BLAST Premier Finals 2020 Preview, Team Storylines & Interesting Facts on Both EU and NA Events
I’m late, fellas! The first match of the European event took off an hour or so ago, which means our BLAST Premier Spring Finals 2020 Preview needs to come ASAP. So, let’s skip the classic introductory paragraph and move straight to the most interesting facts!
BLAST Premier Spring Finals Preview | Interesting Facts
The originally planned BLAST Premier Spring Finals had to be canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Just like most other CS:GO events out there, BLAST Premier’s system was reformatted in two online events based on the game’s biggest regions, Europe and America.
The total prize money for the American BLAST Premier Spring Finals event is $250,000. There are only four teams participating on the American event. To put things into perspective, the European event features eight teams, which is why the total prize pool of the European event sits at $500,000.
The European event starts today and is set to last until June 21. The American BLAST Premier Spring Finals, on the other hand, starts tomorrow, which is only logical considering they don’t have quarterfinals.
By the time you read this piece, several European quarterfinals matches will already be done and dusted. At the time of writing, G2 and Vitality are playing a tightly contested overtime on Mirage, with Vitality in the lead after the first map.
BLAST Premier Finals | American Team Overviews
As stated earlier, only four teams will be participating in the American BLAST Premier Spring Finals. This American event features a double-elimination bracket, meaning every team has room for one mistake. The first upper bracket round 1 match brings forth the ultimate Brazilian encounter, with MIBR and FURIA as the leading roles. The second one paves the way for another massive encounter, this time featuring the two biggest US teams, Liquid, and Evil Geniuses. Upper Bracket Finals will be interesting, that’s for sure!
Is FURIA really the best team in the American region? Well, if we are to judge by their recent results, they sure are! I mean, they won DreamHack Masters Spring NA just last week, and have a set of awesome results since the start of 2020. They are much more consistent than any other team in the region but don’t yet have the individual presence like, let’s say, MIBR, EG, or Team Liquid.
Don’t get me wrong – yuurih and KSCERATO are top-tier fraggers, but they’re not nearly as dominant nor popular like FalleN, Brehze, EliGE, and similar NA stars. What could be the next step for this FURIA team? Well, considering their recent results, anything but a clean BLAST Premier Spring Finals title would be slightly disappointing. There are no easy teams here, but FURIA is still considered as the main favorites… so they got to act like it.
Team Liquid is down! I repeat, Team Liquid is down! The boys in blue are far from their best form and have fallen to the seventh spot on HLTV’s world ranking. The only NA team that’s above them is FURIA, which goes to show you just how dominant the European side of the table is.
Back to Liquid – EliGE isn’t playing half bad, but the rest of the team are typically absent. This doesn’t happen very often, but when it does it’s catastrophic. It’s sort of like a new normal for Team Liquid – a new normal that has to end if they are to get back to the top of the region.
MIBR is a tricky team to talk about. Ever since Coldzera departed on greener pastures a la Faze Clan, this MIBR roster couldn’t help but look for a new identity. They still had plenty of talent, but Coldzera’s absence was as clear as day. FalleN’s superb IGLing wasn’t able to push MIBR further, or keep them at the top spot of South America.
Apparently, someone thought zews was the problem, so MIBR replaced him with dead. Now that there has been no real improvement, they switched out meyern for trk. The young Brazilian, ex-Team One star, is yet to impress under new colors, but I reckon we’ll see him perform increasingly better as time goes by. As for the first-round BLAST Premier Spring Finals match against FURIA, I reckon yuurih and the boys will take the win without any issues.
Lastly, let’s say a word or two on Evil Geniuses. When looking at the grand scheme of things in the NA region, Evil Geniuses seem to be the biggest losers. Sure, MIBR is a proper candidate in that department, but I’d like to argue the current MIBR roster has more long-term potential than EG. In my books, the success EG had with the current roster was way above its level. Brehze and the company reached their peak and, with a bunch of new kids on the block, will only continue to sink further down the pecking order. EG’s management should try to mix things up a bit. From the looks of things, zews was not the option EG needed.
