BLAST Premier Global Final 2020 – Lower Bracket Semi-Finals Betting Preview
Today’s free Counter-Strike: Global Offensive betting previews and predictions focus on the second round of BLAST Premier: Global Final 2020 lower bracket fixtures featuring a North American derby between Team Liquid and Evil Geniuses, and the rematch of IEM Beijing semi-finals between Natus Vincere and G2 Esports.
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Evil Geniuses v Team Liquid
Evil Geniuses enter this match off a 2-1 reverse-sweep win against FURIA on Wednesday, which marked their first win of the tournament after the North American squad had to admit defeat to Astralis (1-2) in the opening fixture of the competition. I am not overly excited about EG based on their performances so far and even though they have managed to steal one map off Astralis, it was far from a good series, whereas, they did not impress me in their win over FURIA either.
Team Liquid, on the other side, looked amazing in their tournament opener when they swept the floor with Natus Vincere (2-0) and even though they fell short against Team Vitality yesterday (0-2), I must give Liquid some props as they put up quite a fight.
If we draw a line, Liquid looked slightly better than EG, but as already mentioned in our previous CS:GO betting predictions, TL are now in the so-called “honeymoon phase” on top of the fact that they can play without any pressure considering they’re not expected to win it all with a new player. Those factors surely help with better showing, but it remains to be seen how long the former will last.
Despite their less-than-inspiring showings, Evil Geniuses enter this match with a superior head-to-head record, seeing how they have beaten Liquid in all of their last six meetings. Their last clash happened in September 2020 during the ESL Pro League Season 12 North America, when EG went 2-0 with 16-12 on Inferno and 16-9 on Mirage. Tsvetelin “CeRq” Dimitrov was the best player on the server that day with 39 frags and 1.32 HLTV rating, whereas no player on the side of Liquid managed to break the 1.00 rating line. EG were priced at around 1.76 to win that match and they did not disappoint.
Liquid have since replaced Russel “Twistzz”Van Dulken with Gabriel “FalleN” Toledo as their new AWPer and in-game leader, which is a good move both because he is exactly what Liquid needed as well as because Twistzz was Liquid’s worst player across the last couple of months.
Liquid are priced as favourites (1.781 at Pinnacle) to win here, which seems a bit low for me. Even though they have looked better than EG this tournament, we can’t ignore just how efficient EG are against their regional rivals. There is no excuse for having EG priced above even money. Value bet on EG!
Prediction: Evil Geniuses to win, 2.06 at Pinnacle
Natus Vincere v G2 Esports
The second fixture of the day will see G2 Esports clash with Natus Vincere for the first time since the Intel Extreme Masters XV – Beijing Online: Europe semi-finals in November, when NaVi won 2-1.
NaVi began their journey through BLAST with a disastrous showing against Team Liquid on Wednesday when they lost 0-2, although they deserve some praise for forcing a tight affair on the second map (Nuke) where they won 14 rounds (14-16). To make matters worse, NaVi were priced as the favourites for this match, which we did not agree with in our betting preview and instead sided with Liquid to win one map.
In their second match against Complexity, NaVi lost the first map (Mirage) with 17-16, but managed a comeback with two commanding victories on Nuke (16-8) and Inferno (16-11). The Ukrainian side were the rightful victors, but I can’t praise them too much given that they were facing a team who were playing without their main AWPer.
G2 Esports opened their BLAST campaign with a 2-1 win over FURIA, which was a much closer bout than what I expected to see. However, Brazilian teams are never easy to play against so perhaps G2 deserve some slack for losing Mirage (14-16).
In their second match of the tournament, G2 were faced with Astralis and did surprisingly well. The French-Balkan roster took the series lead on Dust2 (16-14), lost on Vertigo (8-16) and came extremely close to sealing the deal on Inferno, where they held a 5-10 lead, but eventually fell apart and lost 14-16.
G2 are priced as the favourites (1.826) for this match, which I can’t argue with. They have been playing much better than NaVi and if these teams’ performances in their most recent fixtures are any indication, I have far more faith in G2 to take the W, even though I expect a close match. G2 to win 2-1!
Prediction: G2 Esports to win – 1.826
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