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902 bytes added, 2 September
In the anime
In [[SM131]], it was revealed that {{an|Lana}} would be Guzma's opponent in the second round. In [[SM134]], Guzma and Lana began their battle, with Guzma using Golisopod against [[Lana's Primarina]]. With his ruthless tactics, Guzma was able to defeat Lana with relative ease and advance to the semifinals. The match-ups revealed that he would battling Ash in the semifinals. In [[SM135]], Guzma assured his Grunts that he would destroy the entire League and brushed off Plumeria's concerns about him facing Ash.
In [[SM136]], Guzma went up against Ash, using his Scizor to battle his {{AP|Torracat}}. He quickly recalled Scizor in favor of using Golisopod, only for Golisopod to activate Emergency Exit during the match and send Scizor out in its place, resulting in it being quickly defeated by {{m|Fire Blast}}. Angered by Golisopod's cowardice, Guzma sent it out again and berated it on having made Scizor lose. The battle continued in [[SM137]], during which Ash's attitude once again reminded him of Kukui and his past, Guzma finally started to realize his own cowardice by defeating only weak opponents and running away from battles against strong ones. After seeing Golisopod's newly found determination to keep battling, Guzma decided to battle until the end, with the battle ultimately leading to Guzma's loss. The audience applauded for the great battle and Kukui hoped to see Guzma participating in the League next year, but Guzma considered his reputation ruined and was ready to disband Team Skull. However, Plumeria and the Team Skull Grunts felt so fired up by the battle that they wanted stay by his side and learn to battle as well as he.
Guzma has a great amount of determination, which was best showcased during the [[Manalo Conference]], where he entered with the strong hopes of destroying it from within. Guzma uses dirty tactics in order to win, as seen during his battle against [[Ilima]], where he had his {{p|Scizor}} position itself so that Kangaskhan's baby was always in the middle, endangering her well-being and causing the mother to hesitate often enough to be defeated. This was seen again during his battle against {{an|Lana}}, when he had {{p|Golisopod}} ruthlessly attack {{TP|Lana|Primarina}} without mercy.
Although his fighting style is questionable, he never breaks the rules. Despite his brutality, he is a careful fighter who observes his opponents and adapts his Pokémon's next moves accordingly, both by not falling for the same tricks twice and by trying to find a weakness he can exploit. All of this is done with cold and calculating precision, with him taking full advantage of any chance that comes. He completely defied the use of Z-Rings and Z-Crystals, because in his youth, he never learned to understand them properly and was bitter for always losing exercise battles against Kukui, despite the latter always commending his growth as a Trainer. After resolving to become strong in his own, Guzma built his reputation among Team Skull as "the Undefeated" by actually defeating only weak Trainers and retreating from battles against stronger Trainers with an excuse that he would have won anyways due to the damage his brutal tactics did to his opponents' Pokémon. It was only during his battle against Ash in the Manalo Conference, when Guzma was finally forced to admit his own cowardice and Golisopod, who had previously shared the same trait with him, now convinced him to let go of his fear of losing, keep battling until the end.