For this season of ECL Elite we are releasing a recurring segment that looks to detail the ‘hottest’, ‘coldest’ and… ‘mildest’? teams in Elite over the past week. Each article in this series will be released on Mondays (in this case as early as possible) and will thusly be based on the days in between each power ranking iteration. In addition to this it should be noted that each ranking will invariably be in some way biased as it is, at the end of the day, a subjective list. Note: Each article will be based off of results starting from the Monday, all the way up to (& including) Friday. Ergo, any games played over the weekend will be 'missed', although if the results are significant enough they will be mentioned in the following next week's article.
The logic behind the ranking is admittedly a sort of internal subjective ranking that weighs up results, opposition 'strength' as well as thoughts on the general play during some games. As such a ranking is not 100% quantifiable in nature there will be some bias that creeps in, therefore I will do my best to elucidate the reasoning behind why 'X team' deserves to be ranked at 'Y'. One thing I would like to make abundantly clear however is that points are not the be all and end all within these rankings; for instance, just because 3 teams have the same record does not mean they won't be ranked wildly differently, as the context behind said results are of great importance and simply cannot be understated.
1. Dynasty (3-0-1) [+6]
Rising to the summit of Elite this week we have Dynasty, although I feel as though I should clarify straight off the bat that whilst Dynasty’s rise is quite obviously down to them playing well, it is also quite considerably down to the rest of Elite going on some sort of grand rock paper scissors adventure. In fact, truth be told, Dynasty at the #1 spot is perhaps the only position this week that I can completely be sure of. They find themselves in such a position based on a nigh on flawless record of 3-0-1 against last week’s #2 team in Written, as well as this week’s #3 team in the Unlucky Boys. They may not have played that much but their general record is impressive and realistically (barring any actual miracles) there should be no reason that Dynasty are not able finish in the top 4 once again in Elite.
They may not be the most flashiest of teams but fundamentally they are strong and their record up to this point illustrates that quite well.
2. Symphony (5-2-1) [+1]
34 points, 20 games played, 2 wins against last week’s hottest team solidify Symphony’s slight rise this time around. With an overall points per game average of 1.7 and a three point gap between them and Written in second place signify the gap that is beginning to form at the summit of Elite, although all is not rosy for Symphony, as they gained only one point against Sjukstugan, then dropped a game in regulation to Unlucky Boys. Sure, these aforementioned teams are quite strong (4 & 3 in these rankings respectively), however these are teams that Symphony may very well meet down the line in the playoffs, as such there should be some feeling of apprehension going forward although it shouldn’t be that intense of a feeling; more of a niggling annoyance than full blown panic.
3. Unlucky Boys (5-2-1) [+5]
With a meteoric rise from 8th to 3rd we find the Unlucky Boys who came out of a very gruelling schedule this week (FILA, NOR, DYN & SYM) with an extremely solid record of 5-2-1. Remove NOR and the record is not as impressive as it falls to 3-2-1, however picking up ~58% of all points available against some of the very strongest that Elite has to offer is something that should garner some serious attention, especially with the playoffs approaching very quickly.
4. Sjukstugan (2-1-1) [+2]
(7), 2, 4, 6 and 4. These are the positions that Sjukstugan has held throughout these power rankings from week 1 to the current week 4, with the 16 in 16 ranking shown in parentheses. Outside of their brief foray below the top 4 of Elite, Sjukstugan have managed to put together one of the single most consistent runs throughout the entirety of Elite this season, at least compared to those in the top half of the table. With that mind however, if there was any week out of the four covered so far where Sjukstugan looked at their weakest it would most likely be this one, despite them moving up two positions from last week. This is due in part to the somewhat inconsistent play exhibited by 112, as they transitioned from disposing of Symphony efficiently, to dropping both games against UB just two days later. It should also be noted that 112 would have been ranked lower than 4th this week, but due to the rest of Elite deciding to go a little insane and have everyone beat everybody it's particularly tough to punish Sjukstugan that much.
5. Rusty Blades (4-2-0) [+4]
It’s at this point where the rankings become… interesting shall we say? It’s even somewhat tempting to lump teams placed 5th through 11th into one category and call it a day. Nevertheless, I’ll try to discern some patterns from the noise although I apologise in advance if I don’t mention too much because for real; I don’t even know where to begin with this.
Starting off this descent into madness we have Rusty who find themselves on the playoff side of Elite for the first time in these rankings (sans 16 in 16). That said, despite such a high ranking there are some serious missteps made by this team that need mentioning. As impressive as their wins against Written are, they still dropped two regulation losses to basement dwellers in SIKA and the ever-sputtering Team Frosty. With that in mind then it’s tough to really place these guys higher than 5th as the consistency is simply not visible, at least not to the same extent that DYN, SYM, UB & 112 have exhibited.
6. Written in the Stars (3-2-1) [-4]
Should the players for Written be worried about dropping two games to a team currently outside of the playoffs? Sort of? They didn’t score that much (only four goals in the two games) although they had plenty of zone time. Should they be annoyed that they dropped points that may have ruined their chance of clinching the top playoff spot? Hell yes they should. Just losing these two games and only picking up a lone point has sent them crashing down to three points behind Symphony with the same amount of games played between them, with FILADELPHIA nipping away at their ankles in 3rd place. Of course, it needs stating that the season still has a week (or so) to go before all the ‘chips are down’ so to speak and based off of how this week went expecting any of the top teams to slip up is something that is almost a certainty at this point.
