Season two of the ESL ESEA Pro League is well underway, and the best teams from Europe and North America have been battling it out for a slot in the season finals. Week two brought us plenty of exciting matches and moments - find out how it all went down below.
Fnatic - 2-0
After a good start during week one of the Pro League, Fnatic had a shot at distancing themselves from the rest of the pack by winning another two games.
Firstly they had to fend off Natus Vincere on Cobblestone. With a Terrorist-side start, the Swedes put up a very convincing first half. Olofmeister had an astonishing performance, winning nearly all the duels he took part in. With the momentum on their side, Fnatic closed out the game like a major champion should, taking the win 16-4.
Straight afterwards, Fnatic had to face their Swedish counterparts Ninjas in Pyjamas on Dust 2. A game that looked to be a landslide win for Fnatic turned into a very close one because of a stellar performance from NiP on their Terrorist side. Where Fnatic had no issues closing out the game versus Na’Vi, it took the Swedish powerhouse the full 30 rounds to finally take home a 16-14 win.
Natus Vincere - 1-1
Na’Vi hadn’t encountered the toughest of opponents in the first week of the Pro League but that changed during the second - a chance for them to truly display their current form.
They faced off against Team SoloMid on Train, a map that TSM has had very good results on now the playground of GuardiaN and flamie. After a strong Terrorist side from TSM, Na’Vi responded with even more force and quickly swept up the required eight rounds to grab a 16-10 victory over TSM.
With back-to-back games in the schedule, Na’Vi now had to face Fnatic on Cobblestone. The inability to shut down Olofmeister cost Na’Vi many rounds during the first half. With only three rounds picked up the odds looked grim, with Na’Vi unable to get their executes going due to their poor momentum and ultimately losing to the Swedes 4-16.
Team SoloMid - 1-1
After a busy weekend where TSM attended a LAN event, they now had to face two old-school teams that over the past weeks had proved to be somewhat unpredictable opponents.
First up they faced Na’Vi on Train. This usually is one of TSM’s stronger maps due to very strong defenses where they employ some of the best crossfires there are. However, it just so happened that Na’Vi had an answer to most of it. After a good first half by TSM, the Danish squad was unable to get their economy or momentum going in the second. TSM managed to grab three rounds before they lost 10-16 to Na’Vi.
The really unpredictable team they had to face was NiP on Train. After a disappointing performance against Na’Vi, the Danes got back into the swing of things and showed that their defense hadn’t lost its touch, only losing four rounds during their CT side. The second half was a runover, with only one round dropped to the Swedes - TSM quickly picked up the 16-5 win.
Ninjas in Pyjamas - 0-2
After an amazing start in week one, where they won every match, NiP now had to face two of the best teams in the world, one of which was out for revenge.
With Fnatic wanting to get their own back for the previous week’s loss, NiP now faced them on Dust 2. However, while pure aggression works on the Terrorist side, it fails for defense. NiP was unable to defend their bombsites and only scraped in a single round during their CT side. The unpredictable and carefree aggression showed its power once more during the second half, where NiP pulled back 13 rounds before losing 14-16.
Lastly they faced Team SoloMid on Train. Their inability to penetrate the defence of TSM led to NiP only picking up four rounds during the first half. With such a deficit in front of them, the Swedish side was unable to hold themselves together during the second half and quickly lost control of the game. NiP ultimately lost 5-16 to TSM.
Team Coast - 2-0
After a somewhat disappointing week one, Team Coast now had a chance to grab some wins and improve their standing early on in the season.
They met the Canadian FOLLOWeSPORTS on Inferno. Through an absolutely stunning defense, Coast was able to set themselves up for an easy victory. Securing 13 rounds in the first half, Coast now had to win a mere three Terrorist rounds to secure the win. With only a single round given away during the second half, Team Coast took a 16-3 win home.
Next up they faced 3sUP on Inferno. While the first match was a walkover, 3sUP managed to put up much more of a fight. A standout performance from abE made it so Coast had to brawl their way through their Terrorist side. After a somewhat back and forth second half, Coast managed to close out the game 16-11.
Luminosity Gaming - 1-0
With only a single match scheduled, the Brazilians had plenty of time to prepare.
They faced 3sUP on Cache. Despite the stunning performance in the match preceding this one, it seemed abE was asleep during this match. LG had done their homework and were able to overpower the 3sUP lineup during both halves, only giving away six rounds. The Brazilians took home a 16-6 win.
3sUP - 0-2
This being their first matches for the season, 3sUP was ready to show their potential.
They had to fight Luminosity Gaming on Cache first. With almost every member of 3sUP losing their entry duels, LG quickly took control of the match and never let go of it. The American roster only managed to pick up six rounds before losing 6-16.
Next up was Team Coast on Inferno. abE had woken up from the beating he and his team endured during the first match of the evening, and now put on a very strong performance. Despite a meager four round wins during the first half, 3sUP was able to contain the momentum that Coast had built up for a while. However, containing a team effort is much harder than stopping a single player, and in the end the team performance from Coast broke the 3sUP defense, causing them to lose 11-16.
FOLLOWeSPORTS - 0-1
One map into their Pro League season, the Canadian roster now had to play their next game.
With Team Coast as the opponent and Inferno the map, they took off. This takeoff was quickly shut down, however. With a 2-13 first half, the Canadians had a mountain to climb during the second. Team Coast proved to be a mountain too big for the Canadians to climb, only picking up a single round in the second half before losing 3-16.
Up next in the ESL ESEA Pro League
The upcoming week is a full match week, and our recommendations for matches you definitely shouldn’t miss are:
- Virtus.pro vs. Team EnVyUs - One team that is an unstoppable force once they get going and the other an immovable object with some of the most skilled players around. A match that is bound to provide action regardless of which way it swings.
- compLexity Gaming vs. Luminosity Gaming - The coL lineup has shown some good form during the first week of the Pro League. It will be interesting to see how they match up against the internationally tested squad of Luminosity Gaming.
- Team Dignitas vs. Titan - With good results from both teams during recent offline events and the addition of ScreaM to the Titan lineup, this match will show both teams’ potential for the future.
Please note that any teams not mentioned above have not played matches this week.
This week was the second week of the ESL ESEA Pro League, and we’ll be resuming with the next games on Tuesday the 29th of September at 19:00 CEST - be sure to tune in here!