We're kicking off a new week with a big evening of Esports action as our resident Esports guru Michael Lee has delivered his best bets from around the world. Tonight's action comes to us from BLAST Premier: Spring Groups 2021 and ESL One CIS. Check out his preview and Esports betting tips below.
BLAST Premier: Spring Groups 2021
Evil Geniuses and G2 will clash on Monday in the opening Group 2 fixture at the BLAST Premier: Spring Groups 2021. This will be their first meeting since November 2019, when EG reverse-swept G2 at the CS:GO Asia Championships 2019 with 16-5 on Mirage and Overpass.
A lot of time has passed since and both sides have made numerous roster changes, so we shouldn't overvalue that result and instead focus on what EG and G2 have produced recently.
EG have attended BLAST Premier: Global Final 2020 and DreamHack Open January 2021: Europe, where they struggled to deliver. At BLAST, they managed to defeat FURIA (2-1) but lost to Astralis (1-2) and Team Liquid (0-2). Even more concerning are their most recent performances at the DreamHack, where EG won their opening match against FunPlus Phoenix (2-0), but then went on to lose against BIG (1-2) and even suffered a 0-2 sweep in a rematch with FPX.
G2 attended only BLAST Premier: Global Final 2020, where they did not make it too far. They won their first match against FURIA (2-1) but ended up losing to the two finalists in Astralis (1-2) and Natus Vincere (0-2).
EG are priced as massive underdogs for this bout, probably due to their disastrous performance at the DreamHack, but their lacklustre results hardly match the quality of this roster. EG also failed to impress at the BLAST Premier, but it's important to note that was their first tournament after the player break, so it's fair to expect better showings from them now that they had a chance to get rid of the ring rust. Value with Evil Geniuses!
BLAST Premier: Spring Groups 2021
Team Vitality and Complexity have last met just over two weeks ago during the BLAST Premier Global Final 2020, where Vitality won 2-0 with 18-9 on Mirage and 16-8 on Dust2. Considering how one-sided that affair was, it's only fair to expect another commanding victory for the French side and it's hard to find an argument against that.
In their last meetings, Complexity had to play without their AWPer Valentin "poizon" Vasilev, who is now back on the team and ready to play. Even his return, however, doesn't convince me Complexity will stand a chance, mainly because of how poorly Justin "jks" Savage has been playing of late.
The Australian CS:GO pro looked terrible since the turn of the year and even that is an understatement. Out of seven maps played in 2021, he has managed a positive rating only once (1.03) and has hit a new low just a week ago when he averaged 0.37 rating on Overpass against Dignitas.
On the side of Team Vitality, all five players seem to be in great form. Even though Vitality have lost three out of their last five games, those losses came against Natus Vincere and twice against Astralis, who are much stronger than Complexity. This should be an easy 2-0 win for Vitality.
ESL One CIS Lower Division
HellRaisers have rebuilt their Dota2 roster in January with the signing of Zaur "Cooman" Shakhmurzaev, Roman "Resolut1on" Fomynok and Ivan "VANSKOR" Skorokhod and have also added ex-Natus Vincere player Nikita "young G" Bochko as a stand-in. Although their current roster is not nearly good enough to be considered as one of the best in the region, HellRaisers don't look too shabby.
So far this tournament, HellRaisers have played three games against VP.Prodigy, Imperial Pro Gaming and PuckChamp and won all three with 2-1. Winning with such a small margin is not too great, but at least HellRaisers are winning games, so they have that going for them.
Gambit Esports have also made a couple of changes in January, although they have kept most of their roster intact heading into the 2021 season. They have signed a former HellRaisers player Arslan "xannii" Shadzhanov and Evgenii "Blizzy" Ri.
Like HellRaisers, Gambit have played three games, but managed to win only one against Imperial Pro Gaming (2-1), but lost against PuckChamp (0-2) and Winstrike (1-2). Even though Gambit managed only one win so far, it's hard to overlook their three-map series against Winstrike, which proves this team is not nearly as bad as how it may seem.
These regional clashes often produce close affairs and I don't expect that to change here. Out of 15 games played at the ESL One CIS Lower Division only three ended in clean sweeps and even those came either early into the tournament or have featured a strong favourite meeting an underdog. Bet on Gambit to win one map!
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