ESL Pro League Season 14 group stage betting preview

Kenneth Williams • August 15, 14:58

The newest season of ESL Pro League will be the last big Counter-Strike: Global Offensive betting opportunity before the Stockholm Major in October.

The Electronic Sports League attracted the best CSGO teams with the promise of $750,000 in an online tournament. ESL Pro League Season 14 will be the final top-level proving round before the  $2,000,000 major in Stockholm.

The first stage of ESL Pro League is a group stage where four groups of six teams compete in a round-robin. The winner of each group advances to the playoff quarterfinals while the second and third teams start in the round of 12. If you’re looking to bolster your funds for the exciting playoffs matchups, these are the teams to watch at the ESL Pro League Season 14 group stage.

Group A – Heroic and Astralis

The champion of ESL Pro League Season 13, Heroic, is back and ready to defend the crown. The Danish squad took a tumble at IEM Cologne, but they should be more comfortable in an online environment. That loss can be your gain, as bookmakers appear to be undervaluing Heroic. You can earn a 1.54 times return on Heroic if they defeat ENCE in the opening round.

The other Danish stack, Astralis, is also an interesting bet. The squad will use the same starting roster as IEM Cologne, where they earned third. The squad’s most recent addition, Philip “Lucky” Ewald, won’t be starting just yet. Even with the subprime roster situation, the combined firepower of Emil “Magisk” Reif and Peter “dupreeh” Rasmussen is enough to secure playoffs. 1.89 odds for Astralis over Team Spirit is a good opportunity for faith in the Danes.

Group B – G2 and Complexity

G2 Esports is fresh off the organization’s biggest paycheck since 2017. Nemanja “nexa” Isaković’s gang secured second in Cologne, and they will carry some of that momentum into ESL Pro League. Nikola “NiKo” Kovač is the player to watch, with 83.1 damage and .74 kills per round at recent tournaments. 1.62 odds for G2 to beat OG is difficult to pass up.

G2 Esports is a clear group B favorite but the runner-up is a tie between Virtus.pro and Complexity Gaming. Both teams have an extremely even matchup spread. But Complexity appears to be the more underrated. The recent signing of Patrick “es3tag” Hansen should considerably improve the squad’s performance. Complexity’s 1.95 odds against Virtus.pro makes it a very attractive underdog bet.

Group C – Na’Vi and FaZe 

Let’s be real. Natus Vincere is very, very likely to win ESL Pro League Season 14. The squad stomped over nearly every team at IEM Cologne and finished G2 in the grand final 3-0. Not even the oddsmakers want to go against Oleksandr “s1mple” Kostyliev. The highest odds you’ll find for Na’Vi is a paltry 1.38 against FaZe Clan.

FaZe will probably mop up any other squad still standing. The stack looked fantastic in Cologne and Group C is arguably the most lopsided bunch of the preliminaries. With the exception of Na’Vi, FaZe Clan is a safe bet for every matchup. FaZe’s 1.83 odds to beat Mousesports have it pegged as the most contentious match for the international all-stars.

Group D – Gambit and NiP

Gambit ended IEM Cologne with a slightly disappointing fifth place. That tricked the oddsmakers into severely underrating the team. Young guns Sergey “Ax1Le” Rykhtorov and Dmitry “sh1ro” Sokolov have earned a combined 1.49 kills in every round of 2021. 2.00 odds for Gambit 2-0 over Furia is much higher than it should be.

Ninjas in Pyjamas is the final team to watch during the ESL Pro League Season 14 group stage. New AWPer Nicolai “dev1ce” Reedtz was still settling into his role during IEM Cologne. Nicolas “Plopski” Zamora and Fredrik “REZ” Sterner aren’t slacking off either. A $20 bet on NiP over Team Liquid in two maps would earn $53.6.

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