ECS Season 6 North America: Week 1 Recap

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The first week of the North America Esports Championship Season 6 has come to a close and with three more to come, we would like to offer you a recap of the past few days and the implications the results will have on upcoming matches.

Team Liquid comes out strong

The top-ranked NA CS:GO team in the world has had a great week in the ECS. In only three days of play, Team Liquid has managed to climb to the top of the rankings and is now in a dominant position.

It was Team Liquid and Luminosity Gaming that opened the tournament on 3 October. The matchup went mostly as one would expect, with Team Liquid promptly crushing their opponent in both games. While Luminosity did offer some resistance, Liquid once again showcased why they were the best NA team.

After soundly procuring 6 points at Luminosity’s expense, Team Liquid once again took the field versus AZIO eSports. AZIO are new to the CS:GO professional scene, established only in November 2017 and their current lineup is mostly made up of teenagers. Team Liquid made quick work of the upcomers on the first map, closing the game at 16 – 7. The Overpass match did see AZIO make some headway though they only managed to get in 12 rounds before Liquid finished the game.

Already on a streak, Team Liquid would come up against their first serious opponent – MIBR. The Brazilian team were eager to make their debut in the tournament noteworthy and they did so by handing Liquid their first defeat on Inferno. It was a hotly contested game through and though but by the second half MIBR would come out as the clear favorites. The second game offer even more excitement, being played out to the bitter end – all 30 rounds. Ultimately, the last round went to Team Liquid, closing the match at 16 – 14.

As a result of these matchups, Team Liquid is the current leader in the North America league, with 5 wins, 1 loss and 15 points.

MIBR and Rogue follow close behind

MIBR also had a great first week. Following their battle with Team Liquid, they went up against AZIO eSports. Once again, the underdogs had no chance versus the more experienced team, even if they did give their all. In both games, AZIO only managed to secure 10 rounds before MIBR dealt the killing blow. This matchup propelled MIBR to the top with 3 – 1 record and 9 points, while AZIO is at rock bottom with 1 game won, 5 lost and 3 points acquired.

Rogue is contending with MIBR for second place in the rankings, boasting the same record and only a small differences in won rounds. They entered the tournament on the first day versus eUnited, where they dropped the first map at 16 – 14 in favor of eUnited. However, Rogue were determined to make the best out of it and in the Inferno match, they crushed eUnited 16 – 6.

Their matchup with Luminosity was hard-fought, going into overtime in the first game on Cache. For both halves, it was not clear who the dominant team would be. Even the overtime rounds were heavily contested, though Rogue did manage to pull out ahead. The Mirage game came shortly after and it was no less intense. Still, Rogue managed to prevail though just barely, bringing the game to a close at 16 – 14.

Closing thoughts

From the first week, we can already draw some clear conclusions regarding certain teams. Luminosity Gaming have played the most matchups in the league, so far, and their performance ranges from bad to inconclusive. They were able to pull off victories against Cloud9 and eUnited, but both teams traded the loss.

eUnited are plagued by similar results, being able to trade matches with mid-tier teams but not really achieving anything of note. They have not played against the top contenders in the league and it is expected that they will crumble under the pressure.

On the other hand, MIBR and Team Liquid look to be the clear two favourites in the NA league. They have overcome every other opponent that they went up against, even trading rounds with each other. Still, certain teams have not yet made an appearance in the event. Complexity, Renegades and NRG Esports have not had the opportunity to play and their introduction into the league might bring some interesting changes, especially in the 3rd and 4th place brackets.

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