ELEAGUE S2 Group B preview

Virtus.pro, NiP, G2 and Echo Fox are set to play Group B of ELEAGUE Season 2 which kicks off tomorrow evening. Here's our preview of the four teams.

After Group A was played out two weeks ago with mousesports and FaZe securing the first two spots in Season 2's quarter-finals, it's time for Group B's quartet to show what they have in store for Atlanta.

The entire group stage is played in a classic GSL format, where the initial round and winners' matches feature best-of-one matches while elimination and decider matches are played in best-of-three's.

Let us delve into the four teams battling for two more spots in ELEAGUE Season 2 quarter-finals and find out what we can draw from their recent results and form:

Virtus.pro    
  Age Rating
Poland Janusz "Snax" Pogorzelski 23 1.07
Poland Paweł "byali" Bieliński 22 1.04
Poland Wiktor "TaZ" Wojtas 30 0.99
Poland Filip "NEO" Kubski 29 0.97
Poland Jarosław "pashaBiceps" Jarząbkowski  28 0.96

 * Ratings are from the past three months

Virtus.pro have had a busy yet quite successful several weeks, as they played ESL One New York, WESG European Finals and EPICENTER: Moscow in October.

While they never reached the very top at any of the aforementioned events, the consistency they've shown over the last few months gave them first place in our Team Ranking, at least until SK regained that spot after Pro League Finals.

The Poles decided not to travel to Brazil for the $600,000 event even though they had been asked to replace fnatic, which means they had a little over one week off to get ready for their next adventure.


Virtus.pro are favoured in Group B

They likely used that one week to finetune their Mirage, which is their most played map on LAN in the past three months but also the least successful. In October they lost on it to teams such as .Norway and .Russia at WESG, and to fnatic and Dignitas at EPICENTER: Moscow.

Their Nuke has become one of their best maps. They hold a 5-0 record on it across their last three events, with wins against established Nuke teams: Dignitas, SK and HellRaisers. I wouldn't be surprised to see Nuke in any of the potential match-ups, especially the initial round with Echo Fox, who have good results on Nuke as well. The Americans and G2 are unlikely to beat the Poles on it, but if it comes down to it against NiP, all bets are off.

Overall Virtus.pro should be at least slightly favoured in all of their match-ups due to their strong map pool. That advantage won't do them too much good in the best-of-one's, but if they fall down to the best-of-three matches, that's where it will shine through. NiP have two maps they don't play at all, while G2's Nuke or Train aren't strong enough to take on the Poles.

NiP    
  Age Rating
Sweden Christopher "GeT_RiGhT" Alesund  26 1.12
Sweden Richard "Xizt" Landström 25 1.06
Sweden Patrik "f0rest" Lindberg 28 1.05
Sweden Adam "friberg" Friberg 25 1.02
Sweden Mikail "Maikelele" Bill  25 0.99

While Virtus.pro had the week off, NiP are going to their third event in a row after a month-long break. At EPICENTER: Moscow, the Swedes were part of Group A where all teams exchanged maps in the best-of-two matches, and went out due to the worst round difference of the four teams.

They were close to a similar scenario happening in Pro League, where they lost to Cloud9 and Dignitas and defeated eventually first-placed SK in groups, but the Americans' win over Mathias "MSL" Lauridsen and company secured them a place in quarter-finals.

There they defeated Envy on two maps before taking on crowd favourites SK once more. Despite starting 1-7 on Nuke, the Swedes proved themselves worthy on the map, but then they barely contested the Brazilians on Overpass and Cobblestone.


NiP should be hoping to avoid Virtus.pro in a series

Their biggest strength right now seems to be Nuke, which they only lost to Dignitas. They clearly have issues on Cache, which was a problem against G2 in Moscow, and they don't play Mirage and Train at all — a scary prospect when facing Virtus.pro.

NiP will probably play G2 on Dust2 or Cobblestone, great maps for both teams, and if they pass that they'll be hoping for Nuke against Virtus.pro. They have a very good chance to go through from first place, but if G2 does and The Swedes go on to play Virtus.pro in a best-of-three, it's almost as if they started 0-1 in the series.

What bodes well for NiP is that GeT_RiGhT played well in Brazil, while friberg had a very good showing in Moscow. However, Maikelele and f0rest both dropped off from their amazing level at StarSeries, and they need to be on form against G2 and Virtus.pro.

