NaVi Claim the Title at Blast Pro Series: Copenhagen
By Benjamin Hodge Mckenna
NaVi have been proclaimed champions of the second Blast Pro Series: Copenhagen after defeating Ninjas in Pyjamas 2-0 in the grand finals on Saturday.
The tournament victory came after a strong run through the group stage format of the series, proving their position as one of the top teams in CS:GO as of the second half of this year. This title adds to their impressive run of form recently where they placed 2nd at both EPICENTER and the FACEIT Major.
The start of the pro series proved slightly difficult for NaVi. Initially, they faced a disjointed Cloud9 roster that was playing with coach Valens and KioShiMa as a stand-in. What would have seemed an easy victory for NaVi ended up as an intense brawl matchup with both sides playing well against each other. Ultimately, a superb 35 kill performance from star player Simple allowed NaVi to win 16-13 on Mirage.
NaVi once again looked troubled as they faced FaZe in their second game. Having just defeated NaVi in the finals of EPICENTER FaZe continued to look like the more dominant team as they achieved a swift 16-8 victory on overpass. A better result than Faze’s 15-15 tie against NiP in the first match of the tournament.
Elsewhere in the tournament MIBR had a difficult opening two games, losing tightly 14-16 against Astralis and 13-16 against Cloud9, with both games being played on Inferno. NiP on the other hand had a much better opening after their draw with FaZe by narrowly overcoming Astralis 16-14 on Overpass, thus concluding the first day matches.
As day two began, NaVi continued to show strong form by winning all of their day 3 matches. Firstly, they convincingly dealt with Major champions Astralis with a 16-9 victory on Overpass (One of Astralis’ strongest maps). After that, an impressive 28 kill performance from Coldzera nearly saw victory for MIBR in their fight on overpass but strong play from Simple, Electronic and Edward were enough to push the CIS team over the line at 16-14. Then, in their final match of the group stage NaVi convincingly defeated NiP 16-10 on inferno.
Other than their defeat to NaVi, NiP enjoyed relative success in this group stage by demolishing MIBR 16-4 on Train before pushing past Cloud9 16-9 on Mirage. This would prove to be a sign of things to come for Cloud9 despite and early 16-13 victory on Overpass, as the American-European mix would go on to be narrowly defeated by home side Astralis 14-16 on Inferno, despite an impressive comeback in the second half.
FaZe certainly struggled more on the second day as they would go on to be defeated 7-16 against Astralis on Overpass after their loss to Cloud9 earlier that day. This meant that despite a convincing 16-7 victory over MIBR on Cache, Faze would miss out on a spot in the finals.
MIBR were the only team present at the Blast Pro Series: Copenhagen that lost every game that they played.
Now, instead of a Semi-Finals at the Blast Pro Series, 5 different 1v1 duels occur with different weapons being available in each round. The first to 7 kills on each map is the victor and the team with the most rounds won is declared the winner.
The first round of 1v1’s saw Xyp9x face off against Rush, both sides armed with M4A4’s, Xyp9x narrowly managed to win this one 7-6. Next was the Deagle round in which the French stand-in KioShiMa proved his worth by securing a 7-4 victory over Magisk. In the AK47 round Cloud9 continued to show strength with IGL Golden defeating Dupreeh 7-4. The CZ75 round proved to be an absolute blowout in favour of Cloud9 with Flusha securing a 7-1 win over Danish IGL Glaive, thereby finalizing the Victory for Cloud9. Despite this Device showed competitive spirit gaining a Knife kill and a round win for himself over Autimatic in the Awp round.
Then came the moment everyone had been waiting for, The Best Of 3 Grand Finals, NiP vs NaVi.
It would be Mirage to start the finals as NiP’s map choice. NaVi secured an early lead in this one, winning 6 of the first 7 rounds. They would then finish the first half 9-6 in their favour. However, NiP looked like they weren’t ready to give up just yet after a pistol round victory saw them claim the subsequent 2 rounds and tie up the score line 9-9. After this though, a monstrous performance from Electronic saw NaVi dominate the T side, winning Mirage 16-10. Electronic had a 105 ADR and a 96.2% kill assist percentage on this map.
Then it was NaVi’s Pick of Inferno. This saw another incredibly strong start from the CIS team as they started the map with a 6-2 score line in their favour. However, NiP proved more alert on their CT side of this map as they managed to prevent NaVi from running away with things and ended the first half 8-7 in favour of NaVi. However, another strong start in the second half saw NaVi go 12-7 up after the first 4 rounds. After this NiP attempted a comeback by securing 3 rounds of their own but after this was answered by another 3 from NaVi, NiP could only survive 2 rounds at map point before NaVi claimed the title of champion 16-12 and 2-0 in the final.
After the final was concluded, Simple took home the MVP award after his monstrous performance in the group stages and NaVi as a team took home $125,000 and the Blast Pro Series trophy.