We've seen some exciting and close matches in the European Winter Season Group Stage and now we finally know which four teams will battle it out in the next phase of the tournament.
Here is what we are expecting to see in the playoffs;
Even though Nova eSports did end up in the first place of the Group Stage, we would still say that Team Elevate are the clear favorites to get another championship under their belt.
With the recent recruitment of „Angel“ and „Alpha“ the team is looking stronger than ever.
They did slip in the last week of the Group Stage, when they narrowly lost versus Nova eSports (12-13 on Bureau), but that shouldn't be too much of a concern, as everyone makes mistakes from time to time.
Looking at the round balance, it’s apparent that they were very convincing in all other games.
Since playoffs are going to be in a best-of-three/five format, it's very hard to imagine Elevate losing more than a single map versus any of the opponents.
Nova eSports definitely proved that they deserved a direct invite into the Group Stages, as they managed to end up in the first place.
However, if we take a look at their matches, a lot of them were very close, and could have gone either way;
• 13-12 victory vs SKY2FLY
• 13-11 victory vs SetToDestroyX
• 13-12 victory vs Elevate
It’s great to see that they can come out on top and perform well in a close match, but can they also do it in the playoffs on multiple maps?
If they can copes with the pressure as well as in the Group Stage, then they will be a truly terrifying opponent.
“Grizz90” showed us his skills with the shotgun on Bureau, as he was able to shut down some areas of the map almost single-handedly.
“GeNes1s” and “Naarkz QLF” also performed on a very high level, which makes the team a force to be reckoned with.
SetToDestroyX had a solid run in the Group Stages, finishing in the third place.
They did lose pretty hard versus Elevate when they faced them (2:13), however they showed up against Nova eSports, where they only lost by two rounds on Bureau.
With the likes of “Exo”, “Primza” and “Mrbates”, they do have a chance to advance in the playoffs, but in to do so, the whole team will have to perform on a higher level, as they are facing Elevate in the semis.
Team SKY2FLY played very well in the Group Stage and have the potential to upset a higher ranked team in the playoffs.
During the Group Stage, they did manage to take 12 rounds versus Nova eSports and 6 rounds versus team Elevate, showing that other teams shouldn’t take them easily.
In the Semi-Finals, they will have to play Nova eSports once again.
If they wish to defeat them, everything has to fall into place.
The team already proved they can compete with the best on a good day, but in order for them to advance, they need to bring just a little more.
They should make the best out of the remaining days before the playoffs, as their team play wasn’t consistently on a high level and was lacking in some of the matches.
Looking at the bracket, there is a big chance we are going to see Nova eSports up against Team Elevate in the finals.
However, nothing is set in stone yet and judging by the Group Stage the left semi-finals will be very interesting.
Do you agree with our predictions?
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You can watch the matches live at youtube.com/valiancegg