Can finally take a stab at these with some more time in hand and fewer teams in.
Team Raiders (6) vs (6) Alpha Ruiners
SV OU: Baloor vs xavgb - xavgb has been the picture of consistency in CG OU for a couple of years now. He uses good teams and makes good plays. I do feel his playoff performances have been a step behind his regular season ones, but I think another season of experience will serve him well here. I like Baloor a lot and I think he has a cool vision of the tier, but I find him to be a step or two behind where he needs to be to be a favorite in this setting, especially against a top opponent. Overall, Baloor is just more error prone while xavgb has been an absolute machine. I expect the Raiders to have Baloor equipped with some Tricking technology here, but xavgb will flick the right switches to make it work.
SV OU: DAHLI vs njnp - Ruiners' SV teams have been some of the best in the tournament imo, and I think njnp is one of the biggest forces behind this strength. CBB and Raptor are creative, too, so perhaps it is a group effort, but njnp has shown an affinity for practical techs since the first time I saw him play. I really love how he focuses on generating openings and offensive pressure. I think stall into Lily was not his single best choice, but otherwise he has had a ton of good ideas. DAHLI is someone I am less familiar with and I worry this will be an uphill game for them. Their win vs Raptor was good, but perhaps more due to Raptor than DAHLI themselves. Of course, credit is still due and DAHLI has a solid record in a shorter sample, but njnp's full body of work impresses me more.
SV OU: Kebab mlml vs Raptor - Raptor had a rough week nine game, but a very strong season overall. I have a lot of respect for his creative ideas and aggressive plays. Kebab is definitely good, too, but I think he is a bit more reliant on support in the builder and a bit less seasoned as a battler here. I am very excited to see what Raptor comes up with in the teambuilder. I expect this one to be quite offensive and over by turn 30-40 either way.
SV OU: Ash KetchumGamer vs CrashinBoomBang - This one is close. I think both are way better than their records. Ash has been an absolute fiend in STour like settings and CBB has been great for many years. I think I can see CBB winning because he has a ton of experience and the moment in the playoffs is not too big for him, but Ash is really scrappy and finds a way to win when he has the right teams selected a lot. My gut says Ash, so I will bold accordingly, but definitely close to me. Very excited to see what teams they come up with.
SS OU: Gtcha vs Eternal Spirit - Gtcha is a very strong player. Gama can and likely will be, too, but sometimes he makes errors that hurt his position. When he has a clear plan and his ideas straight, Gama is arguably the higher ceiling of the two and I love his style of play as well. Gtcha seems a bit less prone to errors and more consistent though. His success is really understated and Gtcha's records overall are pretty amazing. I will side with him due to this and recent track record, but never count Gama out as he is very capable as well.
SM OU: Skypenguin vs CTC - Skype got some fortune in the first round, but he is overall one of the top SM players and probably my favorite builder in the current metagame. CTC is a wild card who can beat anyone in anything with the right amount of preparation and form, but I do think his best days are a bit behind him. Obviously still cannot count him out as a high ceiling player, but Skype, kind of like Gtcha, is just very solid and consistent. Gotta stick with that here.
ORAS OU: RaiZen1704 vs pj - Tough break for pj last week, but overall I am impressed a lot with pj's teams and play. He continues to improve in a metagame that is looking more cool by the season to me. RaiZen is tough as I am unsure how good he may be; some silly wins with the activity and timeout, but also he seems to be very invested and the Raiders have a lot of support. I know pj more and trust him more, but could see it going either way.
BW OU: Jisoo vs dice - dice is phenomenal when in BW. His teams are close to the golden standard and his play is not too shabby either. Jisoo has had an amazing debut, demonstrating masterful play of numerous archetypes, but I think they may have their hands full here. The support of a pantheon of BW greats -- McMeghan, raiza, and even Tricking -- may go a long way, but preparing for dice is very hard. I expect dice to have the advantage in preparation for sure and the battle may be close, but dice has avoided making many mistakes, so I expect him to come out on top in an absolute highlight.
DPP OU: DeepBlueC vs Laurel - Another repeat game. I think DBC is too good to lose consecutively here. He is not going to dominate any field necessarily, but DBC is a consistently good player. Laurel I am less familiar with in the modern day. He looked good last week, but may have some more ground to cover to repeat this performance.
ADV OU: McMeghan vs zf
GSC OU: false vs Siatam
RBY OU: Serpi vs chuva de perereca
Lean Raiders in tiebreak
Congregation of the Classiest (6) vs (6) Stark Sharks
SV OU: Garay oak vs SoulWind - I am surprised to see SoulWind in SV, and I think this match-up is a bit awkward for him. He has a decent chance in any tier vs any player of course because he is an all-time great player, but Garay is no easy opponent. Neither has been excellent this season as both went 4-5, but Garay has been better here than in BW and at least has a few weeks under his belt. I expect this to be close as both are superb players, but I will give Garay the edge as he is typically good in the playoffs and has been in SV a bit longer. I think we see some sneaky cheese being brought out here, too.
SV OU: Lunala vs kythr - Quietly, kythr had a nice 5-4 regular season after a very strong start. Lunala has struggled a bit with a 2-5 showing thus far himself. I think kythr has just looked better and I view both as similarly competent, but support reliant, in CG OU, so the recent results break it open for me.
SV OU: mncmt vs mind gaming - Absolute banger. mind gaming has become a top player, but mncmt is now 9-0. Gotta go with the 9-0, too. mncmt has been so strong this generation and I cannot pick against them with what I have seen. mind gaming is the heart of this very strong OU core and he can beat anyone of course, but his hands will be full with an undefeated opponent in mncmt.
SV OU: Aberforth vs Nat - Nat is great. If she stays on task, I expect a complete effort and victory from her here. Abe shows some promise and had a nice win last week, but I think he is outmatched in terms of metagame prowess and body of work here by Nat, so it will be tough for him to make this up without getting a favorable match-up.
SS OU: suapah vs TDNT - suapah is a very strong SS player and has been super efficient when given the chance to play the tier officially. TDNT I am not familiar with at all and cannot comment on, but given that suapah is a clear positive in my eyes, the decision made itself for me.
SM OU: emforbes vs Gondra - emforbes has been great this season and I view them as a consisntently strong player. Gondra I see as more hit or miss though and I think his team choices may also reflect this. I gotta side with the more consistent of the two as a 6-3 debut is phenomenal and Gondra just has not dominated much recently like he once did.
ORAS OU: MichaelderBeste2 vs jonfilch - Great pairing! jon is a wonderful ORAS player who always brings good teams. Surprised to see Michael here, but I respect the call from the Classiest a lot. This will be close as Michael is coming off of an invitational win, too, but jon has been in this format all season and feels like he is in a good stride aside from the pj moment. A third tier this tour for Michael feels tough, especially after he finally got it together in SS after a rough month in SV to start things. Gonna side with jonfilch here due to this, but will be very close and exciting above all else.
BW OU: Luthier vs watashi - 5-3 in BW is a great run for watashi, who is more experienced and proven in this generation. Luthier has shown good signs in his time in the tier so far without a doubt and he is a very good player, but I think he lacks the support watashi does and I think he is a step behind in terms of metgame instinct/knowledge, so I side with watashi.
DPP OU: Student of Sinnoh vs bruno - the corder
ADV OU: Triangles vs robjr
GSC OU: Century Express vs ggggd
RBY OU: Nails vs Heroic Troller
lean Sharks in tiebreak