Welcome back, FANation! The BLAST Premier event keeps on rolling on, and for this Thursday we have another 3-match slate with all two matches from the upper-bracket semi-final, and the last match being from the lower-bracket. Let’s see what we have for it!

Match 1

NaVi (Ranked 6th in World) vs Complexity (Ranked 20th in World)

Our first best of three match out of the upper-bracket semis features NaVi and Complexity. Per the current betting odds, the books have NaVi listed as a -190 favorite on the money line with the Under 2.5 rounds juiced up slightly to -125. Both of these squads are fresh off of bounce-back wins in their most recent matches. NaVi rolled over NiP with small ease in a 2-0 sweep, while Complexity outlasted OG in a three-map affair as well. We do have a small amount of head-to-head data to analyze for these two squads, and as you may could have guessed it favor NaVi. These two have faced off twice so far in 2020, with NaVi claiming the victory in both matches. One by the 2-0  sweep in this same tournament, but the Spring Series, and also a 2-1 result in their most recent clash at the ESL Pro League 11 Europe. Since we have a small amount of head-to-head data, let’s see who performed the best against each other. In the five-map sample, I am sure you can guess who lead for NaVi – that would be correct, S1imple is carrying a +43 K-D diff, 1.58 K-D, and 1.39 rating. Electronic right behind him with a +23 K-D diff, 1.30 K-D, and 1.17 rating. Boombl4 also has decent numbers with a +17 K-D diff, 1.20 K-D, and 1.23 rating. For Complexity on the five-map sample, as you could assume with them losing all but one map, none of the options had positive stat-lines, and only blameF was close with a -2 K-D diff, 0.98 K-D, 1.01 rating. Let’s look at some projected map choices for these two.

The first two ban map picks for these two lately includes Overpass for Complexity and Vertigo for NaVi. The typical two first map choices include Dust2 for NaVi, and Mirage for Complexity. I do think that we will see these two maps, as Dust2 has been a very good map for Complexity lately as they have won seven-straight there lately, and Mirage has been a middling map for NaVi winning it 50% of their last six tries. Obviously, Complexity has some really good numbers on quite a few maps lately, and they have also played them a ton as well. This should be interesting, as it has been a few months since these two squads have played and I feel that Complexity continues to get better. Let’s see who is performing on these maps for these two squads. For NaVi on their projected choice of Dust2 (15 map sample) it is S1mple at the top with a 1.38 rating, 0.88 KPR, 1.47 IMP, and 86.9 ADR. Followed by only electronic at 1.26. For Mirage (six map sample) no shocker once again as S1mple sits at the lead with a 1.33 rating, 0.85 KPR, 1.44 IMP, and 84.8 ADR. Once again, only electronic to follow with a 1.28 rating. For Complexity on their projected map choice of Mirage (29 map sample) blameF leads the way with a 1.26 rating, 0.78 KPR, 1.11 IMP, and 85.7 ADR. Followed by three others that fit the bill starting with k0nfig at 1.18, poizon at 1.15, and oBo at 1.14. For Dust2 (19 map sample) k0nfig leads this one with a 1.20 rating, 0.78 KPR, 1.31 IMP, and 82.1 ADR. Next is blameF at 1.15, oBo at 1.14, and lastly poizon at 1.05 to round it out. I know the past head-to-head history solely lies in NaVi, but its hard to think they sweep this match with the way Complexity has been playing lately, and against top-tier opponents at that. I do think that Complexity has more than a shot to take this match to three maps, they just have to execute and not make many mistakes and try to contain S1mple. If they can do that, I think we could see a pretty close match. Let’s talk options.


