DreamHack Open Winter is set to get underway in Jönköping, Sweden
This should be a good one, as many of these teams are coming in hot. Need to catch up on the recent action? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered with a breakdown of the format, teams and betting for this tournament of ancient lineage.
DreamHack Open Winter is an annual tournament that has been running since the very start of CS:GO. The event takes place in Jönköping, Sweden and like all of the DreamHack Open events, it features a $100,000 prize pool.
The format has remained consistent at DreamHack Open events for the last few years. There are eight teams in total, five of whom received direct invites while the rest of the teams qualified. For this particular tournament, there was one European and one Swedish qualifier and lastly, one spot was handed out to the winner of the Finnish Esports League.
The teams have been seeded into two groups of four and will play through a GSL style bracket. The opening and winners matches will be best-of-one, while the elimination and decider matches are best-of-three — ensuring that no team gets eliminated without playing at least one best-of-three. The playoffs will be all best-of-threes — including the final.
The groups are as follows:
These tournaments tend to act as a bit of a springboard for teams on the up, and we have seen plenty of teams kickstart their run to the top at these events. Last year, ENCE won this event before heading over to Katowice for the major, a tournament in which they made it all the way to the finals.
DreamHack Open Winter starts November 29 and will finish December 1.
We last saw forZe in action at DreamHack Open Rotterdam, where they were knocked out in the semis by Heroic. Before that, they beat the likes of ENCE and NaVi to make finals at BLAST Pro Series Moscow. forZe have plenty of fire-power, and Jerry has proven at this point that he is a capable in-game leader. Their recent online results have been a bit shoddy recently, but I would not put too much stock into that. Tricked and FURIA are favorites to make it out of Group A, but I would definitely give forZe a good chance to challenge them, especially considering the format.
This will be FURIA’s third event with HEN1, who joined the team in October. Their most recent showing was not too shabby, as they made third-place at a very competitive DreamHack Masters Malmö with wins against the likes of Vitality, G2 and Renegades (100 Thieves). HEN1 has looked very good so far for FURIA, but arT probably still has more to give in his role as a rifler and secondary AWPer. FURIA will have had some time to iron out their flaws, and I would not be surprised to see them do well here.
Despite losing b0RUP to Heroic back in August, Tricked were able to win the V4 Esports Festival after wins against mousesports, MIBR and Virtus.Pro. What HUNDEN has done with this Tricked team is impressive, and whoever they choose to bring in appear to perform way above expectation. Both sjuush and roeJ have been solid so far for Tricked, and Bubzskji is going from strength to strength. They are definitely a team to look out for going forward.
Marskalk made it through the Swedish qualifier, most notably beating Ancient with players like draken and FREDDyFROG. However, like the odds show they will be massive underdogs here. We saw a Swedish team come out and turn some heads at last year’s event in the form of x6tence Galaxy, but the talent on that team was quite a few steps above this one. If they want to make it out, they need to take advantage of the opening BO1, as winning two BO3s will likely be too much for an inexperienced team like Marskalk, who by the way just replaced one of their players.
CR4ZY are coming off a 3rd-4th place finish at DreamHack Open Atlanta. Before that, they won DreamHack Open Rotterdam after defeating Heroic in the final. An impressive feat considering that they had just lost nexa and huNter to G2 just days before that event. There is no doubt that they still have plenty of quality on this side with players like SHiPZ, EspiranTo and ottoNd, but I have a hard time seeing them repeat that feat here.
The former NoChance and SMASH roster have finally found an organization that pays the bills in the form of GODSENT, and they immediately found success by winning the WePlay Forge of Masters Season 2 Finals. This is an interesting team in the sense that it is made up of players that were left out and perhaps underappreciated in other teams. In particular, STYKO and Maikelele appear to be thriving in this team. The recent addition of Maden seems to have given them a solid boost in the fragging department, as well.
Heroic are coming in as the favorite to win this event at odds of 3.70. The Danes have had a meteoric rise since picking up cadiaN, getting second place at DreamHack Open Rotterdam and winning DreamHack Open Atlanta. In typical Danish fashion, Heroic have proven to be fundamentally sound and their teamwork is what stands out the most. Individually, stavn is the clear standout on this team, but pretty much everyone on the roster is chiming in with good performances— much like their big brother, Astralis.
SJ, formerly known as SuperJymy, qualified for this event by winning the Finnish Esports League. The star of this team is Jamppi, who is widely regarded as one of the biggest talents in Europe right now. Teams like OG have been rumored to be interested in the young Finn, but a VAC banned account seems to be in the way of a potential move. His team will be coming in as a big underdog here, and their upside is likely a BO1 win or two.
This tournament is very difficult to predict, and the odds accurately reflect that. The majority of these teams have won LANs recently and they match up quite evenly. There is no clear favorite here as far as I am concerned, and I think you could make an argument for just about anyone winning this except SJ and Marskalk. In terms of outrights, there is no one that really stands out as value, so instead, I would target individual matches. Out of the top teams, CR4ZY is the team that I feel the least confident about and I would feel inclined to bet against them in this one.