ESL ONE Cologne Final 2018

Enjoy our data-rich report on the 2018 final of ESL ONE Cologne!

NaVi win ESL ONE Cologne 2018 3-1

ESL ONE Cologne final standings

  • 1st: Navi
  • 2nd: Big
  • 3/4th: Astralis
  • 3/4: FaZe

Tournament MVP

s1mple

s1mple is MVP of ESL ONE Cologne 2018

 

  • ADR: 87
  • Kills: 404
  • Deaths: 262
  • Assists: 39
  • Headshots: 155
  • Fantasy points: 336

Notable mentions

electronic

  • ADR: 91
  • Kills: 365
  • Deaths: 272
  • Assists: 62
  • Headshots: 181
  • Fantasy points: 336

nex

  • ADR: 84
  • Kills: 372
  • Deaths: 348
  • Assists: 77
  • Headshots: 187
  • Fantasy points: 288

tabseN

  • ADR: 88
  • Kills: 369
  • Deaths: 338
  • Assists: 85
  • Headshots: 150
  • Fantasy points: 266

Highest margin games at ESL ONE Cologne 2018

Astralis vs Cloud9

BO3 Group A, Upper Bracket Semifinal

Score: 16-1 to Astralis

  • Second in the BO3
  • Reasonably close opener on mirage, 16-12 to Astralis
  • Astralis were the hot knife, and Cloud9 were the butter
  • Cloud9 chalked up only one round in the first half in round 13, courtesy of a team kill
  • 10 team kills, 3 bombs defused and 1 round with no bomb plant

FaZe vs Fnatic

BO3 Group B Upper Bracket Final

Score: 16-1 FaZe

  • decider in the B03
  • After a significant loss (16:4) on overpass, Fnatic scraped a 16-11 win on Mirage
  • only to lose the decider in such a dramatic, one-sided fashion
  • Fnatic successfully planted and defended their bomb in the 10th round
  • 12 team kills and 4 bombs defused

BIG vs G2

BO3 Quarterfinal

Score: 16-1 to BIG

  • Second map in the BO3
  • Incredibly close game on Cache that was decided in overtime, primarily due to kennyS and shox performance on the map
  • It gave G2 fans a lot of hope for the future of this roster and for their map pick which was Dust2
  • The entire BIG team were on fire on Dust2, notably tiziaN and gob b with mammoth ADR scores of 117 and 112 respectively
  • tiziaN was impossible to kill, and with the amount of damage he was dishing out, proved to be god like
  • gob b 4K hold on top mid, taking out SmithZz with the bomb on catwalk, crazy MP9 mid-range accuracy
  • SmithZz stops the 13 round streak with a 3K; this is G2’s only round, won with a team kill
  • 11 team kills, 4 bombs defused and 1 round with no bomb plant

The most entertaining game at ESL ONE Cologne 2018

BIG vs MIBR, on inferno, the decider map score: 22-20 evenly matched halves, 7-8 & 8-7

Being the decider map in a BO3 meant this was always going to be exciting, but having 42 rounds of CSGO to decide it was incredible!

Both teams evenly matched as the scoreline suggests. The map MVP was nex, for pure consistency across 42 rounds.

FalleN’s 1v2 clutch in R29 had everyone on the edge of their seat. The bomb is planted on B, half the timer remains and FalleN has gob b and tiziaN on site waiting to defuse. As the bomb timer ticks on he decides to peek into B site and tags gob b.

tiziaN has the info on FalleN but has to attempt a defuse soon, and as FalleN jumps in, tiziaN attempts to take him out, tiziaN starts to defuse, FalleN throws his remaining grenade, and peeks as there is a fraction of a second left on the defuse.

The clipperino (in German) shows it all: https://clips.twitch.tv/WimpyCreativeLorisThunBeast

Notable match, the shoulda/woulda/coulda/

BIG vs Fnatic

Fnatic dominated BIG. If the two teams had met in the playoffs, it might have been Fnatic taking home the trophy.

16-10 on Cache and a whopping 16-4 on Train.

