DOU SCL II Discussion Thread

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is a Community Leaderis a Tiering Contributor
Doubles Leader
Week 3 saw a lot of lopsided battles, with the only one that was really close was Spurrific vs Nails. This isn’t a knock on anyone, sometimes it just goes down this way. In the coming weeks we should see some of the undefeateds battle it out which should make for some really good games.

Also it does seem that Spectrier, Dragapult, and Pheromosa (and even Genesect) are getting a ton of more play in this scl than in other tours. I suspect this is due to more and more people seeing Mew as a tier 1 Pokémon, and thus players are valuing the ability to threaten it out before it does its Mew things.

Loved Z Strats team this week, TerraCott is such a fun gimmick, and many people have thought that with Rillaboom it’s a dead strategy. Not so, and Z Strats pulled it off perfectly.

Nails continues to win with Ttar. It sat on the field for quite a while just d tailing and ice punching. It seemed Spurrific was ready for Nails style of team, bringing Defog as well as Urshifu and Rilla, but Nails played well and was able to get the win.

Sand is getting a ton of play here at the tail end of the meta. Both Toxigen and Nails brought it this week. It’s interesting how for so much of DLC2 weather was thought to be pretty mid, then rain became acceptable, and then here at the very end sun & sand have seen a lot more play. I suspect sand is chosen as it’s more of a “neutral” weather, so it plays well into other weather options, as well as being good into psyspam.

JRL continues to win by just bringing established teams, I wonder how many lines their team chat is…
JRL: “I’m bringing X team”
Para: “Sounds good”
3 days later
Para: “Good win”

Rinse & repeat.
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Z Strats

Banned deucer.
W4 predicts.

[TER] Nails vs Ninja [SHO] - Ninja hasn't looked to bad and with his win last week is 2-1, but he's against Nails this week who is one of the top players in the pool and has been doing extremely well. Ninja has seemed to have little mistakes here and there though has played generally solid but in the games Nails has played he's been very good at punishing small mistakes and winning by just playing well no matter the matchup, I'd be pretty surprised to see Nails lose this.

[BRE] Tenzai vs JoeUX9 [TMS] - Both teams DOU slot is 0-3 but Tenzai has been subbed in while Joe still remains. While I would normally rate Toxigen a bit higher than Tenzai, Toxigen clearly wasn't playing well and I think Tenzai is definitely the correct play going forward assuming he doesn't also tank. I don't mind the TMs keeping Joe in but I thought we'd maybe see Memoric this week since Joe is 0-3 and has a regional he's going to this week but then again Memo definitely doesn't want to play. Tenzai is a bit of an unknown right now but he did go 2-2 in snake 4 and Joe just hasn't looked to good so I'm giving the bold to Tenzai.

[PLA] Z Strats vs JRL [ISL] - 7-2 in his last official team tour vs 2-5 in his last official team tour

[FOX] qsns vs Spurrific [DYN] - qsns is 0-3 and just hasn't looked to good, their teams are fine but their play isn't enough to carry the fine teams to victory so far and I don't know what it's gonna take to change that. Justin on the other hand is 1-2 but he has had to play two of the strongest players in the pool. I don't ever see Justin tanking and he's going to be really motivated to get his record back on track after the rough start and I can see qsns already being done with mons and not really having much fight left after being 0-3 and now against a big name like Spurrific so I definitely see Justin taking this one.

[SPA] Animus vs Frania [GIB] - It appears I've been to harsh on Fran so far, he is 2-1 with his loss being to Nails, and apart from the Nails game he has played well too. Animus is off to a slow start and hasn't looked as good as Frania, his team is also 0-3 which could lower motivation as well. Fran last week played a solid game vs qsns and came out on top without ever being in a losing position the endgame was maybe a bit shaky but he was solid overall. Animus last week went against JRL using rain and didn't seem to really know how to play rain and just ended up in a really bad spot after t1 and couldn't bring it back. Usually I'd say these two are pretty even but Fran being stronger so far and his team not being in a dire spot gets him the bold.


Banned deucer.
[DYN] Spurrific vs Animus [SPA] - This one is a bit odd for me. Both players are 2-2 with their wins and losses being very similar. Both lost to the toughest competition in the tour, and have won vs some of the weaker players. Looking at Animus' play, I'm not convinced they have it in them to win. While they did win their game last week, that game was riddled with misplays and I found Animus' playing to be somewhat shaky. That being said, I'm bolding Spurrific.

[ISL] JRL vs Frania [GIB] - JRL has looked really consistent so far this tour. They did take a loss to Z Strats last week, however there was some critical hax that took place that allowed Z Strats to play incredibly safe making the win more easily securable. Compared to Frania who despite having a pretty favorable matchup last week, let themselves get ran over by fake out and never took full advantage of their trick room. I think Frania will have to pull it together if they hope to win this week.

