ECS Season 3 – Week 3 Recap

After considerable success in the previous iterations, the third season of Esports Championship Series has been confirmed and the online league kicked off on April 14. The tournament, organized by FACEIT, features a $1,500,000 prize pool; 50% is utilized to ensure player and team stability, while the remaining $750,000 will be given out in prize money.

A total of twenty teams, ten for the European region and ten for the North American one, will compete in the online league from April 14 to June 8. The tournament will follow a round-robin format, where all teams must face each other in two best-of-one series. Only the top four teams will earn the right to participate at the LAN event, held at SSE Arena, Wembley in London, UK, from June 23 to 25. Teams placed in the top eight will also receive a direct invite to ECS Season 4.

The online league is composed of eight weeks of games. To ensure you won’t miss any of the action, we will cover each one and provide a comprehensive recap. In today’s report, we will take a look at what happened during week three, from May 2 to 4. You can find the replays of each day at http://youtube.com/faceit.

Summary of the previous weeks

 

European League – Day 1

  • mousesports vs. GODSENT – Mirage 11:16 (5:10; 6:6)
  • GODSENT vs. mousesports – Cache 10:16 (5:10; 5:6)
  • Ninjas in Pyjamas vs. Team Dignitas – Cache 2:16 (2:13; 0:3)
  • Team Dignitas vs. Ninjas in Pyjamas – Inferno 6:16 (2:13; 4:3)

A particular atmosphere surrounded the first match of the European League between mousesports and GODSENT. The Swedish team lost seven out of their eight past games, achieving the first victory only in the previous week of ECS3, against Team EnVyUS. Instead, mousesports was on a rampage since the introduction in the roster of Robin “ropz” Kool on May 12: they scored nine wins and only three losses.

The first best-of-one took place on de_mirage. GODSENT were the best team in the first half, scoring as many as 10 rounds – courtesy of Jonas “Lekr0” Olofsson who obtained 1.07 kills per round and a 1.57 rating. On the Terrorist side, mouz were able to fight on par with their opponent, but the accumulated advantage secured the game for GODSENT 16 to 11.

The teams moved on de_cache where mousesport won their last game against GODSENT on February 5. History repeated itself, and they brought home this map another time, finishing the day with a 1-1 score. Mouz’s T-side strategy was well executed and earned them 10 rounds; once the sides swapped GODSENT tried their best to recover the game, but without success. The 16:10 victory was guaranteed by the combined effort of each player, but in particular the MVP was Denis “denis” Howell with 26 kills and a 1.38 rating.

In the highlight below Joakim “disco doplan” Gidetun performed a sneak attack on de_mirage, waiting behind the fire box and scoring a triple kill once mouz penetrated into A-bombsite.

After the 0-2 performance in the previous week, Ninjas in Pyjamas were back on the battlefield, but this time against Team Dignitas, the worst placed team in the league so far. The latter announced their new roster on March 20th, thus there aren’t matches in the history between the two teams.

In the first battle, on de_cache, Dignitas literally demolished their opponents earning 13 rounds as Counter-Terrorists, and winning the second half without dropping a single round. A 16 to 2 victory that no one would have expected – it was also the first match of Dignitas on de_cache since the creation of the team. Considering the K/D, each of their members performed evenly, but Ruben “RUBINO” Villarroel and Joakim “jkaem” Myrbostad achieved the best ratings, 1.64 and 1.55 respectively.

The teams moved on de_inferno, where the situation drastically changed. NiP had an impeccable 13:2 first half as Terrorists. Dignitas looked for a comeback in the second half, but their struggle was futile, and the game ended 16 to 6. William “draken” Sundin was the man of the match with a 1.75 rating and 2.56 K/D, he wiped out 23 opponents with one kill per round on average. Below you can have a look at the last two kills of the 4k he scored during the 6th round on de_mirage.

 

European League – Day 2

  • Ninjas in Pyjamas vs. mousesports – Cache 11:16 (3:12; 8:4)
  • mousesports vs. Ninjas in Pyjamas – Cobblestone 11:16 (3:12; 8:4)
  • fnatic vs. Ninjas in Pyjamas – Inferno 16:13 (7:8; 9:5)
  • Ninjas in Pyjamas vs. fnatic – Cobblestone 16:14 (10:5; 6:9)

Ninjas in Pyjamas continued their journey at ECS3 with two consecutive series on day 2. – their first opponent was mousesports. Looking at their past encounters from September 2016 onwards, NiP had a slight advantage with four wins and three losses, but mouz won all games played in 2017. As previously explained, the latter were enjoying success recently, while the Swedish team lost eight out of their ten past games.