The ESL ONE Cologne 2018 Final

We made a video of all the highlights. Below in the “Key moments” section, you can click to skip to that time in the video.

NaVi vs BIG

Map picks for ESL ONE Cologne 2018

  1. NaVi bans Cache
  2. BIG bans Mirage
  3. NaVi picks Overpass
  4. BIG picks Dust2
  5. NaVi picks Train
  6. BIG picks Inferno
  7. Server picks Nuke by default

NaVi ban Cache

NaVi doesn’t play cache, only 26 recorded matches with a 19% win rate. The must detest this map and a great candidate for a map ban since BIG have played a lot of their games on it with a 57% win rate.

BIG ban Mirage

BIG banned mirage, their worst map statistically with a 36% win rate on there and an obvious ban for them since NaVi has a 56% win rate (their 3rd best map).

SERVER picks Nuke by default

Spoiler: This map was not played.

Overpass

NaVi pick Overpass

NaVi has played 153 games on Overpass with a 62% win rate, contrasted to BIG’s 42 games with a 45% win rate. Overpass is NaVi’s second best map (after train) so was a good choice.

  • NaVi pick
  • Win rate 62%
  • NaVi win 16-10
  • 1st half 8-7
  • 2nd half 8-3
Key player(s)
  • electronic
  • s1mple

Consistent damage, 21 and 23 frags for electronic and s1mple respectively. Similar on stats, electronic edged s1mple purely on assists and headshots (although he had a few more deaths).

Key moments

Dust2

BIG pick Dust2

Dust2 was BIG’s map pick and statistically their best map despite playing only 14 games their win rate is 79%. NaVi has played a total of 102 games on Dust2 with only a 50% win rate. Dust2 was a great map pick for BIG.

  • BIG pick
  • Win rate 79% (14 games total)
  • BIG win 11-16
  • 1st half 7-8
  • 2nd half 4-8
Key player(s)
  • nex

tabseN and tiziaN had an impact on this map, but far away in the distance was nex, he was excellent. 31/19/8 KDA and an impressive 130 average damage per round (ADR). tabseN had 97 ADR, 20/17/9 KDA and was in no means a slouch on this game.

Key moments

Train

NaVi pick Train

Train is NaVi’s best map, this is where they an beat most teams and made it the obvious choice for NaVi with 132 games played on it with a 69% win rate. Maybe if BIG blocked this map and took a chance on Mirage, it might have changed?

  • NaVi pick
  • win rate 69% (NaVi’s best map)
  • NaVi win 16-10
  • 1st half 7-8
  • 2nd half 9-2
Key player(s)
  • s1mple
  • electronic

s1mple and electronic had 29/16/4 and 24/16/8 KDA respectively. 14 of elecronic kills were headshots, and he edged s1mple out on damage with an average of 113 per round (s1mple 105 ADR).

Key moments

Inferno

BIG pick Inferno

With only 26 games played and a 54% win rate, BIG felt comfortable here. NaVi had played 140 more games with the same win rate of 54%. A win on inferno would come down to overall team performance to win this map.

  • BIG pick
  • NaVi win 16-8
  • 1st half 8-7
  • 2nd half 8-1
Key player(s)
  • electronic
  • tabseN

NaVi clinched ESL One Cologne with this map win. nex, gob b and tizian were kept out of the game on BIG’s side, and smooya wasn’t able to be as impactful as he was in other rounds and maps. tabseN gets an honorable mention here; he was outstanding for BIG but electronic’s consistency was key in a map where flamie outperformed s1mple.

electronic has 24/10/5 KDA and tabseN matched this closely with 26/19/5. tabseN’s damage average was pretty impressive, 117 per round, as mentioned previously, his performance gave BIG a glimmer of hope while tizian, gob b and nex were <50 ADR each.

Key moments

What was the best possible fantasy team for ESL ONE Cologne?

