By Pavo Jurkic
July 10, 2019
It’s safe to say the BLAST Pro Series is already a well-established event in the CS:GO competitive calendar. Even though many thought there was not enough room in an already exhausting CS:GO season for yet another series of events, RFRSH Entertainment made every day count. These tightly packed two-day events are all the craze these days. They feature only six teams, possess thrilling group stage Bo1 fixtures, and a well-executed show match that captivates the crowds no matter the venue.
With all that in mind, today we’ll be focusing on the next BPS iteration. More precisely, you can consider this post a dedicated BLAST Pro Series Los Angeles Preview. As usual, I’ll guide you through the interesting facts, format and schedule details, prize pool distribution and team overviews. Come to think of it, this is basically your BLAST Pro Series Los Angeles viewer’s guide.
As soon as we all got used to the way things work at BLAST Pro Series events, RFRSH Entertainment went and switched things up a bit. The group stage has, more or less, remained the same. The group stage fixtures still pan out the same way, but the end results are presented a bit differently. More precisely, the transition between the group stage and playoffs has been altered.
Thus far, the group stage sent only two teams off to the grand finals match. However, starting from this BPS iteration, we’ll see a short playoffs phase instead. The playoffs phase is scheduled for the second day of the event (yep, all group stage matches will be played on Friday), and they’re set to feature four best group stage teams.
As usual, all group stage fixtures are Bo1, so there’s a fair share of upset potential to talk about. And lastly, all three playoffs matches are set for Bo3 series. In all honesty, I prefer the new BLAST Pro Series format over the new one. The semifinals bring more dynamic to the event, making it more entertaining for both spectators and players. On top of all that, the BLAST Pro Standoff is also scheduled for Saturday and, in all honesty, it’s a proper spectacle to watch!
As far as prize pool distribution goes, things haven’t changed one bit. BLAST Pro Series Los Angeles 2019 brings forth $250,000 in prize pool money. $125,000 goes to the winning team, with the remaining amount divided to other participants. Based on their final standing.
Additionally, this is the fourth stop in this BPS season, with three more to go by the end of the year. The pinnacle of RFRSH Entertainment’s event series, dubbed as the BLAST Pro Series Global Finals, will be held in December. With $500,000 in prize pool money and a qualification system based on BPS points, their respective distribution bears importance too. Especially for the teams that are currently below the qualification line.
Here’s the official prize pool and BPS points distribution table:
In addition to all this, the BLAST Pro Standoff winning team goes home with an extra $20,000.
And finally, here’s a closer look at the current BPS Global Finals standings:
|4th||Ninjas in Pyjamas||10|
Here comes the main section of this BLAST Pro Series Los Angeles preview – team overviews. Here, we will go through each of the participating teams, assess their current forms, track records, best players and BPS LA 2019 aspirations.
As stated earlier, all six of these teams are well-capable of reaching the playoffs. Some more than others, of course. There are only four playoffs tickets, so every group stage match will count. A lot!
This MIBR team has been in a huge slump for the last few months. Their poor run of form culminated on ECS and ESL Pro League Finals. They got smashed in both tournaments, letting down their fans and losing the chance to earn hefty prize pools. The same can be said about their previous BLAST Pro Series performances as well. A disaster in Sao Paulo and a poor run in Miami, one way or another, MIBR needs to change their approach, and they need to do it ASAP!
The perfect way to get back on the winning path is to start off their BLAST Pro Series LA campaign on the right foot. And, surprisingly, it shouldn’t be that big of a deal for them. First up, they’ll face Renegades, a team which they already defeated twice this year. Jks and jkaem ought to put up a good fight, but MIBR will have to do everything it takes to kick things off with a win. Cloud9 shouldn’t be too big of an issue too. If they manage to win these two matches, MIBR will go up against Team Liquid without the imperative of a win.
Lucas1, their new loanee from Luminosity, hasn’t shown himself in the best light. Synchronization seems to be the main issue here, so I reckon it’s just a matter of time before all five of them get on the same wavelength. However, after Coldzera teased a move to FaZe Clan just last night, this might be MIBR’s last chance to win an event with their golden boy.
After a great performance at the IEM Katowice Major, Renegades started underperforming at virtually all events they participated in. Sure, StarSeries is sort of an exception, but that was right after the Major when they had huge wind to their sails coming all the way from Poland. IEM XIV Sydney, cs_summit 4, and DH Masters Dallas were outright disastrous for Renegades. If they come into this tournament with the mentality they possessed during those events, I’m afraid even Cloud9 could get the better of them.