G2    
  Age Rating
France Richard "shox" Papillon 24 1.10
Belgium Adil "ScreaM" Benrlitom 22 1.07
France Alexandre "bodyy" Pianaro 19 0.97
France Cédric "RpK" Guipouy 27 0.95
France Edouard "SmithZz" Dubourdeaux  27 0.88

Since G2 got silver at StarSeries in the first half of September, they haven't been able to show up on anywhere near that level. At ESL One New York, shox's team shockingly went out in last place following losses to Astralis, Liquid and OpTic.

Afterwards the French-Belgian squad travelled to Moscow, where they were also part of the group full of ties and showed they can play with the best, splitting series with three great teams: Dignitas, NiP and Natus Vincere. They ended up falling short to SK in the quarter-finals, which included a 0-16 bashing on Train, leaving the competition in 5th-6th place.

shox wasn't himself in New York, but he stepped it up in Moscow where he played a pivotal part in three of their four map wins with his sidekick ScreaM. However, the other three didn't step up when it was needed once again.


G2 have a good chance to advance despite their disappointing results as of late

Dust2 continues to be G2's strength and Cobblestone is their second best map right now, but their Train has been awful on LAN and Mirage is their instant veto. In a best-of-three scenario against NiP or Virtus.pro, which is almost inevitable, they should pick Cache for a chance in the series.

They're unlikely to win Nuke against either of them, or Train against Virtus.pro, so we should see a three-map series whomever they meet out of those two in the decider match. The third map should be Dust2 against NiP and Cobblestone versus Virtus.pro, which will give them a solid chance to advance to playoffs.

Echo Fox could take shox and company by surprise on Nuke, as we haven't seen too much of G2 on the map, but the French-Belgian team are favoured on all remaining maps that can go through the veto.

Echo Fox    
  Age Rating
United States Shahzeb "ShahZaM" Khan 23 1.08
United States Ronnie "ryx" Bylicki 23 1.03
United States Daniel "roca" Gustaferri 21 1.03
United States Ryan "freakazoid" Abadir 23 0.91
United States Sean "seang@res" Gares  28 0.90

While the other three teams travelled around for the past three months, Echo Fox stayed at home and only played online competitions ever since they placed fourth at Northern Arena in early September.

In Pro League they finished in eighth place, two wins away from qualifying to the $600,000 Finals. They also attempted to make it into ECS Season 2 but lost 0-3 to Immortals in the semi-finals of the Development league.


Echo Fox are massively outmatched in this group

Overall Echo Fox will be massively outskilled in Group B of ELEAGUE. However, seang@res' anti-stratting could make for an interesting show, as he has had loads of time to study the other teams while the others couldn't give a damn about Echo Fox considering the time constraints.

In the initial match against Virtus.pro they'll probably take their chances on Nuke. In a series against one of NiP and G2, Nuke is a possibility once again and so is Dust2, but it's still hard to see them winning maps against three top ten teams in the world.