Let’s have a look at the ESL ONE Cologne 2018 Legendary pool winner, Waari666:

ESP Legendary pool winner choices for ESL ONE Cologne 2018

The ENCE picks were pretty sick and quite insightful considering sergej was one of the picks that would have swoops the maximum points. It’s worthwhile remembering our rules, 2 players per team (i.e., you cant pick all of Astralis) and 10K to spend. Let’s have a look at these players a bit more:

  • s1mple
    • A frequent top performer, a solid pick albeit for a hefty price tag of $2,900
    • Surprisingly not in the top 5 “dream team” despite scoring 336 fantasy points
  • electronic
    • Not always the best performer on the team, not the worst, at $2,600 he’s not usually as good a pick as s1mple for $200 more, but, you only have 10K to spend
    • electronic was in the “dream team” with 336 points, but slightly cheaper than s1mple
  • dupreeh
    • Another expensive pick because he’s a consistent performer, plus Astralis are hot right now. He is a pricey player for your roster at $2,500
    • Astralis’ run was ended abruptly courtesy of the winners, NaVi. As such, they didn’t go as far and didn’t perform as well as usual
    • If you picked dupreeh, you would have paid out $2,500 and netted 155 points which is “OK” for dupreeh
  • sergej
    • An outside pick right? For $700, we feel that our winner Waari666 threw this in to make the 10K cap.
    • Surprisingly ENCE had a fantastic tournament.
    • Even more surprisingly, at $700, sergej was one of the “dream team”
  • Aerial
    • Another outsider. At $700, Waarii666 probably picked him to fill in the remaining salary.
    • Where ENCE had an unbelievably great tournament, Aerial was not one of the top performers. He netted 83 points.

The “dream team”

Here’s the best possible team you could have picked bearing in mind the 10K salary cap and 2 players max per team:

the ESP "dream team" for ESL ONE Cologne 2018

 

Team Player Score Salary
NaVi electronic 336 $2,600
BIG tabseN 266 $2,600
BIG tiziaN 232 $1,600
NaVi flamie 231 $2,500
ENCE sergej 165 $700

 

Top 10 points per $1000

For your information, here are the ESL ONE Cologne 2018 top 10 picks per $1000. Due to the rules, you couldn’t afford or pick them all:

 

Team Player Score Salary PPKD
ENCE sergej 165 $700 235.7
BIG tiziaN 232 $1,600 145
NaVi electronic 336 $2,600 129.2
ENCE Aerial 83 $700 118.6
NaVi s1mple 336 $2,900 115.9
BIG gob b 153 $1,400 109.3
BIG nex 288 $2,700 106.7
ENCE Aleksib 74 $700 105.7
BIG tabseN 266 $2,600 102.3
BIG smooya 119 $1,200 99.2

Fantasy point leaders

Fantasy point distribution for ESL ONE Cologne 2018

In summary

ADR is all good, as are frags, but team tactics trump everything. If you have the best player and his team cannot advance, then they won’t usually be top of the leaderboards. Additionally, damage and kills don’t always win maps. We saw a few 1v4 clutches at ESL ONE Cologne, a lot more 1v3s and way more 1v2s. Think about picking players that have excellent support, and you’ll do well.

If all else fails, put really expensive players in and “DO A WAARI” and pick the cheap ones to fill, hoping they do well. AKA a “Hail Mary”. There will never be another ESL ONE Cologne, what happened here was special, such a fantastic tournament and we hope you enjoyed it!

FaZe vs Mouz at ESLOne Belo Horizonte

FaZe vs Mouz at ESLOne Belo Horizonte

The map bans at ESLOne Belo Horizonte

Map bans are critical. ultimately Mouz gave away a free map to FaZe at ESLOne Belo Horizonte.

Mouz ban Overpass. A top map for FaZe and a reasonably weak map overall for Mouz.

FaZe ban Nuke. A top map for Mouz. FaZe and Mouz perform well on Nuke, perhaps cromen’s ability to perform on these might have been the reason why this was banned.

