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TGR: Cliff, Sierra, Arlo, and Giovanni Counters

Team GO Rocket (TGR) Leaders have officially arrived! Cliff, Sierra, and Arlo are waiting for you, and then a little later on, Giovanni himself will want to fight! When you fight them, each team leader will always lead with the same Pokemon. Cliff leads with Meowth, Sierra leads with Sneasel, Arlo leads with Scyther, and Giovanni leads with Persian. After that, each subsequent Pokemon is random from a pool of three, with exception Giovanni, who will always throw out Articuno last.

Let’s take a look at what type Pokémon you should be taking into battle against each possible battle you could face. You will notice that Team GO Rocket counters are a little different than Raid counters. The ability to spam out super-effective Charged Moves is extremely important; you have to burn up those shields to take down the TGR leaders!

CLIFF

Willow Report - Cliff

What can we say about Cliff? Lay off the protein powder homie! And maybe don’t shave a ball into your chin? Somewhere out there Will Smith is referring to you as a Ballchinion. Cliff is by far the easiest of the TGR Team Leaders. Here’s an in-depth look at how to defeat everything Cliff can throw at you.

MEOWTH
  
Any Fighting-type will lay a whoopin on Meowth, but Lucario with Counter and Power-up Punch is especially devastating. Spam out Power-up Punch to burn his shields. Then sit back and fast tap away and watch Meowth get nuked.
Counter
PuP
Counter
Dy. Punch
Counter
Focus Blast
SNORLAX
  
Snorlax is only weak to Fighting-types, but its bulk and ability to deal some damage makes Machamp a less than ideal option. Instead, we recommend trying out Lucario, Hydreigon, or Tyranitar.
Counter
PuP
Bite
Dark Pulse
Bite
Crunch
SANDSLASH
  
Sandslash is weak to Grass-, Ice-. and Water-types. Swampert, Leafeon, and Articuno all make excellent counters.
Mud Shot
Hydro Cannon
Razor Leaf
Leaf Blade
Ice Shard
Ice Beam
FLYGON
  
Flygon is double weak to Ice-types. However, high-powered Psychic- and Dragon-types such as Mewtwo and Altered Forme Giratina can also lay down some hurt.
Ice Shard
Ice Beam
Lock On
Blizzard
Charm
Ancient Power
TYRANITAR
  
Tyranitar REALLY dislikes Fighting-types. Using a Fighting-type than can quickly get off its Charged Move will cut through Tyrantitar like a hot knife through butter.
Counter
PuP
Counter
Dy. Punch
Lock On
Focus Blast
INFERNAPE
  
Infernape is weak to Flying-, Ground-, Psychic-, and Water-types. Psystrike Mewtwo owns this matchup, while Garchomp and Origin Giratina also make for solid choices.
Psycho Cut
Psystrike
Mud Shot
Earthquake
Shadow Claw
Shadow Ball
TORTERRA
  
Torterra is double weak to Ice-type moves. Our recommendations are Articuno, Regice, and Mamoswine
Ice Shard
Ice Beam
Lock On
Blizzard
Powder Snow
Avalanche

SIERRA

Willow Report - Sierra

Sierra, girl, you got that sass, but we got sass of our own! Ain’t nobody got time for that whole “Mean Girl” routine! BYE FELICIA! Sierra is probably the 2nd hardest TGR Team Leader. Here’s our breakdown of how to say goodbye to everything Sierra can offer.

SNEASEL
Another Team Leader, another lead that’s double weak to Fighting-types. You know the drill: Lucario, Machamp, Blaziken
Counter PuP Counter Dy. Punch Counter Focus Blast
LAPRAS
  
Lapras is weak to Electric-, Fighting-, Grass-, and Rock-types. If you stick with Fighting, Lucario should have enough health and some energy build up from Sneasel to do some serious damage. Should you choose to change typings, Melmetal, Magnezone, and Kyogre will get the job done.
Counter
PuP
Dragon Breath
Dark Pulse
Snarl
Focus Blast
SABLEYE
  
Sableye is only weak to Fairy-types, however, you wont find any Fairy-type in our recomendations. Why? Fast Neutral Damage is more than enough to take out Sableye.
Bite
Crunch
Bite
Dark Pulse
Feint Attack
Dark Pulse
HYPNO
  
