The Aussie adventure is down to the final four teams. Now it’s time for the group winners to finally entering and face their battle-hardened challengers that survived the quarter-finals. Historically, the rest day hasn’t always benefitted these sides, but today’s matchups might just turn out to be the exception to this rule…
The recent player swap deal between these to teams makes this a fascinating matchup, and the first one where their new rosters get a chance to duke it out in a serious environment. For what it’s worth, Liquid won both of their meetings in the BLAST Pro circuit with a 16-2 mauling on Dust 2 and a 16-10 on Overpass, which would suggest an easy victory.
However, one has to wonder about any lingering rustiness playing a part: apart from their Pro League group, the North Americans only played at BLAST Pro events since the major. Their one best-of-three series was that massive defeat to FaZe in Miami. Then again, it’s not yet the grand final, so Liquid should be good, right?
While MiBR remain frustratingly inconsistent, the Brazilians were pretty damn impressive so far at the event, coldzera especially. While it would be a big stretch to suggest that they’re the more likely ones to win this series, the 3.60 odds offered for a MIBR win might just be too tantalizing to ignore considering the circumstances. A $25 bet on FalleN’s men would therefore net you a whopping $90 – and if it’s your first bet with us, we’ll refund your stake if things go wrong!
There are very specific data points to consider here. The first is the two team’s recent clash in the semi-finals of the StarSeries S7 LAN in Shanghai. The Swedes’ 2-0 win doesn’t tell the whole story: both maps went to overtime and the North American side could have very easily taken that series. It will be interesting to see whether NRG are willing to pick Overpass again, seeing how Fnatic’s recent record isn’t actually that great on the map despite their victory on it in the aforementioned series.
Arguably, their respective matches against MiBR in this very tournament are even more relevant right now, and that doesn’t paint a promising picture for Xizt’s men. Getting crushed on Nuke with a 0-15 first half after picking the map themselves is bad enough as it is, but their 16-4 defeat looks even worse when you consider that NRG achieved the exact opposite result against the Brazilians, going on to win the series convincingly on the same two maps Fnatic lost on against FalleN’s men. The incredibly long match against NiP likely also took a lot out of the Swedes, tipping the balance even further in NRG’s direction. A $25 bet on the North American side at 1.68 would net you $42 – and, again, if it’s your first bet with us, we’ll refund your stake if things go wrong!
Odds accurate as of the time of publication.