CenCal Standoff might be the clearest window into CPT 2018

A lot of what I’m doing in charting these non-Capcom Pro Tour events is to get myself ready for the Capcom Pro Tour 2018 season. Have to make sure my new charts and databases are ready for the 10-month grind.

But another reason I’m charting some of these events is because I want to see whether we can get a window into what could happen once the season begins in a month.

CenCal Standoff was one of those tournaments. Even before analyzing the numbers, there was a part of me that felt like this tournament could be the best indicator of what a Capcom Pro Tour 2018 Top 8 could be like.

Let’s start with LPN, who won the tournament using Abigail. It feels like Abigail is going to be what Laura was last year, where a lot of the focus was on that character before the season began. The difference is Abigail probably won’t have the distorted numbers Laura did last year — being in the top five with a horrible record. In his short time on the stage, Abigail was 15-27 (.417) in the 42 games played. Not bad. He might have done damage given a full year. We’re going to find out very soon.

At CenCal Standoff, LPN, the top Abigail user, was 17-for-20 in rounds which he had a late lead (.850), which caught me off guard. It seemed like he came back more often, but he only came back twice in all of his rounds played. If what he does (and other Abigail users) carries over to the CPT 2018 season, Abigail might have a winning record throughout the year.

If we combine all of the Top 8 players’ numbers, the late-round closeout rate was .828. That’s 22 points higher than the CPT 2017 season average (.806). Here’s all of the events that had a higher closeout rate than CenCal Standoff.

Event 25CL
CPT Online Southeast Asia 10.903
CPT Online Latin America 40.887
Final Round XXI0.885
CPT Online North America 40.883
Evolution 20170.880
Lima Salty0.866
Fighting Fest0.863
Northern California Regionals 160.861
CPT Online Southeast Asia 20.860
Summer Jam0.859
Hypespotting 60.853
CPT Online Europe West 10.853
Evolution 20160.852
The Fight0.847
Manila Cup0.846
VS Fighting0.845
Jam Festival0.845
CPT Online Asia 10.844

(look at all of the Latin America tournaments!)

There are only 18 events that had a combined closeout rate better than CenCal Standoff. The next tournament would have been Dreamhack Montreal at .825. After that, the progression downward continues almost smoothly until all events are counted for.

CenCal Standoff, if it were a CPT 2017 event, would have snugly fit right into the rest of the tour.

I also looked at time, and the average round time was 45.18 seconds. That’s about a quarter second off of last year’s tournament average (45.56). It would have been 38th last year, almost at the midpoint of the 71 events.

Let me add here that there is a slight caveat to this; before the final four began (and this event of all events did Losers Semifinal, Winners Final, Losers Final, Grand Final because I don’t know WHY!?!?), the average time was at 49 seconds. Alex Myers then continued his run to the title bout and he, with his 38.14 second average, helped move the time down all by himself.

Each tournament seems to have that one outlier who will bump averages all by himself. Punk did this a lot in the early tournaments he won before others followed suit, using his fast pace of play. Problem X was like that as well toward the latter part of the year before he clinched the European championship.

Given the structure of the 2018 events and how the ranking events got knocked down a peg in terms of importance, CenCal Standoff might resemble what could happen at a ranking event just based on these numbers.

While I’m still trying to understand why the pace of play is so wide for many of these players in these non-CPT events, the rest of the numbers lead me to believe we’re in for a 2018 season that could mirror 2017. It won’t be a radical change. There might be some hills and dips here and there with some of the numbers, but a lot of it will be familiar. If anything, different characters and players will rise to the forefront.