[SHO] Ninja vs dnagerbdager [FOX] - Ninja is going into this 2-2 with wins over some weaker players and losses to two of the strongest players in the format. It's important to not forget this madman went 11-0 in osdt before getting knocked out. He has shown that he can perform, especially when playing mid tier players. Badger on the other hand is getting an opportunity to prove themselves. Not much to go off of except their recent runs in fall seasonal and osdt. going 5-3 in osdt and 2-2 in ssnl. Not looking to strong and haven't seen much development with the team builds they have been helping qsns make. Easy Ninja bold.

[TMS] Memoric vs Nails [TER] - Nails has been dominant so far and it's hard to see that changing this week. He has been winning a lot in the builder, building things that have had fairly solid matchups into what people have been using. Am mostly curious if we will see another ttar team and if so what he will do to make it different from the previous teams. Joe getting swapped out makes sense to a degree. Memoric has been playing dou longer, but is probably less than or just as experienced with ss dou and hasn't shown that they have much interest in playing mons. If he can find it in him to grind the game a bit and put down valorant he might stand a chance this week.

[PLA] Z Strats vs Tenzai [BRE] - This is probably the match I'm looking forward to seeing the most. I think Tenzai playing was the correct move from the start and am curious to see how he'll perform. If what I heard about him not wanting to play is true, it might mean he is lacking motivation and that could hinder him. Z Strats being one of the top 3 players in the tournament has been really dominant however. As mentioned previously, Zee support can result in some whack but cool teams. We have had the pleasure of seeing terracott be successful and I'm looking forward to seeing what these two come up with this week. Z Strats had some luck go his way in last week's game and while it wouldn't have been an immediate win for JRL had the hax not happened, Z Strats would have had to work a little harder to secure the win. If he underestimates Tenzai I can see Tenzai winning, but at this point in time Z Strats is the favorite to win.
Some things to note from last week:
Nails week 1 team is now 3-0
Terrak 2-0... Ban Beat Up??
Staka 0-3... Worst Steel?
Z Strats and JRL did in fact both bring very offensive teams, world continues to make sense!
Joe brought Leech Seed Celesteela again but it didn't do anything despite sitting on the field forever. Meat Beam the only good Cele?

  • [DYN] Spurrific vs Animus [SPA]
Both won last week! Animus is coming off a tight game vs Frania where he got very unlucky early on, putting himself in a bad position. Despite this he played towards his outs and with some less optimal plays and a timely Fire Blast miss on Frania's end Animus was able to pull out the win. Spurrific's game was much simpler, setting up hazards and just constantly pressuring qsns' more offensive team to eventually chip enough for Genesect to rip holes too big to come back from. I do think Animus is showing he is on the top half of the pool, but like I said last time Spurrific is past Nails and Z Strats and should win out from here.
  • [ISL] JRL vs Frania [GIB]
JRL is coming off a loss vs Z Strats but the match was fairly unlucky so its hard to say what would've happened otherwise. Frania got fairly lucky but ended up playing too passive and making questionable plays with that lead, eventually missing a Fire Blast in a must hit scenario to lose the game. I will say it feels like Frania is actually building while JRL is constantly reusing random HOs, which can be exploited. I actually hope Frania can bounce back and force JRL to start actually making teams this tournament, but play wise JRL has just looked better so far.
  • [SHO] Ninja vs dnagerbdager [FOX]
BDAGER IN! I think this is actually one of the better weeks to try this switch for the Foxes. Yes Dnager isn't a top player but they aren't a bad player by any means. Dnager is also going to put in a ton of effort and if they can scout correctly and identify Ninja's tendencies then I could see Dnager get ahead in the builder and come out on top. Ninja has been alright so far, playing fairly good but falling to the top of the pool. I will say I haven't been a big fan of the Shogun's teams so far, especially last week where its very clear you wanted a Rillaboom > Tsareena in the final slot. That change actually could've made the match much more winnable for Ninja, but alas you learn and move on. I'm going to go with Ninja here since they have been good again the 0-x players so far, and with this being dnager's first official team tournament game its hard to predict them just yet.
  • [TMS] Memoric vs Nails [TER]
  • [PLA] Z Strats vs Tenzai [BRE]
Tenzai was able to get the Breaker's their first win last week.. but it was vs JoeUX9 who definitely wasn't ready to start in a tournament like this yet. Tenzai played it well with their hazard stack team, but it felt way too passive for me. Z Strats is someone who will take advantage of any hesitation in games and if Tenzai plays anything like last week it will not be pretty. Z Strats is now 4-0, reusing teams 2 of the 4. This is especially good for a tournament like this since there is even less information on him now, making Tenzai's chances to win in the builder much harder. Despite both winning last week I feel Z Strats is much more favored here in both building and play. With that said we haven't seen much of Tenzai yet so this could be a big week for the Breakers if Tenzai burst out a 2-0 record vs the player to beat.


is a Community Leaderis a Tiering Contributor
Doubles Leader
Week 4 saw a continuation of trends we had been seeing in the previous weeks… a whole lot of Mew and a lot of Pokémon that’re good into Mew (Dragapult, Pheromosa, etc.)

