We break down two of today's matches at DreamHack Open, including a classic Swedish derby between fnatic and NiP.
NiP will clash against against fnatic in this Swedish derby. This is a classic matchup and it usually delivers on all fronts. fnatic have been the dominant side in this matchup so far this year, beating NiP in three of out four meetings. However, it is worth noting that NiP had to play with their coach in their most recent match. nawwk is now back on the main lineup and they breezed through OG in their last match.
The map veto in this matchup will be key and I think it will play out differently compared to what we have seen in the past since a lot has happened over the past few months. fnatic have commonly been banning Vertigo in this matchup in the past, but they now have started floating it frequently even against the best Vertigo teams in the world. Meanwhile, NiP have completely abandoned this map under hampus’ leadership. in fact, it is now one of their worst maps in terms of overall win rate. NiP are currently on a five game losing streak on Vertigo, while fnatic are on a three game winning streak in the month of October. These wins have come against some of the best Vertigo teams in the world as well, with wins against Vitality and G2. With this in mind, it really would not surprise me if fnatic even picked it here against NiP. This gives them an ever bigger edge in this series, in my opinion.
Interestingly, NiP actually went for the Nuke pick in their last game against fnatic, and they were able to take them to OT with THREAT standing in for nawwk, who is their highest rated player on Nuke. This is a bad map for both teams, but it may be their best shot at beating fnatic. If they pick Overpass or Train, I am gonna give fnatic the edge here by a significant margin. Mirage is their second best option and I suspect this is going to be their pick. Anything can happen in these domestic matchups, but I like fnatic here on their map choice.
Vitality have been such a consistent force over the year, but they are now set to face off against their nemesis, Astralis. They haven’t beaten Astralis in a BO3 once this year, with the Danes winning five straight matches. They were able to take Astralis to a decider in their most recent match after picking Vertigo, but they just haven’t been able to beat them on Dust2, and this is what makes this match so difficult for them. I think that Vitality definitely have a shot on Vertigo, but Astralis are big favourites to get things done here over the course of three maps.