The situation isn’t that bad for Evil Geniuses, though. They had one solid campaign in 2020. ESL Pro League S11 NA was the occasion. They reached all the way to the grand finals where they got stomped by Team Liquid in a quick 3-0 fashion. Generally speaking, EG isn’t a bad team, but I doubt they’ll swing past Team Liquid in the upper bracket round 1 matchup.
BLAST Premier Finals | European Team Overviews
Moving on with our BLAST Premier Spring Finals preview, we’ll be taking a closer look at key European teams too. There are eight teams competing on the European BLAST Premier Spring Finals.
Let’s check out the four key teams that should have the greatest impact on the event!
We’re starting our European journey with Natus Vincere, one of the best teams in the world, and a proper powerhouse in CIS region. However, their CIS dominance was shaken up a bit, following a ridiculously poor performance on ESL One: Road to Rio CIS. A quick reminder – NaVi got eliminated in the group stage after losing to Syman, Hard Legion, and Virtus.pro. NaVi did play a bit better on DreamHack Masters Spring EU, but it was nothing superb, by any standards.
What seems to be the biggest problem with this NaVi roster? Well, they seem to be battling with consistency and nothing but consistency. One campaign, they’re outright awful; the next campaign and they’re playing like gods. Perfecto’s arrival didn’t result in any major performance drops, at least nothing outside of the usual for NaVi.
G2 Esports might as well be the best team in the world at the moment. Their 2020 has been superb thus far, despite the fact they’re yet to win an event. On the bright side, the French teams finished as the runners-up on three occasions since mid-December last year. While that shows their inability to close competitions out, it also shows their consistency which is, at least for the moment, at a very admirable level.
The likes of hunter, nexa and KennyS are pushing this G2 team forward. Yep, KennyS is still one of the top AWPers in EU. He’s been consistent too, although he does go through a bit of a slump every now and then. Overall, if the Balkan duo (nexa and hunter) continue to play the way they’ve been playing in 2020, and if KennyS can keep his AWP mechanics at such a high level, G2’s 2020 should be lit af!
We haven’t seen OG perform for quite a while… if we’re not counting the recent Gamers Without Borders showmatch which saw OG go up against the likes of Fnatic and Mousesports. This brand-new CS:GO team (formed on December 4, 2019) is yet to make a proper impression on either European or International stage, meaning BLAST Premier Spring Finals is the perfect occasion to do so.
The current OG roster consists of several highly talented lads with plenty of experience on the top-level of competitive CS:GO. We’re talking NBK, Aleksib, Valde, ISSAA, and mantuu. In January, just before the COVID-19 lockdown, ruggah got appointed as the team’s coach. Since then, OG competed in several qualifiers and smaller events but failed to assert themselves as a serious side. Can they make a name for themselves on BLAST Premier Spring Finals? Well, I guess we’ll see in a few days.
The last European team we’re going to inspect in our BLAST Premier Spring Finals Preview is Team Vitality. Thus far in 2020, ZywOo and the boys haven’t been all that impressive. They’re yet to venture deeper than semifinals, meaning ALEX’s departure really did shake the team.
Perhaps the problem wasn’t so much in ALEX’s departure as much as misutaaa’s arrival. After all, we’re talking about a 17-year-old here. A 17-year-old without any sort of top-tier CS experience. Sure, he was always among the best in up-and-coming youth teams, but pairing him up with the world’s best player was a crazy move by Vitality’s management. Can they succeed with him on board? Well, I reckon misutaaa is far below his peak. We’ll see him perform at his best in a few years. Considering the fact he’ll be playing alongside ZywOo, perhaps his skillset improves much faster.
Wrapping Things Up
Well, I guess that’s everything that needed to be said in our BLAST Premier Finals 2020 preview. You’ve seen all four American teams and half of the European teams, and you’ve (probably) skimmed through the Interesting facts, which means you’re pretty much up to speed on both events. If that’s really the case, all you’re left with is to watch the action live on Twitch or YouTube!