Barely after IEM Fall 2021 finishes, another key event in the CSGO esports scene is in the horizon. Sixteen teams will be heading to the final BLAST Premier event before the Fall Finals as BLAST Premier Fall Showdown will decide which two teams will be rounding up the Final’s team list.
Moreover, this will be the last time we will be seeing some of these squads before the PGL Stockholm Major later this month. G2, Heroic, Liquid and Virtus.Pro will all be looking to impress in their last showing before the so anticipated Major.
So, before the Showdown starts, let’s review the tournament information, everything you need to know beforehand and some of the most interesting storylines developing through it, shall we?
The first match in BLAST Premier Fall Showdown will be starting this Tuesday, 10:30 AM GMT. You can check which time that is in your time zone using this handy link. The event will last one week, and the final games will be played on Sunday (17).
On the line is a USD $162,500 prize pool, and the two top teams of the event will be taking USD $30,000 home each. Moreover, circuit points for BLAST Premier will also be awarded to every team that finished in 8th place or above. Moreover, the two top teams will also be taking the final spots in BLAST Premier Fall Final.
Lastly, as for the tournament format, BLAST Fall Showdown will run a single-elimination bracket, and all matches are BO3s. This means that losing a game means elimination, and to reach the top placings, a team needs to win three games.
Showdown Bracket & Schedule
The BLAST Premier Fall Showdown schedule has been made public already, and you can check it below:
As for the bracket, as always, HLTV got us covered, and you can check it here. As always, it will be updated as soon as the matches end, so keep an eye on that!
Now, we’re up-to-speed on the tournament info. Let’s now take a look at five very interesting storylines coming to this event.
COMPLEXITY – in need of a break
PLAYERROLE [according to Liquipedia]HLTV RATING IN 2021LAST EVENT HLTV RATINGblameFIn-Game Leader1.171.02 @ IEM Fall 2021: EuropecoldzeraRifler [lurker]1.021.09 @ IEM Fall 2021: Europees3tagRifler [entry fragger, support]1.010.74 @ IEM Fall 2021: EuropejksRifler1.021.04 @ IEM Fall 2021: EuropepoizonAWPer1.051.03 @ IEM Fall 2021: Europe
Just when things start going well for Complexity, the tides take a turn for the worse. The team just announced that their then star player, Kristian “k0nfig” Wienecke, will be not returning to the team after his injury break. This was announced just after Complexity failed to get a spot in the PGL Stockholm Major.
Furthermore, the initial results of Complexity’s ongoing experiment with Marcelo “coldzera” David haven’t been great. Overall, this situation has been a major blow to the organization, which was looking promising a month ago during EPL Season 14.
These series of events have placed Complexity in a very difficult situation just before the Showdown. It’s clear that the team synergy is affected, and the uncertainty of what’s going to happen next won’t help this already struggling team.
Hope dies last
Even though Complexity is in a difficult situation right now, not all hope is lost for this team. As mentioned above, EPL Season 14 saw Complexity with a stand-in performing very well, enough to give fans hope that this squad had a future.
So, even with the current circumstances being even worse than back in August for coL, there’s a glimpse of hope that once again we see that Complexity in the Showdown.
Complexity’s first match will be against MiBR, a team that should be a perfect test for the squad. If Complexity can confidently take MiBR down, then we might see this squad reaching the finals from their side of the bracket.
Still, Complexity’s current ceiling is low. As hopeful as one can be, it’s hard to imagine this Benjamin “blameF” Bremer and his boys defeating a squad like Heroic. At this point, no one’d be surprised if this is the last time that we see this roster together.
EVIL GENIUSES – back in the Old Continent
PLAYERROLE [according to Liquipedia]HLTV RATING IN 2021LAST EVENT HLTV RATINGBrehzeRifler [lurker]CeRqAWPerMICHURifler [entry fragger]oBoRiflerstanislawIn-Game Leader
After IEM Fall: North America, Evil Geniuses will once again be playing against mostly European competition in the Showdown. Starting with MAD Lions, the Americas will have to sweat for a spot in the Fall Finals.
Before we get into EG’s chances, though, it’s hard to ignore their results in IEM Fall. There, Peter “stanislaw” Jarguz and his crew managed to accomplish their main objective, but they didn’t do it as well as a team of their caliber is supposed to.
This makes predicting the Geniuses’ hard to predict in the Fall Showdown. They certainly got some momentum from qualifying to the Major, but after losing to GODSENT and Team oNe, it’s hard to expect much from EG.
Evil Geniuses won’t have an easy time in BLAST Premier Fall Showdown, that’s for sure. While the team might survive the scare by MAD Lions, their next opponent, which probably will be G2, should be a much harder challenge.
Overall, EG getting one of those Fall Final spots might be just too much to ask, but this tournament still is important for the Americans. After all, if they manage to put a fight against a team like G2 and confidently defeat MAD Lions, EG will have a much more positive outlook going to the Major. At the end of the day, for EG this tournament is all about leaving an impression.
G2 – reanimated
PLAYERROLE [according to Liquipedia]HLTV RATING IN 2021LAST EVENT HLTV RATINGAmaNEkAWPer0.991.06 @ IEM Fall 2021: Europe Group StagehuNter-Rifler1.111.49 @ IEM Fall 2021: Europe Group StageJaCkzRifler [entry fragger]0.951.28 @ IEM Fall 2021: Europe Group StagenexaIn-Game Leader0.981.07 @ IEM Fall 2021: Europe Group StageNiKoRifler1.18 1.32 @ IEM Fall 2021: Europe Group Stage
G2 performed incredibly well in IEM Fall 2021: Europe. With Nemanja “huNter-” Kovač and Audric “JaCkz” Jug recovering their individual forms at the event, G2 finished in second-place in their group, and they definitely are looking good for the PGL Major.
