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The ESL Pro League returns for Week 7 after a week away from the intense online action

Peter Stewart
Contributing Editor
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Last week, sides from across Europe and North America, took a break from online play in the ESL Pro League to prepare for, and compete in, the SL i-League Star Series event where we saw FaZe Clan take the US$125,000 first place prize, ahead of major champions and number one team in the world, Astralis. With only four weeks left of matches, there are some teams on both leaderboards that really need to get a move on if they are hoping to qualify for the LAN finals in Dallas, Texas this Summer. Either way, it’s sizing up to be a great few weeks of action ahead.

Here is everything you need to know for the seventh week of the ESL Pro League!

Europe

Standings

At the end of the sixth week of action, Danish side North, just managed to hold onto their top position within the European standings, holding off a plethora of well experience, top teams, including Astralis and Natus Vincere. The North lineup currently holds a total of 33 points from 16 matches played, leaving themselves with a 11-5 win/loss record.

Although North do lead the European region, there are a number of teams that are chasing the number one spot in the Pro League. Both Astralis and Natus Vincere sit on 30 points after 16 matches played, whilst an unexpected fourth place team, HellRaisers, has come out of nowhere with wins of Na`Vi and North, to give themselves a real chance of qualifying for the finals, and competing against some of the best teams in an offline environment.

G2 Esports, for the first time this season, found themselves outside of last place after wins over Fnatic and Team LDLC in Week Six. After 14 matches played in the fifth season of the ESL Pro League, the so-called French ‘super team’ has obtained 18 points, putting themselves into 11th place, a spot that would just keep them in the Pro League for another season without battling in the relegation matches.

Below, you can find an updated look at the European ESL Pro League Season 5 standings at the end of week six:

Hot Match of the Week - mousesports versus Team EnVyUs

This week’s Hot Match of the Week for the European region features an important battle between mixed European side, mousesports, and Team EnVyUs, a side that currently resides in 9th place after a number of team changes before the season began.

Mousesports initially got off to an incredible start in the ESL Pro League, leading the rest of the competition for a number of weeks, after an 8-1 win/loss record to get things kicked off. With that type of start to a Pro League campaigns, everybody had very high expectations for the side, and I think the pressure might have gotten to them just a little bit. Before their map win over Heroic in week six, mouz were on a losing streak of four maps, dropping points to Team LDLC and Virtus.pro.

That losing streak has put mousesports into a slightly difficult position, considering the upcoming matches against, G2, FaZe, and Na`Vi, as they now only just find themselves within the qualification zone, holding a win/loss record of 9-5, giving them a total of 27 points, tied with HR, and only three points behind FaZe.

Outside of the ESL Pro League, we haven’t seen much from mouz, especially in an offline capacity, The last LAN event that the European side competed in was DreamHack Masters Las Vegas, and that didn’t really go to plan, finishing in 5th-8th after losing to Polish veterans Virtus.pro in the Quarter-finals.

Just before the ESL Pro League season, mousesports opponent, Team EnVyUs, went through a huge roster change with G2 Esports during the ‘French Revolution 2.0,’ and our initial thought was that Envy had drawn the short straw, but with the addition of Adil “ScreaM” Benrlitom, they seem to be in a better place. Although not currently in the qualification zone, the French side are not too far off with 21 points from 14 matches played, two less than the majority of the top six teams.

Envy got off to a decent start with a 4-1 win/loss record, but slowly slipped down the leaderboard with a six map losing streak, before taking a map off Fnatic, and winning their series against Virtus.pro most recently. It is a big ask for them to qualify, but with the talented lineup that they have, and matches against Team Kinguin and Heroic, I can definitely see them doing it.

Much like the mousesports lineup, we are yet to see much from the Envy lineup after missing out on a spot in IEM Katowice with a failed qualification attempt, losing to G2 Esports in the semi-finals. With that being said, we are set to see them compete in the cs_summit 2017 in just over one week's time.

However this match concludes, it’s definitely going to play a part in deciding which teams will be moving onto the ESL Pro League Season 5 Finals in the Summer.

