Steven R. February 23, 2019
There is still hope left for Cloud9.
Playing in the fourth round of the 2019 Katowice Major Legends Stage, the fan favorite organization scored a key win over HellRaisers. The victory helps the team to avoid elimination and advances them to the final round of the group stage.
Though Cloud9’s entire run in the major to this point has been defined by inconsistency, the squad managed to look good from start to finish in this series.
Starting off on Inferno, the team posted a game reminiscent of its 16-3 shellacking of MiBR at the beginning of the Legends Stage. Punishing any push down banana or apartments with well-timed grenades, Cloud9 forced HellRaisers into an uncomfortably slow offensive style. Its fortunes weren’t much better on defense, as Cloud9 closed in on the victory following a successful second pistol round and sealed things up 16-8.
Things looked a bit shaky on Cache. After Cloud9 started strong in the first half with an 11-4 lead, HellRaisers responded by taking the first seven rounds of the second half. But the North American team buckled down and managed a 16-12 win.
The win keeps Cloud9 alive in the Legends Stage, and lands the team into an elimination series opposite FaZe Clan.
Questions still linger about the state of the organization’s Counter-Strike team. Despite being rich with proven talent, Cloud9’s major run has seen the team struggle to put in consistent performances. Though this game with HellRaisers saw the likes of Robin "flusha" Rönnquist and Fabien "kioShiMa" Fiey post strong performance, this was preceded by a weak showing against Vitality and a 16-0 shutout loss to Astralis.
The current iteration of Cloud9 has faced FaZe Clan before. At the ELEAGUE Invitational, the two played two series with Cloud9 winning 2-0 in the opening round and FaZe taking a 2-1 victory in a grand finals rematch.
Cloud9 has proven itself capable of beating FaZe. It’s just a matter of which version of the team will show up next in Katowice.