Their first match is against MIBR and it will most likely set the tone for the remainder of the event. If Renegades, by any chance, overcome the out-of-form Brazilians, they’ll be coming up against FaZe with a huge morale boost. And we all know the Aussies love playing against FaZe Clan. They’re one of their favorite customers.
While I do consider Renegades to be a level below everyone else (except Cloud9), their tenacity and snowball potential could see them through to the playoffs. In that case, I reckon either FaZe Clan or MIBR will miss out on the Bo3 craze.
I’m honestly getting sick and tired of talking about FaZe’s lackluster performances. And, come on, we have to agree that their ESL One Cologne campaign was another perfect example of how to be terrible with an outright scary lineup.
The worst thing is, FaZe Clan org and fans expect them to reach the grand finals of every event they compete on. After all, that’s what this superstar roster was created for. However, the players themselves have already come to terms with the fact their current lineup isn’t cut for praiseworthy campaigns. AdreN out, NEO in, but solid results are nowhere to be seen.
There is a glimpse of hope for FaZe Clan, however. With a ton of rumors on Coldzera replacing NEO, FaZe Clan seems to be wrapping the deal for yet another superstar. I kid you not, FaZe Clan is turning into Manchester United of competitive CS:GO.
At the moment, NRG is sitting at fifth place in the HLTV CS:GO world ranking. They’ve cemented their position as the second best team in North America, right after the big guns, Team Liquid. Furthermore, their recent performances have been anything but boring. Great show of strength at the both ESL Pro League and Esports Championship Series finals. Two semifinals and almost $100,000 in as little as two weeks ought to prove their worth.
In all honesty, I would be surprised to see NRG at second place here. Right behind Team Liquid, of course. Stanislaw is doing his IGLing with a proper amount of swag, while Brehze and Ethan are maintaining their kill counts at bay. Such a strong team base means they have what it takes to beat all five competing teams. Who knows, perhaps we even see an all-American final between NRG and TL. What a spectacle that would be, in the middle of LA.
For those of you not in the know, Cloud9 has a completely revamped roster. Four new starters, a completely new approach to the game, and hopefully a much better for both the organization and its respective fans. Considering their roster revamp, they are undoubtedly the biggest wildcard here. The only one, dare I say.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying this Cloud9 roster is trash. The potential is there, no doubt about that. However, I just can’t see them doing anything notable in LA. It’s just too soon. The players need to get a feel for each other’s style of play. They need to work on their in-game strats, rotations, holds, trade points and all that. Syncing up with a new team, especially after a four-man revamp, takes time. Let’s just hope these players will make it happen before the organization makes another drastic roster revamp.
The boys in blue have left me speechless. I’m not kidding, I have no idea what to say here. They’ve done it! They’ve beaten the game, winning the Intel Grand Slam Season 2 with four wins in four ESL/DH Masters events. I already wrote about this, so that’s the place to go if you want a fresh look at the post-ESL One Cologne TL.
That’s about it as far as this BLAST Pro Series Los Angeles preview is concerned. After going through all six participating teams, there is just one more thing we need to do before wrapping everything up.
Let’s wrap this BLAST Pro Series Los Angeles preview up by checking out the schedule. As mentioned above, the game features a group phase packed with Bo1 contests, Bo3 playoffs, and a special show match dubbed as the BLAST Pro Standoff.
With that in mind, here are the exact start times for all BPS LA 2019 matches:
MIBR vs Renegades – 11 a.m.
FaZe Clan vs NRG – 11 a.m.
Team Liquid vs Cloud9 – 12.30 p.m.
FaZe Clan vs Renegades – 12.30. p.m.
Team Liquid vs NRG – 2 p.m.
MIBR vs Cloud9 – 2 p.m.
NRG vs Renegades – 3.30 p.m.
FaZe Clan vs Cloud9 – 3.30 p.m.
MIBR vs Team Liquid – 5 p.m.
Cloud9 vs Renegades – 5 p.m.
FaZe Clan vs Team Liquid – 6.30 p.m.
MIBR vs NRG – 6.30 p.m.
MIBR vs FaZe Clan – 8 p.m.
Team Liquid vs Renegades – 8 p.m.
Cloud9 vs NRG – 8 p.m.
Semifinals #1 – 11 a.m.
Semifinals #2 – 2.45 p.m.
BLAST Standoff – 6.30 p.m.
Grand Finals – 7 p.m.