North America

Standings

As Week 6 of the ESL Pro League came to a close, the long lasting flawless streak by SK Gaming finally came to an end with a loss to OpTic Gaming in their first map of the series. However, the Brazilian side still remain at the top of the North American leaderboard with 42 points from 16 matches played, giving themselves a very respectable 14-2 record. Just sitting behind them is Cloud9 who have continued their consistent performance in this league, now sitting with a total of 36 points from 16 matches, putting together a 12-4 win/loss record.

Much like the European region, the other positions within the qualification zone are still all to play for with a number of top teams only a few points away from entering that all important 1st-6th place area. Brazilian side, Immortals, are currently the final team to hold a position with the qualification zone at a total of 27 points, but with teams closing in on them, it’s difficult to say which teams will be at the season finals.

At the end of the sixth week of action, the bottom of the table in North America witnessed some relatively significant changes. With a 2-0 win over Selfless Gaming, 16-10 on de_cbble and 16-15 on de_cache, compLexity Gaming has just managed to pull away from the bottom three with a total of 15 points. Gaining those all important six points, it has moved coL out of the bottom three, and into a position where they would keep their spot in the league.

Below, you can find an updated look at the North America ESL Pro League Season 5 standings at the end of week six:

Hot Match of the Week - SK Gaming versus Cloud9

This week’s Hot Match of the Week for the North American region features SK Gaming, who still sit at the top of the league standings with an outstanding 14-2 win/loss record, and Cloud9, a side that always seems to perform well in this format, regardless of their most recent results. This is also a rematch of the ESL Pro League Season 4 finals, which Cloud9 ultimately went onto win 2-1.

The SK Gaming lineup got off to an incredible start in the ESL Pro League Season 5, establishing a 12-0 win/loss record before losing their first match to OpTic Gaming in the sixth week of matches. In the same week, the Brazilian lineup lost their second map to Renegades, 16-13 on de_train. It would have been great to see the SK side hold a flawless record throughout the whole of their Pro League campaign, but that’s just added pressure that the team do not need to put on themselves.

Outside of online play, SK Gaming have really not been meeting the expectations of everyone considering how they had been performing in the ESL Pro League. Most recently, the Brazilian side attended the SL i-League StarSeries event, finishing 9th-11th place, alongside Immortals and NiP, after losses to G2 Esports, Astralis, and FaZe. Before that, they competed in IEM Katowice, and that was an even worse performance with an 11th-12th finish out of 12 teams.

We all know what to expect from SK Gaming with the scores that they have been posting this season, but this will definitely be one of their toughest matches for the entire season.

On the other side, we have Cloud9, a side that will be looking to retain the proclaimed title as ‘NA Kings of Pro League,’ whilst also defending their ESL Pro League Season 4 championship win. C9 got off to a similar start to SK, winning their first seven matches, before losing three matches in a row to Immortals and Misfits. However, the side quickly got back on track with wins over compLexity, OpTic, and CLG.

In offline play, Cloud9 have had a similar experience that of SK Gaming, with a number of results that have not been meeting the expectations of the community. Back in February, at the DreamHack Masters Las Vegas, the C9 lineup finished in 9th through 12th place, after losing to SK and NiP. Then most recently, at IEM Katowice 2017, the North American side finished 9th-10th alongside NiP. Although it wasn’t a great overall finish, the lineup still showed some promise, taking down SK and Heroic.

With the way the leaderboard is currently looking, this is setup to be an incredible match between two giants that are looking to solidify their position in the season finals later this year, and I completely expect this series to be tied 1-1.

Week 7 is finally here!

Tune into ESL CS:GO YouTube channel to watch the best teams in CS:GO battle for their spot at offline finals in Dallas, Texas from June 3-4. If you want to watch the season finals live, you can purchase tickets here whilst they are still available.

For live coverage, and all of the latest updates on the ESL Pro League, be sure to follow ESL Counter-Strike on Twitter and Facebook.