The ECS Season 8 finals are almost upon us, with Astralis, Team Liquid, Evil Geniuses and Fnatic all fighting for the trophy. Here’s the schedule of the opening day of the event and our predictions of how things will shake out on November 28th. Keep in mind that the opening matches are best-of-one, everything else for the tournament will be best-of-three.

Group A opening matches

Evil Geniuses vs AVANGAR (10:00 EDT / 16:00 CET)

There’s little to suggest an upset here: even with EG’s less-than-stellar showings in China, AVANGAR couldn’t quite keep up their little streak from the major and haven’t posted anything of note against top-tier sides. Even in a best-of-one, we just can’t see it happening.

Bet on EG @ 1.33

Team Liquid vs NiP (11:30 EDT / 17:30 CET)

Historically, Liquid has a pretty insane record against NiP, winning six out of seven encounters since the beginning of 2018. In fact, the Swedes’ last best-of-three victory against this particular org is from 2015. Form, ranking and the matchup history all suggest an NA triumph, even with the added variance of a best-of-one. The Ninjas’ only recent win was, in fact, their most recent encounter at BLAST Pro Series Copenhagen.

Bet on Team Liquid @ 1.44

Group B opening matches

Astralis vs Sharks Esports (13:00 EDT / 19:00 CET)

The Brazilian minnows are clearly the odd ones out at this event, and though Astralis were burned by FURIA at the previous ECS finals, this seems like an even steeper climb. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence, after all, and we can’t see Sharks pulling this one off, not even at 8:1.

Bet on Astralis @ 1.08

Fnatic vs MIBR (14:30 EDT / 20:30 CET)

Both teams have seen an uptick in performances as of late, but the Swedes’ improvements were above and beyond the Brazilians’. That said, Fnatic have clear weaknesses on their CT side, ripe to be exploited by an experience in-game leader, and this is the one series where we could potentially see an underdog victory in a best-of-one.

Bet on MIBR @ 2.75

Group A winners’ match (16:00 EDT / 22:00 CET)

Group B winners’ match (19:00 EDT / 01:00 CET)

Photo credit: HLTV

Odds are subject to change.

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