The battleground selected for the first fight was de_cache, where mouz achieved a 6-2 score in 2017. They promptly demonstrated their superiority on the CT-side, claiming 12 rounds; even if NiP counter-attacked during the second half, mousesports still claimed the first map 16 to 11. After the optimal performance displayed yesterday, William “draken” Sundin continued pursuing victory for his team, scoring 28 kills and a 1.50 rating, but this time his help wasn’t enough.

The teams moved on de_cbble, a map where both of them had a positive win rate averaging around 60%. The score was an exact mirror of the first match, 3:12 and 8:4; but this time NiP outwitted mouz and won 12 rounds as Terrorists. It isn’t easy to nominate a best player considering the overall conduct of the team: Adam “friberg” Friberg and Christopher “GeT_RiGhT” Alesund’s efforts were the most valuable, and they shared a similar rating and number of kills – 25 and 1.31 for the former, 23 and 1.37 for the latter.

Tomáš “oskar” Šťastný exhibited a great play on de_cache during round 6. An unbelievable TEC-9 kill from ladder and a final execution on A-bombsite cleaned the remaining enemies; afterwards he defused the bomb bringing mouse to 6-0

They day continued with a derby between Ninjas in Pyjamas and fnatic. The latter replaced two players in 2017, and maintained a stable rank ever since, averaging around 10 according to HLTV. The two teams fought each other a multitude of times in the past years, but considering 2017 only, they scored 2-2.

The first battle took place on de_inferno, where NiP won the last clash in March. The teams were evenly matched and shown us a hard-fought match, but in the end fnatic were the ones that prevailed today, 16 to 13. Jesper “JW” Wecksell was the man of the match with 26 kills and a 1.43 rating.

Christopher “GeT_RiGhT” Alesund quickly turned the fate of the round with his double kill.

The fans enjoyed another very balanced battle on de_cbble, where fnatic had a win rate higher than 60% in 2017. NiP were not far behind, and proved it by winning this map 16:14 thanks to a better Counter-Terrorist side. Richard “Xizt” Landström impressed us with 33 kills, 1.1 per round on average, and a 1.53 rating. Below, a magic 4k by Freddy “KRIMZ” Johansson, executed with a Nova.

After a total of ten games played so far, Ninjas in Pyjamas were in the top 4 of the EU Ladder with 12 points and a 4-6 score.

 

  • European League – Day 3
  • mousesports vs. Virtus.pro – Train 18:22 (8:7; 7:8) (3:7)
  • Virtus.pro vs. mousesports – Overpass 11:16 (7:8; 4:8)
  • GODSENT vs. Team Dignitas– Mirage 8:16 (3:12; 5:4)
  • Team Dignitas vs. GODSENT – Inferno 16:10 (7:8; 9:2)

Mousesports engaged in battle in the third day in a row, this time against Virtus.pro. So far mouz are among the best performers in the EU League – VP instead, with a score of 1-3, have to prove their worth. The match history between them clearly indicates VP as the victors: they won all the past six games versus mouz from November 2016 onwards, and with more than solid scores.

The first match occurred on de_train, where VP had only two games on the record in 2017. It was a long and well-fought game for both sides: after a 8:7 and 7:8 score, the game went in Overtime, where finally VP defeated mouz totalizing 18:22. To be honest the fight was fierce, but also so balanced that almost no player obtained more than 1-1.10 rating; the kills were also uniformly split between all of them. The highest kill count and rating went to Tomáš “oskar” Šťastný, with 33 and 1.29 respectively.

The battle moved on de_overpass, where both teams had a negative win rate. Here, mousesports won 16:11 thanks to a particular efficient Terrorist side, and to the intervention of Robin “ropz” Kool. He earned a consistent 1.44 rating, and obtained almost one kill per round with a 48% headshot rate.

We highlighted the play of Janusz “Snax” Pogorzelski on de_train. He waited for the perfect moment while slowly moving behind blue train, then he killed his prey and took refuge in the darkness.

GODSENT and Team Dignitas both tied with their respective opponents on day one, and considering their placement in the league, today they had to give their best in order to earn precious points. Again, due to Dignitas recently formed roster, there are no previous matches between the two teams.

De_mirage was the playground for the first Bo1; GODSENT had a win rate higher than 60% considering the past three months. Against all odds, Dignitas won their first game of all 2017 on de_mirage, 16 to 8. The title of MVP went to Ricardo “fox” Pacheco with a blasting 1.84 rating and 2.33 K/D – he scored as many as 28 kills, 1.17 per round on average.