Nails once again brought Tyranitar & Mew to a win, but this time it was CB Tyranitar and an offensive e-force mew. I think the change up in sets really caught Ninja by surprise, as Ninja’s leads seemed to have been designed to counter a hazards Mew lead, and leaving Incin in to get chunked suggests they weren’t expecting such a strong attack from Tyranitar. Mixing up the sets on Pokémon you know your opponent prepared for can pay off big.

Z Strats again brought beat up + justified, this time with eject button Fini, which I’ve long thought is a good set. Eject button lets fini absorb an incoming strong attack, change the terrain to misty, and swap out back into an offensive threat so you don’t lose momentum, which fits perfectly with justified + beat up.

Hazard stack again won twice this week, winning for both Spurrific and Tenzai. It seems like if you want to bring balance, hazard stack is the way to go.

Animus brought a team with the ol’ triple fake out fire/water/grass core of Incineroar/Blastoise/Rillaboom designed to support an offensive core of Celesteela/Landorus/DD Kyu-b. I thought there was the possibility that this team would be designed around the pledge moves, but it seemed to just be the standard sets. Typically super heavy fake out teams like this struggle into tsareena offense type builds, but when all your sweepers are good into Tsareena, it can still work out. Thankfully it didn’t load up into Tsareena, and once the Kyu-b was able to remove the Volcanion, that paved the way for the Celesteela to pull off the sweep, well played.

Z Strats

Banned deucer.
W5 predicts. Feel like this might end up being one of the most one sided weeks as far as predicts go, it's essentially another top half vs bottom half week.

[DYN] Spurrific vs Animus [SPA] - Gotta give props to Animus after I kind of shit on him for how he played the rain matchup last week I think he played pretty solid last week other than one probably bad play and he was able to get the win while looking like the better player. However his opponent is Justin who is also coming off a very strong week where they brought the Nails 6 vs qsns and looked like they were always in the lead getting a convincing win as well. Justin historically is the better player here both in general and in head to head so he gets the bold and Animus will really have to pull out all the stops this week as well as stop any small mistakes if he wants a good chance at taking down Justin who despite two losses early against the two undefeated players in the pool is very much a top player.

[ISL] JRL vs Frania [GIB] - The only prediction of mine that is probably considered an upset. JRL has been solid with a 3-1 record after a loss to me last week, Frania also had a tough loss last week and is sitting at a 2-2 record. Despite JRL having the better record I don't think either player out of the two have looked better over each other in both play and team choices. Franias team selections feels like it's just randomly building a certain style of team and hoping it works out while JRL has just used a different HO team every week. Play wise both players have moments where they make quite solid plays and both players also have moments where their plays don't make much sense and just aren't very good, I'd consider this matchup relatively even compared to the other matches this week for sure. I'm bolding Fran mostly on gut I think JRLs HO teams will eventually get punished more and even this week if he wants to HO he might end up running into some crack Shadowmonstr HO that overruns him on matchup, Fran has also alternated between wins and losses and this week it's time for his win.

[SHO] Ninja vs dnagerbdager [FOX] - Ninjas been playing pretty well all things considered. Ninja lost last week to Nails but you can hardly fault them for the loss, they've had some shaky turns every game but they haven't been bad by any means and the Shoguns are definitely happy with how their 4k starter has performed so far. Foxes on the other hand are in a very bad spot, I said at the start of the tour that the biggest risk with this pairing is qsns not being flop proof and dnager never being allowed to sub in and here dnager is subbing in after qsns has started 0-4 (though they are actually subbed because covid). dnager is a player who was always supposed to just be good support and not play but they are kind of just being thrown to the wolves and with no real playing success to their name it's very hard to see them get the win, but maybe they can get a really good matchup for themselves.

[TMS] Memoric vs Nails [TER] - Speaking of players who got subbed in we see Memoric subbing in for Joe who is facing Nails. Memoric is no stranger to these team tours but he has never performed well in these officials other than his very first one and has talked about not wanting to play as well. Nails on the other hand is someone who essentially always performs well in these tours and has looked very impressive again this year with a 4-0 record looking better in every game. If there's one thing going in Memos favour it's that he's pretty good at prepping and can get a good matchup here but I haven't loved everything seen from the TMs teams this SCL. Joe's teams have usually had one wack set per team, and even if that gets fixed and Memo gets matchup it's easy to see Nails being able to outplay.

