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Day 2 of Rocket League's World Championships has no winners, just survivors and disappointed players

November 10, 2018 2 min read

The Rocket League World Championships are three days long, and the middle day is the one that feels most eminently unfair. On Sunday, someone will be crowned champion. On Friday, the worst possible result in this double elimination tournament is taking a single loss. Saturday is the grueling day. Saturday is when dreams start shattering.

The RLCS bracket splinters to separate those who have lost a matchup from those who have not. Everyone wants to be in the top. As long as you're in the upper half, you always have an extra life. Crazy things always happen in Rocket League and several world champions have come through the lower bracket to eventually win. But down there, it's always do or die. Up top, there's room for error.

Day 1 was the quintessential example of "crazy things always happen in Rocket League." (Check out our first day recap for a full rundown.) Every North American squad was on the wrong end of the results. They forced themselves into a bloodbath of a bracket, and Saturday was just as brutal as expected. It had to be. The bracket shows no mercy, even if it feels way too early for some of these top names to exit the tournament.

The most high-profile match of the day was played under these exact circumstances. Cloud9 and NRG, the probably-consensus two best in North America, were faced with a tense elimination match. NRG made it to last season's Grand Finals, meaning it was almost inconceivable that they'd go winless this time. But, Cloud9's incredible too -- the sort of squad that's absolutely championship caliber.

In a thrilling five-game best-of-five series, Cloud9 eked past NRG with an overtime goal in the fifth game. It was a neutral ball that just kind of rolled across the goal line. That's how close these two are. The winner came from just the slightest extra bit of momentum on Cloud9's behalf. Cloud9 soldiers on as a very viable candidate to represent the lower bracket in the Grand Finals. NRG is left wondering how differently things could've gone if they hadn't been upset by an Oceanic team on the first day.

Day 2 of Rocket League's World Championships has no winners, just survivors and disappointed players screenshot

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