De_inferno followed, with a rather balanced first half, but the situation degenerated once the teams swapped sides. Dignitas won one more time with a well-executed CT side, during which they scored 9:2. Joakim “jkaem” Myrbostad contributed to the team’s victory with his 26 kills and the excellent 61.5% headshot rate, quickly eliminating threats in each round. In the replay below you can appreciate a succulent grenade kill.

The third week of the European League ended with mousesports and Astralis sharing the top of the ladder with 15 points and a 5-3 score. In the third place we find FaZe Clan, undefeated 4 to 0. At the very bottom GODSENT is struggling for survival with a 2-8 record so far. The official standings are available here.

 

North American League – Day 1

  • Immortals vs. Ghost Gaming – Cobblestone 16:8 (10:5; 6:3)
  • Ghost Gaming vs. Immortals – Cobblestone 8:16 (4:11; 4:5)
  • NRG Esports vs. Luminosity Gaming – Mirage 22:19 (7:8; 8:7) (7:4)
  • Luminosity Gaming vs. NRG Esports – Mirage 16:7 (9:6; 7:1)
  • NRG Esports vs. Counter Logic Gaming– Mirage 7:16 (2:13; 5:3)

Moving on the North American League we find Immortals to face Ghost Gaming in a dual Bo1 on de_cbble. During 2017 the Brazilian team proved their knowledge of this map, and after the following matches they scored a total of 19 wins and 6 losses, for an outstanding 76% win rate.

They claimed the first Bo1 16 to 8, winning 10 rounds during the first half as Terrorists. The man of the match was Lucas “steel” Lopes with a 1.52 rating and 0.96 kills per round on average. The second game also ended 16:8, and once again Immortals confirmed their expertise as Terrorists, obtaining 11 rounds. This time the MVP went to a member of Ghost Gaming,  Matthew “Wardell” Bowman. In spite of the difficult situation he tried to drive his team to success securing 24 kills, one per round, and a solid 1.33 rating. Below his triple kill on round 17 of the first map.

Ghost Gaming confirmed to be the worst team in the NA League so far: they lost all of their eight matches, thus their chances for a comeback before the end of the season are poor.

The second matchup featured NRG Esports versus Luminosity Gaming. The latter were having a bad time at ECS3 with a 0-4 score, and overall they lost eight out of their nine previous games. The two teams fought each other only four times in the past, but never on the map designed for both of today’s matches, de_mirage.

The first game was exceptionally balanced: the 7:8 and 8:7 score brought the game to Overtime. NRG was able to have the upper hand and finally won the map 22 to 19. It was really showtime thanks to Gustavo “SHOOWTiME” Gonçalves, who eliminated as many as 37 opponents. Below you can find his 3k and the running TEC-9 double kill of his teammate Lucas “destiny” Bullo.

The situation changed in the second game. Again, the first half was even, but once on the Terrorist side the Brazilians pushed hard and achieved a dominant 7:1, winning 16 to 7. SHOOWTiME was anew the man of the match with a noteworthy 1.93 rating, 3.5 K/D, and a 28-8 score.

In week two of ECS3, NRG Esports and Counter Logic Gaming had to postpone their second game due to scheduling issues. The first Bo1 took place on de_cbble, where CLG won 16 to 10; instead, today the teams decided to battle on de_mirage.

In their match history there is only a game recorded on this map, and CLG attained a crushing 16:3 victory. Today’s events weren’t so different. The T-side was heavily in their favour; they dropped only two rounds and advanced to the second half with 13 in their pocket. As CT their performance was less spectacular, but still CLG brought home the game with a 16:6 score, winning the series. Pujan “FNS” Mehta contributed to the team’s success with 25 kills and a 1.56 rating. Stephen “reltuC” Cutler quick double on round 15 is featured below.

 

North American League – Day 2

  • Team Liquid vs. Counter Logic Gaming- Cobblestone 16:12 (11:4; 5:8)
  • Counter Logic Gaming vs. Team Liquid – Cache 16:4 (12:3; 4:1)
  • Cloud9 vs. Luminosity Gaming – Inferno 16:3 (12:3; 4:0)
  • Luminosity Gaming vs. Cloud9 – Mirage 6:16 (5:10; 1:6)

The second day witnessed the third game of Team Liquid at ECS3 to date. They played the first series versus OpTic Gaming in the first week, winning both fights on de_cbble. Today Liquid faced Counter Logic Gaming, that have been our guests a total of six times so far, scoring 5-1. Head to head the two rosters have a 2-4 score in favour of CLG, but they both replaced two players in 2017, and have faced each other only two times ever since.