[PLA] Z Strats vs Tenzai [BRE] - Won last time these two played against each other in a team tour
We have survived another SCL week! Congrats everyone we are half way there! Its time for some more fun facts:
The two 0-5s are battling out! I don't think there will be an 0-x by the end of the season but if there is this decides who it is!
Tenzai pulled a huge upset, handing Z Strats his first loss of the season and taking away the 5-0 showdown this week!
Zeraora was originally at a 0% win rate, losing all 4 of its games. This week it was brought once and got its first win! Only took 5 tries!
Whimsicott lost its first game this week, taking victories in 2 of the 3 games it was brought to. Whimsicott is still at a 7-1 record!
First week with no Tyranitar :psysad:.. Tyranitar to T1 dream is dying :psycry:

  • [BRE] Tenzai vs JRL [ISL]
Out of all the matches this is the one I am the least sure about. JRL had been looking so dominate the first 3 weeks but has been knocked back down to earth these last two. The big thing I got from JRL's game last week was how much I didn't like the team. Amoonguss + Dragapult with no terrain setter to get rid of Misty Terrain, a Trick Room Mew with no real abuser outside of Amoonguss, no spread at all because of Dragon Claw on the Dragapult.. It just felt so off. JRL Set up the Trick Room turn 1 and came out in a disadvantage because of Misty Terrain stopping JRL's ability to abuse Amoonguss. After the initial Trick Room turns all it took was a Scarf Landorus to catch Nihi off guard and the game was over. I was just not a fan and it makes me worried that JRL is a one trick Hyper Offense player which is fine if you can build like Z Strats, but if you reuse then its way too easy to exploit. Tenzai on the other hand is coming off a huge win vs Z Strats. This match itself is a little harder to rate as both players got lucky at certain points in the game. The Trick Room turns felt deadly for Tenzai too as despite losing Genesect turn 1 Tenzai was able to get a huge lead. Somehow even with that lead the match came down to Z Strats actually choking an 100% win.. It was just a weird game. Tenzai is 2-0 and coming off a win vs Z Strats which is probably worth even more, but I'm going to give JRL one more shot. This can definitely go either way.
  • [TER] Nails vs Z Strats [PLA]
[01:08:00] +JoeUX9: What's the user
  • [FOX] dnagerbdager vs Memoric [TMS]
Battle of the substitutes. Both of these slots are 0-5 and see this as their chance to salvage their season and bounce back. Memoric had a pretty rough game vs Nails, switching Phero early to get no damage and allow Rillaboom tank a devastating U-Turn to chunk it the rest of the game. After losing Fini turn 2 the game was just a sweep where Memoric really had no actual counterplay to Nail's team. Memoric has stated several times that he does not want to play either, making this situation for the Machines pretty dire. That was the risk of drafting Joe though, so I guess they just lost the gamble. Dnager actually played a pretty decent game, but was just always a step behind. The team choice honestly felt a little weird with Whimsicott to set up Tailwind but opting for Meteor Beam Mew without Lele for the spread Expanding Force option. Overall dnager didn't really make plays that made progress but instead it felt like they were just trying to survive. I think there is potential for dnager if they can get in the correct mindset to go for wins instead of try to avoid losing, but until then I'll have to go with Memoric. Despite literally saying he doesn't want to play, he does have a ton of experience and if there is ever a time to fix that team tour win/loss ratio a bit its right now.
  • [SPA] Animus vs Ninja [SHO]
I was very impressed with Animus last week. The team and game plan felt very strong early, and even though the rest of the game felt very safe he was so far ahead the optimal plays were enough to finish a big win over Spurrific. Not only has Animus looked solid but him and Akaru have been doing a great job in team building as well. Overall I think its safe to say Animus is a top player in this pool and I don't expect him to slow down. Ninja is coming off a win vs dnagerbdager, bringing a typical Diancie P2 team. I want to say more about the team choice but I've honestly seen it so many times, it felt very safe. I will say after losing to Nails last week partly due to poor building choices Ninja didn't agree with, its fair to go back to your roots and bring something more comfort against someone you're favored against. The match itself was very close with both players playing fairly well. Ninja played a very strong early game and ended up just riding the moment until the game ended. I don't really have anything bad to say about Ninja's play so far, solid enough to get the wins. I think both these players are good and capable of winning in terms of play so I'm going to base it on team building and support, in which I favor the Spartans much more at this point.
  • [GIB] Frania vs Spurrific [DYN]
This feels weird to say but Spurrific had a pretty bad match up last week. Yes there were options but Animus' team was definitely more built for a straight up match of speed and offense. I do think this is a fluke and that Emma and Spurrific will dig deeper to get a better overall match up this week. Spurrific's game last week definitely showcased just how strong Whimsicott truly is though, with the Eject Button causing U-Turn to miss timing and force a position where Spurrific had to sacrifice his own Dragapult to have any chance of coming back. I don't think Spurrific played bad, it was just better prep in the end. Frania also brought Whimsicott last week and won in a very odd game. JRL's team was very wonky and in a weird turn of events set up Trick Room early on in which Frania actually capitalized on. I can't fault much of Frania's play last week as it never really felt like they were in any risk of losing. With that said, I am going to give Spurrific a slight edge since I feel the Dynamos core will work extra hard to bounce back from a very uncharacteristic start from Spurrific. Frania has been pretty solid so far this SCL though and I could 100% see them clutching out another win.

