If you are want to know more about the teams in this year's Rare Cup and how they got here, this blog should serve you as a quick rundown of all participants.
Body Block Crew
The Body Block Crew managed to reach the 4th Place in Division 6, losing only their last 2 out of 10 games to the 1st and 2nd place TSEA Link and Lost in Draft BTW. In their group, they face FAT Rodimus, whom they defeated 2:1 after losing the first game. They prefer to play on Braxis Holdout, where they have an impressive win rate of 83%. Their most successful Heroes are Thrall, Blaze, and Ana, which they have picked in around half of their games with a win rate of over 75% on each of them. Being one of the Top 4 teams in Division 6 makes them the most likely one to get out of groups, and maybe even win the Cup if they can show that they learnt something from their last 2 games.
Tied in wins and map wins, FAT Rodimus managed to qualify to reach the 8th place by the skin of their teeth. This makes them the only free agent team in EU this season to reach the Playoffs.
They're also the only team in the rare cup that managed to have a negative win rate on their most played hero, with a 33% win rate on Jaina after 9 games. They prefer to play on the Battlefield of Eternity and Braxis Holdout, having a 60% win rate on each of them. Even though they are not the most likely team to win, they have proven that you should not underestimate them just because they are a free agent team, and maybe it just took them a couple of games to function as a real team. We'll have to see if they will be able to defend the pride of the FAT teams.
Run it down Mid
Despite having 1 less map win than Nexus' Most Wanted and the Jimmies, Run it Down Mid qualified ahead of both of them by beating them. They have an even 50% on both of their most picked heroes, Raynor and Johanna. Their preferred maps are Towers of Doom, on which they have a perfect record, Infernal Shrines, on which they have a perfect but negative record, and Volskaya Foundry. Unlike what their name would suggest, the Run it down Mid is here for a fight and see where it can take them.
Nexus' Most Wanted
Tied in wins but losing to Run it Down Mid and the Jimmies, Nexus' Most wanted to reach the 6th place in Division 7. In their group they'll face Run it Down Mid again, hoping to get their revenge.
Unlike other teams they seem not to care much about maining a map, having picked 6 out of the 9 maps during the season. Their most picked hero is Deckard, with whom they have a lot of success in most compositions. With their loss to Run it Down Mid being their first game as a team, we'll see if they have learned enough since then to beat them and maybe even get out of the group.
Lost in Draft BTW
Regardless of what their Name would suggest, the 9 men Roster lead by NotPrepared seems to be doing their draft just fine, reaching the 2nd place in Division 6 with an 8-2 record. They don't specialize on a certain map, but have a positive record on most of them, with 4-0 wins on Dragon Shire. They also have an impressive 89% win rate after 9 games on Dehaka and Stukov. Since they didn't get to play against the 1st ranked TSEA Link during the season, we'll hopefully see this matchup during the bracket stage to see which team is really the best team in Division 6 and deserves to win the Rare Cup.
Losing to only the 1st, 2nd and 3rd ranked team in Division 6, Giborey Hasse'ara ended up on the 5th place. In their group, they'll try to get revenge on Lost in Draft BTW, whom they lost to 1-2. During the season they've picked all maps but Tomb on the Spider Queen, with a perfect record of 3-0 on Volskaya Foundry. Despite Orphea only being available for a short time, Giborey Hasse'ara has already put her to good use, winning 4 out of 5 games with her. Despite not reaching the top 4, their records show that they definitely have what it takes to beat them and upset the tournament.
Only Fools and Heroes
Having lost only their first and last game in Division, Only Fools and Heroes took the 2nd place. Their losses came from Plaguemakers and the Jimmies, losing to both teams 1-2. They make good use of Blaze, winning all 11 games with him. When they got to play Braxis Holdout, they have also yet to lose a game in their 5 games on it. Despite qualifying from Division 7, they hope to make it out of the group and face one of the teams they lost to before to settle the score.
Stitches Booty Fanclub
The team with the juiciest Team name ended up on the 7th place in Division 7 with 6 wins out of 10 games. Despite their name, their most played hero is not Stitches but Lucio, whom they have picked 7 times to Khaldors dismay, winning 71% of games with him. They prefer to play on Cursed Hollow, even though they have won only 40% of their games there. In their group, they will have to face Only Fools and Heroes again, to whom they lost 0-2. If they manage to do that, they might even have a shot on getting out of the group.
