DarkZero have done it: they've defeated No. 1 North American seed Astralis in the grand finals of the Charlotte Major with a 3-2 scoreline.
DarkZero began the tournament expected by many to get eliminated in groups. They bypassed expectations with only one loss: in overtime, to w7m, and blanking the European representatives G2 and Heroic 2-0 apiece.
Their quarterfinals opponent were a hobbled Team oNe squad, who they dispatched handily after a shaky start on Kafe Dostoyevsky, 2-1.
DarkZero's next opponent was tougher. Team Liquid are LATAM's equivalent of a super-team, they're expected to win every tournament they're in. On the first map, Liquid looked dominant behind a strong statistical performance from Luccas "Paluh" Molina, and took home Theme Park 7-1.
Despite yet another slow start, DarkZero fought back into the game. They won Chalet fairly handily, and then were pushed to maximum regulation rounds by Liquid on Oregon -- which they won by a 7-5 scoreline.
The table was set. Next up would be fellow North American League opponent Astralis -- the consensus best team from the region. It was a clash of philosophies: Astralis are wild, agressive, crazy. DarkZero are calculated, strategic.
The first map started in DarkZero's favor. They started out 3-0, like they would on maps three and five, but Astralis came roaring back to take the first map. Clubhouse was next, and was relatively easily won by DarkZero. The next map would be consequential.
Border is one of Astralis's homes, they are excellent on it. DarkZero managed to flip the script yet again, and steal the map away from a stunned Astralis. Oregon was won handily by Astralis, but it seemed like they ran out of gas.
DarkZero came into the final map, Bank, on fire. They raced out to a dominating 5-0 lead, several technical issues blunted their momentum. Four rounds later, and it was history: DarkZero won 7-3.
The victory puts IGL Troy "Canadian" Jaroslawski higher in the greatest of all time conversation. He now has two SI hammers, a Major title, and a Pro League Finals title.
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