Round by round at ESLOne Belo Horizonte

1. Mouz pick Inferno, 16-6 [FaZe win]

This was a surprising pick by Mouz. Not a strong map for Mouz and consequently a GOOD map for FaZe. The result proved this map pick was a mistake, FaZe dominated, winning 16-6. karrigan, rain, and NiKo were outstanding for FaZe. suNny, ropz and n0thing were shut down entirely in this game, more so during FaZe’s impeccable T-side.

Battle of the standins: cromen had a much better time than n0thing.

2. FaZe pick Cache, 16-14 [Mouz win]

Both teams have a similar win rate on this map. The 16-14 map score reflected how close these teams were. It seemed to be going very well for FaZe, winning 11 rounds on T side, only for Mouz to step up and close the first half off with 4 round wins. In the second half, Mouz dropped 3 rounds but otherwise had a fantastic T side. chrisJ, STYKO, and ropz were the best players on the map and seemed to always be in the right place, at the right time and with the aim accuracy to shut out karrigan and rain.

Battle of the standins: cromen had a great time on cache, n0thing wasn’t so hot.

3. Mouz pick Train, 16-12 [Mouz win]

Great win here for Mouz on their map pick. GuardiaN and karrigan were locked out of the game. NiKo was carrying the critical stats for FaZe on damage and kills but chrisj wasn’t far behind. ropz and suNny put in an excellent performance to back up chrisJ to close the first half 11-4. The last 3 map wins on CT side appeared to be elusive for Mouz, as FaZe conducted a series of team kills and explosions. Round 23 to 28 was the home stretch with FaZe only managing to defend the bomb plant on round 26.

Battle of the standins: The standins on both sides had decent time on this map.

4. FaZe pick Mirage, 16-9 [FaZe win]

GuardiaN didn’t have a lot to do on inferno as karrigan, rain, NiKo and cromen were running rampant around the server. He was FaZe’s best player on cache but chrisJ dominated with the AWP. It wasn’t until Mirage that GuardiaN decided that he’d wreck people. He was top damage (97 ADR) For FaZe with 14 AWP kills and a cheeky 7 kills with the mac10. With NiKo was right behind Guardian with 22 kills and similar ADR, they made cromen and rain look average even though they had a great time on this map. STYKO was unable to make an impact here, but to be fair, it seemed like a massive mismatch for Mouz on mirage and FaZe’s T side dominance seemed too much to overcome in the second half.

Battle of the standins: cromen had a fantastic time on mirage, whereas n0thing (like all of Mouz) didn’t have a good time.

5. Dust2 picK by default, 16-10 [FaZe win]

This was a great map to finish off the tournament. Dust2 is the starter map for most CSGO players, so it’s very familiar to see it in the rotation for noobs all the way to pros.

FaZe managed to counter 7 rounds of Mouz’s T side. FaZe’s gameplay and confidence looked good for them to move on to sweep the T side in the second half, which of course they did. En route, NiKo showed how comfortable he was with an array of weapons:

  • 10 on rifles
  • 11 on sniper (2[scout]+ 9[AWP])
  • 4 pistols
  • 4 UMP

While the NiKo show was in progress, rain and GuardiaN were excellent. chrisJ was the only player on Mouz’s side that had a good game, ropz, STYKO and n0thing were locked out of contributing.

Battle of the standins: both had a rough time on Dust2.

Highlight video of ESLOne Belo Horizonte final

Watch the highlights of the final here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=amd0vsKnXh0

ESP partner with G2 Esports CSGO team

ESP and G2

We are over the moon to announce that we have enlisted with the #G2Army by becoming an official partner of the G2 Esport CSGO team!

We are no stranger to working with pro teams. In the past, we’ve sponsored teams like Na’Vi and Flipside as a way to get more involved in esports and to work with organizations that have similar beliefs such as high levels of professionalism, credibility and most of all a desire to win.

ESP partners with G2 Esports

To celebrate our partnership with G2, we are lining up some exciting contests and prizes throughout the partnership term. We urge everyone to follow us and G2 on Twitter to receive updates on what we have in store!

