Eight teams will travel to Brazil as DreamHack Open comes to Rio de Janeiro for the first time since it’s inception
Eight teams will travel to Brazil as DreamHack Open comes to Rio de Janeiro for the first time since it’s inception. The Brazilian fans will be hoping that Furia can bring home the title on home soil, but they will be facing tough competition from the likes of AVANGAR and Valiance. Read on as we break down all you need to know about this year’s competition.
DreamHack Open is a series of tournaments geared towards lower tier teams hoping to prove themselves and climb the world rankings. This will be the first stop of 2019, as the tournament makes its way to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Eight teams will be competing for the $100,000 prize pool — $50,000 of which will go towards the winner. The tournament is set to begin on April 19 and the winner will be crowned April 21. The format used for most DreamHack Open events is GSL system, and this one will be no exception. There will be two groups of four, with the opening and winners matches being best-of-one. The elimination and decider matches will be best-of-three. All matches in the playoffs will be best-of-three — including the final.
This will be the first time that DreamHack Open will be played in Rio de Janeiro, however, DreamHack has been running tournaments like this for quite some time now and there were five of these last year — so we have a lot of data to go by.
Luminosity, who were amongst the first teams to be invited to DreamHack Open Rio de Janeiro, played three of these tournaments. They had a good amount of success as they overcame the odds to reach the final both in Atlanta and Valencia, however, they had to settle for a second-place finish as they lost to Vitality and North. Still, a decent showing considering the competition that they were up against. In fact, their history at DreamHack Open events is incredibly solid. They have only missed the playoffs a single time, which was in 2018 where they went out in the decider match to Imperial at DreamHack Open Montreal. Out of the eight tournaments that they have participated in since 2016, they have made the final a total of six times with one win and five runner-up finishes. It needs to be said that their stock was much higher in 2016 and 2017 than it is now in 2018. But it is a staggering statistic nonetheless and it shows that they have what it takes to make a deep run in tournaments at this level. However, their inability to come out victorious in these finals is definitely worth noting as well. In fact, they have never been able to win a map in a final at a DreamHack Open event and they have often failed to get to double digits against their opponents.
Other teams that had success at DreamHack Open events in 2018 include ENCE, North and Imperial (Valiance). All of these teams have a win on their resumé and have never failed to make the playoffs.
The team list for DreamHack Open Rio de Janeiro is now finalized. As this tournament will be hosted in Brazil there will naturally be a lot of Brazilian teams in attendance. In fact, half of the teams in the field are from Brazil. Furia and Sharks were invited and W7M made it through the Latin-American qualifier.
Out of the Brazilian teams; Furia will likely be among the favorites to win. They have risen through the world rankings at a blistering pace and they currently find themselves in nineteenth place. The team most notably includes Kaike ‘KSCERATO’ Cerato, a player who is oftentimes jokingly referred to as the “Brazilian coldzera”, due to his playstyle which resembles that of Marcelo ‘coldzera’ David of MIBR. In fact, KSCERATO was rumored to be joining the aforementioned team but the deal seemingly fell through as Furia were unwilling to let go of their sought after prospect. Instead, KSCERATO remained and it proved to be successful as they were later able to go through the American minor in second place to qualify for the major in Katowice. They have also had success in the Mountain Dew League, as they blitzed through the competition without dropping a single game to finish at the top of the standings and ultimately winning the entire thing after besting Team One, Singularity and Bad News Bears in the playoffs.
Another player worth mentioning is Yuri ‘yuurih’ Santos. If KSCERATO is the “Brazilian coldzera” then yuurih is the “Brazilian fer” as he puts up big numbers in more of an aggressive rifling role for the team. Interestingly, there are more comparisons to be made between the two teams as their main AWPer, Andrei ‘arT’ Piovezan, is also the team’s in-game leader — just like Gabriel ‘FalleN’ Toledo of MIBR.
Furia will have a decent shot at bringing home the bacon for Brazil and they are definitely a team to keep an eye on as they’re making waves at the moment. A win here would be their first LAN victory and another stepping stone to establishing themselves as a top team in CS:GO.
*HEN1 has played a big part in Luminosity’s success at Dreamhack Open events in the past. *
The other Brazilian team that the home fans will hope can make a deep run will be Luminosity. They have had lukewarm results lately but the team bolsters an experienced roster that has a long history of competing at DreamHack Open events. They made it to the final against the odds two times in 2018, where they were ultimately taken down by pre-tournament favorites Vitality and North. They also have an additional three runner up finishes in 2017 and 2016 as well as a win at DreamHack Summer 2016 under the banner of Immortals. The team most notably features the twin pairing of Henrique ‘HEN1’ Teles and Lucas ‘LUCAS1’ Teles, as well as Ricardo ‘boltz’ Prass and Lucas ‘steel’ Lopes — all players who have competed for teams such as KaBuM! and Immortals in the past. Their biggest achievement together came at the PGL Major in Krakow in 2017, where they made it all the way to the final where they were bested by Gambit in a three map series.
