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How Na’Vi Won the PGL Major

Written by:
Payton
Published on:
Nov/25/2021

 

PGL Major Stockholm was by far the biggest tournament in the history of CS:GO, being watched concurrently, on average, by 593,000 people. Its Grand Final was viewed by 2.75 million. Those who chose to follow s1mple’s team, Natus Vincere, certainly had the best event viewing experience of their lives. Right at the end, when the greatest player to ever touch the game lifted the first Major trophy of his career, it was an emotional moment for the entire community.

Natus Vincere’s Run at the PGL Major

Being a Major, PGL Stockholm was held in 3 separate stages and all of them offered an excellent show, as well as numerous hyped matches. Those who followed PGL Major’s odds on the top esports websites, such as Rivalry, enjoyed numerous esports betting opportunities throughout the event. 

Because it had earned the Legend status, Na’Vi was exempted from taking part in stage 1, called the New Challengers Stage. No doubt, they would have crushed everyone, but it was still good for them to be able to relax, study the other competitors and then prepare accordingly for every one of them.

 

When the smoke of the first stage cleared, the New Legends Stage had the following participants:

  • Natus Vincere

  • G2 Esports

  • Gambit Esports

  • Heroic

  • Team Vitality

  • FURIA Esports

  • Virtus.pro

  • Ninjas in Pyjamas

  • Entropiq

  • Copenhagen Flames

  • FaZe Clan

  • Astralis

  • MOUZ

  • Team Liquid

  • Evil Geniuses

  • ENCE

The New Legends Stage

Na’Vi started the New Legends Stage well, with a hugely important victory against Heroic. The Danish team would go on to qualify with a 3 W – 1 L result for the Playoffs, giving us a hint that Na’Vi had defeated one of the tournament favorites. And the score was pretty comfortable too: 16 – 11 on Ancient.

Na’Vi’s second game was a stomp against Virtus.pro. The final score was 16 – 4 and s1mple’s stats were off-the-charts again: 22 K – 8 D, with a rating 2.0 of 1.95. But it wasn’t just him who delivered an excellent performance. The entire team played well and even the “worst” player on the roster had a positive score and a rating 2.0 of 0.99. Meanwhile, the entire VP lineup had negative scores.

The 3rd match was a Bo3 series against NiP. At the time, everyone saw this battle as the true Grand Final, assuming that NiP was the 2nd best team in the world. And to be fair, in the global rankings it actually was, while G2 had fallen multiple positions because of its string of poor results. But the match ended much quicker than the fans anticipated. The final score was 16 – 9, 16 – 9. On Nuke, NiP made it look competitive during the first half and was trailing just one round behind Na’Vi. But everything else was a one-sided battle.

 

With 3 flawless wins, Na’Vi advanced to the New Champions Stage, where even harder battles were awaiting them. Or so we thought.

The New Champions Stage

This stage had a different format than the first 2. Instead of the Swiss System, the Single Elimination system was used. And that meant one thing: Na’Vi had no room for error. Or at least no room for 2 errors in the same match. s1mple and his crew needed to win 3 consecutive matches and all 3 of them looked tough.

The first match was against Vitality and it was not easy. Or at least, it was considerably harder than Na’Vi’s fans would have hoped. And the reason for that was ZywOo. He was the only one on the French crew to finish with a positive score. Everyone else was underwater. Meanwhile, the entire Na’Vi roster had positive scores, with Perfecto leading the pack (+22) and s1mple being second (+14). The two maps that got played were Dust II and Nuke and the scores were quite close: 16 – 11 and 16 – 13.

The second match of the New Champions Stage was supposed to be extremely difficult for Na’Vi. s1mple’s team was facing one of its strongest regional rivals, a competitor against whom it had already lost multiple times, including in 2021. But the result was the exact opposite of what people expected. The match ended after just 2 maps and both of them were one-sided: 16 – 8 on Overpass and 16 – 3 on Mirage. On the second map, s1mple had a rating 2.0 of 2.26 and a KD score of +19. You just can’t get more off-the-charts than that.

The Grand Final was a truly beautiful match, thanks in part to G2’s exceptional performance. Unfortunately, NiKo missed the shots of his life while his team was leading and had just one round left to win on map 2, and the match ended with a score of 2 – 0 for Na’Vi. The scores were 16 – 11 on Ancient and 22 – 19 on Nuke.

As a result of this victory, Na’Vi was awarded $1 million and s1mple won both the PGL Major MVP award and the first Major trophy of his career. This was, without a doubt, one of the best CS:GO Majors in the history of the game.

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