We’re on to the semifinals. Each team still in it is guaranteed at least $20,000 but there’s plenty more at stake, and with four of the best and hottest teams in the league left, the closing night of the Tipoff promises to contain plenty of fireworks. Both semifinals series will be played at 7 p.m. tonight with the finals to be played shortly after.
Jazz Gaming vs. Kings Guard Gaming, 7 p.m. ET
Jazz Gaming went 3-1 in group play, and while it dropped a game against Detroit last night, the team wouldn’t be denied its opportunity to advance further. It all starts down low, as Jazz Gaming has been receiving impact performances from its former No. 1 overall pick Ria. The center has been an almost guaranteed double-double in the paint, outplaying and outworking his opposition during tournament play. Splashy, coming off a series in which he averaged 32 points and 5 assists per game, has been building confidence in recent weeks. The star point guard-center duo will have their hands full tonight, as they’re slated to face off against a hot Sacramento squad.
Kings Guard Gaming has had a relatively smooth ride throughout tournament play, winning group play outright with a 3-1 record and sweeping Grizz Gaming last night. Its 2020 offseason moves continue to pay dividends game in and game out. DatBoyShotz is the team’s backbone on both offense and defense, doing all the little things you need from your center, in addition to rebounding and defending at a high level. The team’s top selections from the draft, Crush (third overall) and Bash (17th overall), are coming off career nights against Memphis. Can the team continue to roll and gather momentum or is tonight the end of Sacramento’s run?
Key Matchup: Splashy vs. Crush
Splashy has really come into his own offensively as of late, while Crush is playing like a top-two defender early in his career (and he might not be two). A pair of top-ten picks from February’s draft go head-to-head for a chance at a bigger slice of $160,000, making this our key matchup.
Gen. G Tigers vs. Raptors Uprising GC, 7 p.m. ET
Two of the most prolific scorers clash in tonight’s semifinal matchup between the Gen.G Tigers of Shanghai and Raptors Uprising GC. ShiftyKaii has been dominant on the offensive end this season, but the Rookie of the Year candidate may have unlocked another gear when he decided to play around with the league archetypes. Kai has added to his resume during the last few weeks, besting Blazer5 Gaming’s Mama Im Dat Man in two series while also dropping 76 points on Lakers Gaming.
On the other side is the frontrunner for MVP—Kenny Got Work. The Raptors point guard puts a relentless amount of pressure on opposing defenses, but his understanding of the game’s mechanics also helps him lock up other perimeter players. If the Tigers can steal a game, look for Kenny to be aggressive in the following matchup.
Key Matchup: Tigers supporting cast vs. Raptors supporting cast
While each team’s point guards will take on most of the offensive load, it will be their teammates who ultimately decide which direction this series goes. Though Kenny has received multiple accolades this season, Toronto has remained undefeated due to their depth, which consists of two-way players across the board. This has helped the Raptors put up a +172 point differential in the Tipoff Tournament. Meanwhile, Shiftykaii has been quoted saying he made the archetype change to get his teammates more involved. It’s no coincidence that since then, the Tigers have been difficult to stop.