ESL Pro League s17 Fantasy: Tips & Analysis

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See the prizes and other info here: Tournament Prizes

General Thoughts

One of my favourite fantasy tournaments is here. EPL brings a lot of great CS and tier 1 matches to both watch and play fantasy on. We see four stacked groups that will battle it out to reach the playoffs. What is even more fun is that we got the chance to not just win prizes for the final result, but for every group as well! This means that you have multiple chances to get your hands on a skin or a mousepad. You therefore also get a chance to win prizes even if you are a new user and join the tournament after it has begun, how nice!?


The weeks to come, we will have both the best teams in the world playing like G2 and Heroic, but also some less known teams like Rooster, Rare Atom and ATK. My first thought going into this is to be really careful of picking players from these teams. Mainly because they’re not normally on the level as some of the best teams and therefore shouldn’t go very far into the tournament.

I really recommend you to look over the brackets and see which of the teams that have an easier path to go deeper into the tournament. It can be really useful to pick players from those teams since they get those extra points from winning matches. Players/Teams that win the most of their matches will be skipping some matches from the lower bracket and will therefore receive point padding. Many of you will probably pick players that will do well and therefore I recommend you to read about the padding system here: Point Padding

Since group A is about to start, I thought I would go deeper into that one but also give my thoughts of the other groups after that.

Groups and Predictions

Starting 22nd of February, we have to be done with our lineups. I’ve already looked into the first group and got an understanding of how I think it could go. Without further ado, let’s get into it.
Group A.

Group A

Group A

It’s funny, in most tournaments I've seen Outsiders as the dark horses but that’s not the case here. IHC has shown that they want to play and actually had a decent performance at Katowice, beating both Cloud9 and FURIA. I will however give the win to Outsiders here since KaiR0N seems like a good fit and that Jame has had a great start of the year.

At the same time, fnatic will battle it out versus MIBR. The Brazilian boys have looked great with the addition of insani but this is also against weaker teams in the NA region. fnatic did face MIBR in the Katowice play-ins already so they know what they’re made of. They also had a pretty convincing win and I don’t see why it would be any different this time.

Later this evening, we see the #4 and #5 ranked players of 2022 with the rest of their team in Cloud9 go up against Evil Geniuses that have been a mess recently. The Americans have struggled a lot against the top teams and I just can’t see them winning over the Russians in a Bo3.

The number one team in the world will also play late. The baby goat and his G2 will go up against the Turkish squad of Eternal Fire (that just won CCT). I mean, I don’t see any analyst picking EF as the winner here. G2 has just been looking incredible, recently lifting the trophy in Katowice.

Players to avoid

The following players are either too expensive or will just have a really tough time to be worth his price. It can also be players that are good individually but in teams that I believe wont go far in the tournament.

*exit 200$

 *Brehze 208$

 *HexT 177$

 *autimatic 187$

 *imoRR 198$

Valuable Players

All are players I consider using, I feel like these are players that could get you a great amount of points. However, I might just use a few of them in my lineup not to reveal the team I'm going with.

*Jame 211$

*m0NESY 216$

*Ax1Le 218$

*nicoodoz 195$

 *jks 203$

Group B

Group B

Heroic has had great results even though losing the grand final to G2 at Katowice. They also go up against Movistar Riders that has had really poor results lately, only having a win rate of 18,8% the last three months. Therefore, it should be a walk a part for the danes here. They could be a great pick for your team, depending on what they’ll cost.

On the other server, we see the match that I find the hardest to predict so far. We haven't really seen BIG play a lot of matches without syrsoN who had a great amount of impact on their team. CoL has also been a bit shaky, both losing and winning against European teams. If I can, I’ll probably try to avoid players from these teams.

The Brazilian derby will be played in the evening. For a long time, FURIA has been the best team from the region. However, we see Imperial coming in after pretty much dominating their opponents from South America. Now, they’ll have to face a much harder team though who have had a long time to prepare for this event. I give the win to FURIA but keeping Imperial in my dark horse category for this group.

MOUZ versus the Portuguese of SAW should only end in a win for frozen and his squad. They had a little bit of a rough start this year but really has a chance to prove themselves here. Same as FURIA, they’ve had a lot of time to prepare while SAW has been busy playing the Blast Pari Major Europe RMR qualifiers.

Group C

Group C

On paper, we begin with the easiest first match of the tournament. Without explaining too much, FaZe should just walk over the Rooster squad. I think the best thing the Australians can do is to show what they’re capable of and try to win some rounds or do some individual highlights.

A team that has a lot to prove is of course NIP. They start against pain where they can confirm that they’re a team that still belongs in the top. I think they want this really much and will go in with a convincing mind when they join the server to play their first match.

OG has been up and down lately and we haven’t seen what they can do with niko instead of nexa on the server. I'm really not sure how far they’ll go into the tournament but I believe that they should take the win over 00Nation with the firepower they got. The Brazilians haven’t had that good results recently either, which makes me think OG will take it even easier.

I believe the addition of JACKZ will bring great morale for the team. I’ve seen JACKZ on the server and behind the scenes and he is the most fun and caring teammate. Besides, ZywOo will probably have sniper practice and the frenchmen will probably have a good time together. With all the respect to Grayhound, I truly believe Vitality will win their first match in a pretty convincing fashion.

Group D

Group D

The last group but still with a lot of fun teams and matches to watch. Probably most of us like to watch NaVi and s1mple and they are also a team that has a lot to prove. After their addition of npl, it’s been shaky with me getting a bit worried for them. However, they should be able to win over forZe that recently went out at 5-6th place in the CCT CentralEurope Malta Finals 1.

Spirit vs Astralis is pretty hard to predict. Spirit also went out from CCT after a pretty poor result while Astralis has been winning most of their matches recently. It has been against weaker teams though so this will be their first hard task to beat with a lot of challenges waiting ahead.

YEKINDAR will try to do what he’s good at and make space for his team in their upcoming match against Rare Atom. However, the Chinese have been demolishing teams from their region but will now have to put in an extra gear to beat a team such as Liquid. I wouldn’t be surprised if they actually managed to make a map competitive but Liquid should win this any day in a Bo3.

Last but not least there is ENCE, bringing in the firepower of Nertz that has looked incredible in the Endpoint jersey. I saw Snappi in an interview saying that Nertz could be Spinx v2 and that could make them really dangerous if that becomes reality. ATK are their opponent and shouldn’t really stand a chance here. They should just make the most out of it and have some fun playing teams from the greatest level of Counter-Strike.

Good to know

The tournament consist of four groups

Each group has a last chance stage

Highest ranked team: G2

Lowest ranked team: Rooster

Nertz will play instead of Valde

JACKZ will play instead of Dupreeh

niko will play instead of nexa

A lot of point padding will be given

Wipe phase before each group and playoffs

1 sell token per group/stage

Groups: Double Elimination Bo3

Playoffs: Single Elimination Bo3

Grand final: Bo5

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