Na’Vi enters the fray in Week 2 of EU Pro League

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The Ukrainians were MIA on MD1, but that is about to change big time. S1mple and his boys will play 20 maps between Tuesday and Sunday, in what will be a decisive week for all teams in this drastically shortened online portion of the season. Simon “twist” Eliasson has a chance to help his new team, Fnatic, shine after a quiet opening week, as we get to witness which sides adapt best to Valve’s latest update.

Na’Vi have been considered the world’s second best team for most of 2018. After their victory at ESL One Cologne, where the Ukrainians defeated Astralis in the BO3 semi-finals, Zeus and his boys had high hopes for the Major. Na’Vi made it to the finals where they had said hopes utterly crushed by a far superior Astralis. Just a week later, Na’Vi failed to make it out of the group stage at ESL One New York, probably still shaken by their finals performance in London. By now though, Edward & Co. have had enough time to regroup and focus on their Pro League debut in Season 8.

Na’Vi are going to complete almost their entire season on MD2, facing ten opponents, including NiP, mousesports and FaZe Clan. Most importantly though, they will have their shot at revenge against Astralis in the most anticipated clash of the season. S1mple and electronic have been godlike throughout the entire year, but the former seems to consistently lose his magic touch when dev1ce & Co. enter the server. S1mple is instrumental to Na’Vi’s success, and when the two teams clash on Saturday, he needs to show up or payback will remain a mere fantasy.

A twist in Fnatic

The Swedes stand at one win and one loss after facing Heroic in week 1. A vital and difficult MD2 will see them square off against FaZe, G2, Astralis, Na’Vi, BIG and North. ScreaM is still standing in for Fnatic, but the org has announced the permanent signing of twist, who already had a short stint with Fnatic in 2016. He has always been deemed a potential superstar, but even though many offers from top organizations came his way, he chose to remain in lower tier-two teams like GODSENT or Red Reserve. This could very well be twist’s last chance to prove himself amongst the elite and he can start by helping Fnatic reach the Pro League playoffs.

Valve’s potentially meta-shifting update

A murmur went through the professional CS:GO crowd after Valve’s latest update, which seeks to devalue pistol rounds by bumping the round-loss-bonus after a lost pistol from $1400 to $1900. This could have all sorts of unforeseen implications on the current meta. Forcebuys after a lost pistol become stronger, but saving up money for a fourth round buy, will also be more effective. The CT side especially could benefit from extra utility and an easier to obtain AWP. Overall the community expects the update to favour the T side however, as the weapons are cheaper on the attacking side. It will be fun to see which tactics the teams build around the new economy. Some of the more notorious force-buyers like Na’Vi, mouz and FaZe are probably already looking forward to that juicy round two economy, adding all sorts of grenades and armor to their Deagles and CZ75as. Oh god, the horror.

Don’t miss any of the action next week!

Tune into ESL CS:GO’s Facebook channel to watch your favorite teams battle for a spot at the offline finals in Odense. If you want to watch the season finals, you can purchase tickets here.

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Season 8 of the ESL Pro League is brought to you by Intel, the City of Odense, Nvidia, Legion by Lenovo, Logitech, paysafecard, xfinity, MDL and YouTube.