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May 28, 2019
May 28, 2019

ECS Season 7 - Finals preview

What is the Esports Championship Series (ECS) Season 7?

ECS Season 7 - Finals: Format & Outright odds

Championship contenders: Who will lift the ECS Season 7 trophy?

Rising to the challenge: The outsiders to watch

ECS Season 7 - Finals preview

The ECS Season 7 – Finals are upon us and we are taking a look at all of the teams that made it through from the Regular Season, to the finals. The best teams from North America and Europe converge on the SSE Arena in Wembley, London after an exciting Regular Season to battle it out for the ECS Season 7 trophy and a share of the $500,000 prize pool.

What is the Esports Championship Series (ECS) Season 7?

ECS Season 7 is the latest iteration of FACEIT’s popular CS:GO tournament format. It consists of two regions, the European and North American circuit, which consist of over 20 teams battling it out in best-of-three (Bo3) knockout brackets to qualify for the ECS Season 7 - Finals.

The season is split into five online, eight-team single elimination brackets with the winners of the first three qualifying for the finals in London. The last two slots for the finals will be allocated to the highest-earning European and North American team over the regular season, excluding those that have qualified.

ECS Season 7 – Finals format

The Finals will consist of two stages, the Group Stage and the Playoffs.

The Group Stage will take place from the 6 – 7 June and will divide the teams into two groups consisting of four teams each. The initial matches in the Group Stage will be best-of-one (Bo1) followed by the remainder of the Group Stage matches played in a best-of-three (Bo3) double-elimination format. The top two teams from each group will then advance to the Playoffs.

The Playoffs will take place from the 8 – 9 June in a Bo3 single-elimination bracket similar to how the ECS regular season was formatted.

ECS Season 7 – Finals outright winner odds

The odds below represent the outright winner for the ECS Season 7 - Finals. For a complete list of odds for ECS Season 7, head over to our dedicated section for the ECS Season 7 - Finals.

ECS Season 7 - Finals odds

     Teams

     Odds     

Astralis

1.58*

MIBR

6.46*

Vitality

6.56*

NRG Esports

14.13*

NIP

19.17*

North

19.17*

FURIA

19.17*

compLexity

67.60*

Championship contenders: Who will lift the ECS Season 7 trophy?

After five weeks of the ECS Season 7 Regular Season, eight teams from North America and Europe will have proven their skill online in the Bo3 knockout bracket format and made it to the ECS Season 7 – Finals to challenge for the ECS Season 7 trophy and a share of the $500,000 prize pool on offer.

Astralis (AST, 1.58*) make their journey to the ECS Season 7 - Finals following a year that saw the Danes reach new heights in the Counter-Strike world creating the first dynasty to hold three major titles and the #1 spot in the CS:GO world rankings for an unprecedented 13 months in a row and counting.

This pristine match record was on full display for the inaugural matches of ECS Season 7 Week 1 with the team knocking down Team LDLC (16 – 7, 16 - 4), AVANGAR (16 - 14, 16 - 13), and Ninjas in Pyjamas (16 - 9, 16 - 1) in convincing fashion in the Bo3 bracket. They are the first to lock in their spot to the finals in London. The team’s dominance is illustrated by the three most played maps for them which are, as of writing, Inferno (92.3% Win Rate / WR), Dust2 (73.3% WR) and Overpass (62.5% WR).

Astralis is the benchmark to overcome at the ECS Season 7 - Finals with teams looking to challenge the reigning Kings of Counter-strike.

As definitive favourites for the ECS Season 7 - Finals, bettors will want to take note of their recent match record at BLAST Pro Series Miami & Madrid 2019 in which the team heavily underperformed. At Miami the team lost to MIBR and Team Liquid on Overpass (16 - 2, 16 - 14 respectively), and to FaZe on Dust2 (16 - 5). At Madrid on the other hand, the team dropped games to ENCE on Dust2 (16 - 13), Nuke (16 - 9) and Train (16 - 13). The results at Madrid are particularly interesting to analyse, because ENCE had ended the team’s 31-game win streak (LAN) on Nuke and denied them the tournament win.

