Luminosity vs. Na`Vi preview

One of the biggest current rivalries in CS:GO will take place tomorrow between Natus Vincere and Luminosity in the grand final of the MLG Columbus Major; we have prepared a preview to get you up to speed.

We have been in turn shocked and bemused by the MLG Major storylines; titans such as fnatic and Envy have fallen by the wayside while other teams such as Liquid and CLG have dazzled with their ascendancy to 'Legends' status.

In a further indication of the changing nature of the top level of the scene, the grand final will feature two of the best teams in the world duking it out to perhaps determine a new king of the hill, although fnatic may still retain an edge as the world's best due to past form.

As Egor "flamie" Vasilyev said in his interview, Natus Vincere and Luminosity are truly two teams who are currently competing for that prestigious spot of second best in the world, especially since Astralis  (the other team flamie mentioned) have yet again failed to move beyond the semifinals of a Major.

A showdown between worlds, talents, and styles

Tomorrow's best-of-three grand final will therefore not only be noteworthy because of its gargantuan $500,000 first place payout but because it will truly determine the new hegemon of the current CS:GO world.

Therefore, we will briefly delve into various parts of both of these teams to help prep you for the grand final tomorrow, which kicks off at 19:30.

Past match-ups

As far as 2016 and late 2015 goes, these two teams have met a total of four times before MLG Columbus: IEM Katowice, DreamHack ZOWIE Open Leipzig, StarSeries XIV Finals, and  ESL ESEA Pro League Season 2 Finals.

Before that, the seeds of this rivalry were actually sown a little earlier during the days when Luminosity made use of Lucas "steel" Lopes and Ricardo "boltz" Prass, as the two teams were introduced to each other in the quarter-finals at DreamHack Open Cluj-Napoca (where Na`Vi won in a close 2-0 series) and then later on at IEM San Jose (where Na`Vi yet again won a close 2-0 series, with one map going to overtime).

Following Luminosity's roster overhaul, the first showdown between these two teams was served up on a platter only a few weeks later, and we were in fact gifted two best-of-threes at the ESL ESEA Pro League Season 2 Finals, with Na`Vi winning the opening battle 2-0 (Dust2 was a blowout at 16-5 whereas Inferno went to overtime at 19-15) and then with a closer 2-1 victory for Na`Vi in the group decider match.

Na`Vi retained a distinct advantage over Luminosity a few months back 

Since we can discount the double best-of-three victories for Na`Vi against the older Luminosity lineup, let's be kind and start from the EEPL Season 2 finals and give the Ukrainian-Russian-Slovak team a 4-1 score in the way of maps.

At the StarSeries XIV finals, with 2016 rolling around, the two teams met in groups (beginning a longstanding trend and joke), with the Brazilians finally securing a 2-0 victory (16-14 on Train and 16-9 on Mirage) and therefore bringing the map count to 4-3. However, Na`Vi's loss here in Minsk did ultimately allow them to make a deeper playoff run in the end and reach the finals of StarSeries XIV.

In DreamHack Open Leipzig, the two teams were in groups but somehow avoided each other due to the Brazilians losing to FaZe, but they both ultimately met in the grand final of the event, with Na`Vi winning 2-0 off of two 19-16 overtime map scorelines. Although the map count stood at 6-3, the skill level between the two teams was clearly drawing closer.

But Luminosity caught up by the time IEM Katowice rolled around 

Finally, we arrived at IEM Katowice where the two teams first met in a best-of-one match in the group stage, with the Brazilian team winning 16-11 on Mirage. Later on in the semifinal, Luminosity won a 2-0 series (22-19 on Overpass and 16-12 on Inferno) and this included an Overpass map that is considered one of the best maps ever played in CS:GO.

We thus stand at a 6-6 head-to-head record between the two teams going into this grand final, with the winner of the showdown guaranteed to come out ahead in the rivalry.

Path through the Major

Both teams generally waltzed their way through the group stages of the MLG Columbus Major, with Natus Vincere in particular appearing dangerous and poised. The Eastern European team swept aside Cloud9 16-9 on Train and flattened 16-4 on Cbble.

Meanwhile, Luminosity had to deal with a stubborn and resilient mousesports team in their opener and eventually won 16-13 on Mirage while the subsequent match against NiP was a 16-5 cakewalk on the same map.