More about G2 Esports

With a lot of changes at the top of HLTV’s ladder, such as Cloud9’s major win, Mouseports’s StarSeries4 win and Na’Vi’s 2nd placing at StarSeries4, G2 is ranked 7th. The team is comprised of an all-French lineup of shox, kennyS, NBK apEX and bodyy. In 2017 they managed to win the ESL Pro League final as well as DreamHack Masters Malmo.

About ESP

ESP was founded in 2014 and began offering fantasy esports to their members as a free to play site. In July 2017 we added the option to pay to enter fantasy tournaments. We have since extended our product to allow our members to wager on esports matches in the form of pool betting, and also to live betting where members can watch and bet on the outcome in real time. For a CSGO match, ESP members can bet on events that happen on every round of play.

As participating members in ESIC, we take security and gambling responsibility seriously. We do not accept wagers from non-adults and we do not offer our paid product in countries where it is deemed illegal. We run a rigorous policy of age verification before any action begins.

2017 CSGO review

This has been an incredible year for CSGO. We’ve seen new teams win unexpectedly and the usual top tier teams scoop their fair share of the spoils. Roster changes have happened to fix team performance or simply because a change needed to be made outside of the game. The competitive circuit is going to expand in 2018 with more tournaments and a lot more traveling to LANs for some of the top teams, it will be interesting to see how they will handle the increased pressure. We hope you enjoy ESP’s 2017 CSGO review, starting with some epic moments.

Epic moments of 2017

Here are some of the big moments of 2017, we have a poll running on Twitter, we’d love to see your vote on which was the best.

An in-depth look at CSGO in 2017

In many ways, 2017 was simply a continuation of 2016 in that it was a year that was dominated by SK Gaming. Spattered across 2017, SK claimed 10 first place titles at LAN events. Certainly, the Brazilian squad had low times throughout the year, such as a 5-8 placing at the PGL Major in Kraków, Poland. However, these low points were never long; the team led by FalleN was always quick to bounce back to reclaim their placing as #1 in the world at that given time.

Now looking back on the year as a whole, very few (if any) arguments can be made for SK not to be considered the best team in the world. Claims that they are the best team in the history of the game can also be strongly supported. While they cannot claim to have an 87-0 record of dominance like the NiP of 2013 can, the competition in the CSGO scene has never been more fierce. SK’s current dominance is done in the presence of the absolute powerhouse of Faze Clan; a burgeoning Danish scene; and the Americas growing in prominence in CSGO. We are in an era where the top 20 teams in the world can compete with one another — it’s no longer a competition between a top 4 like the days of old.

Roster Changes

A significant reason behind this increase in competition is in large part due to the spreading of talent through roster changes. We began to see a mix of seasoned veterans mingling with the upcoming young stars in a potent blend. These changes were something even SK were not immune to. Coming off of a brief dip in performance at the end of 2016, SK swapped fnx for felps from Immortals in February of 2017. This influx of young talent into SK saw them rise again and claim several titles going into the summer. Following their early exit from the Kraków Major, SK saw a wide range of results that were both good and bad. In October, felps stepped down from the main roster to go inactive while boltz was brought in. Instantly, SK was back on top and look utterly dominant.

The availability of boltz to join the roster stems from another significant storyline in the Brazilian CSGO scene: the decline of the Immortals. On the coattails of the successes of SK Gaming, the Brazilian CSGO exploded onto the forefront and were able to put together another strong squad in the form of the Immortals. While they were not as dominant as SK (no one was), they were certainly in the top 10 for much of 2017, including a grand final finish in Kraków and finishing ahead of their Brazilian compatriots. The squad of boltz, steel, LUCAS1, HEN1, and kNgV- were looking strong.

