Sentinels have been relegated from the ALGS Pro League. They will now have to fight for their place in the second split of the competition.
Sentinels have been relegated from the ALGS Pro League in a dramatic final day of group stage action. Elsewhere, FaZe survived a late scare to also avoid being relegated from the Pro League. They managed to maintain their hold on a place in the top 20, keeping their slim hopes of LAN qualification alive.
The day's action was won by TSM, who were in lethal form. They have secured their place at LAN, and seem to be back at their very best.
The ALGS Pro League will now move towards the Regional Finals on Sunday. Following a match point format means that anyone inside the top 20 who will play the Regional Finals could qualify for LAN.
In a dramatic fall from grace, Sentinels have gone from winning the ALGS Pro League in December 2021 to being relegated to the Challenger Circuit in December 2022. The question will be on if Sentinels choose to stay together and fight to reclaim their place in the Pro League, or call it a day and look for new opportunities.
Sentinels made one of the worst starts to any Pro League in history, and rallied in recent weeks to give themselves every chance at sneaking out of the relegation spaces. However, that momentum ran out in the final two weeks. Sentinels struggled to 18th on Sunday, and 15th today.
What went wrong for Sentinels?
To establish what happened to Sentinels, you have to go all the way back to split 2 of the 2021-22 Pro League season. Coming off the back of a dominant split 1, Sentinels were derailed by the introduction of Storm Point to the ALGS.
Sentinels never managed to establish their own drop spot on Storm Point. They contested ESA, now OpTic at the Mill. This led to them missing out on Sweden Playoff qualification by just one place. They put in some strong performances, but the two weeks where they shared a lobby with OpTic let them down.
Sentinels never fully recovered from missing out on Sweden playoffs, and then the subsequent ALGS Championship.
They had a clear identity in their winning Pro League split. Sentinels were the best edge team in the region, playing aggressive Apex.
Lack of identity for Sentinels
This split however Sentinels have just never found a winning formula. Various legend compositions, including Revenant have been tried. The roster was changed, with coach TeQ replacing Lou mid way through the season. But, nothing has delivered results.
The question is, do Sentinels stick or twist? Will the organisation stand by Crust, Senoxe and Teq? Will Crust, Senoxe and Teq stand by eachother? You would have Sentinels as firm favourites to qualify for the Pro League, but they will want to push towards LAN qualification rather than fight another relegation battle.
TSM dominate to send group stage
Elsewhere, it was Vintage TSM as they dominated the final group stage day of the ALGS Pro League. TSM started as they finished, winning the first and last regular game days. Their three total wins is the most of any team in the Pro League.
This means that TSM have mathematically qualified for LAN no matter what happens in the regional finals.
TSM won two of the days six games. One at their home POI of Wall on Storm Point, and then a game at Climatizer.
The Climatizer win in particular showed exactly how dialed in TSM have become. They chose to Valkyrie Skyward Dive just after Luminosity Gaming. This call was pure brilliance, while everyone was focusing or reloading LG, TSM flew towards the height of Climatizer. This spot had minimal sightlines, and TSM were able to fully reset and heal up.
Taking this position just as they did allowed them to dominate the end game. Verhulst in particular was in fine form. He dropped 20 kills on the day. This saw him finish first in the day's overall kill leaderboard.
Are we entering another era of TSM dominance?
TSM have legendary status in Apex Legends. They dominated the games early tournaments, and their reputation has never waned. Some people have doubted TSM at times, especially in the early days of teaming with Verhulst. Whatever problems TSM had then, they certainly do not have now.
What has been a real secret to TSM's success has been Lava Siphon. Arguably the best drop spot on Worlds Edge, it has strong loot and favourable rotations. Other regions like EMEA actually split Lava Siphon. Will TSM be able to hold down the entire POI at LAN?
Regardless of what happens in the Regional Finals, TSM will be feeling confident heading into LAN. They have a 66% win ratio when they find themselves in the top 5 on Storm Point. Plus, ImperialHal and Reps are two of the most experienced LAN players in the game. Now that Verhulst is more established, can TSM reclaim LAN glory?