The teams met on de_cbble, and Liquid continued to prove their knowledge of this location winning 16 to 12, with a well played T-side. In the past three months they achieved a 77.8% win rate in this map, with a 14-4 score. The best players were Peter “stanislaw” Jarguz and Nick “nitr0” Cannella, who obtained very similar scores, 27-18 and 27-16 respectively, and a rating around 1.50.

On de_cache the result was completely different. CLG dominated the first half claiming 12 rounds as CT, and ultimately won the matchup 16:4. The MVP was Ricardo “Rickeh” Mulholland who earned a 1.57 rating, with one kill per round on average and a 2.22 K/D.

CLG’s captain Pujan “FNS” Mehta explained that to improve one must work hard, and it is exactly what they have done. The entire interview is available here.

Cloud9 and Luminosity Gaming closed the day with their series. C9 were the favourite for this matchup, and looking at the match history between the two teams, they held the advantage 5 to 2. Their ranking alone can explain the horsepower difference between the two squads: 14th placement for the Americans and 29th for the Brazilians.

A real Inferno shocked Luminosity in the first Bo1. C9 won 12 rounds in the first half, and ended the game with a clean 4:0 as Terrorists, for a final 16.3 score. The Canadian Mike “shroud” Grzesiek deserved the title of MVP with a 20-5 score, a 1.79 rating, and a headshot rate of 55%.

Afterwards they moved on de_mirage, where the situation was sustainable during the first half, but once on the CT side Cloud9 prepared an impenetrable defense, winning 6 rounds with just one loss. They secured the match 16 to 6, while Luminosity Gaming consolidated their position in the lower half of the ladder: they are currently placed nine out of ten, with a 1-7 score. Tyler “Skadoodle” Latham impressed his fans with a 1.68 rating, averaging one kill per round. The highlight below features Gustavo “yeL” Knittel triple kill, no scope included.

We briefly interviewed the member of Cloud 9, Jordan “n0thing” Gilbert, and he shared his opinion about Luminosity – you can find it here.

 

North American League – Day 3

  • Team Liquid vs. Immortals – Cobblestone 16:13 (8:7; 8:6)
  • Immortals vs. Team Liquid– Cobblestone 12:16 (5:10; 7:6)
  • Cloud9 vs. Ghost Gaming – Inferno 16:2 (13:2; 3:0)
  • Ghost Gaming vs. Cloud9 – Cobblestone 1:16 (1:14; 0:2)

During all 2017 Immortals clashed against Team Liquid a total of eleven times, losing only three games. The Brazilians had a win rate above 70% on the map selected for both best-of-one, de_cbble. But, de_cbble is also one of Liquid’s best maps, and they share a win rate similar to immortals for a total of more than 20 games in 2017.

The showdown resulted in two entertaining games, in which both teams utilized their tested tricks and strategies to achieve victory. At the end of the day Team Liquid was declared victor of both matches. Due to the extremely balanced game we won’t nominate any best player for the first Bo1, which ended 16 to 13. In the second instead, Liquid pushed harder, winning 16 to 12. The team must thank the combined efforts of Russel “Twistzz” Van Dulken and Jonathan “EliGE” Jablonowski, who killed 28 enemies each, earning a 1.47 and 1.39 rating respectively.

Henrique “hen1” Teles protected storage with all his might, killing three enemies consecutively.

The third and final day of the league ended with a slaughter. Cloud9 is definitely the strongest team in this matchup, and Ghost Gaming is no threat for them.

The first game on de_inferno ended 16 to 2 for C9, and they dominated also the battle on de_cbble 16:1. In both games, C9’s players shared similar stats, which contributed to demonstrate the difference in the skill level between the two rosters.

In the highlight below, Tyler “Skadoodle” Latham easily shot down three opponents who dared to approach long A without a flash or smoke to cover their movements.

At the end of the third week, the North American League still has Ghost Gaming and Luminosity Gaming at the very end of the ladder, with a 0-10 and 1-7 score respectively. Cloud 9 and Team Liquid share a great 5-1 score with 15 points, while at the top we find Counter Logic Gaming with 6-2. You can find the official standings here.

The fourth week of Esports Championship Series S3 will take place from May 9 to 11, and will be aired as usual on YouTube.