With the very first season of ESL ESEA CS:GO Pro League slowly but surely reaching its climax, both the European and North American division were to settle the some of the final matches before the finals, deciding not only the four teams going to the finals but those who either lose their spot or have to relegate for the second season.
At this point of the season the European Top 4 positions have been unofficially locked into place. TSM was the first to officially be ‘safe’ after taking a win over HellRaisers this Monday. Following closely behind TSM, VP as well as Fnatic, with still plenty of games left to play at the beginning of this week, were able to secure their needed amount of wins to guarantee a spot as well. The final battle would come down to ENVYUS and NiP.
NiP would need to secure all of their remaining three matches in order to place themselves into a possible position to qualify for the Season 1 Finals. This possibility, however would also require a loss in the record of the remaining four matches for the French team, ENVYUS. NBK and his mates performed very strong this week, taking dominating wins against PENTA and Dignitas, as well as a 16-13 victory versus TSM. NiP, on the other hand, while being able to take a match away from mousesports, struggled against fnatic. Their 4-16 loss against the other Swedish team in the league removed NiP’s hopes of attending the finals and solidified ENVYUS’ position. You can look forward to seeing them along with TSM, VP and fnatic in Cologne in just a few short weeks.
Although the European spots seem pretty much locked in, a very close battle for control of the North American seeds continues throughout this weekend, with many teams still having a few crucial matches to play out. Cloud9 is currently the only team which cannot be removed from the top four. They currently sit with a 17-3 record, three wins ahead of the next team. After C9 however, everything remains up in the air.
KeyD Stars (14-4), Luminosity (13-5), CLG (13-7), Team Liquid (12-8) and even Nihilum (11-7) all sit within very close proximity to each other and with the games still to come this weekend, these five teams will need to pull together all of their strength in order to pull ahead and/or keep themselves in the running for a position at the Pro League finals.
Liquid and CLG currently are on the shakiest terrain. With both teams having played 20 out of their 22 games for the season and with games still ahead against high profile teams such as KeyD Stars and Nihilum, we will need to see these teams win both of their remaining matches in order to keep themselves in the running for a chance at a seat at the Season 1 Finals. For the other three squads, the odds look a little bit higher, with these teams only having played 18 of their 22 games, they have plenty more opportunities to pull ahead of their competition.
For North America it is certainly going to be a very exciting weekend of Counter-Strike in the ESL ESEA Pro League, so be sure to tune into the stream on both nights in order to find out who is going to be earning a ticket to Cologne and who will be left in the dust.
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