Major season has officially come to a close, and we have crowned a winner. Astralis have won their third Major in a row, dominating the playoffs in classic Astralis fashion. This outcome, while it wasn’t a huge upset, does throw the scene into chaos as far as power rankings go.
In this recap, we will parse through some of the important results in Berlin, and figure out what they mean for the scene and for CS:GO betting for the foreseeable future. If you’d like to take a peek at what I thought headed into the Major, feel free to check out my Starladder Berlin Major preview.
It seems as though the Danish juggernaut has returned, or at least they did in Germany. For at least a couple of weeks, Astralis looked like they had returned to their 2018 form. They swept the presumptive favorites, Team Liquid, 2-0 in the Quarterfinals, and went on to dominate the rest of the bracket.
Astralis are 18-0 in map score through the last three Major playoffs, which is just ridiculous. Not to mention their performance in the group stage. Astralis dropped all of three maps in Berlin total, a 0-2 loss to NRG, and a 2-1 win over CR4ZY.
Device received the Major MVP off the back of his +81 K-D Difference, which resulted in a 1.26 rating. More impressive than that was his performance against Liquid in the Quarterfinals. Over two maps he went 48-29 with an ADR of 85.2 and a KAST of 77.4%. Keep in mind, that’s against the team that was best in the world, far and away, with several big LAN wins over the last six months. This performance was a reminder that device is one of the best to ever touch the game, and he should be respected as such.
Although I never really bought into Liquid, I can’t help but feel for them here. This Major was all but promised to them, their names were practically inscribed on the trophy before the tournament even started. Unfortunately for the NA dream team, they got off to a slow start in the group stage, dropping maps to NRG and AVANGAR. They proceeded to 2-0 North and Mousesports to make it to the playoffs.
Once in the playoffs, however, they laid an egg of historic proportions. EliGE was the only player to go positive over the two maps, with K-D Difference of just +2. The team seemed to collapse in on itself, not even managing double digit rounds on Vertigo, a map they were supposedly one of the best in the world at.
Surprisingly enough, Liquid had just one player in the top 20 by Rating. EliGE was the only one to crack it at number six, with a 1.23 Rating. The next best were Twistzz and NAF, both at 1.09.
Berlin was certainly a disappointment for Liquid. In interviews, the blame was put largely on the player break, which killed their momentum, and on a subpar boot camp. These are issues that can be solved, and Liquid could, in theory, return in full force.
NRG have finally arrived. Like I said in my preview content, I’ve been waiting for this lineup to have their breakout for a while now. Their talent level is impressive, and it shows in their results in StarLadder Berlin. Wins over Liquid, Astralis, and Na’Vi bolster their case for top five, and at this point I don’t know if there’s anything meaningful to refute them their place. They didn’t perform significantly worse in the Semifinals against Astralis than Liquid did in their Quarterfinal, so that’s not something we can point at to shove them down the ladder.
I feel like we need to talk about AVANGAR, just a little. They fulfilled the “over performing CIS team” slot at the Berlin Major, making a run all the way to the Grand Finals. Over the course of the tournament they grabbed wins over Liquid, Renegades, G2, and Vitality, which is certainly nothing to sneeze at.
Jame was their standout player by a fair margin, with an excellent K/D ratio and a top 15 Rating. His help came mostly from buster, another high K/D ratio guy. We won’t know for a while if their success in Berlin was a flash in the pan or not, unfortunately. History would say it is, and that some teams will overperform at the Major before fading into obscurity. Luckily for AVANGAR, that’s not always the case. AVANGAR could be the next ENCE, at least in theory. Keep an eye out for these guys.
You hate to see it. This was the lineup I was most excited to watch coming into StarLadder Berlin, and I was not disappointed. They set the New Challengers Stage on fire, albeit against weak competition, knocking out G2 with ease in their promotion match. In the New Legends Stage they dropped a crucial game to FaZe, and ended up facing off against Vitality in a promotion game and Liquid in an elimination game.
These games were both closer than they appeared, as each ended in an 0-2 for the multinational mix team. While they didn’t make the playoffs, I’d say things are looking up for Mousesports. They have one of the most exciting cores in Counter Strike, and if you are into CSGO betting, I recommend you keep an eye on these guys.
While the Berlin Major has come to a close, there is plenty more CSGO betting action coming. Several big tournaments are on the horizon, and you should keep your eyes peeled for our best picks.