro16 defeat.
EG_JYP_RC: Not a bad season. What else can you say? He beat Supernova twice, got a 2-0 victory over Curious, and lost to two tough Terran players. His PvT has improved mightily from where it was a few seasons ago, and if he can make it even better going into next season, JYP will be a dangerous player. If he had been put into a group with two Zergs and a Protoss instead of two Terrans, and we could have seen JYP in the Ro8 with just a few lucky draws away from the finals. He's an amazing PvZ player, and if his improvements in JYPvT continue in an upward trend, JYP will become a championship level Protoss.