Still, there are some doubts regarding G2’s recovery, and the Showdown will be the ideal place to answer to those. Can G2 convert their offline form to online events? Is their map pool still good enough to survive three BO3s?
Nonetheless, G2 is expected to perform very well in BLAST Premier after what they have shown in IEM Fall, and not living up to these certainly won’t help them shutting the doubts that were surrounding them just a few days ago.
Favorites for a reason
G2 is one of the favorites in the Showdown. On paper, the only teams that should pose a threat to them here in either Liquid or Virtus.Pro, both of which G2 would only face in the finals of their side of the bracket.
Both Liquid and VP are definitely dangerous teams, but G2 was a team competing for the place of second-best in the world rankings just before the player break. This is a chance to show that despite their performances in EPL and the Fall Groups, they still are that same squad aiming for the top.
The Showdown is an important event for G2. They have already qualified to the PGL Major, but it’s important to keep the momentum going on, and failing to meet expectations here would bring those doubts about this squad back. And of course, no team in the same level as G2 would want to miss the Fall Final.
LIQUID – one last stop before Stockholm
PLAYERROLE [according to Liquipedia]HLTV RATING IN 2021LAST EVENT HLTV RATINGEliGERifler1.171.51 @ IEM Fall 2021: NA Group StageFalleNIn-Game Leader, AWPer1.031.14 @ IEM Fall 2021: NA Group StageGrimRifler1.001.18 @ IEM Fall 2021: NA Group StageNAFRifler [lurker]1.141.31 @ IEM Fall 2021: NA Group StageStewie2KRifler [entry fragger]1.031.29 @ IEM Fall 2021: NA Group Stage
In the past week, Team Liquid only had IEM Fall 2021: North America in their heads. The team did well there, finishing undefeated in their group and qualifying to the PGL Stockholm Major with a Legend spot. However, it’s in the Showdown that we will have another taste of what Team Liquid can do against European competition before the Major.
Going by their previous results, Liquid had mixed results against European competition recently. During ESL Pro League Season XIV, Liquid performed very well until that fateful game against Heroic. Afterwards, the squad failed to impress in BLAST Fall Groups, where they were defeated by Vitality, and Astralis without their captain.
This makes the Showdown a key event for Liquid as they work on building momentum just before the Major. The squad needs to perform well and leave a strong impression, even if they don’t ultimately win the spot at BLAST Premier Fall Final.
Liquid’s first opponent, the Uruguayan team 9z, shouldn’t a challenge for this squad. Things start getting interested after that, however. Given that Liquid wins their game against 9z, they will either face Movistar Riders or Virtus.Pro.
In this past week, Movistar Riders has impressed many after reaching the playoffs of IEM Fall 2021: Europe and getting a map of NiP in the quarter-finals. Virtus.Pro, in the other hand, has always been a team among the best teams in the world although they have yet to consistently break through the top five. In any case, both teams will make up for perfect tests to see what Liquid can do.
As the final stop in Liquid’s road to Stockholm, leaving a strong impression in the Showdown is important. Failing to do that would certainly bring more doubts towards this team chances at the Major.
OG – breaking point
PLAYERROLE [according to Liquipedia]HLTV RATING IN 2021LAST EVENT HLTV RATINGAleksibIn-Game Leader1.021.10 @ IEM Fall 2021: Europe Group StageflameZRifler [entry fragger]1.111.14 @ IEM Fall 2021: Europe Group StagemantuuAWPer1.141.15 @ IEM Fall 2021: Europe Group StagenikoRifler [support]1.000.97 @ IEM Fall 2021: Europe Group StagevaldeRifler [lurker]1.100.96 @ IEM Fall 2021: Europe Group Stage
OG is in a very difficult situation after this past week. As one of the biggest disappointments of IEM Fall, OG won’t be going to Stockholm later this month. Failing to qualify for the PGL Major certainly was a serious blow to this team.
Now, not everything is lost, but it could be in a few days if OG fail to meet expectations once more. Failing to qualify to the BLAST Fall Final could be the last straw for this roster.
To make matters worse, if we consider the current morale of this roster, an upset right in their opening game against paiN certainly is something in the realm of possibility.
OG is in a dire situation, and thanks to recency bias, it’s easy to forget what they’re capable of. This OG roster managed to perform well in EPL Season 14, and on paper they have a strong, capable squad that should be in a much better place.
But they aren’t, and OG has show time after time that they often can’t perform up to what’s on expected from them based on what they can do on paper. So, in order to start building hopes for better days, OG needs to get a spot in the Fall Final, there’s no other way.
Unfortunately for OG, missing the Major was already a massive, critical blow. Qualifying to the BLAST Premier Fall Final could be one chance to start their redemption chapter, but not even that guarantees the future of this roster.
BLAST Premier Fall Showdown starts next week
While most CSGO fans are closely following the remaining of IEM Fall and aiming at the PGL Stockholm Major, the BLAST Fall Showdown is the final top-level before we see Counter-Strike returning to the big stage.
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