Hello everyone, I am Chris Danzo (Lunarr), and I am here to share my Top 16 team from the 2019 Philadelphia Regionals. I will be discussing how the team came to be, my games throughout the tournament, and my feelings on the event. So without further ado, let’s jump right into it!

Before The Event

I recently started my junior year of college and have already been slammed with work. Usually team building for events is my favorite part of the game. In this case, however, I relied heavily on my best friend, Danny Hemchand, to test and build ideas that we worked on together. At one point, he mentioned the idea of Groudon Yveltal (soon to be branded “Fried Bacon”) and I gave him a rundown of what I could see in the support slots. Eventually, he came back with a solid team that he was convinced could win the whole event. After some discussion, EV optimizing, and a Pokémon change, I was committed to using the squad.

Original Team


There really wasn’t much change to the team itself besides one crucial slot: Bronzong. After some discussion at 3 a.m. I convinced Danny that the Yveltal mirror and our Ho-Oh matchup was rough. I tested Stakataka before he got to my house and thought it was the best non-restricted Trick Room setter in the format. After only two test games we agreed it was the call and the team felt complete.

Final Team and Overview


The team felt good but there were still some sets Danny and I butted heads on. We got to the point where it was 3:45 a.m. and we had to be up by 5:30 a.m. and I ended up going with Danny’s sets and spreads due to time constraints. That is honestly my one regret going into the event: not giving myself enough time to fully optimize the team and make it the best it could be. Now with all the set up out of the way, let’s finally get to Fried Bacon!


Yveltal @ Assault Vest
Ability: Dark Aura
EVs: 28 HP / 28 Def / 156 SpA / 44 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Sucker Punch
- Foul Play
- Snarl
- Oblivion Wing

The spread is slightly tweaked from my 2016 spread and it worked wonders the whole event. I talked to Danny about going Black Glasses or Misty Seed so we could go even bulkier and get more damage out of the Yveltal, but due to time constraints we ended up going Assault Vest to play it safe. Snarl was amazing for ruining my opponent’s damage calcs,, Oblivion Wing was amazing in keeping Yveltal around and nukingthe Grass-types in the format, Sucker Punch was good for shutting down outs for my opponent, and Foul Play destroyed strong physical attackers. Overall, Yveltal felt even better than it did in 2016, and for that reason I recommend trying it out!


Groudon @ Aguav Berry
Ability: Drought
EVs: 252 HP / 148 Atk / 28 Def / 68 SpD / 12 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Precipice Blades
- Fire Punch
- Swords Dance
- Protect

I was worried about using Groudon since I barely had any practice with it. To put it simply, Groudon on this team felt overpowered. It was so easy to set up and it felt so bulky. Groudon was easily the MVP of this event, getting the most knockouts and clutching the most games. Danny’s spread was perfect for what I needed.


Venusaur @ Sitrus Berry
Ability: Chlorophyll
EVs: 252 HP / 68 Def / 60 SpA / 76 SpD / 52 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Grass Knot
- Sludge Bomb
- Sleep Powder
- Protect

What I wish I used:

Venusaur @ Sitrus Berry
Ability: Chlorophyll
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Grass Knot
- Sludge Bomb
- Sleep Powder
- Protect

Venusaur felt like the worst part of the team. Danny made a great spread for survivability, but Venusaur is meant to get fast damage and put things to sleep. I ended up missing many of the KOs I needed and the bulk never came into play. Venusaur is a fantastic Pokémon in this format and is almost necessary on this team as it struggles in the Xerneas Kyogre match up. Not running the more offensive variant is probably my biggest regret of the event.


Tapu Fini @ Choice Specs
Ability: Misty Surge
EVs: 252 HP / 124 Def / 28 SpA / 84 SpD / 20 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Scald
- Moonblast
- Grass Knot
- Haze

What I wish I used:

Tapu Fini @ Wiki Berry
Ability: Misty Surge
EVs: 252 HP / 196 SpD / 60 Spe
Calm Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Icy Wind
- Moonblast
- Swagger
- Haze

Tapu Fini was the Pokémon Danny and I could not agree on. I really did not like Choice Specs; I felt like it did not mesh well with the team. Danny had calcs in his head for Sucker Punch + Tapu Fini calcs for unexpected KOs, but that’s just not how I play. I ended up going with it as Venusaur took on the support role on this team. This was my other regret of the event because, after testing, I found the team benefits from Speed control and Swagger support over additional damage. Overall I barely used Tapu Fini and, when I did, it felt hard to keep on the field without getting out-positioned. With that being said, support Tapu Fini is an amazing option for other teams and I highly recommend it!


Stakataka @ Safety Goggles
Ability: Beast Boost
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 4 SpD
Lonely Nature
IVs: 17 Def / 0 Spe
- Rock Slide
- Gyro Ball
- Trick Room
- Wide Guard

Danny and I both agreed Stakataka was the best Pokémon for this slot. Bronzong took so long to set up and was threatened by most of the format while Stakataka tanks more common attacks. Stakataka can also snowball against teams if set up right, and some games I found it threatening a KO on opponents’ entire teams in Trick Room. I used it almost every game and it did exactly what we needed it to do. The IVs and nature are for an Attack boost from Beast Boost.


