Image for Nikhil Kalro Nikhil Kalro - October 14, 2022

FunSpark Ulta Finals Picks, Predictions, Odds January 21

  • World No. 2 Gambit will look to Sh1ro to lead them to another final
  • BIG start as slight favorites against resurgent K23 in upper bracket semi
  • Syrson, Faven will be BIG’s most proficient offensive keys against K 23

Entropiq vs Gambit

Gambit (moneyline)

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Funspark Finals January 21

Entropiq vs Gambit Predictions

Entropiq made short work of Ecstatic in their previous game in the upper bracket quarter final to book a spot with one of the best teams in the world in pro CS:GO presently. Entropiq beat Ecstatic without dropping a map 16-5 (in Mirage), 22-18 (in Vertigo).

Gambit needed a third map but they still came out on top after a tough match against Complexity in their previous match. Gambit are the world’s second best team, which will definitely count for something in the pressure of a semi final.

Gambit start as favorites and rightly so but it would prove to be errant to discount Entropiq entirely. They could win a map in this one or even run Gambit close in both maps, but I am still backing Gambit for the win after the end of this match.

Forester Steps Up For Entropiq

Forester provided a strong statement against Ecstatic as he racked up 55 kills with just 45 deaths. He even had the best average damage per round in the whole match, with 91. He had a KAST of over 70 as well. Forester will continue to be very important against Gambit.

Apart from Forester, Entropiq had several others chipping in as well. In fact, all five players had a positive K-D ratio, which is indicative that the reliance on one player is not present in this team. Lack1 had the second best K-D after putting up 47 kills with just 41 deaths.

By his standards, El1an had a quiet game. He registered just 38 kills but was excellent defensively, with just 33 deaths. That protected his in-game economy and helped Entropiq a lot in the duress of an overtime map in Vertigo.

Sh1ro In Unstoppable Form

Sh1ro was in sensational rhythm in the previous match, registering a stunning K-D ratio. In fact, he racked up 85 kills with just 47 deaths, taking his K-D to +38! That is amazing, by any standard of measure. That was not a flash in the pan performance. Sh1ro has done this repeatedly, which is why he has earned his name as one of the best players in the world.

Ax1le and Hobbit also produced admirable stats. Ax1le had a strong K-D of +15 after putting up 68 kills with just 53 deaths. He had an average damage per round of 87.8. Another solid performance was coming from Hobbit, who had 65 kills and 59 deaths with an average damage per round of over 80.

This team will hard to stop for any team in the tournament if Sh1ro can keep up this level of production as well as earn some support from his colleagues. In this particular match against Entropiq, I do not expect Gambit to have any issues down the stretch.

Head To Head Mismatch

There is a fairly big difference between these two teams. They have played each other in 17 maps , with Gambit winning 13 of those. That is quite a dominant record for one of the world’s best teams.

Gambit have a map win percentage of at least 50 in each of their last few attempts, which will inspire them with plenty of confidence as well. Gambit’s lowest map win percentage is 50, as they have split their last six attempts in Mirage.

Entropiq, on the other hand, have a few holes to plug with urgency, including Dust2, where they have won just three of their last nine attempts. Entropiq are not as strong a team across maps, which could leave some gaps for Gambit to latch onto. And if Sh1ro finds his best form, then this could be a long game for Entropiq.

K23 vs BIG Pick

 BIG (moneyline)

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K23 vs BIG Predictions

K23 will take plenty of confidence from their recent result, a 2-1 win against Astralis in their previous match to secure their spot in the semis of this match. K23 are not as good a team as Astralis when you make comparisons on paper but they showed their dynamism where it mattered while the former world No. 1 team imploded.

BIG were pushed all the way by Fnatic in a thrilling three map encounter. BIG eventually won 16-7, 17-19, 16-12 and will therefore take plenty of inspiration and confidence from that result against one of the better teams in the world.

K23 will definitely push BIG in this as well. However, BIG have a lot of work to do in 2022 to come close to their level of production in the last few months. They will want to, at least, put a strong foot forward in the new year. And that begins with a solid performance against K23 as they seek a spot in the next stage of FunSpark Ulta.

Xsepower Provides Offensive Production

In their last match against Astralis, Xsepower was the only player to generate a positive K-D as he registered 73 kills with just 66 deaths. He was the only player from K23 to have a kill rate higher than his death rate. That will be the first problem for K23 in this tough fixture.

K23 will now need offense from several of the other players as well to stand any chance against one of the better teams in the world. Fame has registered 0.71 kills with just 0.60 deaths per round in the last three months of CS:GO action. He will be one player, for example, that the team will be looking at for some more production.

In terms of form, there is not a lot that K 23 will be complaining about. They are currently on a 10 match winning streak, which will certainly aid their play through the various maps. They will definitely need the edge in as many factors as possible in this fixture.

Syrson Produces A Stellar Performance

Syrson has not quite his best level of form in the last few matches. But he is now starting to correct that with strong performances. He generated a strong game in the previous match against Fnatic with 67 kills and 50 deaths. That K-D of +17 was comfortably the highest in the match, another indicator that BIG will be hard to dislodge down the stretch.

In the last few months, it has been Faven, who has led the overall efficiency but he had a negative K-D in the last match as he managed just 44 kills with just 49 deaths. A negative K-D for one of their best players and still managing to come through is a sign of great things for BIG but they will have to find a way to sustain that form, which is the hard part.

Tabsen did plenty of damage in that match as well. While he did not have a stunning K-D, he was still productive as he generated 68 kills and 64 deaths at an average damage per round of 87.5. He was a key figure in BIG’s rise, and they will want him to come good again.

Form vs Experience

This could well come down to just how much momentum K23 has picked up in their last 10 matches, all wins. It is important to note that some of those wins came against lower profile opponents, who are not quite at the same level as they are. Still, form is form. The experience certainly lies with BIG, who are now ranked No. 15 in the world in the pro rankings. They have been through the curves of the professional circuit, and will now be eager to correct some of the errors they made last year.

They start with a stronger roster, and one that is more than capable of challenging even the best in the world. They do have some map gaps, including Nuke, where they won just three of their last nine maps. They have a win percentage of 43 in Inferno, in their last seven attempts. These are all areas than K 23 could use to find an edge. They will need them all.

How to Watch FunSpark Ulta Finals

FunSpark Ulta Finals Information
Teams Entropiq vs Gambit, K23 vs BIG
Location Online event, conducted in Europe
Time Friday, January 21 at 6.00 AM EST onwards
How to watch Twitch, HLTV Live

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AUTHOR

Nikhil Kalro

251 Articles

With an interest in strategy and mathematics, applying that to sports writing was the natural progression. A writer at night and the founder of a gaming company, Nikhil’s previous experience includes working with ESPN for five years. His specialization includes soccer, basketball, tennis, and esports betting. Email: [email protected]

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