Normally I revise this a bit since its pretty stream of conscious but I'll do that later if I decide to.. Sorry if some parts are hard to read!
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is a Community Leaderis a Tiering Contributor
Doubles Leader
Through 5 weeks, it seems like a handful of team styles are nearly undefeated (excluding mirrors), hazard stack and whimsicott offense. It really does seem like if you’re going with balance, hazard stack is the way to go, and the most effective method of offense against that is whimsicott HO. There’s definitely other elements at play here, but from a birds eye view that seems to be a relevant takeaway.

Ninja narrowly got the win this week bringing the sample hazard stack team (or a slight variation of it). By my calculation, samples are currently 3-0. Using established good teams works!

Nails won yet again, this time bringing a team built around coaching Zeraora. He consistently outpositioned Memoric in this matchup, and by 8 turns in I don’t think Nails had taken ~300 hp in damage. So far in all his games, Nails has seemed to be a step ahead of his opponents. Surely he’ll drop one or two… right??

Tenzai pulled out a win using an interesting Shift Gear Genesect team. You wouldn’t typically think of Shift Gear Genesect to be used on a team with two Trick Room users, but it makes sense when your best other attackers are Diancie/specs Fini, Zygarde, all capable of removing the fire types Genesect hates. Trick Room teams often need a fast attacker to remove offensive Pokémon that threaten the TR setters, but a set up sweeper like Shift Gear Genesect would still take a turn before it becomes this fast threatening Pokémon. It worked out however, as Tenzai was able to get the win by smartly not protecting his Diancie, and playing to his only out which was to click TR and hope that his opponent did not Flash Cannon the Diancie.

Edit: I have been informed that actually the Naga was scarf, so the Genesect was likely scarf as well, but got sniped by the Naga. That makes more sense. Even in recaps I’m wrong.

Spurrific vs Animus was an interesting matchup, as we saw two teams built with Dragapult and Nihilego facing each other. However, Animus brought them in an offensive team with whimsicott tailwind, while Spurrific brought a more balanced team with a few fake outs and CM fini. The more offensive version with Whimsicott won here, as I think Spurrific was trying to play around getting encore’d, which this Whimsicott didn’t carry, knowing Taunt instead. This just goes to show the power of prankster support moves, as your opponent has to play around a lot of possibilities.
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Z Strats

Banned deucer.
super late and lazy predicts because I've been busy this week

[BRE] Tenzai vs JRL [ISL] - this game already happened and tenzai won but I predicted JRL as I thought JRL has looked better. Will obviously go over the game more in the weekly dou recap but I think JRL had a great position and did not play well to keep it when heatran was almost the only thing in the way of a genesect sweep.

[TER] Nails vs Z Strats [PLA] - Nails lost w6 last year, I won w6 last year.

[FOX] dnagerbdager vs Memoric [TMS] - Surprised to not see qsns back in. Memo is the better player but he's cursed in these tours and never performs well. I also have not liked memorics teams so I'm going with the upset of dnager just getting matchup and playing just well enough to take the game from memo wouldn't be surprised to see memo get too brazy as well.

[SPA] Animus vs Ninja [SHO] - Animus was able to get himself a nice auto win matchup last week and took the game over Justin, Ninja also got a win last week but it wasn't too impressive of one and they lost if their opponent clicked iron head on the p2, overall I think Animus has gotten back into a good form at this point in the season and I rate Animus playing with Akaru support higher than I do Ninja playing with Gma support right now.

[GIB] Frania vs Spurrific [DYN] - Frania had an impressive win last week with a cool team and good play. Justin was not able to play a game due to running into a really bad matchup. I do think emma is gonna be super tryharding now that Justin has lost 3 and Justin as a player is usually better than Frania so I think he takes it. Frania has also been alternating between winning and losing and it's time for a loss.
Another week another little recap:
  1. In an unexpected twist, JRL goes from 3-0 to 3-3, making Tenzai vs Nails the battle of undefeated players (6-0 v 3-0)
  2. Reusing teams has been a theme this SCL, with a lot of players using established samples or teams that have won a previous week.
  3. The TMs are the final team without a win in DOU, subbing Joe back in to fight Animus. Can Joe take down a fellow VGC player to save their DOU from Finishing 0-x?
  4. Two teams did not have a Steel type on them (Frania and Ninja), both of which lost last week.
  5. Heatran specifically had a good showing last week, going 4-0. The come back??
  6. Whimsicott once again looking absolutely insane, winning all 3 matches it was featured in and having an overall 10-1 record!
  7. Finally, Volcanion was brought 3 times last week and went 0-3. It has a 31% win rate in 16 times of being brought, while Fini has a 73% win rate in the 22 times its been brought. To add further to that, Urshifu is at a 36% win rate in 14 times of being brought. Rain has only been brought once and it did win, but not counting that it looks like if you're not bringing Fini as your water type you are going to struggle.
Now for predictions!

