Proleague Preview: Afreeca Freecs vs Jin Air Green Wings

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PROLEAGUE PREVIEW:

AFREECA FREECS VS JIN AIR GREEN WINGS

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If It Ain’t Broke, Don’t Fix It

One week into Proleague 2016 and I don’t think anyone is surprised to see Jin Air Green Wings, last year’s runners up, in close pursuit of 2015 champions, and current winner SKT1. What may, however, come as a humble surprise is how the newly sponsored Star Tale squad managed to hold out against CJ Entus after a crushing 0-3 in their own match against the SK powerhouse. This was an important victory for not only the fans and the new sponsor, but also team morale, which was surely in a very convoluted state after the recent Life fiasco. Taking a clean 3-1 against CJ Entus, even with Hero being absent for IEM, was still a worthy victory for the Ace-less Afreeca team and this week we will find out if they can carry forward that momentum with the same set-up. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

Coming into week two, it seems that this was the mindset of both Jin Air and Afreeca, and for good reason. Let’s look at the match ups for tonight:

(Z)Curious <Prion Terraces> (P)Trap

(P)Super <Ruins of Seras> (Z)Rogue

(T)aLive <Ulrena> (T)Cure

(T)Bomber <Orbital Shipyard> (T)Maru

 Ace:

<Lerilak Crest>

 

The Afreeca Freecs are in for a fight tonight if they want to take this win over Jin Air Green Wings.

(Z)Curious <Prion Terraces> (P)Trap

Still fresh into a new expansion, each of these players seems promising as they have each gained entry into Code S. With Curious barely edging out heavyweight Byul and Trap demolishing Shine, there’s no doubt that each player can make a name in this upcoming GSL and Proleague season. That said, I do believe Curious could have trouble in tonight’s match, as evidenced in his recent defeat by Classic.

(P)Super <Ruins of Seras> (Z)Rogue

If last week showed us anything, it was that current Code S member Super seems to be struggling against Zerg. Already losing to two of the best Zergs in dominating fashion, Dark and Byul, he now faces one of the hottest Zergs in Proleague: Rogue. The coaches and players must have faith in his Protoss vs Zerg capabilities, as they send him out once again to face one of the most talked about players. With Rogue starting this season off with a solid ZvT victory and being vastly capable of many styles, Super will have to bring something new to the table if he wants to win against his third Zerg opponent.

(T)aLive <Ulrena> (T)Cure

In what I think may be on of the only match-ups against Jin Air that I think favors Afreeca, Alive vs Cure should be a great show of Terran vs Terran play. Alive seems to be on everyone’s radar as of late, and for good reason. An old crowd favorite during the old EG days, Alive seems to be revitalized with the new expansion and has secured advancements in GSL and SSL. With both Code S players having recent Proleague wins off the backs of Terran opponents, this should truly be a great and exciting match for all audiences.

(T)Bomber <Orbital Shipyard> (T)Maru

This week they saved the crowd favorites for last as Startale legend Bomber goes up against the Terran Prince Maru. While both players failed to secure spots in SSL and GSL, Maru seems to be in decent shape with his recent win over Blaze. However, Bomber hasn’t yet stepped into the booth, and with his recent shaky form, there is much to wonder about his current state of play. Hopefully with morale up in the Afreeca house, and with a need for a new ace player in light of Life’s troubles, Bomber will have shaped up into old form for tonight’s match. This, I believe, will be a hard match for Bomber, but will nonetheless be highly entertaining as the two champions go head to head in a matchup for the fans.

My predictions:

Curious < Trap

Super < Rogue

aLive > Cure

Bomber < Maru

Jin Air Greenwings 3-1 Afeeca Freecs

 

Closing:

In closing, tonight’s match seems very hard to call. Jin Air Green Wings are an indubitably high-caliber team with some of the best players. After all, we are talking about last year’s runner up, right? With no ace player for Afreeca, I know they can take games off any team when they are playing at their absolute best, but tonight I have to give it to statistics and what my intuition is telling me. My heart wants to see Afreeca win off an ace match with Bomber, but my brain is telling me that it won’t make it that far.

 

 

 

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