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NA is both on top of the world and completely screwed, s1mple is back on his BS and G2 are moving away from theirs.
For many of us, it’s been a crazy year - but not as much as it has been for many in the CIS region.
For those in Ukraine especially, it’s been a brutal year; but it’s important to remember the effects it has had on the innocent Russian people, whose lives have been made harder because of the decisions from their overlords.
Admittedly, that sounds like most jobs in esports.
But when it comes to the RMRs, the Russian players might have irrevocably damaged. Visas are becoming harder to come by, and good luck explaining to the border patrol that you need to travel across the border to play a video game.
One that involves blowing up bombsites and killing people at that.
Four teams - 1WIN, Aurora, K23 and Benched Heroes - are potentially looking at visa issues, and maybe having to play with subs, or pull out of the RMR.
On a similar vein, Virtus.pro look like they might be back, and Outsiders might be no more. They were allowed to use the name at a Valve-sponsored DOTA tournament, as they have entered into a new management deal.
A shame, in some ways. We quite liked the Outsiders name; it was very fitting.
s1mple, too, has clearly had a very difficult year. He hadn’t seen some of his family pretty much all year, and had been living essentially without a house for part of the year.
It’s understandable, in that case, that he’s gone back to being angry on Twitter - though he definitely had a point here. That hotel does look genuinely disgusting, and definitely bad for his health.
We’re not going to say it’s more dangerous than being at home, but it’s certainly not the safe haven he probably hoped for.
We talked last week about Carlos of G2 being suspended for six weeks, but it seems those six weeks went by incredibly fast.
He’s not back or anything - in fact, he might never be coming back.
He has officially ‘stepped down’ with an emotional video looking back at his time building, directing and growing G2 into the colossus it is right now. It’s a sad video, but one that we probably could have seen coming.
G2 missed out on franchising in VALORANT, which is going to cost the business millions, and it’s largely down to Carlos’… let’s say antics, of the last few weeks.
Whether or not you think that’s correct - and clearly it’s a polarising topic on Twitter - it’s one fueled entirely by the business side. G2 wouldn’t get rid of the guy who built them if there wasn’t a massive business issue, and Riot wouldn’t have changed their mind along the same lines.
Lord knows Riot can’t take a moral stance on anything.
This is unlikely to have too big an effect on their CSGO team - unless Carlos was the one who harnessed the curse that appears to have troubled G2 for years at this point.
Perhaps they might be able to beat a team with a sub, or even not lose a grand final 0-3, for once.
I should preface this by saying I understand that it is not entirely up to Team Liquid if YEKINDAR stays with them, but they should try very very hard.
TL ended their final series of the Pro League groups with a 2-0 win over Cloud9, who had not lost a game until this series.
This was in large part, of course, due to YEKINDAR and the 1.52 he accrued over the two map series. It was a relatively close series, and a good way to close out the month of group play.
Eternal Fire and Evil Geniuses joined Movistar Riders in the “not advancing” column, while Furia, on the back of a truly insane set of games from KSCERATO, made it out as well.
Cloud9 looked pretty solid despite their fumble at the end; they’re still first in the group, and skipping the first round of games next week which is a huge win.
It was nice to see Eternal Fire wake up in time for their last two series, and they genuinely looked pretty decent in both. It’s a pity that didn’t extend to their earlier games.
They get to just sit and wait for whichever of Complexity or FaZe they’ll end up having to battle.
But after four weeks, we finally have the 12 teams who are still in the tournament. And in just one week, we’ll have just one.
TYLOO haven’t really been a thing for a while. They didn’t make it to the Major, coming 3rd in the weakest RMR. They finished last at IEM Winter, and 9th-12th at EPL S16 Conference and Cologne’s play-in.
So it makes sense they’re mixing it up: Attacker and BnTeT are out, replaced by 18-year-old aristo and Freeman, who was actually in Tyloo in 2019 before being benched at the start of the online era.
The big story here is BnTeT’s removal: The long-awaited Prince of Asian CS hasn’t had the career many hoped he would have after posting 1.43 and 1.24 ratings on LAN in 2016 and 2017, even though he was a tad more successful than any other Asian import so far in CS:GO. Sorry Machinegun.
While the Polish Indonesian rifler has actually had a bad 2022 with a 1.00 rating against pretty poor opposition, there is clearly still a player there. There’s a reason Asian CS expert Bleh has tweeted about the guy about three times a month for the past five years.
The problem is finding a destination. And, of course, whether BnTeT wants to leave his home continent again after the whole EXTREMUM debacle.
Judging by this interview from April, though, he’s willing to give Europe and tier one CS another shot. And with a IEM Rio Major-induced rostermania just round the corner, fingers crossed he’ll get that chance.
⚖️ Balanced, as all things should be
😅 Let’s hope no one noticed