There are 8 teams in the upper bracket quarterfinals and only 4 of them are going to continue on the greener side of the fence. We have favorites, we have underdogs, but we also have some very even matchups, find out more next.
Astralis - To the Stars
Astralis will face Godsent on Monday 19th of October at 1PM to start off the Dreamhack Open Fall 2020 Playoffs phase. One can expect quite a one sided story, as it looks very tough for Godsent beforehand.
Astralis started popping off in ESL Pro League after a tougher period which started during the spring of 2020. Since EPL started Astralis have only lost 2 series, once to Complexity (0-2) and once to Heroic (0-2). During EPL Astralis lost maps against Vitality, Fnatic, Mousesports (x2) and Na’Vi, while taking 6 wins with 2-0 score.
During Dreamhack Open Fall 2020 Astralis have played against Heroic (2-1) and against G2 (2-1). Now going against Godsent in the opening round should mean that the Danish Powerhouse will clinch a spot in the UB semi finals, and they are the biggest favorite to win the entire thing as a whole. If they beat Godsent their next opponent would be either North of Fnatic, which again would favor Astralis going forward and their biggest challenge of the event would potentially be in UB final, if Team Vitality makes it there from the other branch of the tree.
Godsent, but to where?
Godsent is one of those teams you can never be certain of. Some days they are playing like absolute mad men, being able to challenge top teams even, but then the next day they go and lose to tier 2 teams looking like a bunch of amateurs. They have been able to show some promising results and put serious numbers on the board, but it’s hard to see them as a team that could go all the way and win it.
In sports you quite often hear about teams having a great opportunity to prove themselves and get some big W’s in the bag, this is one of those moments for Godsent as they are going to face Astralis in their opening matchup of the upper bracket.
So far in DH Open Fall 2020 Godsent have won against sAw 2-0, lost to BIG 2-1 and then surprised a favorite by winning FaZe Clan 2-1 to clinch the last UB spot of Group C. Their win against FaZe is definitely noteworthy despite the Clan not being able to perform on their required level, but that’s (e)sports for you. Sometimes the favorites cannot hold under the pressure and they fall into mistakes that are costly to them.
That’s where Godsent’s hopes lie against Astralis too. It’s highly unlikely that Astralis would not be performing, but for Godsent to have a legitimate chance of winning they will need some help from their Danish counterparts.
As for the question of how far Godsent can go: If they can beat Astralis, winning in the next round too can happen, but even predicting them to go to UB finals is very unlikely.
I am genuinely surprised that North made it into the upper bracket, let alone as the first seed from their group. They are one of those teams that you almost never pick to win any series, but somehow they are still able to scoop those W’s in their pockets and roam forward. First they beat Ence 2-1, which isn’t a newsflash as the Finns have been lost for quite some time, and then they beat Sprout 2-1 to clinch the upper bracket spot.
Now, one could say that neither Ence nor Sprout can be considered as a true test, but for North they actually are/were. Sprout has been playing their hearts out lately sweeping out the tier 2 teams (as they should) to build up confidence, but North has been able to turn the tides for their favor and march onwards.
Going against Fnatic in the opening round of the upper bracket will be the first time North plays an official game against a top 10 team in over 3 months. This means that their first matchup in the playoffs will be very telling of their true form. If North can take down Fnatic while showing that they are dictating what’s happening on the server and continue in the upper bracket, then it might be time to redefine who they are and where they belong in the rankings.
The Swedish Carousel Called Fnatic
Fnatic is one of those teams that’s impossible to guess what they are doing next. They were about to become one of the greater ones again, but ended up as a flat pancake. Their results are all over the place constantly and it’s very hard to even try to predict what they are doing next. (change on the the two to something else)
Despite the up and down results, Fnatic were able to secure a spot in the upper bracket by beating OG 2-1 in the decider match. They also got a gift from the heavens as Group D ended in a weird spot with North winning it. Out of all the possible opponents it’s quite easy to say that North is the one Fnatic would like to face in this stage of the event, as they are going in as the clear favorite to win.
