DPC or no DPC, Puppey’s men continued their now-regular romp through the non-TI competition, comfortably winning the inaugural season of WePlay!’s Pushka League with a flawless upper bracket run in a tournament which featured more than its fair share of surprises along the way.
The round robin best-of-three group stage for Europe was inarguably the highlight of the tournament, with notable upsets along the way to establish an exciting playoff bracket. OG and Team Nigma were both at risk of relegation at one point, and Kuroky’s men survived by the narrowest of margins in the end, winning a sudden death tiebreaker game against OG.Seed, the other team with a 1-5 record, to earn a spot in Season 2. Clearly there’s a lot of work to do for that side, which is all the more galling once you consider the strong performances of the other big names in the scene – with the notable exception of OG, of course.
Alliance and Liquid could also leave with their heads held high, and VP’s resurgence also continued with a second-place finish in the CIS bracket. In the end, their junior side ended up completely overshadowing the main team’s accomplishments, but a fourth-place finish nevertheless has to be considered decent off the back of winning ESL One Los Angeles.
In the end, Secret secured the inaugural WePlay! Pushka League title with a flawless upper bracket run, 2-0 wins over Na’Vi, Liquid and VP.Prodigy followed by a 3-0 grand final win over the latter. It’s safe to say no one expected the VP juniors to make it as far as they have, and a strong showing in the round robin portion coupled with a win over Liquid (the side which ultimately eliminated the “senior”) side makes this a fully legit run on their part. Unfortunately, the grand final turned out to be a one-sided affair, with the CIS time failing to take a game off of Secret in five attempts, and two extremely quick game wins off of MATUMBAMAN and Nisha and their monstrous kill counts.
Meanwhile, Vikin.gg and Team Unique battled it out for the prestige in Division 2, having already confirmed their promotion at the expense of OG.Seed and B8 by reaching the semis. It was the European side which won the battle with a score of 2 games to 0, putting an end to a competition marred by a multitude of issues. Aggressive Mode, Yolo Knight and CyberTRAKTOR were all removed from the competition at one point, and with a third of the European group stage matches forfeited, there’s a lot to do from an organization standpoint for the second season here.