September, what a month

In September things took a sudden change for the worse due to issues arising outside of the game. Having booked their spot in the playoffs at Dreamhack Montreal, kNgV-, HEN1, and LUCAS1 failed to show up on time for their matches twice. Included in this was also a forfeit of their first game in the grand finals. In the controversy and social media storm that followed, kNgV- sent a death threat to CLG captain FNS. kNgV, was subsequently suspended from Immortals and was barred from playing. The following few weeks, kNgV- played in an official match despite this suspension at the behest of the twins, HEN1 and LUCAS1. For disobeying the suspension, all 3 were subsequently removed by the Immortals organization, at the cost of their berth at the major spot (which are given based on having 3 out of 5 of the participating players, not by the organization). Steel and boltz, at no fault of their own, were now left marooned on a team that was struggling to find suitable replacements. Eventually, both found new homes — for boltz that would be SK Gaming.

Having a roster dissolve in such a dramatic way is a bit of an anomaly, and is not indicative of the scene as a whole, nor the Brazilian CSGO community. Perhaps what is telling is the region-based nature of the scene, with teams from any given region shuffling amongst themselves. Like the Brazilian scene, the North American, Danish, Swedish, and French communities all had their own shuffles. The North American Cloud9 team brought in RUSH and tarik, reolacing shroud and n0thing in August. North, hailing from Denmark, had their own shuffle of players when they benched Magisk and brought on valde from Heroic. As a continuation from the previous year, the Swedes tried to find their form again with perpetual roster changes between fnatic and GODSENT, as well as NiP bringing in two young players from Epsilon. The French saw a major swap of players between G2 and Team EnVyUs as well.

Roster changes are a constant in the CSGO scene, and sometimes they can be done successfully, such as for G2 who has had a string of fairly good results with their new squad. However, it can also be a detriment to that region’s performance, as seen by the swap of players by fnatic and GODSENT. Other times it can be a dramatic explosion of controversy, exemplified by the Immortals case. On the whole, it can be said that shuffling players is healthy for the scene. It allows for a spreading of ideas on how the game should be played between peers and a synthesis of veteran wisdom and the influx of new ideas from the young upstarts.

Major/Premier class tournament results

Classification Tournament Date Prize Winner Runner-up
Major DreamHack Leipzig 2017 Jan-2017 $100,000 F3 BIG
Premier ELEAGUE ELEAGUE Major: Atlanta 2017 Jan-2017 $1,000,000 Astralis VP
Premier DreamHack Masters Las Vegas 2017 Feb-2017 $450,000 VP SK
Premier Intel Extreme Masters XI – World Championship Mar-2017 $250,000 Astralis FaZe
Major The Summit cs_summit Apr-2017 $150,000 SK Gambit
Major DreamHack Austin 2017 Apr-2017 $100,000 Gambit IMT
Premier StarLadder i-League Season 3 Apr-2017 $300,000 FaZe Astralis
Major DreamHack Tours 2017 May-2017 $100,000 G2 HR
Premier ESL Pro League Season 5 – Finals May-2017 $750,000 G2 North
Premier ESL One: New York 2017 May-2017 $250,000 FaZe Liquid
Premier Intel Extreme Masters XII – Sydney May-2017 $200,000 SK FaZe
Premier ESL Pro League Season 5 – North America May-2017 $125,000 SK Liquid
Premier ESL Pro League Season 5 – Europe May-2017 $125,000 North G2
Major DreamHack Summer 2017 Jun-2017 $100,000 SK Fnatic
Major Adrenaline Cyber League 2017 Jun-2017 $100,000 VP Na`Vi
Premier ECS Season 3 – Finals Jun-2017 $660,000 SK FaZe
Major DreamHack Atlanta 2017 Jul-2017 $100,000 Envy Heroic
Major DreamHack Valencia 2017 Jul-2017 $100,000 NiP Red
Premier PGL Major Kraków 2017 Jul-2017 $1,000,000 Gambit IMT
Premier ESL ESL One: Cologne 2017 Jul-2017 $250,000 SK C9
Premier DreamHack Masters Malmö 2017 Aug-2017 $250,000 G2 North
Major DreamHack Montreal 2017 Sep-2017 $100,000 North IMT
Premier ELEAGUE ELEAGUE CS:GO Premier 2017 Sep-2017 $1,000,000 FaZe Astralis
Premier ESG Tour Mykonos 2017 Sep-2017 $240,562 mouz Liquid
Major ECS Season 4 – Europe Oct-2017 Fnatic FaZe
Major ECS Season 4 – North America Oct-2017 C9 OpTic
Major Gfinity Elite Series – Season 2 Oct-2017 $116,000 nV.A Epsilon
Major DreamHack Denver 2017 Oct-2017 $100,000 C9 BIG
Major eXTREMESLAND ZOWIE Asia CS:GO 2017 Oct-2017 $99,000 Flash Eclipse
Premier EPICENTER 2017 Oct-2017 $490,000 SK VP
Major BLAST Pro Series: Copenhagen 2017 Nov-2017 $250,000 SK Astralis
Major StarLadder i-League Invitational #2 Nov-2017 $150,000 RNG VP
Major iBUYPOWER Masters 2017 Nov-2017 $100,000 C9 RNG
Premier Intel Extreme Masters XII – Oakland Nov-2017 $300,000 NiP FaZe
Premier ESL Pro League Season 6 – North America Nov-2017 $125,000 OpTic SK
Premier ESL Pro League Season 6 – Europe Nov-2017 $125,000 Fnatic North
Major ROG Masters 2017 Dec-2017 $235,000 Gambit TyLoo
Major DreamHack Winter 2017 Dec-2017 $100,000 Na`Vi mouz
Premier ESL Pro League Season 6 – Finals Dec-2017 $750,000 SK FaZe

