Image via Ubisoft/@Kirill_Vision
G2 are a fairly even 2-2 in regulation matches just four games into the season. On paper, devoid of context, it looks bad for a team that was supposed to be a “super-team”. However, their early schedule has been anything but kind – they’ve had Heroic and Rogue, the top two teams in the league, as well as solid MNM and Outsiders (Virtus.Pro) squads on the ledger.
Unfortunately for G2, this week isn’t going to get any easier. A good LFO (ex-Vitality) squad awaits on day one, and will be followed up by a soaring NAVI.
There aren’t necessarily any “easy” games in regional play, but there are games that are easier than others. These two teams are not the caliber of Rogue and Heroic, and on paper, G2 should stand a better chance at notching more points and getting out of seventh place in the standings. However, some struggles this week could put them even further behind in a search for a Major berth – they still have to play BDS – and G2 need to get all the points they can from teams they’re directly competing with for a spot.
With the middle of the EUL as jumbled as it is, G2 getting a solid four to six points this week could rocket them up the standings. They’re unlikely to catch Heroic immediately, and Rogue has a solid shot at getting four to six points too, but a good week would go a long way towards calming fans and setting the black-and-red-clad squad up well heading into the back half of the stage.
Only two matches into the first stage of the year, Secret made a change. They benched Peter “pacbull” Bull in favor of William “Titan” Davie, and haven’t looked back since.
They beat MNM and Outsiders, both in regulation. With five playdays left, they’re closing in on their best regional stage since 2021 Stage 2. Additionally, their regulation wins have put them within striking distance of a Major berth if they can continue their run. However, despite the pair of wins, they still have the most difficult part of their schedule coming up.
Secret has not played: G2, Heroic, NAVI, BDS, and Rogue. That’s a tall ask for a team that seems to have very recently found its footing, but more bizarre things have happened in EUL play. Secret looks very revitalized, they look like they’re having fun with the game again on the broadcast, and they don’t really have anything to lose after coming into this stage with low expectations from the community. There’s a long way to go, but Secret could be the “spoiler” team moving forward.
NAVI’s offseason was a curious one. Losing Jack “Doki” Robertson to G2 was a big blow, and they have a ton of flex and support players in a meta that’s defined by raw aggression.
That being said, they looked like a completely new team last week. They rocked a good Heroic squad 7-2 and took care of business against PWNZ (Team Empire), not bad results all things considered. Two weeks ago, NAVI pushed BDS to overtime, giving them a point and bumping them up in the standings in the process. If the season was over today, NAVI would be back in a Major. Time will tell whether they can carry the momentum on through the rest of the season.
A disastrous SI run that was outside of BDS’s control has segued into an underwhelming regional stage. They’re currently 1-1-1-1 on the stage, a far cry from your normal BDS regional results.
Yes, it’s only four best-of-ones. But, those four best-of-ones constitute nearly half of the regular stage. There’s a need to win your games as they come in regional competition if the goal is to qualify for a Major, which should be an almost-given for a team of BDS’s pedigree. Missing the first Major of the year isn’t the biggest deal in the world, but still – BDS shouldn’t be missing it.
BDS has a case for “best French team of all time” honors. They shouldn’t be losing the games they’re losing, and they shouldn’t be going to overtime with some of the teams they’re going to overtime with.
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