As far as playoffs go, it could be said that Na`Vi's path was more symbolic as the team packed with legends such as Danylo "Zeus" Teslenko and Ioann "Edward" Sukhariev took down teams such as NiP and Astralis who sit higher in our rankings than Luminosity's playoff opponents and who also have their own legendary histories.

Luminosity had a slightly more scrappy climb to the grand final as they had to deal with a surprisingly resilient Polish team, which included the Brazilians conceding the first map in an overtime fashion. American team Liquid also almost gave Luminosity a run for their money as Liquid racked up fifteen total match points over two maps and yet still managed to concede both maps of the semifinal to Luminosity.

In this sense, we could say that Na`Vi have definitely appeared more stable during this Major, in terms of overall composure in game, the readiness of the team's players to step up and deliver a strong performance, and in not allowing their opponents to bring them into close matches.

The big day dawns

Thus we have arrived at a state of competitive suspense that is frankly higher than that previously seen before certain Major grand finals.

There are multiple reasons for this that can be summarised as such:

  • The current world's best team of fnatic, despite multiple event wins in 2016, are in a weak place after this Major and are now dethronable.
  • The winner of MLG Columbus would be the most likely to dethrone the world's best team if they also placed well in Malmo and beyond.
  • Both teams competing to win have also been locked in a deadly and concurrent battle for second place between themselves and this battle currently stands at an even 6-6 map record.
  • While both teams have similarities such as explosive AWPers, well-coordinated pushes, and well-drilled discipline, each team also has idiosyncratic specialties on maps and in execution styles that are particular to their region and to their brand of Counter-Strike.

The winner will therefore come to define a new era of the game and set a new standard of high level play that the other elite teams will be forced to emulate or counter and which teams even further below will look up to and study. May the best team win come tomorrow.