ANCHOR: S1mple – (If you ever think I will put anyone else here for NaVi other than the occasional electronic, and I have yet to do that either, you must have not watched S1mple play CS:GO)

Top Stacking Options: S1mple, electronic, boombl4



ANCHOR: blameF – (Been just an absolute beast lately, and if they want a chance at winning this match he will have to continue to do so)

Top Stacking Options: blameF, k0nfig, oBo

Match 2

Vitality (Ranked 10th in World) vs FaZe (Ranked 3rd in World)

The second best of three match for the upper-bracket semis should be a fun one here between Vitality and FaZe. The current betting odds literally have this match split pretty evenly with both teams catching juice with FaZe listed as a bit more of a slight favorite at -120, but if you like the Vitality side you still have to play them at -110. The Under 2.5 maps is also juiced up a smidge in this one at -135. Vitality has been on quite a run lately, losing only one match out of their last five, a 1-2 result to NiP two matches ago, while FaZe has won three of their last five with their only losses coming from BIG both times in both 0-2 sweep fashion. These two squads have clashed just once so far in 2020 with FaZe coming out a 2-1 victor at the IEM Katowice 2020 event. However, they have played three times dating back to 2019, with Vitality only winning one of the three matches. It is worth noting that two of the three matches did go the full three-map distance as well. Also, the prior two matches played both saw even the losing maps still win at least 10 or more rounds on those for all five that were played, so pretty close matches in their last two, or more recent two. Since we have some head-to-head data, let’s see who played the best against each other here for these two. Over a nine-map sample (so this goes back a bit further than just the last three, this is in a 12-month span) ZywOo has been excellent against FaZe with a +74 K-D diff, 1.55 K-D, and 1.44 rating. Also, he is literally the only Vitality player with a positive stat-line against FaZe. For FaZe, same nine-map sample, they are led by NiKo with a +26 K-D diff, 1.18 K-D, and 1.16 rating and coldzera with a +23 K-D diff, 1.18 K-D, and 1.16 rating. Let’s see what projected maps we can find for these two teams.

The first two ban maps include Train for Vitality and Vertigo for FaZe. The first map choices have been Mirage for FaZe and Nuke for Vitality. I feel that we get these maps and the only other scenario that I could see is that FaZe rides their six-map winning streak on Dust2 if not going with their bread-and-butter in Mirage. However, I believe we see Nuke and Mirage for the two map choices. Let’s see the top performers for these two projected maps. For FaZe on their projected map choice of Mirage (14 map sample) no other than NiKo leads this one with a 1.22 rating, 0.80 KPR, 1.35 IMP, and 88.7 ADR. Followed by three others starting with broky at 1.14, coldzera at 1.12, and lastly rain at 1.07. For Nuke (16 map sample) it is NiKo once again at the top with a 1.19 rating, 0.81 KPR, 1.32 IMP, and 89.3 ADR. Followed by just broky at 1.03 and coldzera at 1.01. For Vitality on their projected map choice of Nuke (15 map sample) who else would we guess? ZywOo sits with a 1.27 rating, 0.83 KPR, 1.31 IMP, and 84.5 ADR. Three others fit the bill for Nuke with shox at 1.03, apEX at 1.01, and misutaaa just hitting the threshold at 1.00. For Mirage (nine map sample) ZywOo leads again with a 1.31 rating, 0.83 KPR, 1.42 IMP, and 87.6 ADR. Followed by only RpK at 1.04 for this one. I believe this match could literally go either way. I think that the better overall team is clearly FaZe, as they have a bit more star-power in NiKo/Cold/broky, but ZywOo is the type that can carry his team, and if he gets any help at all from guys like shox/RpK/and even apEX, they could make this a bit tougher on FaZe. I think they chalk here with be FaZe with lots of ZywOo one-off combos. Let’s talk options.


