StarLadder i-League StarSeries Season 3 ReviewLord Matus
SL i-League StarSeries ended last night, and European mix FaZe Clan became the champions. The time has come to take stocks of the tournament.
Would a new coach help Natus Vincere to show a better performance? What kind of game the Asian CS:GO teams could show? Did Astralis lose their shape? Could Virtus.pro redeem after a failure on IEM Katowice 2017? And of course, how Nikola «NiKo» Kovac would affect the results of FaZe Clan? We have asked these questions before the event started, and now we’ve got the answers. StarLadder i-League StarSeries Season 3 is over, and we are ready to make some conclusions.
[Natus Vincere and a new coach]
In a preview, we have told that after Sergey "starix" Ischuk left the team, Na’Vi’s analyst Andrey "Andi" Prophorov took his position. It was his debut tournament for the team on the position of a coach, not an analyst. This was a successful event for him especially taking into consideration that the team passed the group stage with 3-0 score. Due to this, Na’Vi became the second team to pass to the play-off stage in the third round.
Previously, we have told that there was nothing to expect from Asian CS:GO teams, and we were right. Two out of three Chinese teams, UYA and TyLoo became the first to leave the tournament. However, we should point out UYA which is a new team on the professional CS:GO arena. The amateurs from Asia just gathered, beat everyone in the qualification and proved that they may move to next level. Will we see UYA in some big events? We will get an answer to this question soon. The third Chinese team, MVP.Project ended their participation in the fourth round of the group stage with 1-3 score. They won only once in a match against their homies TyLoo. Currently, the Chinese region is still very weak in this discipline.
The team is not in their best shape now. Previously they have taken the second place on MVP.Project and 3-4 place on The ELEAGUE Major 2017, however, these are the only serious achievements of the team. In SL StarSeries Season 3 SK Gaming did not manage to move to play-off and took the ninth place on the tournament table. Taking into consideration that another American team, Counter Logic Gaming managed to pass to play-off stage, SK Gaming might have demonstrated better results in the tournament.
[Ninjas in Pyjamas and Immortals]
Both teams demonstrated rather bad results and ended their participation in the event in the fifth round of the group stage. It is difficult to tell what the community has expected from them, but definitely it was not this course of the events.
Ninjas in Pyjamas are the champions of the previous SL i-League StarSeries series. After this triumph, the team managed to win another tournament, IEM Masters Oakland. On November 26, the problems started: the team took 8th place on ECS Season 2 — Europe, 5-8 places on ELEAGUE Season 2, and also failed to qualify to Major, taking only 12-14 place in offline qualifiers losing the match against Vega Squadron. Except for that, the team took 5-8 place on DreamHack Masters Las Vegas 2017, 9-10 place on IEM XI — World Championship and 9-11 place on SL StarSeries Season 3.
As for Immortals, the ex-player of SK Gaming, fnx, joined the Brazilian team, but despite of his ambitions, he did not manage to help the team to pass to the semifinal.
[Virtus.pro and Astralis]
Previously, Virtus.pro and Astralis have been opponents, but with the current level of Virtus.pro game, the competitiveness of the Polish team leaves much to be desired. In the previous tournament, VP surprised everyone leaving the tournament in the group stage. The community thought that the Polish team will redeem on StarLadder i-League StarSeries Season 3, but they did not manage to do that. It is obvious that they are too relaxed now, and cannot get their previous shape back.
As for Astralis, the Danish team shows rather good results and demonstrates a stable game. The first place on The ELEAGUE Major 2017 became a good start for their winning streak. Since winning the Major, The Danish players pass to the play-off stages and take the prize places. On DreamHack Masters Las Vegas 2017, they took 3-4 place, on IEM XI — Katowice 2017, they became the champions again, and on SL i-League StarSeries Season 3 they took the second place after losing a final match against FaZe Clan in the additional rounds of the decisive map.
FaZe Clan game was a pleasant surprise for the spectators. They started to demonstrate perfect results and game progress after one of the best CS:GO players joined the team. April 9, 2017 became an historic date for the European esports organization. On this day, FaZe Clan CS:GO roster became a champion for the first time in their history after beating the strongest CS:GO team according to HLTV.org list. The players have been preparing hard for the event and they definitely deserved their winning.
HellRaisers is the second team after FaZe Clan which managed to surprise the community. In the group stage, the team demonstrated a great game, defeating the champions of the tournament with 16:10 score in the first match.
In the exclusive interview to our portal, bondik told that the team has been working hard on their growth. Their efforts were noticed by everyone. For the past month, the team qualified to three tournaments: SL StarSeries Season 3, after taking 3rd place in the European qualification, DreamHack Austin 2017 and DreamHack Tours 2017. HellRaisers can get the shape that they have never had and start rapid conquering of the esports world.
This team had the best start out all the teams. A French team took the first place in the group stage. However, the team ended their performance in the quarterfinal losing the match against future champions FaZe Clan. We cannot tell that G2 Esports game was back, as they easily defeated their opponents in the group stage but it did not manage to resist the rush of winner-to-be.
Results and conclusions:
The teams which pleasantly surprised the community: FaZe Clan, HellRaisers
The teams which disappointed the community: Virtus.pro, SK Gaming
- Natus Vincere demonstrated a good game on this event. In means that Andi may contribute to the development of the team no only as an analyst but also as a coach.
- HellRaisers may show great game in the upcoming events.
- Virtus.pro, SK Gaming, Ninjas in Pyjamas are currently in unstable shape.