After dethroning the best team in Rocket League history to date at RLCS Season 6 Worlds, the sky was the limit for the North American team led by dynamic playmaker Mariano "SquishyMuffinz" Arruda. Yet, at the next LAN they would lose in the grand finals to now WeDemGirlz (now TSM) 1-4, fourth at World Series of Esports 4, top 8 at Leipzig losing to NRG in quarters, and came in second in Season 7 NA play to NRG who swept them in the grand finals 4-0.
While the team seemed to have hit their metaphorical ceiling and may be overcome domestically by the likes of NRG or even a newly built G2 Esports, Cloud9 proved they were able to beat the best on LAN. Squishy was hitting insane shots, Torment was playing great defense, and Gimmick was a master of sending the ball toward the enemy goal as Cloud9 went 2-0 in groups and cruised past the teams in their bracket. It was fun watching the World Champs hit their stride a few weeks before finals as any momentum headed into Newark, New Jersey will be welcome.
Mouz and the revenge of the Rival series
While Mouz were rocking a standin, they looked completely revived from their league play self as the now relegated EU squad made top 8 of Dallas beating Vitality 3-2 in a best of five and losing to TSM 2-3 in the quarterfinals. Mouz were extremely fun to watch boasting a lot of speed (pun intended) and flair even in their tight losses to teams such as Dignitas. Seeing a now "second tier" team like Mouz outplace regional champs such as Renegades and domestic rivals such as Renault Vitality shows how competitive Europe is at the moment.
Mouz were not the only Rival series team to have a good showing in Dallas. Evil Geniuses from North America looked abysmal in the promotional series and after two series were swiftly relegated to the Rival series. Despite NA being arguably stacked with talent (Cloud9, NRG, G2, and a resurgent Rogue), EG looked to be a contender to make it to Worlds after importing Aussie star Matthew "Drippay" Den-Kaut to replace Reed "Chicago" Wilen, but they struggled to keep up all season. If you hadn't paid attention to the team all year you might think that EG was the second best team in North America and also heading to Jersey as Drippay showed why he was chosen to be imported to NA hitting some very tight vectors against top teams like G2 Esports who they prevented from making playoffs.