Hypno is weak to Bug-, Dark-, and Ghost-types. Our recommended 3 are: Tyranitar, Hydreigon, and Darkrai
Bite
Crunch
Bite
Dark Pulse
Feint Attack
Dark Pulse
HOUNDOOM
Houndoom is weak to Fighting-, Ground-, Rock-, and Water-types. Our recommendations are: Garchomp, Tyranitar, and Regirock
Mud Shot Earthquake Smack Down Stone Edge Rock Throw Stone Edge
GARDEVOIR
Gardevoir is weak to Ghost-, Poison-, and Steel-types. Our recommendations are: Metagross, Origin Giratina, and Dialga
Bullet Punch Meteor Mash Shadow Claw Shadow Ball Metal Claw Iron Head
ALAKAZAM
Alakazam is weak to Bug-, Dark-, and Ghost-types. Our reccomendations are: Darkrai, Hydreigon, and Tyranitar
Snarl Dark Pulse Bite Dark Pulse Bite Crunch

ARLO

Willow Report - Arlo

Arlo; poor, misguided, slightly Emo Arlo. You’re angry at Candela; we get it. But, perchaps you’re going about dealing with it poorly? In our view, Arlo is the most difficult of the three TGR Team Leaders, here’s how to deal with him properly.

SCYTHER
Scyther is double weak to Rock-type moves, taking that into consideratios, here are our recommended counters: Melmetal, Probopass, and Alolan Golem.
Thunder Shock Rock Slide Rock Throw Rock Slide Rock Throw Rock Blast
MAGNEZONE
Magnezone is double weak to Ground-types. With that in mind here our top choices for countering: Garchomp, Flygon, and Groudon
Mud Shot Earthquake Mud Shot Earthquake Mud Shot Earthquake
CROBAT
Crobat is weak to Electric-, Ice-, Psychic-, and Rock-types. Here’s our top 3 counters: Tyranitar, Melmetal, Mewtwo
Smack Down Stone Edge Thunder Shock Rock Slide Psycho Cut Psystrike
GYARADOS
Gyarados is double weak to Electric-types, meaning that Raikou, Jolteon, and Electivire would be our top 3 choices.
Thunder Shock Wild Charge Thunder Shock Discharge Thunder Shock Thunder Punch
SCIZOR
  
Scizor is double weak to Fire-types. Burn it. Burn it until it’s dead! Our top 3 counters are: Blaziken, Charizard, and Entei.
Counter
Blaze Kick
Fire Spin
Blast Burn
Fire Spin
Flamethrower
CHARIZARD
  
Charizard suffers from a double weakness to Rock-types, therefor our recommendations are: Alolan Golem, Regirock, and Tyranitar
Rock Throw
Rock Blast
Rock Throw
Stone Edge
Smack Down
Stone Edge
DRAGONITE
  
Dragonite hates Ice-types like oil hates water. Freeze him, seriously, make dragon-pops. Our recommendations are: Regice, Lapras, and Mewtwo
Lock On
Blizzard
Ice Shard
Ice Beam
Psycho Cut
Ice Beam

GIOVANNI

FINALLY! The TGR boss man himself, big daddy G, the evil genius, Giovanni. Unless it isn’t? Decoys aside, Giovanni isn’t all that difficult, you know what the first and last battles will be, and all three Pokémon you could face in the 2nd Battle, have the same weaknesses. Here’s our take on how to lay the beat down on Giovanni and send him back to the shadows.

PERSIAN
  
Persian is only weak to Fighting-types. You know what that means? Yup! Lucario time again! Machamp and Toxicroak are also viable.
Counter
PuP
Counter
Dy. Punch
Counter
Dy. Punch
RHYDON
  
Rhydon is double weak to Grass- and Water-types. With those weaknesses in mind here our top 3 counters: Swampert, Meganium, and Kyogre.
Mud Shot
Hydro Cannon
Vine Whip
Frenzy Plant
Waterfall
Hydro Pump
HIPPOWDON
  
Hippowdon is weak to Grass-, Ice-, and Water-types. Here are our top 3 counters: Swampert, Kyogre, and Feraligatr
Mud Shot
Hydro Cannon
Waterfall
Hydro Pump
Waterfall
Hydro Cannon
DUGTRIO
  
Dugtrio, like Hippowdon is weak to Grass-, Ice-, and Water-types. This means we recommend the same 3 counters as well: Swampert, Kyogre, and Feraligatr.
Mud Shot
Hydro Cannon
Waterfall
Hydro Pump
Waterfall
Hydro Cannon
ARTICUNO
Articuno is double weak to Rock-types. Throw rocks at it. All. Day. Long. Our top 3 recommended are: Melmetal, Tyranitar, and Regirock
Thunder Shock Rock Slide Smack Down Stone Edge Rock Throw Stone Edge
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