The top CS:GO teams in the world have been busy of late. The DreamHack Open in Austin occurred at the start of June, followed by the ECS Season 5 Finals in London last weekend. This coming weekend, many of the top teams will convene in Brazil to compete in the ESL One: Belo Horizonte 2018.
However, this is not the only big tournament on a massive week for CS:GO lovers. The CS:GO Asia Championships begin Friday. Then, on June 16, the DreamHack Open Summer 2018 starts in Jonkoping, Sweden.
Let’s begin by previewing the tournament in Brazil.
ESL One Belo Horizonte 2018
For the first time in the tournament’s history, the ESL One comes to Brazil with a total of eight teams battling out for a prize pool of $200,000 at the Mineirinho Arena.
The tournament will begin with a double-elimination group stage of two groups of four.
- Group A – FaZe Clan, SK Gaming, Space Soldiers, Ghost Gaming*
- Group B – mousesports, Team Liquid, BIG, Nao Tem Como
*Ghost Gaming recently acquired most of the roster of original qualifiers Torqued and will now take Torqued’s spot in the finals.
Following the group stage, the top two teams from each group will qualify for the semifinals, with the top team in each group taking on the runner-up from the other group in each semi. The two winners then move on to contest the final.
This should be a very keenly contested tournament. Astralis have opted not to participate in this event, citing a very busy schedule, which opens the door for the likes of Team Liquid, SK Gaming, FaZe Clan, and Space Soldiers to try and claim an Intel Grand Slam victory.
What do the bookmakers think?
The bookmakers seem to think the absence of the great olofmeister from FaZe Clan will not be too big a hindrance. This squad is currently the joint 5/2 favorite to win the event alongside SK Gaming. That is a somewhat surprising turn of events, as SK Gaming’s form of late has been rather poor.
Team Liquid are the other team strongly fancied by the bookmakers at 7/2, and it is not difficult to see why. They pushed Astralis hard in the recent ESL Pro League Season 7 Finals and Esports Championship Series Season 5 Finals. They lost in both finals to the Danish outfit.
Given their consistency, Team Liquid would be my particular pick to win the Belo Horizonte 2018 tournament. Betway’s full list of odds for all the eight teams are below:
- FaZe Clan, SK Gaming – 5/2 joint favourites
- Team Liquid – 7/2
- Mousesports – 5/1
- Nao Tem Como – 8/1
- Space Soldiers -10/1
- BIG – 16/1
- Ghost Gaming – 66/1
CS:GO Asia Championships 2018
With $300,000 up for grabs across the five days of action, the CS:GO Asia Championships 2018 are currently underway.
Five teams earned invites to the event, with the remaining three earning their place through qualifiers. MVP PK earned their place at the CS:GO Asia Summit 2018, while both VG.FlashGaming and Fierce Tiger came through as the Chinese qualifiers.
Fierce Tiger saw its invitation withdrawn from the event after the banning of one of its key players, allowing third-placed TyLoo to step into their place.
The tournament begins with the group stage with the top three of the four teams in each group qualifying for the playoffs. The top team in each group will earn a spot in the semis, with the second- and third-place teams entering at the quarterfinal stage.
The draw for the group stage is as follows:
- Group A – Natus Vincere, Team EnVyUs, Ninjas in Pyjamas, VG.FlashGaming
- Group B – Heroic, MVP PK, TyLoo, Virtus.pro
There will also be an East v West Showmatch comprising players from all eight finalists and decided by a community vote.
Who do the bookies favour?
Natus Vincere have a strong reputation on home soil. Thus, it is unsurprising the bookmakers now have them as the clear 11/10 favourites to win the Asia Championship. Ninjas in Pyjamas are their main threats at 11/5, though I think the recent roster moves by Heroic mean they are a solid option at 6/1.
Find the full list of odds for the Outright Winner market below.
- Natus Vincere – 11/10
- Ninjas in Pyjamas – 11/5
- Heroic – 6/1
- TyLoo, Virtus.pro – 8/1
- Team EnVyUs – 14/1
- MVP PK – 25/1
- VG FlashGaming – 30/1
DreamHack Open Summer 2018
With many teams either sitting out the action this week or involved in the tournaments in Shanghai and Belo Horizonte, the lineup for the DreamHack Open Summer 2018 is perhaps a little short of star-quality.
As with all DreamHack tournaments, the prize pool is $100,000. There are eight teams competing in an initial group stage. At this point, four teams will progress into the playoffs, which is then a straight knockout to decide the winner.
The draw for the groups resulted in the following:
- Group A – North, AGO Esports, GODSENT, The Imperial
- Group B – Renegades, Gambit Esports, OpTic Gaming, compLexity Gaming
With the absence of several top teams for the DreamHack event, this is an opportunity for the teams that usually fill the lower places in a tournament to earn themselves a prestigious tournament win and a healthy cheque for $50,000 for the winners.
The bookmaker’s odds
The bookies think this could be a massively open tournament, and the odds on six of the teams are very tight indeed. Team North are the slight favourites with Betway, but AGO Esports, Renegades, GODSENT, OpTic Gaming, and Gambit Esports are almost as likely winners according to the bookies.
My tip for the event are the favourites, Team North. They’re in the best form of all the teams heading into the event. They also won the last DreamHack event in Tours at the end of May. Odds are below.
- Team North – 3/1
- AGO Gaming, Renegades – 4/1
- GODSENT, OpTic Gaming – 5/1
- Gambit Esports – 6/1
- Team Imperial – 16/1
- compLexity Gaming – 20/1