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Bracket Placement Matters

A couple days ago we started thinking about the brackets . Going a bit more in depth, let’s talk about bracket placement. Specifically, the top two cards in the semifinals.
A Tough DrawRicky Wysocki has the top spot locked up. Paul McBeth has good control on 2nd. This makes the 7th and 8th spots a pretty tough draw. Let’s jump into the shoes of the player in the 8 spot. While they do get a bye in the first two rounds, their semifinal match up is against Ricky Wysocki and a couple players that played well in the Quarters. Presuming they win, the finals would (presumably) include Paul McBeth. Beating Ricky and Paul in back to back rounds is a tough ask, but that may be what a player needs to do to win the Tour Championship.
The player in the 7 spot has the same road, but in reverse order. That might be a lot to ask of Peter McBride, Gregg Barsby or even Drew Gibson. They have all proven they can put up amazing numbers, but doing it twice in a row is a stretch. But what if that 7 or 8 spot is someone like Josh Anthon, Nikko Locastro, or the surging Paul Ulibarri? They’ve all had sustained stretches of great rounds. Either way, the 7 & 8 seeds could have a tough road to hoe.

Is Worse Better?Let’s look at the road ahead for the players that finish in 9th and 10th in Tour Points . Due to the Drew Gibson rule that resulted from last season’s Semifinals finish , the players advancing from the Quarters to the Semis are ranked by Tour Points.
This means that. presuming that they finish in the top 8 among the 25 players in the Quarterfinals, the 9 and 10 seeds will be Q1 and Q2 in the Semifinals. The top players in their Semifinal groupings will be Big Jerm or Simon Lizzote. While clearly not a cakewalk. The other pre-qualified player on the card would be someone like James Conrad, Drew Gibson or Paul Ulibarri.
If you have to win the card to advance, would you rather play against Ricky? Or Big Jerm & Conrad? Any given day gets even tougher when there are two great players on the card.
Pick Your PoisonSo who has the tougher road to the Tour Championship Finals? 7th & 8th place who would potentially face Wysocki and McBeth in consecutive rounds? or 9th and 10th who have to play an extra round and then possibly compete against BOTH Wysocki and McBeth in the Finals.
No matter what road the eventual winner takes, they will need to succeed by beating some of the sport’s best. And we will be ready to watch it go down.
Win. Or go home.