Consistency was the main theme of this weekend as Luminosity Gaming, Fnatic, Evil Geniuses and Mindfreak all struggled to play solid games regularly. Even Luminosity Gaming, who took this weekend in an almost predictable fashion and scored first place, couldn’t dominate every game they played. This left a race for second place that came down to a single gunfight.
Fnatic, the underdogs of Europe, were able to come out of the gates roaring. After placing third at CWL Birmingham, Fnatic may have officially locked in top-3 in Europe status. Day 1 saw the Europeans take a game off of Evil Geniuses, the team that was predicted for second, in a 3-1 series. But then in their following game, Fnatic was 3-0 swept by Mindfreak, a team considered for fourth place. Immediately, it seemed like anybody could take second place.
Day 2 saw Evil Geniuses turn-up after a slow Day 1. But it wasn’t the repeat of their Stage 1 performance where they swept through the pool after the first day. Instead, it was grueling set of games that was only won thanks to Christopher “Parasite” Durate finding his stride. Even with Parasite going off, other members of Evil Geniuses just couldn’t perform as consistently throughout the weekend. Anthony “NAMELESS” Wheeler, in particular, seemed to rise and fall at a moment’s notice. This inability to play games consistently, which was a problem Parasite was suppose to fix, dragged Evil Geniuses down in Day 3.
Mindfreak had the roughest weekend of the four teams. While performing well on Day 1, the Australian team seemed to slowly lose steam as the weekend dragged on. On Day 3, Mindfreak just looked outmatched by everyone else. Evil Geniuses and Fnatic swept them 3-0 on Day 2, while on Day 3 Luminosity Gaming stomped them alongside Evil Geniuses. In just one game, Mindfreak was firmly in last place.
Luminosity Gaming nearly had a perfect weekend if it wasn’t for one game. The American slayers were able to sweep through every team, except for Fnatic on Day 3. This was largely thanks to LG’s slow starts to days. Nicholas “Classic” Di Costanzo chalked it up to an illness that he was battling, but he would still perform incredibly despite that, only needing to warm-up on the first map of the day.
Fnatic taking a series off Luminosity Gaming had monumental repercussions in regards to seeding. Thanks to Fnatic’s heroics in Search and Destroy, in which they managed to win multiple Round 11’s throughout the weekend, the European team was locked into a battle with EG for second place.
The only problem was that Fnatic needed just two maps to qualify for second, while Evil Geniuses needed three. After Fnatic won Round 1 Hardpoint, it all came down to a Game 11 in Round 2 Search & Destroy on Retaliation. Both teams danced around each other until a teamfight resulted in a 1-vs-1 between Bradley “wuskin” Marshall and Colt “Havok” McLendon. Against all odds, wuskin was able to beam down Havok from across the map. A single kill gave Fnatic second place.
Next weekend will be Group Blue where FaZe Clan, Enigma6, eLevate and Ghost Gaming will face-off in what is surely going to be a dramatic weekend.