CS:GO – Notable Favorites To Win Intel Extreme Masters Sydney 2019
The 2019 edition of the Intel Extreme Masters goes to Sydney for another round of virtual action. With no Astralis, a number of teams will be vying for their chance to take home the crown in this prestigious esports tournament Nitrogen Sports Blog notes the top IEM Sydney 2019 favorites who can win it all at the Qudos Arena.
When is the Group Stage of IEM Season XIV?
The group stage is scheduled to begin on Apr. 30 and will run until May 2. There will be two groups each with eight teams and will be using a double-elimination format for the tournament. The single-elimination playoffs start on May 3 and will run until the 5th.
Top IEM Sydney 2019 Favorites
5. Renegades (+700)
After years of underperforming, the Renegades made their very first major in 2019. Since then, momentum has continued to build, with the international line-up winning two of their three Pro League games and making it to the semi-finals of StarSeries Season 7.
The experience that Norwegian IGL Jkaem provides will be key in their games at Sydney. A key factor will be the home crowd advantage – three of Renegades’ players are Aussies. The confidence boost they receive from 25,000 fans on their side may just be enough to tip them further towards glory in Sydney than ever before.
4. Mousesports (+700)
The beginning of 2019 was not kind to Mousesports. They failed to qualify for the major in Katowice, and subsequently went through a huge reshuffle, losing all but two players.
However, this was an opportunity to rebuild, and they did just that. They built an incredibly diverse lineup in both experience and nationality, resulting in making Mousesports among the top IEM Sydney 2019 favorites and a contender again in the Pro League, topping their group without losing a single match (and dropping just one map). With the team undergoing a nearly month-long bootcamp, there can be no question of their preparation.
The only lingering thought is if their young stars can perform this well on one of the biggest stages in the game. But with guidance from Karrigan, ChrisJ, and Danish coach Rejin, underestimating them would be a fatal mistake.
3. NRG Esports (+600)
NRG are one of the unexpected break-out teams of the NA region in recent years, and will be looking to cement their status with a good placing in Sydney. NRG seems to be making their way back up the rankings following a disappointing major run.
Bulgarian star CeRq seems to have found new motivation with the recent signing of Tarik, known for his success with OpTic Gaming. In their first big tournament since March, a re-invigorated NRG will likely make use of that energy to churn out results in Australia.
2. FaZe Clan (+400)
It was a disappointing run at the major for FaZe. Many were questioning the new signing of AdreN, and were seriously doubting his place on the team. This run of bad form continued into Sao Paulo and StarSeries 7, going out in the group stage of both tournaments. However, they seem to be starting to click.
They won BLAST Miami in dominant fashion and even bested Astralis on Dust2. Back in the UK, they topped their group in Pro League with a perfect record. NiKo finally seems to be comfortable in the IGL role, and is once again putting up insane numbers. FaZe are back and looking to have the strongest roster to ever wear the FaZe colors. They are definitely among the top IEM Sydney 2019 favorites.
1. Team Liquid (+400)
Team Liquid are the second best team in the world. Looking back at 2018 and the start of 2019, they never really seemed to reach their peak for one reason – they were always in the shadow of Astralis.
However, with new blood in the team in the form of Stewie2K and coach AdreN, Liquid has had time to practice, and they look formidable. Their biggest achievement was in the group stages as BLAST Miami where they finally beat Astralis. Their biggest enemy in Sydney, however, will be themselves.
Can they get over the old Liquid mentality and finally claim a trophy? If recent results are anything to go by, this could be their best chance yet.
Every type of tournament can always have the chalks going down against the sleepers, but it’s still hard to imagine all of the teams listed above as the top IEM Sydney 2019 favorites falling short of their lofty goals.
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