stich writes for and can be found on Twitter

Ukraine Ioann 'Edward' Sukhariev
Ioann 'Edward' Sukhariev
No team
Rating 1.0:
Maps played:
Ukraine Danylo 'Zeus' Teslenko
Danylo 'Zeus' Teslenko
No team
Rating 1.0:
Maps played:
Russia Egor 'flamie' Vasilyev
Egor 'flamie' Vasilyev
Rating 1.0:
Maps played:
Brazil Lucas 'steel' Lopes
Lucas 'steel' Lopes
Rating 1.0:
Maps played:
Brazil Ricardo 'boltz' Prass
Ricardo 'boltz' Prass
Rating 1.0:
Maps played:
2016-04-03 09:38
Cyprus Swishh_ 
2016-04-03 09:38
2016-04-03 09:38
2016-04-03 09:39
let's fucking do this NAVI <3<3<3
2016-04-03 10:00
they deserve major and they will get it
2016-04-03 10:01
Go go LG! Favelas gonna do it for BRA71L
2016-04-03 11:28
dafuq r u want
2016-04-03 11:42
I want your love!
2016-04-03 11:50
dont talk with me peasant
2016-04-03 11:50
2016-04-03 11:52
favela is shits, karate masters everywhere but 0 skill in cs.
2016-04-03 12:45
K den
2016-04-03 12:47
Brazil evke 
2016-04-03 09:38
2016-04-03 09:38
2016-04-03 09:39
2016-04-03 09:38
2016-04-03 09:38
3rd world internet
2016-04-03 09:39
Toilet cleaning internet
2016-04-03 09:40
cmon LG!
2016-04-03 09:38
apEX | 
China Darmody 
2016-04-03 09:38
Luminosity got this!
2016-04-03 09:44
navi win
2016-04-03 09:39
2016-04-03 09:39
NaVi vs LG for the 29471 this year. gl
2016-04-03 09:39
navi destroyed astralis lg almost lost to liquid lets go NaVi - major with 0 lost maps
2016-04-03 09:41
Thailand KillerBee157 
And astralis never win LG, and líquid win vs fnatic
2016-04-03 14:55
Brazil karlyn90 
all this arguments 0/10
2016-04-03 15:07
Na`Vi to save HLTV. :D
2016-04-03 09:41
2016-04-03 09:42
2016-04-03 09:42
2016-04-03 09:43
Go Na'Vi
2016-04-03 09:46
2016-04-03 09:49
Navi must save CS
2016-04-03 09:50
It would be a f*cking disgrace for cs if favelas win this major.
2016-04-03 09:54
World navlefnuller 
It's already a disgrace no matter the outcome
2016-04-03 10:10
Your country is a fucking disgrace, fag
2016-04-03 11:24
Go eat some sprats and die, no scene faggot.
2016-04-03 12:07
Are you mad? You just don't want to admit that your country is a shithole!
2016-04-03 12:08
look at youir fakin country, russians wannabe noobs
2016-04-03 12:46
2016-04-03 12:57
Brazil karlyn90 
favelas had won CS 1.6 majors in the past btw
2016-04-03 15:11
rain | 
Norway LakSeey 
Although I'm sad Liquid choked when they were so close, this is the dream final right here.
2016-04-03 09:57
would like to see LG win this, but on the other side i need few more points for Pick em so i bet on NaVi :]
2016-04-03 10:13
yeah i dont want a silver pick em, i'm sitting on 48 points :/ i forgot to put a sticker on 1 match and that was NiP vs Na'vi, was gonna bet on navi rip
2016-04-03 20:11
well if i fail this match i will be bronze :v , i havent bet on 3 4 matches, didnt have money on wallet and was too lazy to go to bank and add more..
2016-04-03 21:00
that was a good read!
2016-04-03 10:20
This is some stupid arguments. It seems this is the first incredible major final or something. And also hyping this as the best major to date cause of the prize. There have been 7 majors with definitely better playoffs than this one and some incredible finals. Stop acting like this is the first major or the most important.
2016-04-03 10:25
This is the most important major, prove me wrong
2016-04-03 11:01
mad fangay detected
2016-04-03 19:11
vsm | 
Brazil pajuno 
2016-04-03 10:36
2016-04-03 10:37
2016-04-03 11:29
1/10 rly
2016-04-03 11:30
you do notice that theres no point in argueing since this is gonna be a very biased discussion, right?
2016-04-03 11:31
Brazil karlyn90 
It couldn't be that ez dude, but I think LG is gonna win
2016-04-03 15:12
bra7il go home faggets and get fucked by BOPE PAARAPAPAPAPA PAPA PA PA
2016-04-03 10:38
Dude, seems like you put a hell lot of sugar on your peach juice. Calm down m8
2016-04-03 13:44
ez pz NaVi. They stronger than LG now. only coldzera and fallen can save the day. but if guardian wakes up. to luminosity poluchat pizdi.
2016-04-03 10:39
DaVi Na`Vi!!!
2016-04-03 10:39
Can't wait, nice preview
2016-04-03 10:40
2016-04-03 10:49
vsm | 
Brazil pajuno 
2016-04-03 22:03
Ez for Navi rip favelas monkeys
2016-04-03 10:50
Can`t fucking wait. This is the only major I don't care about drops.
2016-04-03 10:49
ez navi
2016-04-03 10:52
2016-04-03 10:56
Other ragkuu 
2 of my favorite teams in the finals. I will be glad if any of them will win. DAVI NAVI... favela do not give up...
2016-04-03 10:56
Let's hope for a great match. 2 of my favorite teams so I'm taking no sides.
2016-04-03 10:56
Have a feeling that NaVi will outclass LG here. Could be wrong though.
2016-04-03 11:01
Finland jayss 
NaVi will definitely win if GuardiaN turns up, otherwise it can go either way
2016-04-03 11:12