Incineroar @ Figy Berry
Ability: Intimidate
EVs: 252 HP / 4 Atk / 4 Def / 236 SpD / 12 Spe
Careful Nature
- Flare Blitz
- Fake Out
- Knock Off
- Roar

Easily #1 in the format, Incineroar was a clear contender for the last slot on this team. With its great typing, great Ability, solid movepool and versatility Incineroar feels like a must for most teams. The spread is meant to survive 252 Timid +2 Xerneas Moonblast every single time.

Common Threats

+ or
Once a Xerneas gets going it’s hard to stop. Lunala/Kyogre were especially hard to deal with next to Xerneas. Kyogre moreso, since I lacked proper ways of getting rid of it quick, which hindered my Xerneas answers. But Lunala was also a threat when it had Focus Blast, which could quickly defeat Stakataka and Incineroar, two of my main ways to handle Xerneas.

+ + The combination of Amoonguss, Kyogre, and Incineroar was hard to deal with it as gave Amoonguss constant pivoting options. Amoonguss is very good this format and, with Kyogre and Incineroar being able to stop my Fire-types from hitting it, and Tapu Fini being my only way to effectively stop the Spore, it was a challenge to defeat.

Ride to the event:

The ride was a nightmare. The roads were clear and we didn’t run late or anything, but we were so tired. I have to stress how important it is to get a good amount of sleep before an event, especially if it’s a two hour drive to reach the venue. When Danny and I got to the venue we were instantly greeted by hugs from our friends, It was really nice to see everyone again. After hanging out with Maura and Danny for a bit, we finally were announced our round 1 pairings. I was hoping for a simple game one to get back into the swing of things, but that would not end up being the case as I saw my Round 1 opponent:

Tournament Overview

The editors have moved the in-depth warstory segment of the team report to a separate Google Doc to save space. You can read it by clicking here.

Round 1: Terry Hong (WLW)

Round 2: Paul Chua (WLL)

Round 3: Aaron Zheng (WLW)

Round 4: Christina Bacino (WLL)

Round 5: Jeremy Parson (WW)

Round 6: Toler Webb (WW)

Round 7: Erich Schrader (WW)

Round 8: Joseph Ugarte (WLW)

Conclusion

After a great series against Joe I ended up 6-2! For not really having the motivation to play, I definitely performed better than I expected. Danny also ended up winning his last round, but sadly did not end up in Top 32. We didn’t get to stick around long after the games since it was late, so we said quick goodbyes and bailed. Funnily enough, I never checked the standings so I didn’t know how I finished until people started saying they were proud of me online. My sister took this as me getting Top 8. Danny and I got about halfway home and had stopped to eat when my Mom called to congratulate me on top cutting. I freaked out a little because I was nowhere near the venue so I double checked real quick before we were about to rush back. However, I only placed Top 16, my family just made an error based on the Tweets being sent to me. Not the most fun way to find out how I placed, but still, I was happy I came back strong! Danny and I finished our drive home and knocked out immediately, finishing a fun and tiring day of Pokémon.

Final thoughts on the event and Pokémon? I may have had fun at the event but to be honest the entrance fees this season have become too expensive. I really hope that our circuit’s organization issues get resolved before we are paying $100 to play in a regional. As for the metagame, I actually love it. Sun Series grew on me fast and honestly I’d love to play more events in it if it weren’t for the outrageous costs to play. With that being said, I don’t know if this is the return of me. After not really playing last season it would be nice to get back into it, but as of now I’m busy and don’t really want to throw the money into it if I’m not all-in. We will see though, I do miss you guys and would love to play in one more World Championships.

Shout outs:

PB Gang: You guys are probably my closest friends in the community at this point. You’re all really supportive and I’m so happy I got the chance to meet you guys. PB gang for life!
Cruisers: NPA has been over for so long yet our chat still finds a way to be active. I know it’s nothing compared to what it’s like during NPA, but I love how we have stuck together and support each other. We aren’t just a team, we are friends! Thanks for making my first time as a manager such a great experience!
Imoutos: If there is one group I have to thank for making me feel at home in this community, it’s these weebs. You guys let me in from day one and have been supportive and great friends the whole time. You made me feel included when I didn’t have a place, and I can’t thank you all enough for it. We will win Worlds one day.
Summer: Have to give Summer a special shout out for literally always being a great friend and having my back. Summer and I met in the finals of a PC and ever since we have been really close. I can honestly say she is one of the nicest, easy-going, and especially funniest people I’ve had the pleasure of meeting. If you haven’t you should follow her on Twitter, nothing but quality Tweets all the time!
Justin Carris: My Fortnite bro! You already know the drill. Carris and I have been friends forever now, we are really close and support each other a lot. He has a big heart and is probably the hardest worker I’ve ever met. I could say a lot more but this would go on for a while, you already know how important our friendship is to me!
Danny Hemchand: You already know Danny is my best friend. We support each other through thick and thin. There is so much I can say here but I think our hug on stream at Worldssays it all. Just know I appreciate everything you’ve done for me, and thank you for putting up with me at my worst times. You are a true homie and I’m so glad we met at Apex.

That’s all from me! Hope to see you at an event in the future!

Edited by Aaron Traylor, Jen Badamo, and Zach Carlson