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Pick: Seattle Surge to win.
Atlanta FaZe are strong favorites heading into this match as far as the odds are concerned, but Atlanta FaZe are far from invincible, and Seattle Surge got the better of them last year in the Major 3 Grand Final with a score of 5-3.
Atlanta FaZe’s strange form in finals might’ve had something to do with this, but it shouldn’t take away from Seattle Surge’s performance on that day and throughout the tournament. Atlanta FaZe got one back over Seattle Surge in the CDL Champs Losers Final 2022 before losing in the Grand Finals. Seattle Surge are definitely worth a punt in this tie. There’s little to no reward in picking Atlanta FaZe in most ties, and there aren’t many teams with rewarding odds against them, so this is a great game to gamble.
Seattle Surge will have to perform better than they have for most of the season, but teams tend to turn up against Atlanta FaZe, so motivation should be no issue.
Seattle Surge were among the strongest teams in the big competitions last season. They started last year with an appearance in the Kickoff Classic, won Major 4, and made it as far as the losers' final in the CDL Champs. They haven’t come close to recreating the same sort of form in the league this season.
They’ve lost 13 of their 25 league games this season. They looked like they were back to their best when they went on a four-game winning streak towards the end of February and the start of March, but have been a bit inconsistent since that run.
They have a decent record on all the game modes but haven’t really dominated any mode. In Pred, they have someone who is one of the best players in the CDL, but he’s not got the support that his talent necessitates. He averages one or above on all three modes. He also has a highly impressive kills per 10 minutes record of 27.6 and 20.9 on Hardpoint and Control, respectively.
His kills per-round record of 0.72 on Pred is also highly impressive. Despite his apparent strengths, Seattle Surge are a bit easy to play against because most teams know that by neutralizing his impact on the game, they’ll have a strong chance of winning the match.
Sib has done quite well for the side this season, but other members like Accuracy and Mack need to step up. Accuracy, for example, hasn’t got a KD over 0.96 in any of the game modes, which is a big concern. At this level, accommodating a weaker player can be the difference between winning and losing a game.
Atlanta FaZe are topping the league once again. The league isn’t a concern anymore; the problem recently has been their form in big knockout ties. Seattle Surge were one of the teams that got the better of them last year.
Seattle Surge’s big win came in the Major 3 Grand Final, and Seattle Surge weren’t the only team to get the better of Atlanta FaZe in a big match last season. FaZe also lost in the Grand Finals of the Major, Major 2, CDL Champs 2022, and the losers final of the Major 4.
This seems like a psychological issue, as there’s nothing in the stats that suggests they have a weakness. Their record on Hardpoint and Control is incredible, with 53 wins and 37 losses in the former and 35 wins and 20 losses in the latter.
The record in Search & Destroy isn’t as impressive, with 38 wins and 34 losses, but it’s still better than most teams in the league. They have an absolute superstar in Cellium, who doesn’t average under 1.20 KD on any game mode. Team members, Arcitys and aBeZy, aren’t great on Hardpoint with KDs below 0.96, but Cellium’s incredible form on this map makes up for it – Cellum averages an incredible 25.7 kills per 10 minutes on this game mode.
Any attempt to identify a weakness is compensated for with some strength. Atlanta FaZe’s problems aren’t team cohesion or tactics related – they are clearly of a different nature. Since this isn’t a big knockout match, they shouldn’t have a lot of trouble, but Seattle Surge are a side that’s troubled them in the past, so they must be wary.
Teams: Seattle Surge vs Atlanta FaZe
Location: United States of America
Time: Thursday, April 20, 2023
How to watch: Twitch
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]More info on Nikhil Kalro
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