Luminosity may not be as sexy of a pick as Furia to make it far in Rio, but they are an experienced side that has caused upsets in the past. They may not have what it takes to win the entire thing, but they definitely should not be underestimated due to their history at DreamHack Open events.
Note: Luminosity and AGO have withdrawn and will be replaced by INTZ and Redemption eSports.
nexa has made great strides since leaving Renegades back in 2017.
One of the favorites to hoist the trophy in Brazil will be Valiance. They are coming off a win at United Masters League where they took down WESG winners Windigo in the final. The mostly Serbian side features players such as Nemanja ‘nexa’ Isaković and Rokas ‘EspiranTo’ Milasauskas, two players who have now made it a bit of a habit of winning events in the lower tiers of CS:GO. They have won tournaments such as the Copenhagen Games and Dreamhack Open Summer in addition to the previously mentioned United Masters League in Germany. nexa is someone who has really elevated his game after leaving Renegades back in 2017 and he is now one of the team’s top fraggers alongside fellow Serbian, Nemanja ‘huNter’ Kovač. As one of the more individually skilled teams in the competition, Valiance will definitely like their chances as EspiranTo and nexa hope to add another trophy to their cabinet.
Valiance will be facing tough competition from AVANGAR, a team that we frequently see at tournaments with a higher level of competition than the one we will see in Rio. AVANGAR mainly plays around their AWPer Ali ‘Jame’ Djami and their performance largely depends on his form. However, it is hard to argue against it as they have had a decent amount of success doing so. AVANGAR showed good form at the major, with wins against the likes of FaZe, NRG and G2 and they will be going up against lesser competition this time around. As such, they will definitely be amongst the favorites to win. It is worth noting, however, that they have had to replace Aidyn ‘KrizzeN’ Turlybekov who has had to take a break due to health reasons. Replacing him will be former Syman player Sanjar ‘SANJI’ Kuliev from Uzbekistan. It’s not a huge blow to the team, but it is worth noting nonetheless. It might even be beneficial in some ways, as SANJI has some experience in-game leading — a role that AVANGAR have struggled to find the ideal person for.
moose will have to be at his best if eUnited are to challenge for the title in Brazil.
Representing the North American region will be eUnited. They are no strangers to DreamHack Open events, as they participated at DreamHack Open Atlanta and DreamHack Open Montreal in 2018. However, the team has gone through plenty of changes since then and now only Kaleb ‘moose’ Jayne remains. eUNITED have scooped up former Swole Patrol players Victor ‘food’ Wong, Edgar ‘MarKE’ Maldonado, Anthony ‘vanity’ Malaspina as well as Austin ‘Cooper-’ Abadir. The pickups were an immediate success as they were able to qualify for this very tournament by beating the likes of INTZ and Swole Patrol. However, they have struggled somewhat since then, losing to the likes of compLexity, INTZ and Furia (Twice). eUnited will need big performances from moose and Cooper in particular if they want to have any chance of challenging teams like AVANGAR, Valiance and Furia for the title in Rio.
The Polish side AGO kicked off 2019 in a good way, as they earned themselves a second place finish at WESG in China with wins against the likes of Team Ukraine and fnatic. They are also no newcomers to DreamHack Open events, as they competed at four of them in 2018. However, they were unable to make it to the playoffs three out of the four times they attended. Their best finish came at DreamHack Open Montreal, but they had to settle for a third/fourth place finish after losing to their Polish rivals Kinguin in the semi-finals.
The Poles have a ton of experience on their side with players such as Dominik ‘GruBy’ Swiderski and Damian ‘Furlan’ Kislowski — and they will make for a difficult opponent for a lot of the teams in the competition. However, history certainly speaks against them as they have never made a final at a DreamHack Open event.
Note: Luminosity and AGO have withdrawn and will be replaced by INTZ and Redemption eSports.
Lastly, the two big underdogs will be Sharks and W7M. Sharks are the most experienced of the two and they have a few decent wins on their record against the likes of North and TYLOO. However, it would take a lot for them to go far in a tournament like this. As for W7M, this will be the first time that they compete at this level.
This tournament will be completely up for the taking as there is no clear favorite here. The format with best-of-ones in the opening and winners matches does allow for some upsets and we have seen teams like Luminosity in the 20/1 range make it all the way to the final in the past. I would personally say that teams like AVANGAR, Valiance and Furia all have a good shot at winning the whole thing and I would give AVANGAR a slight edge over the latter two. If the oddsmakers opt to post a big number on Luminosity again I would personally be tempted to put a bet down on them despite their recent form. Either on the Top 2 market or as an Outright Winner for a potential hedging opportunity. Simply due to their previous history of making finals at events like this in addition to the support that they will have from the fans in Rio.