The G-Fuel ELeague Arena in Atlanta, GA was the venue and a $500,000 first-place prize was on the line this past weekend, as FaZe Clan continued their show of incredible form, claiming the title at the ELEAGUE Premier 2017.
Changes Prove Successful
FaZe Clan made sweeping changes during the offseason player break, dropping both kioShiMa and allu in place of olofmeister and GuardiaN, moves met with mixed feelings from the community. FaZe made the decision to go all in on star power, with four members that at some point over the last two years have been considered top ten players in the world. The gamble has already paid off for FaZe, as ELEAGUE was a continuation of their dominant form.
FaZe Clan Face Little Trouble in Group Play
FaZe Clan had an incredibly easy path to the playoffs, beating Renegades and Na`Vi, who upset G2 Esports, each in a best of one to leave Group A in first place. Moving on, FaZe were matched with Team EnVyUs, arguably the weakest team to make it into the playoffs. While the first map of Nuke was close at 16-12, primarily due to the heroics of EnVyUs’ RPK – who dropped an incredible 30 kills in the losing effort – the second map of Overpass was no issue for FaZe as they stomped the French side 16-3.
North Provide First Test
The semifinals saw FaZe face their first true test of the tournament, North. North have quietly been on the rise ever since the acquisition of valde to the lineup as the Danes have continued to improve from tournament to tournament. The first map was Mirage, where FaZe struggled to string rounds together on their CT side, gathering only six rounds at the half for a 6-9 score. FaZe recovered nicely on their T side, however, primarily on the back of olofmeister. With 28 kills in as many rounds, olof stood head and shoulders above everyone else in the 16-12 win, with five more kills than the next closest player, NiKo.
The second map of Inferno was just as hotly contested as Mirage, with a slightly more one-sided scoreline. FaZe steadily controlled their opening T-half, continually winning a few rounds in a row before North could find the answer. The scoreboard of the match helps to display exactly what FaZe are all about, as while in-game leader karrigan had minimal fragging (killing) impact (14-19 K/D), the other four members of the squad were tight-knit between 17-21 kills. FaZe achieved a 6-2 run during their CT side to close out North 16-10 and put themselves into the finals against their rivals, Astralis.
Heated Rivals Face off in Finals
Previous personal issues drive this rivalry: in particular, karrigan has had long-standing beef with Astralis as he was removed from the team in October of last year. The initial map of Cache was arguably the best map of the entire tournament, as FaZe Clan staged a comeback of epic proportions. After securing the first two rounds of the T side, FaZe dropped 12 of the next 13 for the brutal 3-12 halftime score.
However, the near opposite was true on the CT side as, after securing the second-half pistol and the subsequent two rounds, FaZe dropped a single round before making their run. FaZe proceeded to win nine rounds in a row for the 15-13 lead after all had seemed lost following their first-half performance. After losing one more round, FaZe secured the map in the final round, giving them absurd momentum heading into the second map.
Consistency Wins Through
Every single player on FaZe Clan performed solidly on Cache, with each team member recording between 20-23 kills. The second map was Overpass, where it appeared Astralis’ mentality had been broken, as FaZe opened up a 12-3 lead. Off the back of stellar aggression from rain, particularly within long-A or towards bathroom/party, FaZe completely shut down Astralis’ T side. Losing the first three rounds of their T side, FaZe Clan captured four of the next five, giving them the 16-7 victory and the championship.
Overall, FaZe look completely unstoppable right now, not dropping a single map over their last two offline events. With four players capable of star performances on any map, FaZe have the ability to become the titans of CS:GO for an extended period of time.