As always during the Six Invitational qualifiers, the 2021 North American Six Invitational Closed Qualifiers provided us with some of the best moments of the whole year in Rainbow Six Siege. From overtime-map-three matches to rankings-shattering upsets, the entire tournament was prime entertainment.
Featuring the ex-eUnited duo of Seth “Callout” Mik and Roman “Forrest” Breaux, APE pushed through the open qualifier to make it to the Closed Qualifier with relative ease. Their SI bid, however, was crushed by beastcoast in the initial match.
This isn’t to say that APE had a bad tournament; they very much looked like one of the favourites in the Open portion of the qualifier. They beat LiViD 2-1 and Mirage 2-0, two CAPL teams. Forrest particularly had a good tournament, securing a 1.15 rating against beastcoast. In the end it just wasn’t enough, though, and APE fell fighting valiantly.
DEFINITELY NOT THE SUSQUEHANNA SONIQS!
The allegedly “Definitely Not The Soniqs We Promise Guys” looked extremely good in the Open Qualifiers, but fell against RentFree in an absolute barn-burner of a match. The SuprSoniqs took RentFree to Map 3, and every single map in the three-map series was decided by two rounds or less. It was excellent play all around, especially for the brand-new look of the Soniqs and it ended up being an enjoyable watch.
Don’t put too much stock in an allegedly brand-new likely-to-be NAL team barely beating a CL team -- RentFree is genuinely good, and the alleged Soniqs didn’t have much practice together. Richie “Rexen” Coronado is looking like a demon on Twitch, and this team -- as a collective -- has a lot of mechanical skill.
They didn’t go as far as a talented team like them should have, sure, but once they gain cohesion they’re allegedly going to be a solid team. They simply have too much talent.
The alleged roster (Creators, Dream, supr, Rexen, and Gryxr) is going to be just fine.
Disrupt, on the other hand, did not have a good tournament and will be feeling pretty shaky. Theoretically, this one was theirs to win. They have North America’s clear Rookie of the Year with Nick “njr” Rapier, they have veteran leadership, they have the support, and they have been honing their skills against the best of the US Division.
Disrupt were the favorites, beating out even the absurd amount of talent on the alleged “suprSoniqs” in predictions for most fans. Their failure to put beastcoast away could mean imminent roster changes and should at least be at least cause for some sincere reflection on the preparation of the squad.
I don’t want to be too hard on Disrupt, but again, they had everything going for them here. They should have been better. One thing they can hang their hats on; they were very consistent and less njr-dependent in this tournament.
Despite not making the final, I thought RentFree had an excellent qualifier. Sure, they had a chance to win it and it slipped away, but I thought they outperformed the expectations of many.
RentFree expect to win, sure, and they’re the reigning CL champs, but in a field with the CAPL champs, Disrupt, and a roster full of the most mechanically skilled players of NA’s “Bottom Four,” victory wasn’t guaranteed. There’s no shame in losing to the eventual champions, and indeed, RentFree pushed Altiora to maximum overtime in Map 3.
RentFree is going to be disappointed they didn’t win it all. Sure, I get it. But this isn’t a “salt the fields and move on” moment. There’s some reflection needed, but there are some positives that can be taken from this too.
Altiora won it all, but the team that was the most surprising was beastcoast. They came in hot and never cooled off until the final map of a best of five, and definitely impressed a lot of people.
There’s absolutely zero reason for beastcoast to hang their heads. They played excellently, and rooty was an absolute pleasure to watch. They didn’t achieve their ultimate goal, but rest assured, there are absolutely some eyes on these players and this team.
Their core has been together since 2019, but they might just now be hitting their stride. That might be little solace after coming so close, but they should feel good about the fact that no one is going to count them out from here on out.
What’s there to say about Altiora that hasn’t already been said? They’re easily one of the best things to come out of Canada since Troy "Canadian" Jaroslawski himself, and they impressed many of those who doubted the CA Division teams could compete in NA.
Specifically, Xavier "Eskaa" Avoine and Zachary "SpiriTz" Dionne were impressive. I don’t feel confident in predictions either way in SI groups, but if they get a favorable draw, I don’t think they’re a cupcake team. This team was prepared strategically and are clearly talented mechanically.
They’ll be an underdog, but then again... they’re used to it. By the time they hit the SI server, being counted out will be another walk in the park for them.
Make sure to tune in for the rest of the regions' games as they come and to check back here at SiegeGG for continued coverage of the event.
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