The first map, Mirage, saw Team Liquid punt the game in epic fashion.
Liquid entered the match on a 15-map winning streak on Mirage at live events, and seemed ready to make it 16 as they stormed ahead to a 12-3 lead by the end of the first half. Instead, Grayhound started the second half with an eight-round streak and went on to take the game 16-13.
Team Liquid seemed to be off the mark after that. The Australian team seized every advantage while competing against Liquid on Nuke and opened with a strong T half.
Liquid seemed ready to run away with the game after the second pistol round as they won it and converted twice. But once again Liquid was unable to get back on track when things started going sideways
Grayhound seemed to have an answer for every play Liquid attempted and consistently got the better of duels. With a final score of 16-10 Grayhound managed to beat the top-ranked team in CSGO.
Unfortunately for Grayhound, that didn’t lead to anything larger. The team was eliminated from the group stage one round later, after losing to Mousesports.
Team Liquid looked unbeatable in the first half of 2019 but seem to be slipping from those heights as 2020 approaches.
They were beaten by a resurgent Astralis at both the StarLadder Berlin Major and at ESL One New York. While losing to the four-time major champions is understandable, falling to the comparatively weaker Grayhound at Dreamhack Masters Malmo is a bit worrying
The team has been on a whirlwind schedule of late and that isn’t slowing down anytime soon. The team will be juggling ESL Pro League Season 10 and ECS Season 8 action through the rest of October and will then turn around to compete at BLAST Pro Series Copenhagen and IEM XIV Beijing.
If the lineup is dealing with burnout, they won’t have the chance to deal with it any time soon.