The preview of BLAST Pro Series Istanbul 2018

The general information

A CS:GO championship will be hosted in Istanbul with a prize pool in the sum of $250,000 on September 28-29. The tournament is second in BLAST Pro Series. The first championship took place in Copenhagen and its prize pool also amounted $250,000. Ülker Sports Arena will be a venue.

An interesting fact: the organizers postponed the dates of the tournament on a couple of days due to a request of the majority of Turkish students. Now, students will be able to visit the event and mass exams on different days because of the tenderness of the organizers.

The format

BLAST Pro Series is famous because the organizers’ approach to the hosting of the tournament is nonstandard enough. Unlike hosting the championship in such stages as the group one and the playoffs, the tournament will start with the group stage and finish with the grand final after that.

In the first stage, six participants will play bo1 matches by a Round Robin system. The top two teams will advance to the grand final and play the final bo3 match, while the rest of the teams will play duels at BLAST Pro Standoff. A team that places third on the outcome of the group stage will have an advantage in the form of a choice of its opponent.

The prize pool

The prize pool of BLAST Pro Series will amount $250,000 as usual. The winner of the tournament will earn the main money prize in the sum of $125,000. The silver medalist will grab $50,000. A team that places third will earn $25,000 and teams that hold the 4th, 5th and 6th place will earn $15,000, $10,000 and $5,000, respectively. The winner of BLAST Pro Standoffs will grab an additional prize in the sum of $20,000.

The coverage of the tournament

Adam Savage will be the main host of the event and the loved-by-everyone Paul “Redeye” Chaloner will be a dest host. Tomi “lurppis” Kovanen, Fabien “kioShiMa” Fiey, and Christine “potter’ Chi will analyse matches for viewers. We will watch matches under the comments of such famous and experienced casters as Anders Blume, Jason “moses” O’Toole, Daniel “ddk” Kapadia, James Bardolph, Conner “Scrawny” Girvan, and Mohan “launders” Govindasamy. David “DJ” Kuntz, Heather “sapphiRe” Garozzo, and Efren “encg” Chuong will observe the championship.

The analysis of chances to win

Only six teams will take part in the championship and two teams will be selected on the outcome of the group stage, who will play in the grand final and determine the winner of the tournament.

Astralis (a place in the rate by HLTV — #1)

The preview of BLAST Pro Series Istanbul 2018. Photo 1

The Major tournament has recently finished, in which the victory has been achieved by the best team in the world, the Danish roster Astralis. The players had prepared for the championship and probably spent all the power on it and earned a solid money reward in the sum of $500,000 for their efforts and the second title of the winner of the Major event. We think that Astralis might have a reboot period and a recovery of strength after such an achievement. Also, the Danes might have a lack of motivation because Astralis has already achieved a great success at the moment. They will be able to show an interesting and beautiful game but Astralis’ chance to advance to the final is not as big as it may seem to be at the first sight due to the more motivated opponents.

The roster of Astralis and the players’ rate:

Nicolai “dev1ce” Reedtz — 1.30
Peter “dupreeh” Rothmann — 1.23
Andreas “Xyp9x” Hojsleth — 1.10
Lukas “gla1ve” Rossander — 1.14
Emil “Magisk” Reif — 1.15
Danny “zonic” Sorensen — a coach

Cloud9 (a place in the rate by HLTV — #21)

The preview of BLAST Pro Series Istanbul 2018. Photo 2

Cloud9 has a bad streak of failures. In August, the North American organization had made a replacement on its CS:GO roster, having signed three new players, and the Swedish star Robin “flusha” Ronnquist joined C9 two days ago. The potential of the team might be very strong but it is unlikely to be unleashed soon. The team was completed a couple of days ago and this means that the roster hasn’t had enough time to team up in an appropriate way. Considering the fact that teams that are in a good gaming shape will take part in the tournament, Cloud9 will definitely not advance to the grand final but if they do this somehow, they will probably not become the champions of BLAST Pro Series Istanbul.

