After the Berlin Major, the CS:GO scene spiraled into disarray. Astralis had won the Major, Liquid looked lost, and there was no clear number one. Now, in the months since the Major, a hierarchy has started to form in the scene. Attentive CS:GO bettors will already know the names I’m about to tell you, but for those of you who aren’t, Astralis, Liquid, and Evil Geniuses have risen above the pack to dominate the scene since Berlin.

If you want to make money betting on CS:GO, you need a complete understanding of the teams in the top tier. Knowing the top three team’s strengths and weaknesses will help you know when to bet the overdog, when to bet the underdog, and which side to take when the three titans come up against each other.

All the stats included will be LAN only, over the last three months. That’s a reasonable sample size, somewhere around 20 maps for each team.

“Trophy" Astralis

Up first are the old guard. The Danes of Astralis have been the apex predator in the CS:GO scene for years now. They have the perfect combination of smarts, teamplay and raw aim that continues to be unmatched in the CS scene at large. Since the addition of Gla1ve to the roster, they’ve gone 201-66 in maps on LAN, which means their win percentage comes in at a whopping 75%.

Over the last three months on LAN, they’ve gone 28-11, which comes out to 71.8%. They’ve won the Berlin Major, took second place at ESL One New York, and got 3rd-4th at DreamHack Masters Malmo.

Since the Berlin Major, the only teams Astralis have lost to in a series are Fnatic once, and Evil Geniuses twice. They have series wins over Fnatic, North, OpTic, EG, and Liquid in that same time period.

Astralis’ map pool looks as strong as ever. They have a 100% win rate on Vertigo with six plays, and all six of their maps have a win rate over 55%. They permaban Mirage, and lean most heavily on their Dust II, at least from a quantity perspective. 10 plays on Mirage in the last three months makes it their most played by a fair margin.

Astralis Team Members

Dev1ce – Has been the engine that drives this team since it’s inception. He’s one of the best AWPers in the world, year after year, and has topped this team in terms of Rating pretty much every year since they started playing together.

Over the last three months he’s put up a 1.23 Rating on LAN, which had been a necessity to compensate for the drop off in his teammates Ratings.

Dev1ce continues to be an oppressive force with the AWP, dominating teams like Vitality, Liquid, and Fnatic. It seems as though he struggles with Evil Geniuses, with just a 0.98 Rating over 6 maps against the American all-stars.

Dev1ce’s most impressive outing in the last three months came at DreamHack Masters Malmo, where he had a 1.42 Rating over 7 maps. While that number is inflated from playing Envy and G2, he put up a 2.46 against Vitality on Vertigo. A 2.46. He went 31-9. That’s absurd.

Dupreeh – Is the guy that makes me the most nervous on this squad. His Rating has dropped from a 1.17 Rating in 2018 to a 1.07 in the last three months. From match to match his Ratings fluctuate quite a bit, especially in the last month or so. In October his best streak of matches over a 1.00 Rating was just 3 maps, and he rated above a 1.00 just 53.8% of the time.

What’s especially interesting about him is his DPR over the last three months is one of the best marks on the team. In fact, everyone on Astralis has unusually low DPR, likely a hallmark of Gla1ve’s excellent In Game Leading. Dupreeh also has one of the best opening kill Ratings, on account of him giving up the opening kill just .08 times per round.

If I had to guess, I’d say that Dupreeh is slumping right now. The team structure hasn’t changed, and his Ratings have fallen off mostly within the last month.

Magisk – Has also been slumping. After posting a 1.15 at the Berlin Major, with a +39 kill differential, he’s had a negative K/D at New York and Malmo. He’s taking a more active role in opening duels, and not doing a very good job at it. He’s taken almost 20% of the opening duels and he wins less than half of them, which isn’t great.

One of the strangest things about Astralis is how well they do against Liquid. While Magisk is averaging a 1.09 over the last three months, against Liquid he’s averaging a 1.20.

Xyp9x – Have you seen The Boys? It’s a show on Amazon Prime, it’s about superheroes, I’d highly recommend it if you aren’t squeamish about gore and violence. Anyway, there’s a scene where the lead superhero is talking about how bad of a job all the other superheroes are doing, except for Black Noir. He’s doing great.