ANCHOR: NiKo – (leads both projected map choices by good margins, and is more often than not their top performer)

Top Stacking Options: NiKo, broky, coldzera



ANCHOR: ZywOo – (Shouldn’t need a ton of explanation, just look at his prior history against FaZe)

Top Stacking Options: ZywOo, shox, RpK


Match 3

FURIA (Ranked 4th in World) vs Liquid (Ranked 7th in World)

The last match of the day features both losers in the upper-bracket semi-finals, pushing them both down to the lower-brackets where they will have to make their way back up with a win in this match if they want to continue their journey in the BLAST series. FURIA was dealt a 0-2 loss to MIBR on Tuesday, while Liquid were out-lasted by EG by a strong performance on Inferno on the third and final map sealing the win for EG and a trip to this lower-bracket round for Liquid. At the time of writing this playbook, we currently do not have a line up yet at the books, so don’t have that to analyze, but we do have some head-to-head data between these two. FURIA has won all five of their last five head-to-heads, with three of the five, including the most recent at DreamHack Masters, coming via the 2-0 sweep. This is quite of a revenge spot here for Liquid, as FURIA was the team that outed them in that most recent match at DreamHack, as it was the grand final where FUR already had a one-map advantage and went on to win the first two to win 3-0 in the best of five. However, FURIA will more than likely be looking to get back in the win column and continue their run here in the BLAST tournament with a bounce-back win against a familiar foe after the 0-2 sweep loss to MIBR. Since we do have head-to-head data, let’s see the top performers for these two against each other. For FUR, in the last three months (12 map sample) KSCERATO, HEN1, and yuurih all have excellent numbers against Liquid. Led by HEN1 with a +64 K-D diff, 1.35 K-D, and 1.22 rating, then KSCERATO with a +63 K-D diff, 1.33 K-D, and 1.22 rating, and last but not least yuurih with a +45 K-D diff, 1.24 K-D, and 1.15 rating. For Liquid, for same 12-map sample size, Twistzz is the only option that has a positive stat-line against FURIA in this span. Twistzz sits with a +12 K-D diff, 1.06 K-D, and 1.02 rating. Let’s look at some projected maps.

The first two ban map picks for these two includes Dust2 for FURIA, and Train for Liquid. The first picks lately have been Vertigo for FURIA and Mirage for Liquid. I highly doubt we see Liquid go with Mirage, being as FURIA has a 12-map winning streak going there as of right now, while Liquid has only won 56% of their last nine opportunities there. I could see Liquid go with Nuke however, a map that they have excelled at lately winning over 60% of their last 8 tries, compared to only 38% success-rate for FURIA in their last 8 tries there. Only other map that would favor Liquid is Overpass, and it could be a strategy pick as it is a map that FURIA has only played a total of four times lately, while Liquid has played on it a total of eight times, while winning 62% of those attempts. I honestly am not sure what map Liquid will go with, as they will likely have their choice of Mirage, Nuke, or Overpass. Only Nuke and Overpass would give them a slight bump as of late. Either way, I still think FURIA is the better team here, Liquid got back to their old ways on yesterday against EG and couldn’t find their way on neither their map choice of Dust2 or the third map of Inferno. However, it is worth mentioning that Nuke was the map that EG picked, and Liquid did look very good there, so there’s definitely a slightly more likely chance they go Nuke? We shall see. I am not going to list player performances for these maps, as I don’t want to cloud judgement for uncertain maps. Let’s talk options.


ANCHOR: HEN1 – (All three of KSCERATO, HEN1, and yuurih will likely be chalky on this slate and for good reason, but I feel HEN1 has had the best numbers against Liquid, so its between him and KSCERATO, with yuurih likely garnering the lower-ownership of the trio)

Top Stacking Options: HEN1, KSCERATO, yuurih



ANCHOR: Twistzz – (Value captain if you decide to go contrarian, which the way the last two days have gone in these third and final matches, it would likely be smart as the chalk has been crushed both matches. Twistzz has the only positive stat-line against FURIA in their prior matches as well)

Top Stacking Options: Twistzz, EliGe, NAF



Top Plays: S1mple, ZywOo, NiKo, blameF, HEN1 (not ranked in order)

Top Team Stacks: FURIA, Complexity, FaZe, NaVi, Vitality, Liquid (ranked in order)

Top Values: Coldzera, oBo, Twistzz, Boombl4, Bymas