7. Gotham Knights (4-2-0) [+4]
Alright, I’ve made it this far, but I seriously don’t think I can make it any further. As I stare at the teams from 7 to 13 I can’t help but imagine the order being completely different with NOS being higher due to them having a relatively hard schedule, or FILA / FLY due to them not playing all that often and facing (currently) playoff bound opponents, or NOR for showing some life even if it’s all too late, or Gotham for taking down most of their opponents somewhat convincingly, or AF for going on a pretty reasonable 2-1-1, or TF for picking up 75% of all possible points this week. Honestly, you can make an argument for and against every team in this bracket moving up and down from where they are currently ranked. As for Gotham at least, they find themselves moving up to 7th thanks in part to a pretty resoundingly strong week points wise, that said their wins came against some pretty woeful teams (NOR & FCM) and their losses came at the hands of a middling Team Frosty so realistically this week isn't that impressive but it at least opens up the door for them to make a last ditch run towards the playoffs - although the window is closing fast.
8. Butterfly Effect (1-1-0) [-3]
I almost feel bad for moving down a team so much for going 50% against a very strong side from last week’s rankings in NOS. Even so, something has to give and with a bunch of teams going on a tear since last week a demotion was in order for the side that once found themselves on top just a few short weeks ago.
9. FILADELPHIA (0-2-0) [-8]
As was said previously regarding Butterfly Effect, the determining factor of this team’s fall from grace is quite simply inactivity and ‘rank’ decay. Sure, losing two games to Symphony stings but in the grand scheme of things does it really change FILADELPHIA's chances of making the playoffs? Not a chance. And realistically, making the playoffs is really all that matters, as clinching a higher playoff position certainly helps, it is not however the be all and end all.
10. Northern Ascendancy (2-1-3) [+3]
Too little, too late. On the surface of things, one may be mistaken for assuming that a record of 2-1-3 shows that NOR may finally be waking up from their slumber and are on the road to putting together a playoff push, well, that’s why there’s also another adage for this very scenario, You can never tell a book by its cover. Taking down AF with two wins surely makes life easier for the NOR side, however dropping two games in OT to UB and failing to pick up more than one point against the cellar dwellers in Gotham puts a serious dark mark on NOR going forward. Despite this there is still a mathematical chance that they make the playoffs, although the disconnect between reality and this ‘fact’ is certainly not lost on anyone.
11. Almost Famous (2-1-1) [+1]
It’s at this point where I genuinely run out of things to say for the following three teams. For Almost Famous it feels as though that they’ve been the mid to low table answer to Sjukstugan’s consistency, with them constantly being ranking in and around this 11th spot. Then again, just like NOR, AF are still within a shot mathematically although the road towards the promised land is even more unlikely than NOR’s, as they are going to have to go toe to toe against some exceptionally tough opponents in Symphony and Unlucky Boys.
12. Northern Stars (2-4-2) [-8]
Moving on to NOS we have slightly more to talk about simply due to the fact that they played four different opponents this week, unfortunately for NOS they performed fairly poorly, only amassing 6 out of a possible 16pts. Despite these quite horrid results NOS still commands 8th place in the league standings and are relatively safe from most challengers unless they drop several games. Such an event is somewhat unlikely, however with that said it should be noted that the path towards the playoffs is often fraught with drama, and with so many close challengers in TF, AF, RB & even to a degree NOR there is certainly the chance of something memorable occurring.
13. Team Frosty (3-1-0) [+1]
Rounding out the completely nonsensical mismatch of teams from 7-13 we have Team Frosty who have shown quite nicely the impact that newly acquired players can have, as @Nampa77 & @Totalii have thrust the once rudderless team into something with a purpose, and perhaps most importantly of all, the means to accomplish that goal. This is exhibited by Frosty churning out a generally impressive 6 out of 8pts, although the main criticism of this record is that it came against an overall fairly weak set of opponents (Rusty & Gotham), nonetheless, points are points and at the end of the season all that matters is how many you have so I don’t imagine TF are really that bothered all things considered.
14. Falun Coal Miners (1-2-1) [-4]
Despite a reasonably strong showing last week Falun have fallen back down to the lower end of Elite once again thanks to a very underwhelming set of games against Gotham where they only managed to scrape together a lone point, although besting NOS in OT certainly raised the spirits of the FCM side as it is currently one of their three wins on the season thus far. Even though the season is close to being finalised, FCM cannot afford to become complacent. Although their motivation has been all but wicked away, one slip up could easily cause them to fall even lower in the standings into the automatic relegation zone.
15. SIKA (1-3-0) [=]
Another week, another series of wasted chances by SIKA to pull themselves out of the gutter that is 15th place in the league. Sure, they had a decently difficult schedule with them going up against Written and Rusty, but when you’re in a hole as deep as the one SIKA finds themselves in these sorts of aspects are no longer of any importance and just serve to mask the true reality that only picking up 2 out of a possible 8pts is going to barely help at all. At this point however, they do have something to hold out on and that’s the chance that they can leapfrog FCM so that they are no longer in the automatically relegation zone, that said even that prospect relies on FCM dropping games which could obviously backfire if they decide to go on a run.
16. Radical (n/a) [=]
⚰️ Rip ⚰️
*Rankings accurate as of 17/11/18
That's it for this weeks Power Ranking, we'll be getting back to you in a weeks time and take a look at which teams have made a climb and who possibly hasn't. Until next time, gamers!
Do you agree with our ranking? You can create your own in the comments below!