IEM XIII Chicago
As part of the yearly IEM competition together with Katowice, Sydney and Shanghai, IEM Chicago will feature the world's best 16 teams in CSGO who are battling over a lion's share of the $250,000 USD prize pool from November 10-11, 2018.
IEM XIII Chicago Betting Tips
Team Liquid (1.5)
Team Liquid (-1.5)
Team Liquid (-1.5)
The return of unbeatable: can anyone stop Astralis at IEM Chicago?
Right after a couple of big tournaments that were hosted in CIS, the big Counter-Strike is coming back to America. Chicago will hold the event of Intel Extreme Masters series and it will be hot!
The Danes are the first contenders for the championship at IEM Chicago. Astralis correctly made their schedule, unfortunately for us declining the invitation for the Epicenter, but it was a right decision for them.
The best team in the world after winning the London Major decided that they can relax a bit and all that worried Astralis whole October were only online leagues ECS and ESL. And the “red stars” are still in the good shape: their win rate by maps for October is higher than 90%. Astralis lost just 3 maps out of more than 3 in October. Seems like they won’t become worse in the nearest future and they won’t lose their own game style. And for the upcoming big LAN-tournament, they will prepare something interesting, for sure. It doesn’t really seem that anyone can contest Astralis now even on the distance of 3 maps – this goal is very hard. The moral part of the team makes no doubt that Astralis will play calm and won’t throw IEM Chicago by themselves. It would be very strange if someone will steal the champions cup in Chicago from Astralis. Seems like now instead of tier-1 teams we got “tier-Astralis” in the top.
After the biggest fail in the final of the London Major, Natus Vincere hardly failed the final of the Epicenter also. This may have an even stronger effect than the September defeat from Astralis - Na`Vi tried and fought, but morally they only had enough for the first map. This means that the CIS team will again have psychological problems that cannot be solved in a two-week period. However, Natus Vincere’s difficulties appear more often in the decisive matches of the play-off stage, and given the potential of the team and the individual level of the players, they still remain a formidable force. That is, you can expect an unstable game in the final stage of the tournament, but before, the current “version” of Natus Vincere should be able to cope with most opponents without any problems.
When you look at the Liquid’s games during last few months, you get the feeling that they have picked up the peculiarities of Natus Vincere’s character and put them to extremes: an incredible game in the group stages of tournaments and an absolute catastrophe somewhere around the semi-finals. Just check this:
A loss in the semi-final of the London Major to Astralis;
A disgusting defeat by the Mousesports in New York;
And now a loss against Faze in the semi-final of the Epicenter.
Liquid is in a similar to Na`Vi situation, but perhaps Americans are more psychologically stable. It is unlikely that their self-confidence will fail, but will they cope with their problems when it comes to the round-of-four stage?
It is difficult to say how a victory at the Epicenter will affect star Europeans. On the one hand, before the tournament in Moscow, everyone admitted that Faze has certain game problems and they have not disappeared anywhere. On the other hand, the level of the individual game of each of the Faze players now is impressive even compared to their usual game. Faze continues to make their game from the shooting and in the future, it can play a cruel joke on her, but in Chicago, it goes for the highest places and may well get a fight even versus Astralis just on the moral rise. The Faze players regained confidence in themselves and in their teammates, and this is especially important for them.
The second tier
So, the “mice” took the first step towards solving their real problems - they returned Styko and sent Snacks to the bench. Yes, Mousesports lost time and money, but as we know, better late than never. Despite the fact that Mousesports had been playing in the current roster for almost a year, after a three-month break, it needed time to return the old game bonds. Mousesports used to play well in this line-up and IEM Chicago will be a serious test for the European team. However, again, a little time has passed and the tournament in Chicago will only show whether Mousesports had enough time to reverse and restructure their game or not. If enough, then Mousesports will contest the highest places on upcoming IEM, if not – everything will depend on the tournament grid they will get.
It seems that BIG is the team that is extremely difficult to reach high places in tournaments without a strong moral charge. And this puts them in the category of unstable teams because it is difficult to say at what point the team’s psychological energy will reach the level when the “explosion” becomes inevitable. However, BIG has a strong ingame and tactical basis: its game is clearly structured, everyone understands what is required from him, and the universalism of the players, along with extensive experience of the ingame-leader, opens up opportunities for a versatile game. BIG should definitely hit the top eight teams, and there it starts the stage of the IEM Chicago where psychological factor will matter much, and then we will know the real possibilities of the Germans in the tournament.
