The World Cup of Pokémon 2019 - Round 1

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It's been a long time coming, but here we are at last. THE RETURN OF THE UNBIASED PREDICTIONS

This edition will truly be unbiased since I am predicting my own team's games. Let the fun begin. I suppose I will start with the relegation series.

UK (2) vs. Asia (0)

SM: 1 True Lycan vs Analytic | Analytic has never really been that good of a player. The Baron was probably a bit overhyped by various parties, but he should be good enough to win this one.
SM: The Hallows vs Altina | Not gonna lie, I have no idea who Altina is LOL At least The Hallows was in SPL and I recognize his name.
GSC: baddummy vs Kingler12345 | Wow LMAO what a game. Both of these players seem to be pretty inconsistent. I don't really have that strong of a take here, but I think Kingler's probably a bit more experienced in GSC.

okay thank God we are done with that dumbass meme series LOL onto the real games.

Spain (1) vs. US South (2)

SM: Axel vs FMG | FMG is proving himself to really be a franchise player. His game against Ultraballz was extraordinary and helped show that his 5-0 SPL performance was no fluke. I think at this point he is a 14-15k player with even more upside. On the other side of the matchup is Axel10, who was a beast at his peak a few seasons ago. He had a solid Round 1 showing, and could definitely take this game. However, I think FMG is a better bet right now. I'm honestly really surprised Spain didn't put Trosko in both tiebreaks, since I would favor him against pretty much everyone that is participating in these series. I don't really see the merit of their strategy, but perhaps it will pay off.
ADV: M Dragon vs TDK | A lot of people seem to be high on TDK's ADV abilities. He is obviously a solid player whose talent speaks for itself. However, I will need to see him demonstrate his ADV skills on the big team tournament stage before I'm ready to bold his name against one of the best ADVers of all time. M Dragon may not be in the best of form, but he gets the benefit of the doubt in this one.
GSC: SoulWind vs d0nut | I've always felt d0nut was a bit underrated. His price in SPL was insanely low, especially considering people were picking up Century Express and CasedVictory for laughable sums. He had a brilliant SPL showing, and in a weak GSC pool, has established himself as a pretty solid player. On the other hand, SoulWind needs no introduction. He's an amazing player with a track record of consistency across the years. However, this is GSC OU. There's really no evidence that would lead me to believe that SoulWind is a better GSC player than d0nut. So for now, d0nut can have the edge.

Spain (2) vs US West (1)

SM: Trosko vs lax | lax is a beast. There's no denying that. In a short amount of time, he went from US West afterthought to lower tier mainer to jack-of-all-trades SPL hero. I'm pretty high on my friend as a player, and he would be bolded against a great deal of the players in the tour. Not here, though. Trosko is ridiculously good, and is in monster form. As I alluded to in my previous prediction, I would favor GODSKO against everyone in these tiebreaks in SM OU. I always was decently high on him, but the level he has demonstrated since the start of SPL is otherworldly.
ORAS: Poek vs ben gay | ben is a force to be reckoned with. He always manages to get the right matchups, and has probably even improved as a player over the years. He even tackled his nerves when his team needed him in SPL. However, I would favor Poek against almost anyone in ORAS. I think he'should a fantastic player and should be able to outplay ben gay enough if the matchup isn't too one-sided for ben.
GSC: M Dragon vs Lavos | It will take a lot for me to predict against one of the best GSCers of all time, but Lavos is just that good. He's cemented himself as the best GSCer on the site and as one of Smogon's best overall players as well. Against an out-of-form MDragon, he should justifiably have a solid edge.

US South (0) vs. US West (3)

SM: FMG vs lax | I already spoke about both these players earlier. I think both are newcomers that are establishing themselves as true monsters in Smogon's future. This is a very tight one, but I have to give the edge to Lax. I think he's slightly more proven and that will give him the smallest of edges.
ADV: TDK vs undisputed | Kevin S is one oof the best ADVers on the site. He's been slamming people in this tier for years. TDK has potential, but has yet to really demonstrate it in this metagame. Solid edge for the veteran.
RBY: d0nut vs Lavos | We picked this tier because it's a literal coin flip and we had no edges elsewhere. Still, Lavos is one of the best players on Smogon and a fellow Classic Champion, so he gets the advantage here.

Well, based on this, we would have to play another tiebreak lol...not my fault Spain didn't put Trosko in twice vros.


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Spain vs US West

SM OU: Trosko vs lax - Both are great, but lax has been a bit better in recent months, dominating SPL all the way to the tiebreak and WCOP. Trosko has been very successful, too, but I think lax will edge him out in one of my favorite games of the bunch.
ORAS OU: Poek vs craing ;_; - Ben's great obviously, but I think Poek is a bit more consistent. I was pretty much entirely unsure who to go with, but Poek has looked great in ORAS this year thus far, so I have a hunch he will take it.
GSC OU: M Dragon vs Lavos - Hard to predict against Lavos in this tier. M Dragon is surely a formidable opponent, but Lavos has been near automatic here, so I will give respect where it is due.

Spain vs US South

SM OU: Axel vs FMG - Big game FMG is a force to be reckon with apparently. Axel has shown signs of life and his former self for sure, but I'm still not ready to draw conclusions on his level of competency in SM, at least vs SPL caliber players as opposed to middling WCOP opponents.
ADV OU: M Dragon vs TDK - M Drag felt confident enough to slot himself here, so he must be feeling confident in the tier. I expect him to be in good form and use something solid. TDK is no pushover and I've seen him do well against other top level ADV players, but he may be a bit in over his head here against one of the historically stronger players in the tier.
GSC OU: SoulWind vs d0nut - I feel like SW is always going to have a good shot to win any game in any tier given how strong he is as a player, but SPL showed d0nut off as one of the better GSCers atm. I have confidence he will hold his own in his best tier in the face of strong competition once more. This one should be a treat though.

