Blast Copenhagen: The top dogs

Yesterday, we took at look at some of the teams involved in the Blast Pro Series event due to start in Copenhagen tomorrow, and today we continue that preview with a run down of the most likely winners. There are no bad teams in Copenhagen this weekend, but it’s fair to say the three we look at today are the best of the bunch, and if the winner doesn’t come from this group it will be a shock to everyone watching.

The big three

Astralis, Na’Vi and FaZe are the obvious giants prior to this tournament, and the Danes are favourites on pretty much every level. From a gameplay point of view, they’re ahead of the pack, and they are also playing on home soil here. Having decided not to compete in Moscow, there is no real risk of burnout for the Danes either, who have looked imperious in recent online games, and should be feared by the rest, coming in as reigning champions.

To add to that, dev1ce is in the best form we've seen in a while, which is saying something for one of the most consistent players in the world. If that isn’t enough, the people who own their org own the tournament too, so the under-the-table side of things should take care of itself…

In case you weren’t sure, the above was a joke, but the way FaZe Clan turned on the style at EPICENTER certainly didn’t make Na’Vi laugh, or even smile. Their recent ‘home’ tournament was upset by the superteam in spectacular fashion, who not only won the event, but beat Liquid and Na’Vi 2-0 in doing so, dominating the final map in the process.

As a result, we think it is Na’Vi who come in with something to prove, and electronic in particular. The man called Denis lives in s1mple’s shadow to some extent, and it’s a testament to his professionalism and intelligence that he’s not pushing for a move to a worse team where he can be the star. However, after he went missing in Grand Finals at EPICENTER, it might be that electronic bounce back with some shockingly good play, and if that lines up with peak s1mple Astralis and the rest need to be worried.

As for FaZe, EPICENTER showed you can never write them off, but this shouldn’t be a second win in a few weeks for the NiKo project. Astralis seem to have their number, and with Na’Vi also out for revenge we think it’s most likely FaZe finish third, with a 1 v 1 exhibition to enjoy, rather than another Grand Final. They can win, of course, but they should fear Astralis coming in, based on the way the Danes look.

The future for Blast

Blast are obviously not done here, and they released details of four further stops on the Pro Series this week to accompany the hype around their Copenhagen event. The next event for them will be in Lisbon, Portugal, taking place in December 14-15, with three more slated for spring 2019 and beyond, hosted by São Paulo, Miami, and Madrid.

The Lisbon event, BLAST's final one for the calendar year, will be held in the 20,000-seater Altice Arena in Portugal's capital city, which is fantastic news for a nation that hasn’t produced many top tier talents in the game yet. Hosting in Brazil can be more controversial, with some talent refusing to travel to that part of the world, but Miami and Madrid are the sort of venues that fans and sponsors alike can be really excited about.

This is fantastic news for fans in those nations, and across the world, but for now it's Copenhagen getting us in the Counter-Strike mood. We can't wait to see who goes home with the trophy, as one of the more entertaining TOs on the circuit continues to evolve in the right direction.

Image credit: Blast