Statistically speaking, “Primetime” Paul Oyama had a fantastic sophomore season. Last year, he increased his Singles Division Accuracy by 13.9% and his Potential Points Earned% by 11.0% when compared with his rookie season. Yet, on a macro level, Oyama never really got close to reclaiming the belt he lost to Ben “The Boss” Bateman at Schmoedown Spectacular IV. This season, he plans to do both.
Oyama (8-3) started the season on the right foot following a 25-21 win over William “The Beast” Bibbiani (12-10) in the Schmoedown Throwdown Undercard.
“I was 1-3 in my last 4 Singles matches,” Oyama said, “so, it feels really good to get back in the win column. S.W.A.G. has struggled a bit out of the gate. I wanted to sort of lock it down as one of the linchpins of the faction. […] I’m just really glad that this match went the way it did against an amazing competitor that I have an enormous amount of respect for.”
The key to the game was an early advantage that Oyama never let go of. He was perfect through Round One to open the match with a 9-7 lead.
With the lead, Primetime elected to defer to The Beast who did his best to try to close the gap in the top of the second. Bibbiani secured 7 PTS in the category of Robert DeNiro after only checking to multiple choice once in the round. Unfortunately for him, Oyama was playing a cut above The Beast. Primetime breezed through the category of Black Cinema, and continued his perfect game through two rounds to take a 17-14 lead over Bibbiani with one round of play remaining.
Down three, The Beast was in a bit of a bind. He started off on the right foot after knocking down his 2-pointer, but stumbled over a difficult 3-point question in the category of Musicals. This forced Bibbiani to answer his 5-point question to avoid the Technical Knockout, which he did with confidence to force Oyama to beat him. Primetime struggled to open the round, conducting his first miss of the game on his 2-point question, but had no issues with his 3- and 5-pointers to walk away with the 25-21 win.
The win brings Oyama one step closer on the path to regaining the belt he lost over a year ago.
“Being back in the hunt is really nice,” Oyama said. “Playing matches is super fun, but playing matches for high stakes is something that I really really care about and am invested in. And I’m excited to get back and approach that mountain top again and keep climbing.”
After picking up a big 2 PTS for S.W.A.G., Oyama does not have a direct path back to the Singles Championship. Yet, if given his choice of who to take on next, he knows exactly who to beat to get him there.
“The person I’ve wanted to play in Singles for a long time that I never got to play is Ethan Erwin,” Oyama said. “I want to show what I’m made of against him. And I think that that’s the kind of matchup I find myself wanting right now. That’s the test that I want to take because he’s one of the few truly elite players I have yet to play in any capacity. I really want to take him on and see who comes out the winner.”