  • [ISL] JRL vs Spurrific [DYN]
I said last week that it was JRL's last chance before I stopped believing. 3-0 to 3-3 is a rough but JRL is still a solid player so this isn't impossible to come back from. JRL does find himself vs Spurrific though, who is coming off a strong win with a real cool team vs Frania last week. JRL's game felt a little awkward last week, with having a strong early game but allowing Fini to just sit there and get 2 free KOs ultimately losing too much momentum. Spurrific brought a cool Coaching team vs a hard Trick Room team. It ended up being very close but it always felt like Spurrific was in control. I've been saying Spurrific will win out from here for a few weeks now and I'm sticking to it.
  • [SHO] Ninja vs Frania [GIB]
Both players lost in very close games last week. The biggest take away from their games was that Ninja actually should have won the game. The Knock Off on Necrozma was an error that definitely changed the outcome. Ninja's mid game was very solid though, giving up two Pokemon early in return for a much better mid and end game. I think Ninja has a lot of potential in DOU with more experience, but as of now there are still small errors that need to be taken care of. Ninja has shown glimpses of better play, but Frania overall has been much more solid. Frania's teams have also been very unique, bringing Hatterene hard Trick Room of all things last week. I think Frania will bring something solid and catch an error or two from Ninja to run away with the game. Frania is also rotating between wins and losses this SCL so.. sorry you rolled the wrong week Ninja..
  • [TMS] JoeUX9 vs Animus [SPA]
I don't actually have a lot to say about this game. I may be wrong but I highly doubt Joe was practicing DOU while on the bench, and his understanding of DOU was already the biggest issue here. Animus on the other hand has been super solid in both play and the builder. Last week Animus was definitely bailed a bit in a losing endgame, but I still think he is one of the top players in the pool right now.
  • [PLA] Z Strats vs dnagerbdager [FOX]
Dnager is coming off a solid win! The match up was already bad for Memoric and dnager didn't give them any chances which is always a good sign in these high pressure games. Dnager did reuse one of our teams though, so the question still stands if their team building can keep up with the big names. Big names such as Z Strats, who lost last week to Nails with some luck that felt very game changing in the end. Z Strats is very clearly one of the top plays in the pool again, and despite going 0-2 the last two weeks it was against the two undefeated players left so its excusable. This week is definitely the week for dnager to really prove they are deserving of the slot, but Z Strats has been so strong these past two SCLs it would be wrong to predict him to lose. Keep in mind Z Strats did choke the win vs Tenzai, so he is not impossible to defeat so dnager definitely can do it.
  • [BRE] Tenzai vs Nails [TER]

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Z Strats

Banned deucer.
[ISL] JRL vs Spurrific [DYN] - JRL has been getting punished for his team brings of HO and reusing older style of teams bringing his record from a 3-0 to a 3-3. Justin is in his lose week but is someone who will definitely punish JRLs team choices like JRLs previous opponents have. Even if JRL does switch it up Justin is someone who can play solid with and against every type of team and it's hard to know how well JRL can adapt to the new meta changes that are currently punishing his older style of teams.

[SHO] Ninja vs Frania [GIB] - Frania is in his win week, when he's not throwing in the builder and getting an awful matchup he looks really solid and I think he should have learned his lesson with indeedee hatt in 2022 and have something a little more solid this week. Ninja is coming off a choke which is always tough but it happens to almost everyone and I wouldn't knock him for it too much. Overall he's been pretty good but his teams havent been amazing either so I don't expect Ninja to get the matchup on Fran needed to make me consider bolding against Fran here.

[TMS] JoeUX9 vs Animus [SPA] - Amaranth free Leo you coward

[PLA] Z Strats vs dnagerbdager [FOX] - I'm running out of things to say here

[BRE] Tenzai vs Nails [TER] - Fun match between the undefeated players that have lucked Z Strats. Nails is looking too unstoppable to bold against but Tenzai hasn't been too shabby either having a really solid win vs JRL last week. Ultimately I'm not ever bolding against Nails even if I do expect him to lose 1 of his next 3 games so Tenzai will once again have to prove the haters wrong which he has been doing a pretty good job of so far.
Not going to go that in depth this week. Every team is still in contention for play offs so these matches are extra important! Should be fun to see what everyone brings and how they play in the high pressure situation!

