The Blast Pro Series Miami saw six top tier teams in attendance. For everyone, Astralis was the team to defeat in this tournament. The Danish team is the strongest team in the professional scene at present. However, the Danish team was unable to win this tournament and did not have a great group stage either.
Faze Clan won the Blast Pro series Miami after defeating Team Liquid in the Grand finals. The team saw Niko put up a strong performance to lead them to a 2-0 victory and the bulk of the $250,000 prize pool.
Team Liquid secure a 5-0 group stage but fall in the Grand finals
The Blast Pro Series Miami saw Team Liquid emerge as the undoubted victors in the Group stage. The format required them to play Best of One matches against all the other opponents. The North American squad managed to win against al their opponents and finish the Group stage with a 5-0 scoreline.
The competition amongst the rest of the teams for the second Grand Finalist slot was interesting. Astralis did not have a great time at Miami as they lost matches to Faze, Team Liquid as well as MiBr. Their 2-16 loss to MiBr on Overpass was truly shocking as it is rare to see Astralis lose matches in such a manner.
Faze Clan: A strong Group Stage, losing only to Team Liquid
The International mix of Faze Clan has forever been a team with potential. However, the team has never been able to live up to the expectations. However, the team has always been a strong contender, despite repeated poor performances. Faze Clan’s roster is at its strongest when we have multiple players performing at their peak. Niko is one of the world’s best players, yet he remains stuck as the In-Game Leader for Faze Clan.
Their performance at Miami saw Faze Clan win against every other team except Team Liquid. Considering the format of the Blast Pro Series, we are not sure how much legitimacy we should afford Faze Clan’s performance in this tournament.
Faze Clan defeat Team liquid 2-0 in the Grand finals
The International team of Faze Clan managed to defeat Team Liquid in the Grand finals. The Finals was a Best of Three series with the two teams playing on Mirage, Dust 2 and Overpass. Niko, the In-game Leader for Faze Clan was in exceptional form and was single-handedly responsible for the strong showing by the team.
He ended the Grand finals with a total of 47 frags and a +22 KDA ensuring the team’s victory. Faze Clan still has a long way to go before they can be considered to be a top 3 team. This is a welcome start for the team which recently added a new player and a coach at the turn of the new year.
Niko was awarded the MVP of the tournament after his stupendous performance in the Grand finals.
The Prize Pool distribution of the Blast Pro Series:
- FaZe – $125,000
- Liquid – $50,000
- MIBR – $25,000
- Astralis – $15,000
- Natus Vincere – $10,000
- Cloud9 – $5,000
MiBr won an additional $20000 from the Pro player stand-off.
The Blast Pro Series Format needs to change
On paper, the Blast Pro Series seems to be the ideal compromise between competition, viewer experience as well as the economy. For a tournament organiser, the two-day event presents the perfect opportunity to reach out to the fans while lowering costs. Since the event takes place only over two days, the Blast Pro Series does not entail as many expenses as other tournaments. However, with the world’s best teams in attendance, there is always a keen interest in the tournament.
At the same time, the Blast Pro Series matches are held simultaneously over multiple channels. Fans can catch up with their favourite team’s matches on one stream or another. However, they cannot watch quality CS: GO as multiple teams are constantly playing simultaneously.
Does this tournament mean the end of the Astralis era?
The ‘Astralis era’ has stretched over multiple months. The team has secured its position at the top with multiple tournament titles and dominance in their playstyle. They are constantly trying to figure out how their opponents will want to counter-strat against the team.
Astralis was unable to have an impressive showing in this tournament. They lost matches to Faze Clan, MIbr & Team Liquid. However, as we already mentioned earlier, the format of the tournament steals away a lot of legitimacy from the victors. If these matches were all Best of Three matches, we are sure Astralis would have put forth a much better showing. Having Best of Three matches would inadvertently increase the length of the tournament/ However, it would also ensure fair matches.
Astralis still remains the best team in the world. They have a schedule with fewer tournaments in the upcoming months. It can be a time for the Danish team to further enhance their strengths and retain their Number one position in CS: GO rankings.
For now, the teams will prepare for the next big event, the IEM Sydney 2019.