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[pullquote_right]Big-time players step up in big games. – Santana Moss, NFL Receiver[/pullquote_right]In every championship there are several key moments that stick out from the rest as being truly incredible plays that turn the course of the game – the pass from Eli Manning to David Tyree in the 2008 Superbowl, David Freese’s walk off home run in game six of the 2011 World Series and many others are burned into the psyche of American culture. We lust for the chance to make it on ESPN’s Top 10 Plays: to become a legend in your own right. We may not have the ESPN exposure, however here is the Social Paintball Top 5 Plays of the 2012 PSP World Cup Finals.

5.With the Boston Red Legion leading 3-2, both teams at full strength, rookie snake player Keith Brown pushes into the snake for Tampa Bay Damage and shows incredible patience for the longest point of the match. He eventually gets a shot on veteran Boston player Kirill Prihidni making it a 2 on 1 game in favor of TBD, and then finishes off Justin Rabackoff.

4.With the score 6-4, and under three minutes to play, Konstanin Fedorov of BRL makes an incredible jumping move over a lane to stay alive and makes it into his first bump. Although this move had no immediate impact on the game, it is an awesome feat of athleticism and mental awareness.

3.Boston Red Legion had just lost a fast point which also resulted in a major penalty being assessed to Justin Rabackoff, the score being 6-3, with under five minuets to play. David Baines of Tampa also had a minor penalty on him on the previous point (both teams playing with 4 alive). Instead of sitting back and waiting on TBD to make their moves, Red Legion player Alexander Berdnikov pushes into snake one and then two, making cross field shots on the Edwards brothers. After his penalty expires, Justin Rabackoff gets out of the dead box clean, and moves up the dorito side. Red Legion finishes this point with a victory.

Although there was nothing spectacular from any particular player in this point, this was perhaps the most solid looking Boston was during the second half of the game. They worked the clock perfectly and won their final point of the match. Score, 6-4; Tampa leading.

2.During the same point of the Konstantin Fedorov lane-jump, Tampa Bay Damage was able to close out the game and win the World Cup. Damage dorito player Chad Busiere makes it out to the back left corner off the break, moves up to the 20 yard line tower then explodes up the field to eliminate Kirill Prihidni at the 50 dorito. This makes it a 3 on 1 in favor of TBD with only Justin Rabackoff left in the snake who gets polished off by Ramzi El-Yousef.

1.The score was 2-1, Russians leading, and Chad Busiere of Tampa Bay Damage was called for a major penalty putting Tampa down a man for the next point. The next line for Tampa: Jacob Edwards, Jason Edwards, Mike Carthy, and Keith Brown. The Russians lose their back left corner player, making the game 4 on 4 and losing their advantage of the penalty. Red Legion player Justin Rabackoff moves into snake one while time expires on the major penalty. However while moving from the dead box, Chad Busiere is eliminated. During the confusion, Tampa Bay also gets an elimination of their own: 3 on 3. Then insert player Jacob Edwards makes an incredible move from the 40 dorito, splits the seam created on the inside of the field created by the Red Legion not having a solid cross of the field, and eliminates the three players, making the score at 2-2.

This move by Edwards was selected as our number 1 because it was not a designed play – instead it was a combination of brilliant field awareness, speed and execution. Jacob had to recognize that there was a seam in the cross of RBL, make the correct move, and do it all before RBL had time to switch their guns. Consider: if he had moved down the tape, the RBL player in the MD would have had an easy elimination. Likewise, if he had continued down the inside of the field, Justin Rabackoff would have had a guaranteed shot from the snake and the MT player may have turned his gun from the snake side, to the dorito side. Excellent move! Graph of the move:

Worst move of the finals: The RBL coaches throwing in the towel with Justin Rabackoff at the 40 snake, making the score 5-3 in favor of TBD. From our perspective this was completely unnecessary as it gave TBD all the momentum, which lead to another major penalty being assessed to RBL.