The roster of Cloud9 and the players’ rate:

Tyler “Skadoodle” Latham — 1.03
Timothy “autimatic” Ta — 1.11
Will “RUSH” Wierzba — 0.93
Maikil “Golden” Selim — 0.96
Robin “flusha” Ronnquist — 0.95
Soham “valens” Chowdhury — a coach (a place in the rate by HLTV — #28)

The preview of BLAST Pro Series Istanbul 2018. Photo 3

Like, Cloud9, The Polish team’s things are not so good. The team has recently parted its ways with one of the main players, Pawel “byali” Bielinski, having replaced him with an ambition ex-player of AGO Esports, Michal “snatchie” Rudzki. It’s difficult enough to suppose something about the results of the renewed roster of “the Bears” in the upcoming tournament but the majority of viewers thinks that the Polish five has not so many chances to have a success at BLAST Pro Series than fans of VP would desire. is unlikely to get to the final but they will be able to fight for an additional money prize in the sum of $20,000.

The roster of and the players’ rate:

Filip “NEO” Kubski — 1.01
Jaroslaw “pashaBiceps” Jarzabkowski — 1.04
Michal “MICHU” Muller — 1.14
Piotr “morelz” Taterka — 0.96
Michal “snatchie” Rudzki — 1.08
Jakub “kuben” Gurczynski — a coach

Space Soldiers (a place in the rate by HLTV — #39)

The preview of BLAST Pro Series Istanbul 2018. Photo 4

The Turkish five was not able to show something at the previous Major tournament. This happened because the sniper of Space Soldiers hadn’t been able to visit the tournament due to visa issues and the coach of the team played instead of him. The players have promised the public that the Turkish esports will perform even better after that situation but a usual motivation to win might be not enough to achieve good results at BLAST Pro Series. There are strong enough opponents in the face of Astralis, MIBR, and Ninjas in Pyjamas, who will be able to tame Space Soldiers. SS has an advantage in the form of the home arena, where Turkish fans will help to reinforce Space Soldiers’ moral, however, this is unlikely to help MAJ3R and his team.

The roster of Space Soldiers and the players’ rate:

Can “XANTARES” Dortkardes — 1.31
Engin “ngiN” Kor — 0.89
Ahmet “paz” Karahoca — 1.05
Engin “MAJ3R” Kupeli — 1.03
Bugra “Calyx” Arkin — 1.01
Canpolat “hardstyle” Yildiran — a coach

Ninjas in Pyjamas (a place in the rate by HLTV — #9)

The preview of BLAST Pro Series Istanbul 2018. Photo 5

The Swedish five performed at FACEIT Major: London 2018 not good and not bad at the same time. It didn’t manage to make it to the top eight but didn’t leave viewers without a beautiful game. At The New Legends Stage, NiP managed to beat mousesports and Vega Squadron but lost the decisive match against MiBR for getting to the top 8. We think that Ninjas in Pyjamas will show a good game and probably advance to the grand final of the championship but if they face the Brazilian-American team MIBR there, the Swedes will become the silver medalists.

The roster of Ninjas in Pyjamas and the players’ rate:

Patrik “f0rest” Lindberg — 1.09
Christopher “GeT_RiGhT” Alesund — 1.05
Fredrik “REZ” Sterner — 1.12
Dennis “dennis” Edman — 1.01
Jonas “Lekr0” Olofsson — 1.06
Faruk “pita” Pita — a coach

MIBR (a place in the rate by HLTV — #4)

The preview of BLAST Pro Series Istanbul 2018. Photo 6

In our view, FalleN and his team are the main favorites to win BLAST Pro Series. Unlike Astralis, MIBR has a lot of power and motivation to win the championship and the Brazilian-American team has a strong and well-organized roster, unlike Space Soldiers and Knowing how FalleN can motivate his team, we think that MIBR will have to advance to the grand final for sure and their chance to win the final match is also good.

The roster of MIBR and the players’ rate:

Gabriel “FalleN” Toledo — 1.14
Fernando “fer” Alvarenga — 1.12
Marcelo “coldzera” David — 1.21
Jacky “Stewie2K” Yip — 1.05
Tarik “tarik” Celik — 1.10
Janko “YNk” Paunovic — a coach