Its getting scary because all navi players are stepping up.
2016-04-03 11:15
Latvia Ke]R[4u 
there is a chance because guardian is stepping down
2016-04-03 11:16
Edward solo carry inferno, seized olofpass god. I think NaVI will go for overpass, Ban cache. LG ban d2, go for Inferno, so it can go either way, but navi to take overpass, train, cobble, mirage, and lose inferno
2016-04-03 11:20
2016-04-03 11:27
Poland Loxiney 
I don't think so, but I guess this is gonna be awesome
2016-04-03 11:32
Well, atleast you didn't reply like a mad russki vodka addict! :D But gl, this is gonna be a great final!
2016-04-03 11:33
Poland Loxiney 
To be honest, I'm a little fan of NaVi, but I wanted to see Astralis vs. Luminosity on finals lol :P
2016-04-03 19:17
Yeah, have to agree. I felt sad when I saw Device crying
2016-04-03 19:18
Poland Loxiney 
GGWP. GJ Fallen and Coldzera. That was awesome :D but Guardian should play better.
2016-04-03 22:51
this is going to be an amazing match, like Na'vi vs LG is almost like NiP VS Fnatic. Hoping for Na'vi cause i kinda wanna get my silver pick em :P I didn't get to pick 2 matches ripp
2016-04-03 20:12
Lithuania Kooligan 
Ez for Na'Vi.
2016-04-03 11:35
c'mon TACO do it for the people of your neighboorhood here in Arg, TACO best Argentinian player!
2016-04-03 11:37
now that you mentioned, taco really does look like a bit like maradona and boludos
2016-04-03 16:59
Argentina thankzz 
2016-04-03 17:34
he's argentinian man, he used to work on YPF
2016-04-04 01:56
ez ivan
2016-04-03 11:41
Germany se6 
Go Dave!
2016-04-03 11:53
NAVI win i know. glhf
2016-04-03 12:09
valde | 
Finland Juvi 
Should be bo5 but still excited for this one!
2016-04-03 12:29
Finland SluvE 
Good analysis. I'm pleased to see a new major champion after fnatic's success. :)
2016-04-03 12:34
LG <3
2016-04-03 12:37
Seems like it would be an awesome final Hoping that Na'Vi would win,but LG winning it would be damn well deserved
2016-04-03 12:38
Ez for navi
2016-04-03 12:57
Guys let's talk srsly tell which team will win and argue why. You have 3 hours !
2016-04-03 13:04
2016-04-03 13:23
Favellas lost it 1-2
2016-04-03 13:51
Azerbaijan M1R4CL3 
clean 50-50 game. gl both team.
2016-04-03 13:55
I love reading your articles stich cause you use words that I've never seen or heard. HLTV needs to add memes. &#128076;
2016-04-03 14:09
Nice read
2016-04-03 14:26
I think impossible beat na'vi in this situation. LG is full of skilled players, but na'vi is not humans.
2016-04-03 15:12
Poland Loxiney 
Russians are not humans, you say? :D LG was close to win in Katowice against Fnatic, but NaVi is stronk. I think this is going to be an awesome match
2016-04-03 19:24
''The current world champion of fnatic'', isn't the current world champion nV from cluj-napoca? ayyy stich :D
2016-04-03 15:12
suNny | 
Finland iPaZ 
2016-04-03 15:37
Brazil q1XtheAVATAR 
2016-04-03 15:41
NaVi look better so far in the tournament; decisively winning all their matches. But I think Luminosity will be unbelievably excited and we might see all 5 players go into god mode.
2016-04-03 15:47
if i pick bad team in pick em challenge i still get 1 bonus point ?
2016-04-03 15:57
United States freakaroid 
Get 1 point per day if you play pickem that day.
2016-04-03 17:06
Thanks ! So i get gold.
2016-04-03 19:17
Brazil BuddyINSANE 
Gj hltv, thanks
2016-04-03 17:06
go LG
2016-04-03 17:29
Uninteresting final. Would've loved to see Liq or CLG in it.
2016-04-03 17:31
Luminosity to rek Na`Vi as usual. Sad for Edward.
2016-04-03 17:40
This match is going to be interesting!
2016-04-03 19:55
Check this amazing girl cheering for LG!!
2016-04-03 19:58
2016-04-03 21:36
Croatia mds818 
Ayyyy I swear that this MLG tournament is by far wrost tournament ever,clear fucking rigged bullshit. Stating some facts Envyous has been knocked out in the group stage,yes alright they have Devil,but he performed well,not godlike or good enough,but being beaten by CLG 16-8 on Cobblestone and 16-13 by Gambit on Cache..I mean those 2 maps are best maps for Envy(after Mirage but all 3 maps are somewhat here nearby)-also NBK placing Pick'em on CLG Fnatic being knocked out by Astralis,16-10 and 16-5 like they're some tier 4 team after not losing a single tournament btw Cluj and MLG,and the next day Astralis losing to Na'Vi 16-5 on DD2 and 16-14 on INF(after Cache wrost map for Na'Vi) Lumminosity,making some way too big comebacks(double one against Liquid 15-6 and 15-9) and against Na'Vi in finals 11-4>17-19 Overall,way too fishy matches wins,way too big emotions on all teams(device crying,krimz using the hoodie and having way too sad face in the middle of match,envy faces)...I dont know.... #discuss
2016-04-03 22:43
Login or register to add your comment to the discussion.