The Pro League kicked off again on Monday with its new compressed schedule. Two playdays were played for each region which you can read about in our complete rundown coming out tomorrow or check out our highlights right here:
Also of note is the return of the Pro League caster of Devin "mzo" Becker after he took the second half of Season 9 off due to medical issues. He now takes back his place alongside Milosh, Interro, and KiXSTAr in the English language lineup.
Europes very first all-LAN R6 league, the second of its kind in the world, kicked off this week in a major step forward the French scene as it’ll help elevate the game of those involved giving them this added experience and practice.
Participating were the three French Pro League teams in Team Vitality, PENTA, and LeStream Esport, the ex-Pro League side of Supremacy and six ex-Pro League players across four of the top up and coming French rosters in Siege who played the first week of the best-of-one map, double round-robin league on Wednesday.
While all the attention was on the Pro League meeting between PENTA and LeStream Esport, the second game of the day was also of note, as Team MCES, led by the two ex-Vitality players of RaFaLe and ZephiR, played against the two ex-Pro League players from ARES on Bastille Legacy, SpokeN and Chaoxys. Not much was known about either of these two teams going into the game as they had both been founded somewhat recently and had yet to play a high profile game prior to this week, meaning we were set up for an exciting game.
The two teams were fairly even throughout the first half of their matchup on Kafe, with them ending on a joint 3-3 scoreline before sides were switched and Bastille Legacy went onto attack. Here they showed that they were clearly the better team on the map as they won four of the next five rounds to take the map 7-4. This result was largely thanks to the new players of Tanis “Kopp” Sice and Nicolas “P4” Rimbaud who, as well as top fragging, each got a 4k on the attack -- P4 on Zofia and Kopp on Capitao.
Next came the game between PENTA and LeStream which, while technically a preview of next week’s Pro League meeting, was very clearly not at that level of play. as AceeZ kindly illustrated when he brought out a Tachanka pick for one of the rounds while PENTA was playing with Benjamin "Krunch" Ploton substituted in to create a French core lineup. The game was taken by PENTA almost straight away with them winning four rounds in a row on defence, including a 1v2 by SirBoss, before taking three rounds on the attack including another 4k, this time by ENEMY. Interestingly, the only round in which LeStream won on their defence was the one that included a Tachanka pick, making the operator statistically the most successful one in the league with a 100% win rate and +1 KD spread.
Rounding out the games was a 7-0 by Vitality over Oplon as many people had expected and a draw between Supremacy and GameWard Team which includes the ex-Sy player of Aherys. While being close on paper, the Supremacy game was largely made up of one-sided rounds as just three out of the twelve rounds came down to a 1v2 situation with the only clutch and one of two 4ks this match coming from the British player of Leo "M4DMAN" Kukielka.
Last week, BR6 brought us FaZe Clan vs paiN Gaming and Black Dragons vs Ninjas in Pyjamas. As the last matchup before Pro League Season 10 and NiP’s first match back in their home region since the Allied Minor, the last two tickets to playoffs are still in contention between the third and fifth-placed teams. On top of this, the players would also be greeted with the return of the infamous Lion and the two newest Australians, Mozzie and Gridlock.
The first matchup between FaZe Clan and paiN Gaming kicked off with a 7-3 victory for FaZe on Bank, showing a strong offensive side before closing out the map. Map two, Consulate, saw paiN get an early lead before effectively losing a majority of their defence rounds to give FaZe the series victory with another 7-3. This second map would also mark the first time that one of the new operators, Mozzie, would be picked for the first time in high-level competition. Despite Guilherma “Revo1tz” Lima’s bold usage, it wouldn’t turn the tide of FaZe’s bruising attacks. For FaZe, this is yet another victory in the book as they edge closer in second place, just behind Team Liquid.
The second matchup looks to settle the third and fourth place tie between Black Dragons and Ninjas in Pyjamas who both stand at 16 points prior to the series. NiP managed to stand tall with a string of wins on defence before taking BD’s map pick of Villa on a 7-3 scoreline, where Gabriel “pino” Fernandes would one-up Revo1tz by being the first to obtain a kill with the new Aussie operator. However, BD would be quick to turn the tide on NiP’s map pick with an astounding five straight rounds on their Consulate defence. It would be this insurmountable lead from BD that would lead them to the map victory, tying the series at 7-1. Both teams don’t move in the standings, as the fight for 3-4th would remain unsolved at the end of the day.
This week saw the first qualifiers of Stage 2 in the East and West conferences take place on Tuesday and Wednesday which included four Pro League teams, but it was the amateur teams that really stood out.
In the very first game of the week, it looked like ‘92 Dream Team were going to smash their opponents as they went up 5-1 on defence on Villa before Team Boosted went on their own comeback winning four out of the next five defense rounds, but eventually fell to ‘92DT following two weak Kitchen/Dining defences. This game would’ve gone very differently if it wasn’t for Doodle who, aside from being the only player in the team to get above a 1.0 rating, also got the only 4k in the game and the only clutch of the map in two different instances.
