CS:GO fans may have viewed FaZe Clan’s superteam experiment as a failure but the org isn’t done with it just yet. After dropping Finn “karrigan” Andersen and legendary AWPer Ladislav “GuardiaN” Kovács, FaZe acquired another legend in Marcelo “coldzera” David from MIBR. The team also added Latvian Helvijs “broky” Saukants on a trial basis. In karrigan’s absence, Nikola “NiKo” Kovač took up the IGL role for his team. This series of moves drew ire from long-time fans, foreseeing another disappointment. However, the team proved the doubters wrong in the recently concluded BLAST Pro tournament in Copenhagen.
FaZe’s new lineup went through a rough beginning, as expected of most new lineups. Moreover, many analysts believed that simply throwing superstars together will never work. Criticisms include their lack of chemistry and the addition of superstars past their primes. Fan-favorite Filip “NEO” Kubski’s short-lived stint with the team only fanned the flames. They failed miserably in their first tournament, ESL One: New York. FaZe bombed out of the group stage without winning a single map. To be fair, the team didn’t really have enough time to mesh then.
FaZe pulled together in their next tournament, ESL Pro League Season 10. They managed to secure a spot in the second round which they will play in this week. They followed that up with a semifinal outing at ECS Season 8. The team seemed to be more at ease, making less unforced errors and enjoying playing with each other. Topping all of that, they played magnificently at Blast PRO Series: Copenhagen 2019.
Full steam ahead
The superteam won 4 out of 5 of the group stage games. On top of that, they did it in style, winning 16-2 against Astralis and 16-3 against NiP. As the top-seeded team, they again fought NiP in the grand final where they outlasted the Swedish crew. In the first map (Nuke), the first half went pretty close, ending 8-7 in favor of NiP. The Swedes then came rolling through after the break, winning five straight to bring the score to 13-7. FaZe won a single round to break the streak, but lost the next two with NiP at map point. They then pulled a miraculous eight-round streak to force overtime. NiP again brought FaZe Clan to the brink of defeat. Olof “olofmeister” Kajbjer and broky won two consecutive rounds to finally bag the map for FaZe.
In the second map (Dust 2), the first half ended in another 8-7, this time in favor of FaZe. After the break, NiP threatened another steamroll, winning the first four rounds on their CT side. However, it was all FaZe from there. They tied up the score at 11 apiece and then broke off to a 15-12 lead. In round 28, FaZe found themselves in a 2v5 situation. Fortunately, this is where their star power comes to the rescue. NiKo and coldzera turned a potential disaster into their first trophy.
Bright future ahead
With the win in Copenhagen, FaZe Clan became the only team to win two Blast PRO tournaments in the year. The win also gave them the top seed in the Blast Pro Global Final on Dec. 13 in Bahrain. There, they will again face NiP along with familiar rivals Team Liquid and Astralis. Before that though, FaZe Clan’s superteam will be participating at Intel Extreme Masters XIV – Beijing and, if they do well in the ESL round 2, the ESL finals. Expect this team to get even better as they play more games together. We all know what each player could do individually. The remaining question is: Could they win together and can they do it consistently? We’ll have to wait to find out.
IEM Beijing will commence on November 7th until November 10th, while the second round of ESL Pro League Season 10 will start on November 16th. Tune in for more CS:GO news and updates.