73 teams down, two remain standing.
It's been a wild ECL 7 in 'The Jungle' formally known as ECL Lite. As we know, the Lite regular season is probably not as tightly contested as in our other divisions simply due to the fact that a vast majority of teams will make the playoffs. The playoffs, however, are an absolute free-for-all. With 64 teams making the playoffs, we've now weeded through five rounds in order to make it to the finals, that's a lot of games right there. Number one seed The Next Gen has played a total of 25 playoff games so far and the opposing number 3 seed The Black Jacks have fought through a total of 26 playoff battles.
Here's what our ECL 7 Lite Final matchup looks like:
As previously stated, both teams have fought a long way to make it to the final. There's still a lot of hockey left to play, so let's hope their tanks don't run empty and there is some hunger left to claim the very top spot of ECL 7 Lite.
Seeding first into the playoffs, we have the favourite from Finland, The Next Gen. The offensively strong team started off with a 'bang', sweeping Bombers Hockey in the first round. After this, they've ran through their opponents at a rather steady pace (Pink Panthers HC 4-2, Rukoilevat Hinkkaajat 4-0, Supremacy 4-2 and Supernatural 4-2). You could see that the opponents were getting tougher as the games went on, but the playoff favourites still managed to engine their way on. By advancing to the semifinals The Next Gen gets to enjoy a promotion to ECL Pro for season 8.
On the opposing side is a team from small Switzerland, The Black Jacks. TBJ has had a similar playoff run as their final opponents, but they ended up with a close scare in round 2 against Lehmannen Badboyz. Their round 2 went into overtime of game seven until captain and center @julmi21 (Original-SnuS) scored the decisive goal. This is the complete run of TBJ: HC Keskikalja 4-0, Lehmannen Badboyz 4-3, Infinity 4-0, Dubnation Gaming, 4-2, Mentula SKA 4-1. Alike their final opponents, TBJ has secured promotion to ECL Pro for season 8 by advancing to the semifinals.
It'll be interesting to see these teams go at it, as we without a doubt have two highly skilled opponents going head-to-head. The Next Gen packs a massive amount of individual skill and holds several young and potential players, whereas The Black Jacks are probably more reliant on their routine and some set plays in their game. Both teams like to use their center as a target player to set up their game, so it'll be a battle of who can execute said strategy better. My personal opinion is that TnG has a slight advantage in skill level but TBJ is a more coherent unit. Margins are small and I expect a tightly contested series. My prediction is TnG in 7.
The Next Gen The Black Jacks
C NikkeDangles C Original-SnuS
LW Ninjawiq LW Krinke
RW thounidinho RW Freeman7187
LD koppipelaaja LD Bille1990
RD lambu89 RD Cami__7
G ramseyyy2 G Afc_Tschitsch
Thounidinho (25GP, 22+23=45) vs Krinke (26GP, 34+39=73)
Ramseyy2 (25GP, 19W, 91.75 SV%, 1.24 GAA) vs Afc_Tschitsch (12GP, 11W, 87.57 SV%, 1.66 GAA)
Schedule for the finals:
Game 1: Wednesday, 12th of December 20:15 CET The Next Gen vs The Black Jacks 6-7
Game 2: Wednesday, 12th of December 20:45 CET The Black Jacks vs The Next Gen 2-3
Game 3: Wednesday, 12th of December 21:15 CET The Next Gen vs The Black Jacks 3-2
Game 4: Wednesday, 12th of December 21:45 CET The Black Jacks vs The Next Gen 2-1
Game 5: Monday, 17th of December 20:15 CET The Next Gen vs The Black Jacks
Game 6: Monday, 17th of December 20:45 CET The Black Jacks vs The Next Gen
Game 7: Monday, 17th of December 21:15 CET The Next Gen vs The Black Jacks
The games will be streamed on: twitch.tv/gameturniertv and twitch.tv/tbj_hockey unless otherwise informed.
Good luck in the finals for both teams!
Thank you to @julmi21 for reaching out and assisting with this article. All opinions are my own.
Your NHLGamer Editor