BUILDING #TEAM AMERICA
Published on 05/21/2016 18:37 PDT by Paulo "CatZ" Vizcarra
I have been playing StarCraft for many years now. I wanna say, about 15. In this time, never, EVER have I felt as strongly about NA StarCraft as I do today.
NA vs EU has been an event that I've been wanting to organize since the game came out, but honestly, we would've always gotten crushed.. Until today.
Today, EU is stronger than it's ever been before. But so is NA. Foreigners are closing the skill-gap with Koreans since the release of LOTV and partly thanks to the new #WCS System.
There has never been a NA vs EU deep roster Clanwar / Showmatch. And in this first significant encounter I believe in the NA team we've put together to pull off what most will consider an upset.
Hi, that's me. As a coach for NA, I'll be going over the chosen team and
reasoning behind it.
The group of players we'll call the 6-All-American Eagles is the reason I feel as strongly as I do when it comes to NA StarCraft today. Before a tournament name or format, the 6 Eagles were already on my #DreamTeam list and radar for this event. They are the tip of the spear, they march together and in the front lines towards a revolution in North American StarCraft. More importantly, they are ready to defend and uphold American values such as Freedom, that the evil Europeans are very clearly out to destroy.
Literal God Neeb is considered by most the best player in the Americas. Neeb is a proven Tier 1 player capable of beating anyone, period. He is a God. Neeb improves faster than I've seen almost anyone improve, ever. Neeb is the true definition of a foreign hope: He is the best - yet still, he is only getting better.
MaSa has been a beast for a long time, only recently however, he started being able to participate in WCS and tournaments abroad, taking 2 consecutive top 4's at DreamHack Austin and Tours within a week. One of America's greatest weapons, without a doubt. Masa won't stop until he is worthy of his birth-given name: Maru. And he's well on route!
Do you know why Scarlett can go away, come back and be top notch? Because she's brilliant. She is a champion level player with great intelligence and talent. More importantly she is one of the most experienced players in the lineup. She knows how to approach a series and she knows how to win. In top shape, Scarlett is one of the scariest players in the world, is she ready? I think yes.
The most recent Leifeng Cup, Copa America and Cheesadelphia champion is on a tear. At the house, Kelazhur wins online tournaments as often as hydra does. Kelazhur trains mostly on the Korean ladder, this season, he floats in the top 30, while playing from North America. It's no wonder they call him KelaGod.
I see much of myself in puCK. Naturally a much stronger player than I am - puCK is as strong as he is unique. puCK knows his strengths as a player and how to exploit them, he plays in his own comfort zone and forces his opponents to play his game. At his game, he is one of the best there is. puCk can beat anyone in Europe. No, puCK can beat anyone in the world.
MajOr has been consistently, one of the best non-korean players over the last decade. In fact there is NO ONE outside of Korea with as much experience and time at the top as MajOr. MajOr may not the easiest player to work with, but we're going for the win and he is a key piece of the equation. If MajOr shows up in full force, he'll be nearly unstoppable, but i'll be happy if he shows up at all.
After inviting the 6 eagles to the team, many names were brought up as worthy to complete Team NA. We simply have too much talent!
Much like Scarlett, HuK is a Legend. He is a brilliant player with tons of competitive experience. HuK is the type of player that is always a threat to anyone and in top shape can look unstoppable. Unfortunately, HuK won't be available to participate at the event due to prior commitments. But I want to make sure that people know he was considered and invited, because he deserves it.
With HuK unable to make it and 3 spots still remaining, one name came up most often in discussion, although the eagles have different proteges, one man was on everyone's radar;
Today, JonSnow may very well be the best Zerg in the Americas. JonSnow has been consistently improving over the last couple of years. Yet to have a big breakout performance, and with experience as his main limiting factor; ClanWars are JonSnow's wheelhouse with over 6-All-Kills in Premier Team Leagues. JonSnow is an incredibly promising player & the most recent TeSPA collegiate league Champion, where he won $12,000 worth of scholarship funds. Jonsnow has been around for a couple of years, but his watch is just starting.
For the remaining 2 slots, there were many worthy players. StarCraft is always fluctuating in terms of skill level. It's very difficult to gauge the exact level of an individual at a given point in time. Results are important, but sometimes being hungry for a win and a breakout performance is just the push necessary to reach the top. With that in mind, I decided to award the 2 remaining spots to the 2 players who advance from an [unstreamed] GSL style group between some of the strongest contenders who were up for consideration: Cham, PiLiPiLi, PandaBearMe & Bails.
I believe that any 2 of these 4 players will make fantastic additions to our already very strong line-up, but it is also important to me to mention that there are many other strong players such as Semper, NoRegret, State or JimRising, etc, etc ,etc. Who, for different circumstances aren't the best fit in my eyes for this particular event, but are certainly capable of hanging and becoming some of the best.
For more updates on the lineup and more information on the event, follow me on twitter:@ROOTCatZ
For questions and discussions on social media please use #NAvsEU and include@ROOT4ROOT!