Lazarus, CLG Red, Singularity off to hot starts in Winners League
Steven R. April 16, 2019
Winners League Season 2 is moving full steam ahead and delivering exactly the kind of action that Counter-Strike: Global Offensive fans are looking for.
Whether it’s world class squads putting on a show or two evenly matched teams combining for a double-overtime nailbiter, Winners League delivered both this week. Fans got to see one of Swole Patrol’s first games under the Lazarus Esports umbrella, Counter Logic Gaming Red took the long road towards a 2-0 record, and Virtus.pro began its climb back to the top.
Team of the Week: Team Singularity
It’s still early on in Winners League, but Team Singularity looks like one of the teams to beat in North America. Singularity became the first in either division to reach a 3-0 record and encountered very little difficulty along the way, courtesy of multiple monster performances by star player Ricky "floppy" Kemery.
Singularity’s season kicked off with a 16-3 shellacking of IdentityDisorder Esports. The team sprinted out of the gate to rack up a 9-0 lead over IdentityDisorder and never left the outcome in doubt, with Floppy running wild and racking up a 29-11 K/D in just 19 rounds.
He came back to Earth a bit in his second Winners League game, but still managed to top the scoreboard in another lopsided Singularity win. Facing Lowkey Esports, Singularity looked solid early on Nuke but the door remained open for a possible comeback with an 11-4 score at halftime. Though it was playing on the T side in the second half, Singularity slammed that door shut by breaking off five straight to seal a 16-4 win.
Singularity’s most competitive game came a day later opposite Team Hyper in the North America division’s first game on new map Vertigo. Though Hyper’s 1Edward1 was a real threat throughout, Floppy was once again a difference maker with Singularity turning his 27-18 line into a strong 16-10 win.
Play of the Week: The Wrath of WrathzZz!
When New Identity’s economy was shredded by an eco round in its game against Grizzlys Esports, it looked like the two teams were set for a competitive game. Though the squad formerly known as MASSIVEimpact stood as the clear favorite, their Canadian foes theoretically had the tools to put some rounds together.
Instead, Collin "wrathzZz" McSweegan scrounged up just enough money for an M4 and armor and turned that into a tidal wave of momentum for New Identity.
He scored first blood in the round to cut Grizzlys off from the bomb and give teammate Sebastian "seb" Bucki an AK-47. That slowed down the push in a big way, allowing New Identity to position themselves around Grizzlys and look for kills.
That didn’t come easily as Grizzlys managed trades, but when things boiled down to a one versus one, WrathzZz made sure to close out the round the same way he opened it. He scored the headshot, got the defuse, and set New Identity down the path towards a 16-1 win.
Game to Watch Next Week: Virtus.pro vs. OFFSET Esports
Virtus.pro and OFFSET Esports are both off to solid starts in the Europe division’s group A, but at least one of them will lose their undefeated status by this time next week.
Virtus.pro needs no introduction to fans. The organization is among the largest in all of esports and has a long and storied history in CS:GO. The team is in a rebuilding phase, but entered this Winners League season as one of the favorites to win and have lived up to those expectations thus far with wins over the Copenhagen Flames and eSuba.
OFFSET doesn’t have that same name recognition, but the Portuguese team has looked lights out in its first two games of the season. It kicked things off by toppling Berzerk 16-4 and followed that up with 16-6 victory over Codewise Unicorns.
Though many will look at the Polish team as the favorite based on brand recognition alone, OFFSET is positioned to really put up a fight. The match is set to take place on April 18.