Fnatic’s issue is that they have lost consistency completely. They might get a big win vs a favorite and then a horrible loss in the next game against an underdog. This is their downfall and even if they beat North it’s quite likely that they get their asses whooped in the next series vs Astralis (or Godsent if they pull off a miracle).
Still BIG in Germany
For whatever reason I seem to underestimate BIG from tournament to tournament. They have been pretty consistent with their results winning more than they lose and they are not losing against the bad teams, but mainly to teams ranked above them. Now looking at just rankings doesn’t tell the whole story, but it helps of course.
So far in DH Open Fall 2020 BIG has faced FaZe (2-0) and Godsent (2-1). Dropping a map vs. Godsent and not against FaZe tells more about the current form of the Clan than about the form of BIG. Godsent was able to steal BIG’s map pick in their series, after which BIG won Godsent’s pick and the game went to the 3rd and deciding map which was Inferno. Godsent had a hero CT side and they were close to taking it, but BIG forced OT and then won 4 rounds straight to win the group and take the higher seed for playoffs.
Going forward they are playing G2 first and then Vitality/NiP if they can win against Godsent. Placing in top 6 is looking very likely for the German squad.
I don’t know what happened to G2 as they were rocking over the spring and summer but now their flames seem to have calmed down. Their run in the ESL Pro League was cut short as they started the event by winning their 1st two matchups but then lost 5 straight to get forced out of the tournament. In IEM New York 2020 Europe they lost to both Fnatic and Complexity 2-0 and in DH Open Fall 2020 they beat Endpoint (2-0), lost to Astralis (1-2) and then won against Heroic (2-1).
Going against BIG in their first playoff matchup will be another test to see if Fnatic can build on their win against Heroic. All of the maps vs their Danish rivals were quite tight and they need to be able to perform on a better level if they wish to continue on the winning path.
Looking toward the future when talking about G2 is hard because of their inconsistency, so even if they can beat BIG it’s impossible to try to even think if they can perform on the next series cause it’s possible that they are sleeping on the server then.
Team Vitality and the Golden Boy
The Funny thing with Vitality is that even if the team is playing like a bunch of toddlers they can still win maps and games by a landslide because of ZywOo. We got a good example of this in their winner match on the 2nd round of group stage when Vitality played against Fnatic. On the deciding 3rd map (Mirage) Vitality won 16-10 and ZywOo stats were 39-12 with 2.34 rating. That’s just absolutely ridiculous.
Despite Vitality’s results not being that good lately, it’s hard to count them out because of the golden boy as he can literally win games solo against tier 1 teams. And the craziest thing is that he can do it game after game, and the kid is 19 years old.
Now, going against NiP in their first playoff game favors the French squad quite significantly. It’s expected that Vitality marches onwards to face the winner of BIG/G2 in the 2nd round, which would again favor them. Next big test would potentially be waiting in the UB finals where they could meet Astralis. That would be the juice right there.
NiP = nawwk & hampus
NiP hit a harder batch in ESL Pro League after having promising results in ESL One Cologne. Part of it was due to nawwk taking a break from CS:GO, but now he is back to steal the show. So far the Ninjas have played three series in DH Open Fall 2020:
- 0-2 vs Sprout
- 2-0 vs ENCE
- 2-1 vs Sprout
In all but one of the series their scoreboard leaders have been nawwk and hampus, in that order. These two youngsters have been performing on an elite level and nawwk especially with his AWP has been popping off like a mad man. It’s super interesting to see if NiP can challenge Vitality for real and the battle of two young aggressive AWPers is always super entertaining to watch.
NiP is definitely going in as the underdog, but with their most recent performances vs Ence and Sprout it makes sense to see them having a possibility to win. If Vitality is a one man show and NiP can work as a unit while hampus and nawwk continuing with their dominance there’s a proper chance for them. Going forward? Only the CS:GO gods know.