The Charlotte Major saw 33 of the 80 players new to that level of competition, while the Berlin Major only had 11 new players. Now, the Jönköping Major will have 20 more debutants at this level of play.
Mirage: Benjimoola, Melted, Kento, Dexter and Mohesse
The whole of Mirage has never played at a Major before, though their assistant coach Zachary "Nyx" Thomas has been to multiple international events as a player.
The team had finished Stages 1 and 2 in 10th place, before bringing in the two tier-one rookies Lorenzo "Dexter" Albeira and Jesse "Mohesse" Sheffield.
The caveat to this is that Dexter did a trial for Spacestation Gaming at the Gamers8 event in Saudi Arabia, where he beat DWG but lost to WYLDE and Team Liquid.
Black Dragons e-Sports: Patoxy, Peres, Bassetto, and nade
All of Black Dragons except ex-FaZe Clan player Ronaldo "ion" Osawa have also never played at a Major before.
The team missed out on Stage 1’s Copa Elite Six by round difference, before finally breaking what was an almost-five-year dry spell for the Black Dragons organization this stage.
All four players listed above have never played on another professional team other than Black Dragons, but none of them are in their rookie stages -- a rarity on both accounts.
FURY: Darkk, Hajime, Lycolis, and SpaceHead
While Sumate "i9" Srimabut and Sirasit "BGMan" Ariyasirisopon were a core player and substitute for Elevate the last time Siege came to Sweden, the rest of FURY have never played on the global stage before.
This was definitely not for the lack of trying, as Chayapat "SpaceHead" Boonyamanop, Sillapakorn "Lycolis" Dokmaikhaw, and Surachat "Hajime" Loednaweporn have been playing together in the Pro League and APAC League since 2018.
Since then, they dominated South East Asia a number of times and were a single game away from reaching the ESL Pro League Season 8 and Season 9 Finals, as well as two games away from the Season 10 Finals and Mexico Major.
Now, after four years of close calls, they’re finally here.
TSM: Snake and Gasher
Both of these two players impressed in the NA Challenger League last stage, as they both were in the top five by SiegeGG Rating. This stage, both players’ individual figures have struggled, but TSM has looked remarkable and has potentially found their championship-winning again. Lining up next to Jason "Beaulo" Doty is a tough challenge for a rookie, but these two have definitely been pulling their weight leading to a NAL Stage 3 win.
Nick "Snake" Janis had previously trialed with TSM at the Gamers8 tournament, where his team had a similar fate to that of SSG as they suffered an early exit. Their NAL results have shown drastic improvement already, though, and they have certainly been working on further improvements in the one month away.
Heroic: jume and Meloo
Hailing from Europe’s national leagues, both these signings have been revolutionary for Heroic.
Maxime "Meloo" Cahagnet previously finished EUCL 2021 in fifth-sixth place on Acend and played in the Nordic Premier League.
Marc "jume" Steinmann, meanwhile, had an extensive history in the NPL, the GSA League, UKIN, and the Benelux regions. He reached the Benelux League Season 6 grand final, teamed up with Juhani "Kantoraketti" Toivonen and Fabian "Fabian" Hällsten on Delta Project, was the GSA League 2022’s best-rated player, and has been in the top-three in the monthly European FACEIT Pro League for 10 months in a row, winning in April, July, September, and October.
This is a tier-two CV that would put any player to shame. Now, he’s finally got his tier-one chance and has taken it by the horns.
Dire Wolves: Reeps96
Wu "Reeps96" Weichen will be the second Chinese player to ever compete at a global event. He has been competing in Chinese national tournaments for a number of years and, during Stage 3, was the top-rated player in APAC South in his debut stage.
A 1.27 SiegeGG Rating across five games saw him earn 61 kills to just 38 deaths. He missed the final game in order to get a visa for the Major, though, as he led Dire Wolves to win the tournament with ease. He’s now APAC’s star player at the Major, can he perform in Sweden?
Shaun "Gunnar" Pottorff has drawn a lot of attention in North America, as he was initially hailed as the region’s star rookie of 2022.
During Stage 2, he was the NAL’s third-best player by SiegeGG Rating with the best opening record while playing for Parabellum. Since then, he’s moved to the Soniqs, where he finished Stage 3 with a much less impressive 0.90 Rating. Nevertheless, Soniqs looked impressive even as he learned to play in a new more supportive role.
Now, with over a month of preparation since Soniqs’ last game, it’s time to see which Gunnar we get in Sweden.
Team BDS: LikEfac
While Théo "LikEfac" Mariano did play in the Japan Invitational 2022, where he beat Crest and DWG twice without dropping a map, this will be his debut Major tournament.
Here he will be working as Stéphane "Shaiiko" Lebleu’s duo, as BDS have looked a lot more vicious, with yet another key fragger at their disposal. LikEfac was EUL’s second best player by SiegeGG Rating and best fragger during Stage 3.
BDS have never played in front of a European crowd before. Now, over three years since they first won their spot in Europe’s Pro League, they may finally do it.
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