Even if the audio is off in the beginning, and TFC is no longer our biggest draw -- we still have an intimate weekend of DOA with some of the best in a competitive field. Kick Punch Block has been streaming our community events for a number of years and we are grateful for the time. Big E Gaming's TFC 2017 Top 8 will conclude tomorrow at 1pm via Bifuteki, but for now, let's look at the matches in pools.
Kwiggle is no slouch, but he's always having fun and this remains true with the opener for the stream against Savage. You can tell Savage knows a lot about the game, but given Kwiggle's experience with Marie Rose... he seems to know what to expect for the entirety of the match. What will it take to put Kwiggle into a serious competitive mode? I'm not sure, but I dig his style!
In the next game, SYN Gruff shows the importance of the low throw punish with Lisa against Dr. Sexual's Ein and it just works for him. Though the first game goes into last round because the doctor has some smooth moves, using both defense and aggressive behavior to get rounds on the vet. The second game may not showcase environmental damage like it could have, but a lot of great combos from Gruff and more low throw punishes give him the win against the hungry doc.
NC Tempest and NC Mysterio Jackson are next on the bracket, and fight at the Crimson streets. Tempest quickly shows Mysterio the wall and keeps his Jann Lee there for most of the match, though he missed an opportunity after a wall crumple, he had more than enough control to take the game. Though the atmosphere is opened up in the next round, Mysterio is still backed against a wall despite some unblockable hits and a slip stun on Phase 4. Tempest takes the second game to move on to the next round with a good effort from Mysterio.
After a break, Rikuto and LF Sypher are next to fight and Rikuto gets his wall damage from throws and holds on the Crimson streets to end the first game quickly. During the next fight, Sypher's Rig is able to adapt to some hits and gets a round on the champ, but Rikuto being Rikuto adapts quickly and aggressively. Rikuto wins the set, but Sypher put up a good fight.
Right after the short break, Sypher is pitted into another fight, this time against Gruff. His Rig is more comfortable against Lisa in this fight and he gets a round with a cool back turned throw, and some good wall damage before Gruff adapts and takes the first game. Going back to Crimson again, Rig takes control right away and knocks Lisa to the streets below, and after that takes two quick rounds before Gruff slows down the pace and takes the win!
XcaliburBladeZ is up next against Hollow in a Alpha-152 mirror. They start off on Zack Island and you can tell there are some nerves with both players. RUSH, BURST and combos from Hollow come out right away, and he does well but struggles with the offense of Bladez.
Hollow loses the first game, but he brings in more BURST and a scary offense of his own in the next fight to secure a victory in a close last round match. They both bring Alpha to the last fight, and Hollow absolutely unloads on Bladez using all of Alpha's effective tech to put Bladez away with his own character for maybe the first time in DOA5 tournament history. Well fought, Hollow!
WBGG Big Dame21 brings out Mai to fight Conditioner's Rig in a well-paced set with two players that are very close to the same skill level. Tournament nerves are present in this fight, and they rush each other down the whole fight until Big Dame gets the advantage in the last round. As shown in the stream, Conditioner is able to successfully adapt to Dame and wins the first match, and then on to win the next game over Mai convincingly.
Hollow is next in line to fight Conditioner after his win on Bladez, but this time he brings Momiji to the battles. Hollow is very comfortable against Conditioner and wins the first game quickly. Rig is able to adapt defensively at the Scramble, but Hollow is still making good enough reads to stay potent in this fight. Hollow is able to confuse Conditioner with Momiji's flips to take this well-paced match.
GXR SRM Hoodless brings his meticulous style to fight Winback at the circus. Surprisingly, Winback takes the first round and even taunts with his Jacky to the seasoned vet in which Hoodless retorts with insane Mai pressure winning him a round. Winback is able to adapt with excellent reads and takes another round with two more taunts. Mai fires back with quick stuns and fast damage and mix-ups. Winback takes the first game with a few more reads.
Hoodless switches to Zack and begins to destroy Winback with speed and wall damage, consistently looks for slip stuns and pressure moments -- easily taking two rounds before Winback is able to slow it down and take one for himself. For the next round, Hoodless switches it up to high punches and stance confusion destroying Winback with that alone before finishing him on the wall.
Hoodless takes Winback back to the circus and puts on serious pressure to take the first round. Winback is able to adapt though in the next round and shows off an impressive bounds combo that earns him another round in this set. Hoodless responds with AMAZING setups of his own and takes the last round in what might be the most intense game of the tournament thus far.
Xcal sends Hitomi to his next fight against Big Dame who chooses Mai once more. After Xcal's loss to Hollow he puts some serious pressure on Big Dame to win the first fight. Dame is able to put a few strings together for an impressive round in the next fight but ultimately succumbs to the pressure of BladeZ knocking Big Dame out of TFC.
Hype match alert!!! Hoodless and UGS Black Moon RisingX (Lei) are about to tear each other up and it all starts on the top level of Scramble. These two are trading blows and punishing the shit out of each other. Black Moon is eager to hold and it starts costing him against a fighter like Hoodless who gets consistent BT damage, before an amazing Power Launch rebuttal from Black Moon. This was a tight one, but Hoodless was able to outplay him this game.
They start the next fight in the Lab and Hoodless slows the game down and fishes for holds and stuns winning two rounds because of it. Black Moon is able to get some serious offensive hold/wall damage in the third round and takes it before losing the set to Hoodless' scary pressure.
Bladez is fighting his way out of loser's bracket in this next fight with yet another mirror, this time against Vet's Jann Lee. Vet put up a fight, but Xcal's speed and reads proved to be too much in game one, and the trend continues in the shrine. Vet can slow down the fight with throw punishes, but ends up a little too unsafe with his move selection to win the fight despite having firm knowledge with the tech.
After a surprising match with Hoodless, Winback is back to fight Black Moon Rising in what could be an epic clash starting on the top platform of Lorelei. Black Moon opens up with a great reset to easily take the first round, but Winback remains steady in the second round and takes it. They break through the top floor in the third round and Lei Fang puts Jacky in "the blender" right next to the wall taking the third round and quickly wins the last to take the first game.
We finally see a match in the home and surprisingly the environments don't end up being used well in the first round. Though the third round makes up for it as Black Moon performs the highest damaging combo in the tournament so far. He wins this game far more convincingly than the last and proceeds to the next round.
In the last fight of the stream, Bladez continues his quest of the loser bracket with Bass against Conditioner's Rig. Conditioner really understands his available damage against heavies and gets great combos in. By the end of this set, Bladez had him with crushes, breaks and seriously damaging throws.
Top 8: Kwiggle - Rikuto - GXR | SRM Hoodless - GXR Hollow - Gruff - UGS Black Moon RisingX - Savage - XcaliburBladeZ