US South vs US West

SM OU: FMG vs lax - Both are strong, but lax has shown to have a bit more outplaying potential and he has more experience in high pressure situations. Also, bolding FMG's name twice in a tiebreak seems wrong :cwl:
ADV OU: TDK vs undisputed - I flipped a coin to honor the ape, hopefully this will prove to be more accurate than whatever I may have predicted here.
RBY OU: d0nut vs Lavos - Lavos is the better overall player. No clue where he is at in RBY now, but he will make it work if he needs to. This being the tier they play makes me sad ngl, but it's probs the most logical pick for South.

United Kingdom vs Asia

SM OU: 1 True Lycan vs Analytic - The godly Baron OML. Close one, but favoring 1TL as he has a bit better track record in SM specifically.
SM OU: The Hallows vs Altina - Hallows shows a lot of promise in his games whereas I'm not too familiar with Altina.
GSC OU: baddummy vs Kingler12345 - I think I'll pass up on spectating this one.
Well, based on this, we would have to play another tiebreak lol...not my fault Spain didn't put Trosko in twice vros.
Based on your predictions, South would be out, and West would take 7th seed and Spain 8th. If the TDs are following Lavos' idea (I think) from last year, all 3 games of a series should be played and score will matter as well as won series to remove the tie. This allows for a lower chance of getting another tiebreaker.
Predictions! :psyglad:

SM OU: Trosko vs lax - Both of these guys have looked extremely strong all year so I'm very excited for this one. I'm going to favor Trosko because of his metagame knowledge and ability to innovate. I was there when he reshaped SM OU during SPL 9 by creating Rocky Helmet Tornadus-T and he's looked on point playing wise as well.

ORAS OU: Poek vs craing ;_; - Another highlight across these tiebreakers, but for different reasons. I trust no two players more to pull up with some brilliant type of cheesy nonsense in this tiebreaker. Poek brought Toxic + Block + Skill Swap Blissey to trap and remove Clefable (and apparently Keldeo?!) already, so this should be a wild ride. Poek's been on fire in ORAS specifically since SPL, while ben has mostly won his games in SM, so I'm picking him for this one. Another extremely well contested game.

GSC OU: M Dragon vs Lavos - I think M Dragon was unlucky not to win more in round 1 this year and I do consider him elite in GSC still, but Lavos is top dog right now. I think all three of these games could go either way, including this one, but I find it near impossible not to reasonably predict Lavos to win this game. He's just won too much since last year. Very hyped for all of these games!

SM OU: Axel vs. FMG - It appears Spain went with the tactical approach of spreading out their players across the tiebreakers, instead of just loading up SoulWind and Trosko in both. Axel admittedly did positively surprise me in round 1, considering his slump (on Smogon at least) since SPL 8. Having said that, FMG did not hold back against the ballsack whatsoever and he did impress me more so far. Axel has experience on his side, but FMG looks very good this WCoP.

ADV OU: M Dragon vs. TDK - I'm very hyped for this one. For those of you unaware, it's worth noting that ADV is TDK's favorite tier right now and he's been playing it very well in recent tournaments. I'm a big believer in doing better in tiers you're enjoying the most, and TDK hasn't enjoyed SM OU since what feels like the late 90s. M Dragon obviously has more experience in ADV, but both players have huge experience not only playing in team tournaments, but playing in tiebreakers as well. Going with my gut here and letting the very welcome change of pace for TDK determine the outcome.

GSC OU: SoulWind vs d0nut - Honestly, there's only a handful of people I'd predict to beat SoulWind in any tier at all. Not typing out .17.5 during the SPL auction still regularly features in my nightmares and to add to that, I've seen SoulWind play GSC enough to know that d0nut is in real trouble. Seriously, it's not just the Smogon Tour tiers he smacks people around in. I do rate d0nut quite highly and his run in SPL obviously hasn't gone unnoticed, but SoulWind is just too good at playing Pokemon.

SM OU: FMG vs. lax - Lax has won too much, especially in tiebreakers (in which he's 3-0) compared to FMG's inexperience. This very well can be considered FMG's breakout tournament, but it's not like Lax has been slacking in round 1 either. His games also fall under the 'not close' category. I'd be surprised if FMG won this one.

ADV OU: TDK vs. undisputed - I predicted TDK to beat M Dragon, but I think Kevin S. will prove to be a hurdle too far. Though I wouldn't put this match-up past TDK, I assume undisputed will be equipped to beat him. It's worth noting that undisputed did lose to Astamatitos in his last tiebreaker game, but as optimistic as I'd like to be, I don't consider TDK to be on Asta's level in ADV. The anticipator wins too consistently in ADV, I can't predict against him here.

RBY OU: d0nut vs Lavos - First of all, I wholeheartedly agree with South's pick. I've said many times myself that I'd NEVER pick RBY for a tiebreaker, but I can't help but agree here. West just matches up too well in a tiebreaker not to take the gamble. Plus, d0nut can clearly play RBY well. He convinced me during round 1 anyway. I'm still favoring Lavos to win because he always looks strong in RBY to me, especially during playoffs of Classic last year. However, RBY is RBY, so who knows right?
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