  • [FOX] dnagerbdager vs Tenzai [BRE]
Both players lost last week. Dnager went with a pretty interesting Trick Room Lurantis team that had a Rillaboom slotted in as well for double Grassy Glide. I thought the team itself was a cool concept but after Rillaboom fainted turn 1 to a Choice Band U-Turn from Genesect it was basically smooth sailing for Z Strats. Fake Out pressure is already difficult for Trick Room teams, and with Whimsicott threatening Encore it was a very rough match up to play. Tenzai had a very good match up into Nails last week but ended up playing suboptimal in some positions letting himself fall behind. I don't think we have enough information on dnager to know where they slot in the pool yet, and as Tenzai is 3-1 at this point I think its safe to go with him here. Dnager could definitely win this with solid play though.
  • [TER] Nails vs JRL [ISL]
Undefeated regular season??
  • [SPA] Animus vs Z Strats [PLA]
Both of their games last week were pretty uneventful. Z Strats won in a pretty straight forward game while Animus got cheesed by Joe. I think they are both solid players but Z Strats has just looked a bit better. Excited to see what both bring though!
  • [GIB] Frania vs JoeUX9 [TMS]
Joe gets the TMs their first win, meaning no DOU core is going 0-x this season! Frania is on his lose week but I can't predict for Joe with just one psyspam hard TR win.. Will Frania be able to break the win loss streak or is fate too strong?
  • [DYN] Spurrific vs Grandmas Cookin [SHO]
Much like Frania, Spurrific finds himself in a win loss cycle. Luckily for Spurrific that would mean this is his win week. GMA had a rough start to the year, I believe not winning a single series of DOU period (Got to round 9 of the OSDT without winning a game LOL dropless swiss is crazy). GMA is not a bad player but Spurrific is on a different level, especially on his win week.

Z Strats

Banned deucer.
[FOX] dnagerbdager vs Tenzai [BRE] - Both got good matchups last week but both also lost and would like to bounce back. dnager has shown they are quite good at getting matchup which has given them a fighting chance despite being someone who was never supposed to start, while tenzai was always a solid playing sub if things went wrong and has been performing well except for a pretty bad game last week. If there's anyone I favour to get matchup here it's definitely dnager but I still rate Tenzais playing better and will give him the bold.

[TER] Nails vs JRL [ISL] - Nails is playing on Friday again and he can't keep getting away with his Friday teams, please JRL please punish him I'm begging you.

[SPA] Animus vs Z Strats [PLA] - Lost to JoeUX9 vs didn't lose to JoeUX9

[GIB] Frania vs Leo JoeUX9 [TMS] - Frania is in his lose week and the machines somehow won a game, realistically I probably predict Frania here but the win/lose week thing seems to be very real and Frania randomly pulls out some bad teams and matchups on his lose week. As bad as the machines record has been we do have to remember that Joe probably should've beat JRL if not for luck, he is more capable to pick up the win then some think, even if he hasn't been the best when it comes to DOU.

[DYN] Spurrific vs Grandmas Cookin [SHO] - Gma is subbing in for 3-4 ninja and is unfortunately for him up against Spurrific in his win week. Gma has not had the most successful year this year and lost to Fran in his only SCL game last year. Spurrific has had a much weaker season then he would like also having the same record as ninja at 3-4. This is a good bounce back game for Spurrific as he is generally more skilled than Grandmas Cookin and I expect them to prep a bit harder too as going negative would be super bad for someone like him.

Z Strats

Banned deucer.
Lunar. please give the people good predicts this week because I sure the hell am not.

[PLA] Z Strats vs Frania [GIB] - Usually I say something dumb here about how I'm going to win because of x, but I literally have not beaten Frania since 2017. To make matters worse his team also has pokeaim on it who farmed me in osdt. To make matters EVEN worse Fran is in his win week, I am absolutely screwed and all I got going for me is that one time years ago I beat Fran in a LC seasonal game (ignore the fact that EVEN THIS is from 2017) please help me.

[TMS] Leo vs Spurrific [DYN] - LEO IS FREED. Rumour has it Leo beat umbry on the dou ladder, Leo might be the goat and Justin is underperforming and in his lose week. I'll take a potential goat over washed Justin any day but Justins team is also about to be guaranteed out in which case he might not care as much and Leo the next emforbes will farm 6-0 with ease.

[ISL] JRL vs Grandmas Cookin [SHO] - JRL was our one hope to stop nails and he ruined my dreams and happiness by not going for the free heatran when he had the chance. GMA on the other hand has been having a bad year going 2-10 in team tours, his team is also the only team 100% out of playoff contention. JRL almost always wins this but if Gma doesn't win this game I will not pick him for the Canada dwcop roster and even if the tour becomes 6 slots will be replacing his starter slot with omicorio so I expect he will be extra motivated to finally get a win.

[BRE] Toxigen vs Animus [SPA] - beat Z Strats, though that's becoming less impressive these days.

