FaZe: Long past viable

FaZe Clan made it to the top-eight of the London Major, where the team went out of the competition 0-2 to Astralis, the eventual winners. This marks the latest in a long strong of failures for this line-up, which is one of the most star-studded in the history of esports, and should put to bed any lingering doubts about whether it might still work.

The superteam was constructed in the wake of their failure at Krakow 2017, where a FaZe with NiKo already on board finished in last place, despite already having made a massive move. The second-place in Boston looks like the sort of progress you’d want to make, but the fact is they choked - it should have been a victory. Cloud 9 were gifted their first Major.

At this point, there are a couple of directions FaZe could go but, if you want to keep the core of the team, then the first move is obvious. With the greatest of respect for Karrigan, those who defend him based on results are starting to sound a bit tired, as it becomes increasingly clear than the likes of Na’Vi’s Zeus and even ChrisJ are capable of achieving more with similar, or even fewer, resources.

The alternative would be to keep Karrigan and rebuild around him, but that makes no logical sense when you look at what happened in London. The team was able to achieve more with NiKo leading than they were under Karrigan, despite the latter having weeks to prepare them for the event and more than a year with the team at this point.

Painted into a corner

So, assuming that Karrigan has to go, the question then becomes who comes in as leader? The world’s best are probably gla1ve and FalleN, although the former is way ahead of the latter right now, but neither of those is available. Outside of that, you have the likes of ChrisJ, nitr0 and MSL leading teams in the top ten, but they all seem to have some shortfall or weakness if you watch their current rosters.

That leaves you with making one of the current team in-game leader, and bringing in a new player to help the team. As an option, bringing in s1mple or coldzera might seem sexy, but the flip side is that there is already a lack of space on the team and Karrigan leaving would reduce the number of support players by one. A tricky situation, no doubt.

Still, this is where FaZe are, and should not be, given the level of spending that has already taken place. Somehow, by signing players everyone wanted, they have painted themselves into a corner like no other, one which is likely to require a massive pile of cash to escape from. Let’s hope they have the impetus to spend those dollars, too, as FaZe are great for CSGO, but right now they are going nowhere.