If you thought last week’s matches were hot, things have only gotten hotter with week 3 of the Smite Pro League! Radiance continues their undefeated win streak, tossing lesser teams to the side with every match. Sanguine had a lot to prove this past weekend, as a victory they scored during week 2 was marred by controversy. And Obey Alliance continue to struggle despite some improvements they’ve made to their teamwork.
Here’s a brief rundown of this past weekend’s Smite Pro League matches.
Match 1: Pittsburgh Knights vs. Spacestation Gaming
Until this match, Smite Pro League games were always 2-0 affairs. The team who struck first usually walked away with the victory. With this match between PK and SSG, however, we finally found the elusive third game of the set, as both teams proved to be evenly matched.
It was a real back and forth battle as these teams butted heads. Healer characters demonstrated themselves to be quite meta in the SPL in Game 3, resulting in a long, tense match which SSG ultimately won.
Match 2: Sanguine vs. Team Rival
Sanguine’s victory against SSG last week was unfortunately overshadowed by controversy. Apparently Sanguine exploited a Fire Giant giving them a slight advantage in multiple matches. For using the exploit, Hi-Rez gave Sanguine the equivalent of a slap on the wrist, issuing a warning and fining each player $100. The ethics of Sanguine using the bug and Hi-Rez’s response are topics for a separate article. The point is, Sanguine had a lot to prove once again as they had to demonstrate they could win and compete with the best in the league without having to use game exploits.
Team Rival was not the team to make this statement against. Team Rival quickly proved to be Sanguine’s better in Game 1, securing a dominant lead and running away with it. Game 2 was closer, going on past the 40 minute mark, but Team Rival managed to clutch it and secure the 2-0 series victory. They had this to say on Twitter following their victory against Sanguine:
Match 3: eUnited vs. Obey Alliance
The woes of Obey Alliance continue unabated, despite the demonstrable improvements they’ve made in their match against eUnited. At least for Game 1 it was because eUnited went with an unorthodox but effective draft, choosing a double Hunter team composition. Obey Alliance didn’t know how to deal with this non-standard team, and eventually crumbled.
Game 2 saw Obey Alliance improve further still, as they established an early lead. Although they were leading in kills, eUnited still maintained a gold and experience point lead through stronger objective control. This stronger objective control eventually proved to be Obey’s downfall, as eUnited won the set.
Match 4: Sanguine vs. Renegades
This was another match that took us to the mythical realm of the third game of the set. Sanguine was able to come out on top in Game 1 by effectively controlling the pace of the game. They also capitalized on isolating Brandon “Venenu” Casale, picking off this mid lane damage dealer before collapsing in on the rest of the squad. Renegades managed to answer back in Game 2, taking Jing Wei away from the hands of Sanguine. Jing Wei is the usual pick for Fabrizio “Netrioid” Palacios. They were able to use Jing Wei to their own advantage to take Game 2.
Game 3 turned out to be a real slobber-knocker, as Netrioid pulled out a Freya pick to counter Renegades taking Jing Wei away from them again. It was a battle for the ages, but in the end Sanguine proved victorious by the skin of their teeth. It was a late game Sanguine steal of the Fire Giant (which at least looked legitimate this time) that proved to be the dagger for Renegades.
Match 5: Pittsburgh Knights vs. Team Rival
It was the grudge match of epic proportions, as these two rosters last met for a Smite World Championship grand finals match. The Knights struck first in Game 1 as one lucky team fight that happened at the 35 minute mark went in favor of PK, enabling them to end the game right then and there. Game 2 saw Team Rival strike back. Focusing on aggressive picks in draft gave them the edge they needed to outlast PK in a long game and snatch a victory.
As is befitting of such a match, it went all the way to a game 3. But game 3 didn’t go on nearly as long as the others. It was Team Rival in their final form, demolishing objectives as early as 16 minutes in. PK struggled to keep up with the new onslaught and Rival managed to secure the set in 2-1 fashion. To celebrate their victory in this grudge match, they made this epic GIF:
— Team Rival (@TeamRivalGG) April 19, 2020
Match 6: Radiance vs. Spacestation Gaming
You probably already know the outcome of this match from the title of this article. Radiance continues to dominate every match they play. Their victory against SSG was no exception.
Even though Game 1 lasted 44 minutes, there was never any doubt that Radiance was ahead every step of the way. Ditto with Game 2. That game was just clinical teamwork and precision from Radiance as they picked apart SSG, this time in a much shorter time frame at just under 30 minutes. Can anyone stop Radiance now?