With the conclusion of Week 8, we couldn’t think of a tighter situation going into the final two weeks as the lineups from across Europe and North America put everything they have into obtaining a spot in the ESL Pro League Season 5 Finals in Dallas, Texas. Although there is no confirmation yet as to who will be competing in the Finals, both SK Gaming and Immortals only need one more win from two weeks worth of matches to receive their invites - exciting stuff ahead.
In a recap of Week 8, you will find an in-depth review of the league standings across both Europe and North America, our favorite bits from the week of matches, as well as a look at our Hot Match of the Week.
At the end of another week of action, Astralis still lead the European ESL Pro League standings, ahead of second place lineup North, after a close match against Swedish giants, Ninjas in Pyjamas, which concluded 1-1 in the series with a 16-12 win on de_inferno, and a 16-12 loss on de_cache. With that result, the Danish side now sits at the top of leaderboard with 39 points from 20 matches, giving themselves a 13-7 win/loss record.
As previously discussed in other recaps, although Astralis is leading the European standings, the other teams in and around the qualification zone, are only a few points away from taking that number one spot, or just generally acquiring an all important spot within the top 6 for an invite to the season finals. For the teams that have worked hard enough to currently hold a position within the top 6, there is only a maximum of six points between them and the Danish leaders so in reality, anything could happen, just look at G2 Esports for the evidence.
The other end of the leaderboard seems to be getting even more interesting by the end of each, for all the wrong reasons, however. Over the past few weeks, Virtus.pro and Team EnVyUs have slowly slipped down the standings into 12th and 13th place, respectively. This ultimately means, if they’re not careful, we could be seeing them in the relegation matches, or immediate relegation dependent on the upcoming results in the next two weeks.
Below, you can find an updated look at the European ESL Pro League Season 5 standings at the end of Week 8:
Hot Match of the Week - Recap
For this week’s European Hot Match of the Week, we recommended that you made an effort to tune into the match between CIS side, Natus Vincere, and G2 Esports, a lineup that had recently come into their own after some early troubles in the ESL Pro League.
On the first map, de_nuke, Natus Vincere got off to an early start winning the first pistol round on the CT side, but unfortunately for them, it did not lead to anything with the next round being won by G2. After a couple back and forth rounds, Na`Vi then took full control of the first half with a 9-2 lead, making it seem like the game was already over, but the determined G2 sides pulled it back to only a three round deficit at 9-6, as they switched sides.
The second half got underway on Nuke and it was beyond a different storyline to the first half. Within minutes, the match was all tied up at 10-10 with Natus Vincere only winning one round out of the five played. That was the only round that was won by Na`Vi as G2 Esports went onto take the first map 16-10.
Coming off of that huge win in the first map, G2 got off to a great start in the second, taking a strong 4-1 lead over the CIS side, but then here came Na`Vi, a team that is often able to come back when it looks like there is no hope for them. All of a sudden, with a few important clutch rounds, Natus Vincere found themselves in the lead with a 8-5 scoreline before G2 got a few rounds back to finish the first half 8-7.
Moving into the second half, Na`Vi got the ball rolling with the momentum that they had at the end of the first half, and quickly found themselves in a situation where they now had a five round lead over their French opponents. Much like the first map, the two teams were in a back and forth situation, and it wasn’t long before G2 had again tied up the map, this time it was 12-12. Despite their best efforts, it just wasn’t enough for G2 as Na`Vi went on to take the map 16-13, finishing the series level at 1-1.
Highlights of the Week
1) Gla1ve ace clutch
2) S1mple makes it look simple
3) So calm. So collected. So CZ.
At the end of Week 8, the North American region is still led by Brazilian side, SK Gaming with a total of 48 points from 20 matches played, leaving themselves with a 16-4 win/loss record. Just sitting behind them on 45 points is their Brazilian counterparts, Immortals, and the ‘NA Kings of Pro League,’ all of which who are within touching distance of obtaining a spot at the offline finals in Dallas, Texas this Summer.
The continued trend throughout the ESL Pro League Season 5 was that, regardless of who led the standings, the rest of the teams were in a relatively close position to each other, and the top positions in the leaderboard. That same trend transpired throughout Week 8. At this point, there is four teams sitting outside the qualification zone that, depending on their own performance and other results, could clinch a qualifying position within the top six, including OpTic Gaming, and Counter Logic Gaming. Both of these sides sit on 33 points, and with a matchup between the two coming up in Week 10, we could see some interesting changes.
For the bottom three sides, Rush, Winterfox, and former Selfless Gaming side, The Foundation, it’s already game over with a combined points total of 18 points from 57 matches played. It’s difficult to say which side will be instantly relegated from the Pro League, but everyone is looking at the The Foundation side. However, they do have three games in hand over the remainder of the teams so who knows what will happen.
Below, you can find an updated view of the North American ESL Pro League Season 5 standings at the end of Week 8:
Highlights of the Week
1) Wow ShahZaM
2) 4 kills from 9 bullets
The penultimate week is coming!
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 while they are still available.