KANSAS CITY - The more things change, the more they stay the same.
In front of hundreds live at the Kansas City Convention Center and tens of thousands on Twitch, Sentinels notched a 4-0 victory over the Raleigh Kickoff Major champions Cloud9.
It was a return to form for one of Halo’s legendary rosters. Sentinels, under Counter Logic Gaming and OpTic, are two-time World Champions – and were undisputedly the kings of Halo 5.
Late in Halo 5, Splyce, (now Cloud9 minus Anthony “Shotzzy” Cuevas-Castro) took the crown from the Sentinels roster in the 2018 Halo World Championship. Additionally, Cloud9 were undisputedly ahead of the rest of the field in the early days of Halo Infinite.
Now, the kings of old have returned to claim the throne. While Sentinels struggled with some teams they arguably should not have struggled with (a 3-2 victory over Quadrant in upper quarterfinals and a 3-2 victory over Pittsburgh Knights in pool play come to mind), against the perennial Infinite powers they were brilliant.
The grand final was a clean 4-0 sweep – an anticlimactic finish to Sentinels’ run. The series they played before, against OpTic Gaming, was a 3-2, and held much more excitement.
The unofficial MVP of the tournament was undoubtedly Mathew “Royal2” Fiorante, who wowed fans and analysts all weekend with mechanical dominance.
Time will tell whether Sentinels can reclaim the world champion title, but for now, they hold a Major title – nothing to sneeze at in any way, shape, or form.
Overall, the late stages of the tournament held no surprises. Sentinels, Cloud9, OpTic, and eUnited have been the top four in Infinite for some time, with no clear number one team emerging during online play. Cloud9 certainly had their moments like winning Anaheim, eUnited made grand finals in Raleigh, and OpTic came into the tournament with a lot of momentum.
However, at the end of the day, the return to form put Sentinels back on top.