The Blast Premier Spring Season has begun! Starting off with Group A, FaZe Clan has trounced the competition, taking BLAST Premier London (Group A) by storm! FaZe managed to go undefeated throughout the group, swiftly defeating Ninjas in Pyjamas before demolishing Team Liquid twice! Not only did FaZe Clan go unbeaten, but in the 6 maps they played, only once did they concede more than 10 rounds! After placing in the top two of the group, FaZe Clan and Team Liquid are through to the Spring Finals while on the other hand, NIP and MIBR have dropped to the Spring Showdown.
Because this event took place in London, I was actually able to attend in person. In fact, I must say that the production value was top class, with a beautiful stage, great casters and quality viewing monitors. It’s good to see BLAST stepping up the quality of their production and their format.
FaZe Clan, More Of This Please! (1st Place)
FaZe Clan is a team that was on the upturn in late 2019. Their victory at BLAST Pro Series Copenhagen in November got them their first LAN win as a new roster. However, at the ESL Pro League Season 10 Finals, they finished in a disappointing 9th-12th position before finishing last the BLAST Pro Series: Global Final 2019, so it’s fantastic to see them looking this strong coming into 2020! Whilst this was a phenomenal showing from ”Niko” and the boys. The problem is FaZe Clan always seem to do well at BLAST events in particular, the question is can they now show this type of form at IEM Katowice 2020 in a few weeks time?
The final map of the Grand Final was on Dust 2, where FaZe Clan destroyed Team Liquid 16-2 with the North American side blown away every round, seemingly at a loss of what to do. The FaZe roster, particularly ”Rain” and ”Coldzera”, was in peak form, hitting their shots with incredible accuracy and efficiency. You can check out the video below of ”Rain’s” unbelievable ACE against Liquid on Dust 2!
Team Liquid, Job Done But Work Needed. (2nd Place)
Before this event, many people were saying this was Team Liquid’s group to win. While they did manage to qualify the Spring 2020 Finals by finishing 2nd, they will be bitterly disappointed in getting beaten by FaZe Clan twice in two days! Team Liquid just isn’t the same team that dominated the summer of 2019. Something is missing, something has changed, and I just can’t put my finger on it. I really hope that the North American roster can recover and once again become the number one team in the world, because when at their best, Team Liquid are extraordinary to watch!
Ninjas in Pyjamas, A New Era For The Swedes! (3rd Place)
For the first time ever, NIP played an event without any of their original 2012 lineup! With the recent announcement that Patrik “f0rest” Lindberg, the final member of their original 2012 line-up had left to join Dignitas. His replacement is the former GamerLegion AWPer Tim “nawwk” Jonasson. In addition, the coach of NIP has been changed, with Faruk “pita” Pita being replaced with former NIP coach THREAT who had worked with the Ninjas from 2016 to 2018.
During the tournament, the Ninjas tried “nawwk” as the AWPer. However, from what I witnessed at the event, I would highly recommend that NIP stick with ‘twist’ as their main AWPer and make ”nawwk’ more of a hybrid player. Whilst NIP managed to overcome MIBR, they were simply outclassed by FaZe Clan and Team Liquid. Clearly, this roster needs some time to develop. Hopefully, we will see some improvements at IEM Katowice 2020.
MIBR, A Valiant Effort! (4th Place)
The last time we saw MIBR was at the cs_summit 5 where the Brazilian roster bombed out in last despite debuting with new player”meyern”. This was the first chance we’ve got to see the new MIBR in 2020. (apart from the IEM Katowice 2020 qualifiers where they lost out to Cloud9 in the Grand Final) First up, they had to face Team Liquid.
Game one began with MIBR going 13-6 up on Vertigo before Team Liquid pulled off the most miraculous of comebacks, pulling the score all the way back to a 15-15! It just seemed that Liquid had all the luck in the world, clutching rounds they had no right to win. Round 36, in particular, was absolutely heartbreaking for the Brazilians, with NAF stealing the round with a last-second AWP shot through the metal crates, stopping the bomb plant in the process!
With the final score ending 22-19! This result seemed to drain the life out of MIBR as Liquid secured the following map Inferno 16-9, dropping the Brazilians to the Lower Bracket where they met Ninjas in Pyjamas. While MIBR did manage to take the first map, the Ninjas (in particular, ‘twist’) proved too strong in the end, sending MIBR to Spring 2020 Showdown. Overall, it was a decent showing from MIBR but the competition was too much to handle. We will next see MIBR at DreamHack Open Anaheim 2020 on February 21st, this a tournament that the Brazilians will be expected to win. By the way, we did get one the best CS:GO GIFS on all-time from ”Fer”!
The BLAST Premier Spring Season will continue in the following weeks. Up next is Group B, which consists of Natus Vincere, Team Vitality, Astralis, and Complexity. Group C consists of 100 Thieves, G2 Esports, Evil Geniuses and OG.
Group B of BLAST Premier: Spring 2020 will begin February 7, 2020 – 16:30 CEST, with Natus Vincere taking on Team Vitality!
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