‘92DT then met the reigning US Nationals champions, Rogue, in the qualifier finals following their fairly sloppy victory over Shlongii, Billboard, and Breezy’s team of !claimcharm. Here, in the finals, ‘92 Dream Team definitely looked like the better team as we saw a literally round to round repeat of their first matchup, this time on Clubhouse. Once again, ‘92DT went up 5-1 on defence before once again holding off a Rogue on the road to a comeback as they swapped sides. This time the star performer was not Doodle, who had cooled down from his last match as the top fragger, but Hyena, who both achieved a 2 kill-death ratio as well as a 1v3 [email protected]
The first game of the day saw the two completely unknown teams of S7venSpades and Parallax Gaming play off, neither of which included a single known name. S7venSpades seemed like the most dominant team on Coastline as they went up to match point, 6-4, with just a defense on Hookah/Billiards -- a feat they had already achieved twice this map -- needed to progress onwards, but Parallax didn’t let it go lightly. A 4k by Bravodog set off a four-round comeback for the team, allowing them to take the map and head onward to the qualifier’s final.
Following what many people thought would be the decider match between Spacestation Gaming and DarkZero Esports, which was a fairly run of the mill game for DZ (a game with no standout carries, no major clutches and no comebacks), ended with a 7-4 win for DZ, leading to a meeting with Parallax Gaming in the final. To everyone's surprise, the match went pretty pear-shaped for the second-seeded NA team, as some incredible fragging performances including 15 kills from Bravodog, and 14 kills from Fahood, led to them winning Coastline once again in a close 8-7 scoreline to take the map and put themselves a single Bo3 away from the USN grand-finals in December.
Meanwhile, in the Spain Nationals, the last five games of the first leg were played. The game week began with x6tence dominating Cream Esports on Border with a 7-0 win, being this the second match of the entire competition ending with a flawless victory. This quick result helped the Aliens as they had to play their Six Major Raleigh qualifier matches later on.
The following match featured Team Wizards and Efficiency Team, both clubs needing the win to stay away of the relegation zone. Efficiency was the favourite team after winning their last two game days, while Team Wizards last win was on the fourth week of the competition. The match ended 7-2 for Efficiency, with M4DMAN and SETzz being the top fraggers -- 11 kills for each player -- and the players with the best KOST, 0.88 and 0.77 respectively. Both sides will be making changes soon, as MonkeyDaBlue already confirmed that he is looking to leave Wizards, while the two most important Efficiency players, M4DMAN and SETzz, have reached an agreement to join GameWard Team.
Great game by M4DMAN in his last game for Efficiency team. GG WP!
The last match of the day faced off Team Queso and Arctic Gaming. Team Queso was, by far, the favorite team as Arctic has only won two matches, both against lower placed organizations. Played in Consulate, the match was won by Team Queso (7-2), and the MVP was given to Iluzjonist, who played his last game for the Spanish team as he is parting ways with the club.
The two matches left -- Giants Gaming against Team Dragons and Ramboot Club against Movistar Riders -- were played on Wednesday. The day kicked off with the most anticipated match of the game week, as Giants faced Team Dragons. A win or a tie for the Dragons would put them leaders of the league after the conclusion of the first leg, while a lose would give this honor to x6tence.
Giants surprised everybody at the operators ban phase, as they banned Jager and Capitao, while Dragons banned two shield operators, Montagne and Clash, with the objective to weaken Giants' play style. After Giants Gaming ended the first half being the best side -- winning 4 of the 6 rounds as attackers -- Team Dragons almost pulled off a great comeback and finished the match with a draw.
The last game of the day featured Ramboot Club and Movistar Riders. Ramboot Club was looking to get their first win of the competition, while Movistar Riders needed the three points to stay in the run for the leadership. After a tough match in Villa -- and mainly thanks to ch0i, Welshyy and Jugger, who all reached double-digit kills -- the Riders won the match. This result also means that Ramboot and Cream are the only organizations left without a single win, as their matchup ended with a draw three weeks ago.
Today’s games come to an end… the first half of the season is done now!
We have had some amazing matches but the best is still to come. We will be back with the nine rounds left after the transfer market shuts down, in two weeks.
Thanks, everybody for watching!
Teams have now until the 1st of July to make roster changes and to practice so they can improve before the beginning of the second half of the season.
Elsewhere in the world of R6 we saw a number of other great games. This includes the ESL Premiership games between Natus Vincere and the ex-Team Secret player of Ryan "Lacky" Stapley’s new team of T3H Esports. Both these teams sit undefeated at the top of the league and due to very close rounds by both teams, it was kept this way with the game ending in a 6-6 draw. This is pretty remarkable considering that Na’Vi currently sits in the mid-table in the Pro League after defeating PENTA last week and yet the amateur team of T3H kept them to a draw. This certainly makes them a must watch team in the BYOC brackets of the upcoming DreamHack Valencia event.
Talking of DreamHack Valencia 2019, the teams and groups for the event were confirmed for this event as seen below. Probably most interesting is the inclusion of the APAC teams of Cloud9 and Father’s back, both of which we haven’t seen much of recently and will be an unknown element to both teams and fans.
And so, there’s a roundup of everything that happened in R6 over the last week. Check back here next week for more coverage of R6 action at all levels of play!