Made in Brazil
MIBR is a team whose real state is very difficult to understand throughout the whole year. The Brazilians do not have a real game, there still have communication problems, but Made in Brazil has a star roster, that all you should know. And now it seems that at least they have dealt with some of the problems – the MIBR players have found confidence in themselves. In principle, given the difference between the ambitions of the team and real achievements in 2018, this can already be considered a great success. Made in Brazil is absolutely unstable: it can both take one of the lowest positions in Chicago and soar to the top, but it’s simply impossible to put it below than top-10.
The new roster of Fnatic is similar to the Rubik's cube, which the Swedes are frantically trying to assemble as soon as possible. That's just the problem with Fnatic being overestimated strongly that with Brollan they will start to win right here and right now. With the addition of young talent, Fnatic’s potential has undoubtedly increased, but many factors must come together in order for it to show itself at the upcoming tournament in America higher than expected. Given the roster of the team and the status of other teams, we can expect that Fnatic will take a place in the top eight. Below - just not status and the above will be difficult to climb.
The pig in a poke
There is a group of teams, from which it is not at all clear what to expect. And this is one of the main interesting questions for the IEM Chicago. It will be especially interesting to look at each of the teams presented below.
The Renegades with Gratisfaction and Liazz in the roster look more than impressive. In their region, they are, as always, a top team. But this line-up has the potential to grow to a strong tier-2 team, which was once the Renegades. The question is how soon it will happen. Renegades already show a solid game, but it will be clear at IEM Chicago how well they are adapted to the game against top teams. The flip side of the coin is that the Renegades may fail without showing anything at all - in this case, their time has not yet come.
LDLC long ago is not a contender for something serious. However, with the advent of Devoduvek and Amanek, the game began to improve. If we touch on the French team, then the question here is more likely: will the LDLC fail or not? A good result for them would be a place in the top ten if we look objectively. The team has no top ambitions and it will be a plus for it - the French will play relaxedly. However, recalling their instability, LDLC might as well leave the tournament first.
Avangar performed well at the Epicenter when it reached the semifinal of the tournament, but now it’s interesting how this local success will affect the Kazakhstan team. Given the fact that they tend to show steady progress, we can expect Avangar to see in the top-8. Avangar does not seem to overestimate itself and its capabilities, and this is the most important. The only risk - a trip to another continent can be a big stress for the Kazakh team. In general, there are reasons for optimism.
North is truly an amazing team. They can lose from scratch and win where they are not expected to succeed. For Danish teams, this is not typical. North once again chose to try to solve their problems with a reshuffle and, on the first sight, hit the target exactly. The new composition of the Danes looks stable and strong, but IEM Chicago will put everything in its place.
Home sweet home
The American team became a ray of light in the spring and early summer, but then lost itself and fell to the very bottom. If the NRG went through the qualifiers, one could argue that they are in decent form, but NRG received an invitation, and on the background of the problematic game of the Americans and the weak form of the Cerq, the NRG may be not only the weakest invited team but also the weakest in the tournament. The factor of the “home” tournament should not play any role. We all saw that if the NRG winning, then winning everywhere.
But for eUnited the fact that the tournament is held in the home region can play a big role. Still, the team is not so experienced and strong. It would be strange to expect great success from them, but eUnited can pull the nerves of many opponents at IEM Chicago. But the main thing for them is the valuable experience of playing at a big LAN-tournament.
Nothing good to expect
When from Asia to such tournaments goes not Tyloo or Renegades, the team is automatically recorded in the status of one of the weakest. Unfortunately, the overall level of play in the Asian region still leaves much to be desired. Skepticism about the MVP PK performance at IEM Chicago is reinforced by the fact that the qualification did not have Tyloo (again), which means it is difficult to say that the Koreans will arrive in Chicago in good shape.
Unfortunately, the same thing as MVP PK can be said about Steel's team - in the South American qualifier, the only serious opponent for Luminosity was the NoTag team, which went to the qualifying tournament, not in the best shape. Summing up the unstable performance of Luminosity and the high dependence of Brazilians on morality, they have a chance to go far only with a very lucky grid and showing their best game. In any other case, Luminosity will leave the tournament as one of the first teams.
- Two double-elimination groups
- 8 teams in each group
- The initial matches are Best-of-One
- All following matches are Best-of-Three
- Top 3 teams from each group advance to playoffs
- Single-elimination bracket
- The Quarterfinals and Semifinals are Best-of-Three
- The Grand Final is Best-of-Five