Well LA are probably not practising much, though I don't know for sure, because anytime I try to nail down the whereabouts of the unix_user 'par excellence', that is slm of course, I seem to get a variety of bounced ips; and i don't know why. I think slm is trying to avoid me, which, indeed, I can understand; for I want to ask him about Tuva Novotny and her dual career as an actress and as a promising coder. Slm seems to know how to run her and angelina simultaneously---to me, this is quite a feat! But in lieu of slm's insight into LA and running the two women, I will have to offer my thoughts on the LA vs SR final. Sorry for the disappointment. A while ago I wrote that I thought SR would take the series in 5 games; three games to 2 over LA. Now I am not so sure.
I think LA has the raw individual skill to take out anybody. Dag has looked deadly in games I have seen him play --- which, admittedly, have not been many --- but consider this: on e2m2tdm is there anyone better in tdm at running the quad? I used to think akke was superb playing e2m2....Oh, wait, he's on LA, too? Yes, e2m2tdm will in all likelihood go to LA. Again, take e1m2: aren't nabbe, akke and rkr active for LA? If so, then I think it would be an upset if SR can take out LA on the map that made vana famous in sd1. On e1m2, rkr is like a fish in ya/water area; I can't think of a deadlier player hanging around there.
On cmt4 I favour SR. That said, I think LA have shown they can play cmt4 quite effectively --- even beating the cmt4-kings tVs on it in the semis. Still I think SR have a routine on this map which will make it tough for LA to win the map. It is on dm2 and dm3 that I fear most for SR.
As anyone who has followed qw tdm for while will know well, dm2 is a lottery map. For spectators, it is exciting because the map is given to huge frag swings as control of the map changes hands. In order to win this map for their respective clans, Dag and hib will have to be the best players on the map. No dropping the big Q with 0 frags; every frag will count; no failures in communication from one teammate to another. If dm2 holds true to its nature, this game may come down to the final seconds. If you rank players by how icy their nerves are in-game, dag and hib are cool customers; though dag is a proven come-from-behind winner on dm2. Nothing seems to faze dag. Paradoks will have to be awesome with the big Q on dm2; and dm2 is a 'hit-and-miss' map for Paradoks. As it has been said by others elsewhere, dm2 is not a map to be counted on; the greatest dm2_clans have been betrayed by her in championships and important playoff matches before: just think of tVs. I say throw a coin, then hope your favoured clan makes no miscues and is able to capitalize on even the slightest mistake of its opponent; the dm2 game might come down to merely 1 or 2 small mistakes.
On dm3 I would have given the edge to SR until I saw some recent SR practices. I would say SR are playing at about 80% of what I have seen them play at; as, for example, when they beat cmf's great dm3_game in the clanbase final last season. But more to my point is that SR will have to step it up big time on dm3 if they want to take out LA on dm3. Nabbe and dag are well known as strong dm3 players; and slm is no mrlame on dm3 either:) In recent practices, some have reported to me that memil is playing some of his finest quake these days. Hence, at this point I would tend to give the edge on dm3 to LA as well; my only concern for LA fans is the status of nabbe: is he active and in game shape? If so, LA might be lifting the NQR 6 Gold Cup.
The biggest issue for LA is going to be finding away to disrupt SR's really strong routine support players. Both Gamer and Goljat will have to be rock solid for SR; but if LA can think of a way or two to surprise or disorient them, it might give LA the break it needs to secure a victory in a close game. I think LA's achilleus heel might its lack of well-practiced, teamplay; but of this I can't be sure, because LA tends to practice in secret places so that I can't follow them around. However that may be, I think most will recognize that LA has very skilled individuals; does anyone actually doubt that they can play superbly as a team?
I hope for a fine match and great sportmanship like we saw in the Gold semis between SR/FS and LA/tVs; strength and honour to those about to battle!