Ninjas in Pyjamas (NiP, 19.17*) almost didn’t make it to the ECS Season 7 - Finals after failing to secure a qualification spot in Week 5 and instead relied on fellow Swedes Fnatic to beat AVANGAR, who were the remaining team in contention for a spot to the Finals. Despite a poor showing in Week 5, NiP have seen an improvement in form over the past three months, with good performances at the BLAST Pro series 2019 events and IEM Sydney 2019.

NiP search for their first trophy of 2019 and hope that their recent performance continues at the ECS Season 7 - Finals.

A key player to watch from NiP is legendary CS player f0rest who has seen a renaissance in form and leads the team in Kill-to-Death (KD) differential alongside taking on the duties of IGL, which is a combination that is a rarity in the modern CS:GO era. Looking at their most-played maps for 2019, Nuke (60% WR), Train (53.8% WR) and Mirage (50.0% WR) have been solid picks for them.

Bettors looking to assess the performance of NiP during the event should keep a close eye on map veto and CT-side performance. Statistics show that NiP have had a good portion of their map victories on the CT-side while their T-side performance has remained lacklustre.

NRG Esports (NRG, 14.13*) are a team to keep an eye on at the ECS Season 7 - Finals as the mixed North American roster arrive at the SSE Arena with a number of positive results, placing third at both IEM Sydney 2019 and StarSeries i-League Season 7 LAN events. NRG secured their spot to the Finals in Week 2 of the ECS regular season beating Spacestation (2 - 0), INTZ eSports (2 - 0) and Furia eSports (2 - 1).

NRG’s resurgence in the world rankings has been led by two longstanding members of the team, Brehze and Ethan, who have posted stellar individual performance statistics in 2019. These individual performances have translated into a strong map pool for NRG with Train (100% WR), Overpass (66.7% WR) and Mirage (63.6% WR) likely to make an appearance in their map selection.

If NRG want to get past the initial stages of the mixed Bo1 and Bo3 Group Stage, each member on the team needs to perform on match day with their newest addition, and star acquisition Tarik is expected to show his experience at Wembley.

MIBR (6.46*) seek to maintain their current form following a tumultuous 2019 that saw many analysts question the ability of the roster early on. MIBR have experienced a number of positive results recently with match wins at BLAST Pro Series Miami 2019, IEM Sydney 2019 and the ECS Season 7 regular season. The Brazilians secured their spot in the Finals in Wembley in a close match against TL in Week 5.

Breaking down their 2019 performance, MIBR have recorded a generally positive map record with Overpass (60.0% WR), Mirage (61.5% WR) and Train (66.7% WR) as the top three picks for the team. The revival in form is powered by coldzera who at points in recent matches has single-handedly won MIBR rounds, and in turn, matches that under normal circumstances wouldn’t go in their favour.

Bettors could have a hard time gauging the performance of MIBR in its current state, however historical match data points toward a possible strong showing for the Brazilians at the ECS Season 7 – Finals. As mentioned previously, coldzera is a key player within MIBR and the overall performance of the team at the event may live or die with how he performs.

Rising to the challenge: The outsiders to watch

‘The North’ may have been a focal point in Game of Thrones but the Danish CS:GO team of the same name, North (NRT, 19.17*) are experiencing much more of a struggle to establish their rule in the CS:GO scene with a notable absence from major events over the past three months. NRT arrive at the ECS Finals by qualifying early on in the regular season winning a qualification spot in Week 2 beating Virtus.pro (2 – 1), AVANGAR (2 – 0) and Team Vitality (2 – 1).

North launch their campaign to win a title at the ECS Season 7 - Finals following an inactive season for the Danes so far.