That’s how I feel about Xyp9x. In 2018 he averaged a 1.11 Rating, over the last three months he’s averaged a 1.08. He throws a ton of flashes for his team (roughly one per round), and a ton of clutches. He’s been in 10 1v1s since Berlin, and he’s won 7 of them. Two 1v2s, a 1v3 ,and a 1v4, against NRG no less.

Xyp9x held a Rating over 1.00 in 70% of maps, and has maintained a positive K/D in three of their last four events. He’s taken to the SG like a fish to water, and his headshot percentage has risen in the last three months.

Gla1ve – Is continuing to put a competitive squad in the server, despite a fall off from pretty much everyone involved. He’s the reason that I still believe so strongly in this team, despite their drop off from 2018.

Perhaps the most telling stat I can bring up is their record against Team Liquid. Despite Liquid being in better form this year, their all-time record is 43-16, which is lopsided to say the least.

While Astralis does have a losing record against Evil Geniuses this year, their record against Liquid gives me faith that they’ll figure them out. If Astralis can figure out how to shut down CeRq, and get in stanislaw’s head, they’ll be able to dominate EG just like they do Liquid.

“Trophy" Liquid

We should be wrapping up the year of Liquid right now. They were supposed to be Major champions, winding down on an eight month stretch of complete dominance over the scene. Instead, we’re here talking about how they let it slip through their fingers.

It’s not all bad news though. Liquid are still in the upper echelon of the CS scene (which is why I’m talking about them here). They’re 18-12 in the last three months, which isn’t great, but most of their losses are at the hand of Astralis, as well as a map to EG and a best of three to Grayhound somehow.

Liquid placed 5th-8th at Berlin, 3rd-4th at New York, and 9th-12th at DreamHack Masters Malmo. It really does seem like they’ve lost their mojo since the disappointment at the Major.

As far as maps go, their map pool is weaker than Astralis’ by a fair margin. Their best mark is an 87% win rate on Dust II with eight plays, but their bottom three maps all have below 50% win rates.

Liquid Team Members

EliGE – Has been the bright spot for this team since Berlin. A 1.21 Rating in the last three months makes him a top-five player in CS right now, up there with dev1ce and ZywOo. EliGE has had just six maps where he Rated under 1.00, out of 32. His consistency is impressive, as is his ceiling. He routinely hits the 1.30 mark in any given map, and he can take over a game whenever and where ever.

Not to mention his opening stats. EliGE takes almost 26% of Liquid’s opening duels, and wins about 50% of the time. Taking 26% of opening duels, winning half of them, and keeping your Rating over 1.20 is incredibly impressive. There’s only a handful of players that have done that in history.

That was the ethos of this team, at least in its construction. A group of players that could pop off at any given time, which in theory could win them any given game. The funny thing is, none of the players on Liquid seem to be slacking too bad, which makes it hard to discern why they haven’t been winning events.

NAF Was the big surprise for a lot of people at the start of this year. In a team that looks to be draped in star power, NAF emerged as one of the best players in the lineup. He’s averaged a 1.19 Rating so far in 2019, and 1.16 over the last three months. In both data sets he’s the second-best player, and by a large margin in the second data set.

He’s kept his Rating over 1.00 in almost 80% of his maps in the last three months, which is one of the best marks we’ve seen. His event to event consistency is nearly as impressive, with a Rating over 1.25 at two LANs this year, and two under 1.10.

Twistzz – His last three months have been kind of a disappointment, which still feels kind of unfair to say. The first half of 2019 was a good time to be a Twistzz fan, with his 1.17 Rating and his event consistency through their five event run.

In the last three months, however, he’s had a rough time of it besides New York. A 1.17 average Rating and an egg laid at DreamHack Masters Malmo combined to make the back half of his year look a lot less impressive than the first half.

It looks like Twistzz might still be trying to find himself in the server, and who could blame him. His role has shifted quite a bit over the last year or so, and he’s still a young guy. I’d be continuing to buy Twistzz stock if I were you.