Dreamhack Astro Open Winter 2017 #DHW17 team highlights

DreamHack Astro Open winter is almost here, here are some key points for some of the teams competing in the tournament.

BIG replaces Fnatic

Fnatic withdrew from the tournament. Although not the powerhouse they once were, Fnatic will be missed by the fans at DreamHack Winter; they won the first ever CSGO Major in 2013 at DreamHack Open Winter with the legendary team of JW, flusha, znajder, Devilwalk & pronax.

BIG is currently ranked 21 and has leapfrogged into this competition due to Fnatic’s withdrawal. BIG placed 2nd in DreamHack Open Denver this year, losing 16-13 on cache (their pick) and 16-6 on C9’s pick, train. Overall, they are ranked 21st by HLTV. They’re quite far behind the top 16/17 teams.

EnVyUs replaces Team Liquid

zews could not get a visa (he replaced stanislaw) and are replaced by EnVyUs who won DreamHack Atlanta this year and had some decent placements in 2017. They’re currently ranked 13th in HLTV rankings, although they’re far behind the top 8 teams.

Na’Vi have a small change in the roster with electronic replacing seized. Their performance has been relatively erratic this year. This has been a bit of a bumpy ride for the team. In August, Guardian left for FaZe and Zeus came in from Gambit after winning the PGL Major in Krakow.

For two and a half months the team tried to gel until seized was replaced with electronic in October, so this is quite a new team. Watching s1mple is always enjoyable, but there are high expectations for Na’Vi to do better than they’ve been doing, lest they slip away into obscurity.

Gambit Esports

Gambit has a solid team, but the reality is that they’re at the low end of the top 10 teams in CSGO. fitch is on trial, and a good performance here might see that trial extended. hobbit was formally signed in August about two weeks after the team won PGL Major Krakow.

They have a new coach, and the team is stable. Last year at DreamHack Winter, HObbit was a rookie but still managed to pick up the tournament MVP at his first premier competition. Expectations are high for a repeat performance this year, on the whole team too.

mousesports

mousesports are sitting just out the top 10, but the gap between the guys at the top SK and FaZe, and the rest is gargantuan, however, every tournament win helps. They won ESG Tour in Mykonos, showing up in total pro mode, leaving with 120K USD and no sun tan, beating Team Liquid 3-2 in the final. suNny and oskar steamrolled the three maps they won on cobble, train and nuke with suNny was excellent on Mirage, one of the two maps they dropped to Team Liquid.

Who do you think will win DreamHack Astro Open Winter?

Tell us what you think on Twitter @esportspools and don’t forget to come back and bet In-Play on the event!