[TER] Nails vs dnagerbdager [FOX] - no pressure dnager but everything rests on ur shoulder, you can't be letting lucky ass nails get a 9-0 regular season when true goats have never done it. This guy is all luck he gets every dragon tail send out in his favour, he wins every important speed tie and he dodges hydro pump while hitting every single one, just bring all fairy types that are super fast and use only 100% accurate moves and you've got this.
I have been called upon, and as a man of the people I must deliver.. We are in our final week with 2 teams in and only 1 team out of contention, meaning there are still 7 teams fighting for their spot in play offs! This means there is a lot on the line in these games! If these players have some crazy techs and strategies this is the time to pull them out. Will we see meta changing best teams of SS DOU or will people fall back on teams and concepts that are proven already? Either way these should be some exciting games!

Recap of last weeks games:
  1. Joe gave rain its first loss (1-1) meaning that Fini is now the only water type with a positive win record.
  2. Speaking of water types, Volcanion actually got 2/3 wins last week! Despite some help to its win record it still sits at a 32% win percentage in 22 games.
  3. Whimsicott still stays having one of the most impressive win percentages of all time for DOU. It was brought 3 times last week and only lost the mirror! With 17 usage it has a 82% win rate which is absolutely insane! It shows how strong fast speed control is this format!
  4. Speaking of fast (instant) speed control, Dracozolt went 2-0 last week! Tyranitar was also brought 3 times last week, going 2-1 with its only loss being on a team without Dracozolt!
  5. Lastly, dragons (outside of sand rush) haven't been doing very well. The winrates follow: Dragapult 35% in 17 games, Naganadel 36% in 14 games, Kyurem-Black 25% in 8 games. There are other dragons too but these are the three main ones people go to. Other Pokemon that rely heavily on speed also aren't doing very well, like Pheromosa at 36% and Zeraora at 20%. It seems if you want to do well running bulkier teams with stable speed control is the best method.

Finally we are here! The last regular season predictions:

  • PLA] Z Strats vs Frania [GIB]
I usually regret predicting against Z Strats but if there is a week to do it it's this one. Frania has had Z Strats' number for years now, and its not easy to break that kind of mental barrier. Frania has also been taking this tournament very seriously, and with the Gibles tournament life possibly on the line I can see Frania pulling out something deep and showing us some heat. To be honest he definitely shouldn't have won last week. Joe played a great mid game and put himself in a very strong position but made some less than optimal plays to give Frania the win. With that said, I am a believer that if you are in that bad of a spot and still put yourself in the position to win with help then your play is still solid enough. On the other side we have Z Strats who played a very solid early game but ultimately gave up his answers to CB Genesect and it proceeded to sweep him quite like he did week 2 to Ninja. This end game hiccup felt pretty uncharacteristic from Z Strats honestly. Its been a pretty weird season with some questionable plays and chokes that you dont expect from him. But hey if you're off performance is a guaranteed positive regular season then thats still solid. Overall this season both have felt pretty even in terms of play so I think its safe to go with the historic winner of this exchange... just as long as Frania doesn't lose to Terrakion..
  • [TMS] Leo vs Spurrific [DYN]
Leo actually in.. This is actually insane from the TMS since they very much still have a shot of getting into play offs. I guess both other DOUers aren't performing well and if you are going out you may as well stay true to the meme.. I don't know anything about Leo's DOU, and even with Memoric support the last two weeks have been random hyper offense.. yea idk about this one. One thing they have going for them is Spurrific being on a loss week. I'd put more into this but Frania broke that curse last week which gives me up hope Spurrific can too. I guess you can argue Spurrific got bailed last week by Grandma's Cookin tossing late game, but Spurrific still played solid and overall I rate them high. I wrote all of this but like come on LOL we all know who is favored here.
  • [ISL] JRL vs Grandmas Cookin [SHO]
Both lost last week in similar ways. Both players definitely had favorable positions and couldn't take full advantage of them and finish the job. JRL brought a pretty interesting Zygarde Heatran + Speed Control team with a Pheromosa slapped on while GMA brought a pretty standard psyspam. I've just never been too impressed with either of their team choices this tournament, but JRL's have been slightly better overall imo. That on top of JRL having a solid overall 2022 season while GMA hasn't had the best, I think the safe pick is JRL. With that said I could definitely see GMA win this, its a lot closer than it may seem.
  • [BRE] Toxigen vs Animus [SPA]
Animus is coming off a real impressive win vs Z Strats. He didn't start the strongest but his late game planning was enough to pull out a win with CB Genesect. I've been really liking the team choices from both these slots lately, with Animus bringing very solid teams and piloting well, while the Breakers were bringing teams that felt more tailored towards their opponents and getting solid match ups. That is where I think Toxigen needs to hit if he wants to win this. His play wasn't the most solid early on, choking some pretty solid match ups. But that's just a battle against yourself at that point. Toxigen is a solid player, and with the right match up if he avoid losing to himself I can definitely see him pull out a win. I just cant justify myself predicting against Animus though, who has had the cool teams and great play throughout the whole season.
  • [TER] Nails vs dnagerbdager [FOX]
I honestly just want to be the support for the 9-0 slot. Nails has been playing sick this tournament. dnagerbdager is no slouch but Nails is always favored here.
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