With 18 Map Wins and 8 Wins, the student HoTS team of Tilburg, TSEA Link, won the Division 6 and go into the Playoffs as the favorites to win. Surprisingly, their only losses came at the hands of FAT Rodimus and Portrait Goblins, the 8th and 10th ranked team in their Division. One of their most contested Heroes is Whitemane, being banned 11 times against them because of their 7-1 record on her. When it comes to Maps, they pick Infernal Shrines if possible, having won 6 out of 6 games on it. TSEA Link might be ranked number 1, but have shown in the season that they are beatable, which the other teams will try to capitalize on.
Space Phungi qualified to the Playoffs with a 7-3 record, losing to Lost in Draft BTW, Southgate Boiz and the Body Block Crew. Unlike most of the other teams, they have not played against the other team that qualified from their Division before, TSEA Link. They go into the tournament with a perfect record on Tomb of the Spider Queen, Infernal Shrines and Towers of Doom. One of their staple heroes is Johanna, having a 6-1 record on her and being banned out 5 times. Now that they are finally able to play against TSEA Link, they are able to prove that they are to prove that they should not be underestimated and are able to compete with every other team in the tournament.
Having won all of their games, Plaguemakers is one out of 3 teams that has yet to lose a game this season. They have one of the biggest Hero pool of all teams, having yet to pick a hero more than 5 times this season. One of their strategies, when it comes to the 3rd game, is to pick Cho'Gall on Tomb of the Spider Queen, which worked out 4 out of 4 times so far. Their favorite Maps are Tomb of the Spider Queen and Infernal Shrines, winning 100% and 86% of their games on them. Their record makes them one of the favorite teams to win the Rare Cup, although they are a Division 7 team. We'll have to see if their perfect record can withstand a Division 6 Team.
Jimmy and the gender neutral lords of the Underworld
The Jimmies, whose name I refuse to type out more than once, ended up on the 5th place despite their Map wins because they lost to Run it Down Mid. They were one of the teams that got to team 3 against the Plaguemakers before losing to their unexpected Cho'Gall pick. Even though they have never picked Infernal Shrines, it is their best map, having won all 5 games in it so far. Their hero pool is spread out, having their most games on Raynor with a 60% win rate. Now that they know about the Plaguemakers unusual strategies, they are going to do their best to show that they are able to win and get out of the group.
The last group is being led by Southgate Boiz, one of the few teams that have been playing since Season 6. Losing to the 1st and 2nd placed teams they ended up in the 3rd place with an 8-2 like them. They find success in the nowadays rarely seen Li Ming, winning all 7 games on her so far. They've played on all 9 maps this season, winning all their games on Tomb of the Spider Queen, Volskaya Foundry and Towers of Doom. As the veterans of the group, they hope to make it out and have their runback with TSEA Link and Lost in Draft BTW to win the Rare Cup.
The Trying Dutchmen
If the Trying Dutchmen were trying to make it to the Playoffs, they can rename themselves to the succeeding Dutchmen. If their goal is to win the Rare Cup, they still have something to prove. So far they have won 7 out of 10 games, having a perfect record on Azmodan and playing most of their games on Infernal Shrines with great success. The team has yet to play against the Southgate Boiz, but if they manage to do that they'll be very likely to get out of the group.
Heavy Metal Fans
Being tied in Wins but having lost to Only Fools and Heroes, the Heavy Metal Fans find themselves in 3rd place. Their only other loss came from the Plaguemakers, which they took to game 3 before falling for their Tomb of the Spider Queen shenanigans. They play a big variety of heroes, with Raynor being their only frequently used hero that they have yet to lose as. In maps they've found a liking in Tomb of the Spider Queen and Battlefield of Eternity, displaying a positive win rate in both of them. They have made it apparent that they are able to beat any Division 7 team, but they'll have to prove themselves against the Titans from Division 6 to advance in the tournament.
Wrath of the Pharaohs
Last but not least, we have the Wrath of The Pharaohs, which managed to secure the last Spot in Division 7 to reach the Rare Cup Group Stage. The team managed to get the necessary 5 wins even though they only played 7 games, having lost to Only Fools and Heroes and the Heavy Metal Fans, which they'll have to fight again in their group. Because of that, they've only played 11 maps this season, is to the most unknown team in the tournament. But this could come to their advantage which might be what they need to finally beat the Heavy Metal Fans and maybe even advance in the Tournament.