sacrifice MZ! i will happily use him as an assist and trade hits with cable, doom, etc to wipe out the more powerful characters on my opponent’s team, be they points or the assists that protect the points. even if MZ is finished off and my opponent’s characters are only weakened in health, i can have my remaining two characters, with almost full health, wipe the hell out of the rest of my opponent’s team, because he is now playing more defensively than he normally would, all of his characters having so little life left. MZ sets up my supers well, and few people can defend from my Strider/Doom when all 3 of their characters are left with 1/3 life because of my MZ assists–>Doom supers, or their primary point or assist is wiped out. this is one of my favorite methods of taking out scrubs who punish my mid-tier characters with cable, magneto, and sentinal, although it is somewhat less effective against storm from my experience. (no problem, rape her with someone else) hell, many times i don’t even need strider/doom, and often defeat un-suspecting scrubs afterwards with Ken’s invincible AAA stopping all the AHVB’s and Ryu hurting people with supers left and right.
and for a all-power team of killer supers? MZ, Juggernaught, and the Hulk. now TRIPLE-TEAM!!! and chip the opponent into little pieces. (MZ stops any counters with the forward-spinning lariat super, juggernaught murders anyone that didn’t block, and the hulk controls the air and does most of the chipping damage if blocked. captain corridor timed properly stops hulk and juggs, but not MZ, and not if MZ hits first!) if all three of these connecton sentinal and he is near the corner (to take all hits from all three characters’ supers) it completely wipes him out, even at full life!
as a point, murder any rushdown characters, or at least chase them down while building super meter with jumping fierces and sweeps. if you get close to anyone and they are on the ground or landing, spinning lariat xx super pile driver works quite well. the best ways to cover a lot of ground include super jumping and down plus LP for a fast dropping elbow, or down plus HP for a wrestler-smash that comes down slow, but recovers almost instantly. against beamers and other weak-minded projectile gods (LOL), especially cable, try not to play him on point. if you must, MZ and try to use his vodka-blizzard (firebreath, whatever it’s called) to trade hits and stop his moves. basically, what i am saying throughout this is to change into MZ and sacrifice him to kill off, or damage severely, your opponent’s best characters, or at least the assists that protect them.
yeah, in general, if you are playing against the very best in the world (or at least in your world), don’t pick zangief unless he is your best character, in which case you are going to need to take away his controller for half the match, or randomly push his taunt button so that you get in some free supers. unfortunately, these methods are usually considered less than acceptable, and unless you are much like zangief (or MZ) in real life, i wouldn’t use them very often.