HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE PUBG CHARITY SHOWDOWN
The North American PUBG Charity Showdown signaled the official return of PUBG Esports for many this past weekend. With a $100,000 USD prize pool up for grabs and an additional $100,000 USD for the charity of the winning team’s choice, the region’s top sixteen teams dropped into the battlegrounds for the best-of-twenty tournament. Throughout the event, some of PUBG Esports’ very best players produced the intense and exciting moments that make an event such as this one extraordinary.
Early on, Zenith Esports found success with a twenty-one point win amongst three consecutive top-three placements on Day One of the tournament. Considering that Zenith was one of eight teams to recently earn their spot from PCS Qualifiers, this immediate collection of points displayed the team’s ability to carry momentum into the finals. The team continued playing well through Day Two and into Day Three, reinforcing the good impressions they made during PCS Qualifiers.
Day Two of the Charity Showdown rearranged the opening day standings, as teams began to understand their competitors and make the necessary adjustments. Of the teams that returned for Day Two, none were as successful in their approach as the squad of Oath. The team started Day Two off slowly in the first two matches, before erupting in a fifteen-kill chicken dinner to separate themselves from the pack. They followed up that performance and wrapped up their day with back-to-back top-five placements, with at least twelve points in each match.
Recently, Oath added to their team’s firepower when they announced the signing of Brendan “Balefrost” Connors, who was picked up prior to PCS. Oath displayed a well-rounded roster with an ability to collect kills along with poised in-game decision making. Their performance during the Charity Showdown only elevated the expectations surrounding this team. Heading into future events, Oath has rightfully earned themselves a place in the debate of “who’s North America's strongest team?”
As Zenith Esports and Oath stole the spotlight during the opening two days, Shoot To Kill decided that Day Three would be their opportunity to remind everyone of their elite play, something we’ve often seen from this roster. Entering Day Three in the sixth position, Shoot To Kill would need a substantial performance across the next five matches to climb the leaderboard and position themselves for a strong final day of competition.
Tournament highlights starred numerous plays from the four-man squad of Shoot To Kill, with Day Three offering us even more impressive moments. The team did an outstanding job to bounce back from a tough outing during Day Two and proceeded to go on an absolute tear during Day Three. Throughout Shoot To Kill’s five matches on Saturday, the team didn’t place lower than fifth in any of the matches. Their ability to prepare and accommodate zones made the difference down the stretch. Whether you attribute this to their preparation, in-game leadership, or coaching before and after game days, Shoot To Kill has proven once again why they’re revered around the esport. Regardless of exactly how they developed this ability to withstand tough challenges and find points in transition, their performance certainly paid off during this tournament.
Day Three brought out the best of another team that arrived via PCS Qualifiers, as Dodge put together a series of matches to ascend the leaderboard. Having collected forty-five points in a three-match series, Dodge quickly began climbing the leaderboard during Day Three. Their highlight of Day Three came when the team occupied the center of the zone, just to the South of Stalber. From there, the team defended its territory from multiple teams closing in from above and below before ultimately securing the chicken dinner along with nine kills.
By nature, PUBG Esports can take teams on a roller coaster. Ups and downs are common but the best teams find a way to level their performance and become consistent. Throughout the tournament, the team that best displayed a consistent performance day in and day out was Exodus. Placing themselves into late-game scenarios with multiple players still up, Exodus was able to place within the top-three across the first three days of the event.
Performances like these add up, and maybe if they were able to win another chicken dinner or two, this team could have been the one walking away on top. That doesn’t matter much for this event, but as we advance into the next competition for these teams, Exodus has exhibited all of the signs of a championship team.
Day Four of the PUBG Charity Showdown set the stage for an intense battle for first-place amongst the top-three teams. With only twenty-seven points separating Shoot To Kill in first from Exodus in third, the first match of the final day began. After a mediocre first match for each of the top-three teams, Oath put their best foot forward for the remaining four matches.
Entering the final day of the tournament, Oath was competing alongside two extremely talented rosters for the top spot and $25,000 USD. Instead of faltering under the pressure of Championship Sunday, Oath played their best games when it mattered most, winning the remaining four matches of the event to seal the tournament win.