Nitr0 – Is the weak link at this time, but not in the way you might think. His In Game Leading has been excellent, especially with the addition of Adren to help with the back end planning. I can’t imagine dropping Nitr0 for anyone that’s available right now.

What Nitr0 still can’t do well enough is AWP. While Liquid have been picking up an SG on T side in lieu of the AWP on occasion, Nitr0 does still bear the brunt of the long range duties. For my money, that’s a big part of why they fall apart against Astralis. They don’t have the ability to shut dev1ce down reliably.

Stewie2k – Somehow he has turned into the Andre Iguodala of Counter-Strike. He throws a ton of flashes, takes opening duels 25% of the time, and Rating that rivals some In Game Leaders (like Nitr0). While he will have the occasional map where his Rating hits 1.30, he spends about half his time on the wrong side of 1.00.

“Trophy" Evil Geniuses

EG are simultaneously the biggest surprise of the back half of 2019, and one of the most obvious developments. This core was always potent, and the addition of Stanislaw put the head on a top of a very dangerous hydra.

They’ve played the most maps in the last three months out of the top three, with 53 maps played. They’re 40-13, they have at least two plays on every map in the pool, and they have a win rate at or above 50% on six of them. They’ve played Dust II twice and they’ve won it 92.9% of the time.

In the last three months, they’ve won ESL One New York and StarSeries Season 8, as well as a 3rd-4th finish at the Berlin Major.

Evil Geniuses Team Members

Brehze – Has broken out as a genuine tier one player. He’s Rated a 1.20 over the last three months, and his event results are, obviously, immaculate. He’s proved he can be the best guy on a tournament winning team, and at only 21.

Brehze tends to play mostly in the mid-round, taking just 19% of his team’s opening duels. He’s 10-7 in clutches, and has the best K/D numbers on the team.

Honestly, there isn’t a ton to say about him. He shows up, he performs consistently (Rating over 1.00 in 80% of rounds), and he helps his team play winning Counter Strike. Simple as that.

CeRq – Was always the most tantalizing talent on this team. He joined NRG in 2017, and it felt like he was destined for greatness from the beginning. Unfortunately, his stats didn’t always agree. After Stanislaw joined the team, I had hope that he’d finally be able to put it all together. And look at us now.

CeRq is averaging a Rating of 1.19 in the last three months, and he’s looked incredible. 622 AWP kills and a K/D of 1.28 make him one of the most successful AWPers in the game in that time period.

Perhaps most impressive about new CeRq is his consistency. He hits the 1.00 mark and over 75% of the time, and he shows up to play at every event.

Ethan – It seemed like hew was always Berhze’s second fiddle, and it never felt like that worked. Luckily for them, it seems as though they’ve figured it out. Ethan is averaging a 1.16 over the last three months, which is about on track with his numbers from last year. What’s different is, his K/D is hitting 1.13, and he’s clutching very effectively.

Brehze spends 78% of his maps above a 1.00 and has dropped below that mark at just the Berlin Major in the last three months. He has been another beneficiary of the SG movement in CS recently, as it’s made him even more effective as a mid-round fragger.

Stanislaw Has turned this team from plucky underdog to legitimate world beaters, cutting down just about anyone in their path. To talk about his in game statistics would be disrespectful, considering what he does out of the server.

Evil Geniuses’ effectiveness has gone up on both sides of the game, but especially their T side. They look like a well-oiled machine, putting their best players, especially CeRq, in a position to succeed.

Tarik – Weirdly enough, he is just like Stewie2k. It’s not long ago that these players won a Major together, both playing high usage roles on C9. Now we find them both supporting, enabling their teammates from behind.

Tarik throws more flashes than anyone else on EG, and he’s happy to play his role to help out his team. The way he supports CeRq especially has been a huge difference maker for this squad since they picked him up.

In Counclusion

Pound for pound, Evil Geniuses is the best team in CS right now. While all three of these teams can beat each other given the right circumstances, EG have the best chemistry, and the best overall firepower in the scene right now.

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