The winter break has come to a close and it is time for the first DreamHack Open event of the year.
The winter break has come to a close and it is time for the first DreamHack Open event of the year. Eight teams will duke it out for a combined prize pool of $100,000 in Leipzig, Germany. In this article, we will break down the format, the recent roster moves and the odds for the tournament.
It has been a long winter, but CS:GO is finally back! We kick off the new year with DreamHack Open in Leipzig, Germany, where eight teams will be battling it out for a combined prize pool of $100,000.
This will be the fourth time that DreamHack has hosted an event in Leipzig. Previous winners include the likes of FlipSid3, NaVi, and Sprout. Out of these teams, only Sprout will be attending this year’s event. The Germans defeated domestic rivals Unicorns of Love and expert eSports in last year’s tournament, which was a four-team event labeled the Winter National. The competition has been upped significantly this time around, with teams like North and Heroic that have had a lot of success at DreamHack Open events in the past.
The format should be of no surprise if you have been watching any of the DreamHack Open events in the past. The group stage is double-elimination (GSL style) with two groups of four. The opening- and winners matches will be BO1. However, the elimination and decider matches will be BO3, which ensures that no team gets eliminated without playing at least one BO3. The playoffs will be single-elimination and all matches are BO3.
The groups are as follows:
DreamHack Open Leipzig kicks off January 24 and runs through January 26.
Like many of the other teams in this competition, BIG opted to make some roster changes during the Christmas break after a string of poor results. smooya and nex have been dropped in favor of syrsoN and k1to, two players that have shown plenty of promise under the banner of Sprout. The communication has been an ever-present issue for this team. However, there is no denying the individual skill that they have at their disposal and perhaps a change of personnel will be enough to revigorate this BIG side.
Cloud9 have chosen to acquire the roster formely known as ATK. The team most notably includes two rising stars in the North American region; floppy and motm, as well as Sonic, who is arguably the best player to ever come out of South Africa. This side surprised many with their performance at the EPL Finals, where they defeated the likes of North and G2 in BO3s. They have had a great start under the Cloud9 banner, winning against the likes of MIBR, Complexity, INTZ and eUnited in online matches.
Renegades have chosen to let go of DickStacy, who has been forced to take a break due to his eye condition. In comes Hatz, who should be able to slot in just fine as he has played alongside both Sico and INS during his time on ORDER. We last saw Renegades in action at the EPL Finals, where they went out in groups after losses to Astralis and the eventual winners; mousesports. However, they were able to push mousesports to a decider after winning Nuke, a map that they have proven to be very strong on even against top international competition.
After a long stretch of poor results, Virtus.pro chose to let go of their Polish roster. Instead, they have acquired the team formerly known as AVANGAR. Their most recent outing was at EPICENTER, where they bombed out of groups after losses to mousesports and forZe. AVANGAR mixed good with bad during 2019, getting second place at the coveted Berlin major in addition to wins at DreamHack Open Rio and BLAST Pro Series Moscow. AVANGAR attended three more DreamHack Open events after their win in Rio, failing to make the finals at all three of these tournaments. This just shows how volatile they are as a team. A lot depends on Jame, who is the big star of this team. If they can set him up to succeed, they can beat just about anyone.
Heroic closed out the year with a 3rd-4th finish at EPICENTER 2019 — A result that looks better than it actually was. They were only able to beat EHOME and forZe, losing to NaVi twice and Vitality in the semi-finals. However, they have proven to be far more effective at DreamHack Open events where the competition isn’t as fierce. They attended three DreamHack Open events last year, winning in Atlanta and finishing as the runner-up in Rotterdam.
The Spanish organization MAD Lions acquired the team formerly known as Tricked in a deal that was described as “The biggest transfer in Danish esports history”. Tricked showed great form throughout 2019, winning the V4 Future Sports Festival in addition to runner-up finishes at Good Game League, DreamHack Open Winter, and WePlay! Forge of Masters. Bubzkji has been a star for this team, and the likes of sjuush and roeJ have stepped up and delivered big performances despite being largely unknown outside Denmark before making their debut for Tricked.
North had a rough time in 2019 and often found themselves on the losing end even in domestic matchups against Heroic and Tricked. Losing their main talisman, valde, to OG back in October only made things worse. This forced a roster move, and MSL has now returned to North after a tenure with OpTic and Rogue. I expect MSL to bring some much-needed structure to this team and I would not be surprised to see them win here. North may not be a good team at the highest level, but their track record at DreamHack Open events is excellent. They have won every single Open tournament that they have attended except DreamHack Summer 2018. They won Sevilla in 2019, Valencia and Tours in 2018 and Montreal in 2017.
Sprout had two of their big stars poached by their big brother in the German scene; BIG. Goddammit, why would you name your team BIG? Anyways.. k1to and syrsoN packed their bags and Sprout had to look for replacements. In comes, oskar, who was considered one of the best players in the world only a year or two ago — As well as dycha, one of the biggest talents to come out of Poland. I actually think that this team has some upset potential, but sadly they find themselves in the group of death. The communication aspect is also a question mark, as they will be switching over from German to English with the addition of oskar and Dycha. With that said, I definitely wouldn’t rule out Sprout in a BO1 against any of these teams.
Personally, I think that the winner will likely come out of Group B. The Danish trio of North, Heroic and MAD Lions have a great track record at DreamHack Open events. While Virtus.Pro probably has the highest upside out of all these teams, they have been far too volatile for me to ever bet them at this number. Renegades and Cloud9 are both teams on the up, but I still favor the Danes in the long run. As such, the bet that I like the most is Group B in the “Winner’s Group” market at odds of 1.65.
In terms of longshots, it is hard to ignore the Germans on home soil at these numbers. They may not win this event, but they can certainly win their groups due to the BO1 format. The play that stands out is “BIG to win Group A” at odds of 7.50, but you can also make a case for their German counterparts in Group B.