A number of people would argue that the NRT squad have missed a window of opportunity to establish themselves as the second-best all-Danish lineup in the world behind Astralis, but the rise of OpTic Gaming and the lack of matches played have left analysts in doubt over the team’s abilities. Of the data available for 2019, NRT’s top three maps played are Train (76.9% WR), Inferno (57.1% WR) and Mirage (42.9% WR), with Dust2 (75% WR) and Nuke (66.7% WR) rounding out their overall map pool.

Team Vitality (VIT, 6.56*) have fallen off the radar for many in the CS:GO scene and for good reason. The mixed French squad have been active in the background playing at tier two online and offline events which has led to a lack of broadcasting time on streaming platforms like Twitch. This lack of time in the limelight of CS:GO isn’t always a bad thing however, as the team have been dominating at these events for the past three months with a 60 – 22 map win record.

VIT arrive at the ECS Season 7 – Finals after securing the last guaranteed qualification spot in Week 3 of the regular season defeating Virtus.pro (2 – 0), Valiance (2 – 0) and OpTic Gaming (2 – 1) without any problems. Reviewing their map selection for 2019, Dust2 (82.6% WR) and Mirage (59.3% WR) are staple picks for the roster with Nuke (82.4% WR), Overpass (82.4%) and Inferno (68.8% WR) in equal contention for the third most played by the team.

Bettors looking to find an outsider pick that isn’t as volatile of a selection as Furia may find that VIT will meet their criteria. The team have a mix of veteran and rookie CS:GO players with a largely positive match history going into the ECS Season 7 – Finals.

FURIA eSports (FUA, 19.17*) return to Europe hungry to claim the ECS Season 7 - Finals trophy after many would describe as a meteoric rise within the CS:GO scene. FUA secured their qualification spot to the Finals in Week 3 of the ECS regular season narrowly failing to secure a spot in the Week 2 Grand Finals against NRG in a close 2 – 1 defeat.

Furia is set to light the SSE Arena stage on fire with a playstyle reminiscent of the Luminosity roster that won majors in 2016.

The young Brazilian roster have been praised by analysts for their creative in-game strategy and huge fragging potential with a number predicting that the roster has yet to reach the peak of their performance together. FUA’s rifler KSCERATO stands out as an individual with the potential to become a world-class player with a number of rumours indicating that top tier North American and Brazilian teams are interested in acquiring him. The team’s primary map pool consists of Inferno (70.4% WR), Overpass (73.1% WR) and Mirage (69.2% WR) with a pocket-pick Vertigo (100% WR) for which they’ve won all four matches on so far.

FUA are expected to be the outsider with the highest potential to cause an upset at the SSE Arena, but bettors should be aware that the roster does not have an extensive track record to evaluate. External variables such as physical comfort after travelling may come into play as well, which will be amplified by the team’s inexperience.

Complexity Gaming (COL, 67.60*) join the ECS Season 7 – Finals under less than ideal circumstances, claiming Rouge’s Week 1 qualification spot after the roster disbanded. Recent results from the North American squad indicate a notable underperformance when facing opponents in a Bo3 format.

Bettors shouldn’t entirely discount the COL squad at the ECS Finals, as the team has recently moved into a newly built multimillion dollar training facility in Frisco, Texas following a partnership with NFL super team the Dallas Cowboys. Leading into the ECS Season 7 - Finals, the COL roster will have access to professional -level sports psychologists and trainers to help them prepare for their matches in London. The top three most- played maps for the team are Mirage (53.3% WR), Nuke (41.7% WR) and Inferno (40.0% WR).

Be part of the action and watch the ECS Season 7 – Finals live at the SSE Arena in Wembley, London between the 8 – 9 June by booking tickets or catch the games broadcasting on Twitch from the 6 June.

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About the author

Kristian Medina
Kristian, a self-proclaimed Esports evangelist, watches competitions from all levels of players, and seeks to craft both engaging and informative content for the industry to enjoy. Outside of Esports, he likes following tennis, blockchain technologies and the latest food trends.
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