Credit: NAVI

Preview Group C: Who will join NAVI in the playoffs?

Group C could easily be the most entertaining group in this year's ESL Pro League.

With all the surprise storylines of the tournament so far, we are eager to see, if we will see another huge upset at the tournament, where number 3, 5, and 6 in the world (G2, Virtus.pro, and Astralis) have already been knocked out.

Group C:

1. Natus Vincere

Together with Gambit, s1mple and his teammates have been the most consistent team in 2021. The inclusion of Valerii 'b1t' Vakhovskyi as a permanent fifth man has been a solid move from the CIS Organization. The young Ukrainian has produced some solid numbers, that helped his team to a great victory at IEM Cologne. The team starts their run at ESL Pro League with a match against Fnatic, where they are huge favorites to take home the three points. We also have them as clear favorites to win the group.

2. FaZe

Judged by their individual skills, FaZe ranks as one of the best teams in the world. Their excellent showing at IEM Cologne gave some much-needed hope for the team. The question is, how will FaZe perform back online? The team has had horrible performances online in 2021, so what FaZe team will we get to see at Pro League? We think they will carry on the good form from IEM Cologne and show some of the moves, that made them beat Gambit in their last tournament.

3. mousesports

There is a potential big match coming up in the last round of Group C. mousesports and BIG collides in a battle, that very well could determine who books the last spot in the playoffs. Since the roster move that saw in-game leader Finn 'karrigan' Andersen switch to FaZe bringing in Australia's finest Christopher 'dexter' Nong as his replacement, the trend has been positive for mouz, who has improved throughout 2021 with one exemption. At IEM Cologne the team lost both their opening matches and caused the team to crash out of the main tournament in the last position. We do think, that the team is strong enough to make it out of this group in third.

4. BIG

You should never write off the Germans! In reality, BIG could end up anywhere from 1st to 4th in this group, but given the circumstances of them making a late roster move, we have placed them in the bottom of their range. İsmailсan 'XANTARES' Dörtkardeş and his impressive firepower are gone and replaced by the 26-year-old Dane, Nicklas 'gade' Gade, who has some big shoes to fill. The former North player joined the team in the beginning of the month, and it will be interesting to see, how the roster change will affect the team.

5. Fnatic

A new chapter in the book of Fnatic was written with the signing of the two Englishmen Alex 'ALEX' McMeekin, and William 'mezii' Merriman. For the first time in history, the team will not be entirely Swedish. The move that sent Maikil 'Golden' Kunda Selim, and Jesper 'JW' Wecksell on the bench is being tested for the first time at ESL Pro League. The team has dropped down to number 65 in the world, their lowest position on the world rankings since August 2016. We have not seen a competitive match from Fnatic in two months, so it is hard to predict, where they will land in this group. One thing is for sure though, they will be pressure tested right away with their opening match against tournament favorites, Natus Vincere.

6. Evil Geniuses

We predict them to finish last in the group. A dangerous team, however, that can easily win maps from their opponents, if you underestimate them. Polish AWP'er Michał 'MICHU' Müller has been a good addition to the squad, but the team will be severely handicapped by the loss of their in-game leader Peter 'stanislaw' Jarguz, who is on medical leave.

Evil Geniuses will be playing with their coach Damian "daps" Steele as a stand-in. A fact that has lowered all expectations for the team in Group B.

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