The qualifiers for ESL One New York are complete, and the results guarantee fans will see some of the world’s best competing at the premier event.
Six of the world’s top Counter-Strike: Global Offensive squads received direct invites to ESL One New York. In addition to reliable standbys like Astralis, SK Gaming, and Virtus Pro, ESL invited some newly shaken up rosters.
FaZe Clan will make their debut with newly acquired talent Ladislav “Guardian” Kovacs and Olof “olofmeister” Kajbjer. As anticipated as FaZe’s new look will be, it may be even bigger news that Natus Vincere is welcoming former captain Danylo “Zeus” Teslenko fresh off his major championship with Gambit Esports.
A pair of stacked qualifiers have only made the field of teams more impressive.
EnVyUs impress in Europe
The event’s European qualifier featured multiple contending teams. BIG came in fresh off a surprise playoff run at the PGL Major. Traditional powers G2 Esports and Ninjas in Pyjamas were eager to earn another ticket to the international stage.
But the most attention was on Gambit Esports, who acrimoniously parted ways with Zeus after he resisted the firing of coach Mykhailo “kane” Blagin. Could Gambit continue their success without their acclaimed leader?
Early indications were that they could, as Gambit progressed all the way to the qualifier’s final. There, they met Team EnVyUs. Vincent “Happy” Cervoni’s side had no interest in allowing Gambit to prove anything, giving up only a combined 14 rounds across two straight wins as EnVyUs booked their trip to New York.
Cloud9’s new roster gets job done
Across the pond, the unquestioned headliner in the American qualifier was Cloud9. Traditionally one of North America’s most stable and successful teams, Cloud9 shocked fans with the benching of long-time players Jordan “n0thing” Gilbert and Michael “shroud” Grzesiek. Those movies made room for new additions Tarik Celik and Will “RUSH” Wierzba.
Adding to the intensity of the spotlight was Braxton “swag” Pierce, one of the players ESL recently unbanned after he’d sat out for over two years for match-fixing. Pierce was substituting for Timothy “autimatic” Ta.
With all of the roster turnover, Cloud9 looked none the worse for wear. The Americans won each of their three matches, giving up two games along the way but never looking to be in serious jeopardy of elimination. The final game was an emphatic statement from Cloud9, a 16-2 shellacking of Rise Nation.
Cloud9 and EnVyUs will join the six automatic invites when ESL One New York begins Sept. 14, and bettors are sure to have a hard time deciding what sides to favor.
Image credit: Luciano Mortula – LGM / Shutterstock.com