G2 v FURIA – BLAST Premier Global Final 2020
G2 Esports will clash with FURIA on Tuesday, January 19, in the second fixture of the upper bracket quarter-finals in what should be an exciting bout between two “dark horses” of the tournament. Here is our betting preview of the match as well as a free betting prediction.
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G2 Esports have played only four tournaments with their newest signing Nikola ‘NiKo’ Kovač and while they were quite impressive during the “honeymoon phase”, G2 slowly started to slump. Some of their most recent results include a top-four finish at the IEM Beijing-Haidian 2020 Europe, ninth-12th at the DreamHack Masters Winter 2020 Europe and fifth-sixth place finish at the BLAST Premier Fall 2020 Finals. Regardless of their lack of success, G2 were playing against some of the best teams from Europe, so they deserve some slack especially considering they had to find synergy with their new acquisition.
FURIA, on the other side, were quite dominant in the North American scene, where they have won several tournaments in 2020, including DreamHack Masters Spring 2020 – North America, DreamHack Open Summer 2020 North America, ESL Pro League Season 12 North America, IEM New York 2020 North America. It’s worth noting that FURIA were playing mostly the same teams over and over again, so their “success” must be taken with a grain of salt.
As for their European campaign, FURIA did not look too sharp early on and crashed out of the BLAST Premier Fall Series 2020, where they lost against G2 and the old-new roster of MiBR (not the ex-BOOM Esports). The Brazilians eventually found their stride at the BLAST Premier Fall 2020 Showdown and bested the likes of Isurus, Virtus.pro and Liquid, eventually getting eliminated by Astralis. Adding to that, FURIA have finished fifth-sixth the BLAST Premier Fall 2020 Finals and IEM Global Challenge 2020, where they lost to G2, NaVi, Liquid, but managed to defeat OG and Heroic.
I have rated FURIA as one of the Major dark horse picks, but I might step back from my evaluation, largely due to the recent roster changes. If they manage to perform as well with Paytyn “Junior” Johnson, they will be a force to be reckoned with in 2021, but only time will tell how will Junior do in his debut for a proper S-tier team.
G2 and FURIA have met three times in November-December. Their first meeting happened at the BLAST Premier Fall Series 2020, which was also FURIA’s first match in EU. FURIA entered the match as underdogs, priced around 2.00 and G2 managed to justify their tag as the favourites by winning the match 2-0 even though FURIA managed double digits on both maps.
The second meeting happened shortly after at the DreamHack Masters Winter 2020 Europe, where G2 were priced as 1.58 favourites to repeat their success from BLAST Premier Fall Series 2020, which they were unable to do and it was FURIA (priced at 2.40) who got their revenge with 2-1.
In their most recent bout – at the BLAST Premier Fall 2020 Finals – FURIA were once more priced as the underdogs around 2.02 (Pinnacle opening odds were 1.75). Despite their tag as the weaker team, FURIA looked very strong on the opening map (16-5 on Inferno) but dropped the ball on Mirage and Nuke, which they lost with 17-19 and 11-16.
FURIA deserve some praise for their showing that day, as they looked fairly competitive and even had chances to win. Henrique ‘HEN1’ Teles was the best player on the server with 72 frags and 1.30 HLTV rating, while NiKo justified his high buyout with an equally-impressive 68 frags and 1.23 HLTV rating across the series.
Before the departure of HEN1, I would not hesitate to bet on the underdogs, largely because this is an online match between two teams that have a lot of firepower and are also a bit ring rusty. However, with the 25-year-old AWPer out of the team, I am a bit sceptical about FURIA’s chances to cause an upset.
Considering FURIA now field a rookie player (Lucas “honda” Honda) with no previous experience in playing at the top level of CS, you simply have to favour G2. FURIA, however, have the “Brazilian fighting spirit” and are not the kind of a team that will just back down, so they might even steal one map off the French-Balkan squad. I am not betting this match, but gun to the head I would pick G2 to win 2-1.
Prediction: G2 to win, 1.32 at Pinnacle