The 2019 season of BLAST Pro Series is set to culminate in the Global Finals event, kicking off Thursday, December 12 and concluding two days later with the grand finals at ISA Sports City in Riffa, Bahrain.
The final BLAST Pro Series event will feature four teams who have earned the most BPS points throughout the six tournaments which took place throughout the season, where the teams claimed anywhere from 10 to two points based on their final placement. Each of the seven teams got a chance to play in four tournaments, and their final score of BPS points determined whether they made the cut to appear in Global Final or not.
Teams that outperformed the rest and made it to the finals BLAST Pro Series event are: FaZe Clan, Team Liquid, Astralis and Ninjas in Pyjamas.
The tournament will be played in a double-elimination bracket with best-of-three (Bo3) series used for all fixtures throughout the tournament, including the grand finals, where the final two teams will duke it out for US$350,000 and the title of BLAST Pro champions.
With basics of the tournament covered, all that is left to do is look over the teams, what they bring to the table, how they compare and ultimately give our betting prediction on which team will claim the prestigious BLAST Pro Series Cup.
Ninjas in Pyjamas ($8.00 at Skrilla) are entering the tournament priced as heavy underdogs to claim the title and looking at the tournament lineup, it's hard to not agree with the odds provided by eSports bookmakers. NiP finished the BLAST Pro circuit fourth, by finishing fourth in Sao Paulo, third in Madrid and Moscow and second in Copenhagen, which earned them a grand total of 24 BPS points.
While a praiseworthy achievement from the Swedes, NiP are not a team we believe has what it takes to defeat the likes of Astralis, Team Liquid and even FaZe. As we see it, NiP can have their moments of greatness, which could earn them an upset win here. That being said, they failed to convince us they have the needed quality to go the distance, especially with their iffy displays against some much weaker teams at ECS and ESL Pro League.
FaZe ($6.00 at Skrilla) have been on the rise since the signing of Marcelo "coldzera" David and while they made sure to make themselves noticed in the professional CS:GO scene, FaZe still had their moments of weakness, which makes us doubt in their consistency. In regards to their BLAST Pro Series results, FaZe finished first with 30 BPS points which they earned by claiming a fifth-place finish in Sao Paulo, first in Miami, second in Los Angeles and first in Copenhagen.
As far as their recent results are concerned, FaZe suffered a crushing defeat against Astralis in IEM Beijing at the start of November, where they finished third-fourth and further disappointed with a fifth-sixth place finish in ESL Pro League - Europe. All things considered, FaZe are way too inconsistent with their performance and until they find a better suited IGL as compared to Nikola "NiKo" Kovač, we can't see FaZe as a serious contender to win this tournament.
Team Liquid ($4.00 at Skrilla) are priced as second-favorites to win the tournament for which they qualified by claiming 28 points throughout the BLAST Pro season. The North American powerhouse finished second in Sao Paulo and Miami, won the BLAST Pro event in Los Angeles and finished fifth in Copenhagen.
Other than that, Team Liquid had a fairly successful season, winning a handful of events, but not one since July, when they claimed the IEM Chicago title. Since then, Team Liquid’s results were up and down and while they are still regarded as one of the best teams in the world, their questionable displays earned them a tag of an underdog here, as they can hardly compare to Astralis, who are flying to Bahrain in great form.
Astralis ($1.80 at Skrilla) are entering the final BLAST Pro event of the season priced as heavy favorites and we can't argue with that. The Danish powerhouse earned their spot in the tournament by finishing third in the BPS rankings with 26 BPS points next to their name. Astralis won the BLAST Pro even in Sao Paulo, finished fourth in Miami, second in Madrid and fourth in Copenhagen. While not very promising results, Astralis did manage to claim the StarLadder Berlin Major in September and even went on to win IEM Beijing at the start of November in a dominant fashion.
From what we have seen from Astralis recently, it's hard to see them as anything less than the main favorites. They do have their moments when they underperform, but once a serious tournament comes around, Astralis put on a show. The only way Astralis can lose here is if any of the remaining teams cause an upset, and considering neither of the remaining three teams really showed up recently, we won't count on seeing any upset wins here.
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