Written By ArmandVanHelden - 2022-04-17
As the days pass, the VCT 2022 - Stage 1 - Masters Reykjavík excitement continues to grow. Today, four teams will compete against each other to reach the upper bracket final. G2 Esports will face the Brazilian side, LOUD, and lastly, DRX VS will try to continue their dominant performance against OpTic Gaming.
The first match of the day will host the competition between South Korea’s DRX VS and North America’s OpTic Gaming. I guess I won’t be tired of pointing out DRX VS’s dominance since the beginning of the tournament. The South Korean team dominated every opponent during the group stage and then took down the VCT 2022 - APAC Challengers winner, Paper Rex in the first round of the playoffs. Their chemistry and teamwork are surely on another level but Myeongkwan "MaKo" Kim’s individual performance has been one of the biggest factors of their supremacy. He is leading the statistics board with a solid 1.52 rating, 177.4 ADR, 1.82 K/D, and 88% KAST%. You can go and show your respect to MaKo by visiting the MaKo appreciation thread. He is the biggest weapon on the side of DRX VS and we are sure he will continue to dominate in the upper bracket semi finals.
Secondly, OpTic Gaming took their revenge from The Guard in the upper bracket quarter finals to reach here. Despite their poor start to the tournament, OpTic Gaming have managed to bounce back and compete at the highest level possible. Their teamwork and chemistry looked great against The Guard yesterday and that is the main reason they have reached the upper bracket semi finals. OpTic are the number-one North American team in our rankings and they have proved themselves as the only NA team that have made it thus far. Jimmy "Marved" Nguyen is having a great tournament, holding a 1.11 rating but Jaccob "yay" Whitaker is also having a decent performance with a 1.34 K/D and 0.9 kills per round.
G2 Esports are the top-seeded European team in the tournament and they have proved their title by eliminating ZETA DIVISION in two one-sided maps. We saw Aaro "hoody" Peltokangas with incredible contributions to the scoreboard the other day. The Finnish player grabbed 43 kills in two maps while holding a 1.49 rating and a 1.39 K/D. We haven’t seen him putting up huge numbers on the scoreboard except in the later stages of VCT 2022 - EMEA - Stage 1 - Challengers - Main Event. During the playoffs, he was right behind Žygimantas "nukkye" Chmieliauskas with his aim fight abilities and he continues to dominate the battlefield in Iceland. Looking at G2 Esports’ win over ZETA DIVISION, they haven’t picked many different agents and stuck with their composition in two maps. Firstly, ZETA’s pick was Split but G2 showed no mercy, grabbing the w after 20 rounds, 13-7. The second map was Bind as the European team’s choice and they only changed Sage and Breach with Skye and Viper. The rest of the team kept their agents and the second map ended with a score of 13-10, in favor of G2 Esports. On the fourth day, LOUD pushed Team Liquid to the lower bracket and yesterday ZETA DIVISION kicked them out of the tournament. With basic math, it will be an interesting matchup to see G2 against the Brazilian representatives.
Lastly, LOUD destroyed every opponent they had in VCT 2022 - Brazil - Stage 1 - Main Event. After coming to Iceland, they kept their dominance and pushed Team Liquid to the lower bracket with an important 2-1 win, as mentioned above. Yesterday, the series started with TL’s Icebox pick and LOUD showed a great performance on the map. Secondly, they picked Haven but got destroyed by their opponent. Lastly, LOUD closed out the series with a 13-10 Ascent win to reach the upper bracket semi finals. However, G2’s strong side has also been Icebox during VCT 2022 - EMEA - Stage 1 - Challengers - Main Event and if they make their choice towards some real competition, it will be interesting to watch these two teams compete on the ice. On the other side, LOUD have different strengths on different maps and Ascent is one of them. Erick "aspas" Santos’s performance will be very important as the Brazilian duelist is capable of carrying games at this level. Let’s see who will step up to keep his team in the upper bracket, aspas or Žygimantas "nukkye" Chmieliauskas?
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