You can follow HLTV.org's Milan "Striker" Švejda on Twitter

United States Ryan 'freakazoid' Abadir
Ryan 'freakazoid' Abadir
Age:
26
Team:
Rating 1.0:
1.00
Maps played:
783
KPR:
0.70
DPR:
0.69
APR:
0.15
France Cédric 'RpK' Guipouy
Cédric 'RpK' Guipouy
Age:
30
Team:
Rating 1.0:
0.98
Maps played:
1241
KPR:
0.67
DPR:
0.68
APR:
0.13
United States Shahzeb 'ShahZaM' Khan
Shahzeb 'ShahZaM' Khan
Age:
26
Team:
No team
Rating 1.0:
1.08
Maps played:
956
KPR:
0.73
DPR:
0.65
APR:
0.10
France Edouard 'SmithZz' Dubourdeaux
Edouard 'SmithZz' Dubourdeaux
Age:
30
Team:
No team
Rating 1.0:
0.96
Maps played:
1161
KPR:
0.65
DPR:
0.67
APR:
0.14
France Richard 'shox' Papillon
Richard 'shox' Papillon
Age:
27
Team:
Rating 1.0:
1.10
Maps played:
1573
KPR:
0.75
DPR:
0.66
APR:
0.12
Poland Paweł 'byali' Bieliński
Paweł 'byali' Bieliński
Age:
25
Team:
No team
Rating 1.0:
1.02
Maps played:
1449
KPR:
0.70
DPR:
0.67
APR:
0.14
United States Ronnie 'ryx' Bylicki
Ronnie 'ryx' Bylicki
Age:
26
Team:
No team
Rating 1.0:
1.09
Maps played:
491
KPR:
0.76
DPR:
0.67
APR:
0.16
Sweden Mikail 'Maikelele' Bill
Mikail 'Maikelele' Bill
Age:
28
Team:
No team
Rating 1.0:
1.02
Maps played:
956
KPR:
0.68
DPR:
0.64
APR:
0.14
Sweden Patrik 'f0rest' Lindberg
Patrik 'f0rest' Lindberg
Age:
31
Team:
Rating 1.0:
1.12
Maps played:
1624
KPR:
0.77
DPR:
0.65
APR:
0.12
Belgium Adil 'ScreaM' Benrlitom
Adil 'ScreaM' Benrlitom
Age:
25
Team:
No team
Rating 1.0:
1.09
Maps played:
1425
KPR:
0.74
DPR:
0.66
APR:
0.12
Poland Wiktor 'TaZ' Wojtas
Wiktor 'TaZ' Wojtas
Age:
33
Team:
Rating 1.0:
0.98
Maps played:
1786
KPR:
0.67
DPR:
0.67
APR:
0.13
Poland Filip 'NEO' Kubski
Filip 'NEO' Kubski
Age:
32
Team:
No team
Rating 1.0:
0.97
Maps played:
1681
KPR:
0.66
DPR:
0.67
APR:
0.17
Sweden Christopher 'GeT_RiGhT' Alesund
Christopher 'GeT_RiGhT' Alesund
Age:
29
Team:
No team
Rating 1.0:
1.10
Maps played:
1611
KPR:
0.75
DPR:
0.64
APR:
0.15
Sweden Adam 'friberg' Friberg
Adam 'friberg' Friberg
Age:
28
Team:
No team
Rating 1.0:
0.99
Maps played:
1509
KPR:
0.68
DPR:
0.67
APR:
0.16
Denmark Mathias 'MSL' Lauridsen
Mathias 'MSL' Lauridsen
Age:
24
Team:
No team
Rating 1.0:
0.91
Maps played:
1530
KPR:
0.64
DPR:
0.72
APR:
0.15
Sweden Richard 'Xizt' Landström
Richard 'Xizt' Landström
Age:
28
Team:
No team
Rating 1.0:
1.00
Maps played:
1549
KPR:
0.68
DPR:
0.65
APR:
0.17
France Alexandre 'bodyy' Pianaro
Alexandre 'bodyy' Pianaro
Age:
22
Team:
No team
Rating 1.0:
0.96
Maps played:
762
KPR:
0.65
DPR:
0.67
APR:
0.14
Poland Janusz 'Snax' Pogorzelski
Janusz 'Snax' Pogorzelski
Age:
26
Team:
Rating 1.0:
1.04
Maps played:
1597
KPR:
0.70
DPR:
0.66
APR:
0.13
United States Sean 'seang@res' Gares
Sean 'seang@res' Gares
Age:
31
Rating 1.0:
0.88
Maps played:
713
KPR:
0.59
DPR:
0.68
APR:
0.14
Poland Jarosław 'pashaBiceps' Jarząbkowski
Jarosław 'pashaBiceps' Jarząbkowski
Age:
31
Team:
Rating 1.0:
1.02
Maps played:
1592
KPR:
0.72
DPR:
0.69
APR:
0.13
United States Daniel 'roca' Gustaferri
Daniel 'roca' Gustaferri
Age:
24
Team:
Rating 1.0:
1.02
Maps played:
620
KPR:
0.72
DPR:
0.70
APR:
0.13
What an intersting group interesting*** 3 old tier teams and rip EchoFox [*]
2016-11-03 23:03
#22
 | 
Japan Th3Koala 
Echo can win vs vp :) 1.Nip 2.Vp 3.G2/EF
2016-11-03 23:15
Strongly disagree, VP is much better than NiP. Even G2 could beat NiP if they showed up, of course.
2016-11-03 23:17
#28
 | 
Japan Th3Koala 
No :) vp don't know how to play vs nip, expected 1.Nip 2.Vp
2016-11-03 23:18
Still don't agree, guess we'll have to wait and see!
2016-11-03 23:19
#47
Poland pree 
u know shit about this game :v
2016-11-04 00:43
VP usually loses against NIP
2016-11-04 01:13
The last they met each other at ELEAGUE and guess what they raped NiP and that even on Dust 2 so lul
2016-11-04 08:52
Nip had pyth and were complete trash. Now they are doing okay and since they always play good against vp, vp might have some trouble but should take it. Dismissing his statement completely is more retarded than what he said.
2016-11-04 09:09
he said that VP doesn't know how to play vs NiP which is wrong. Why shouldn't they know how to play vs NiP? They really have tough time with Dignitas which was stated also by neo before Dreamhack Bucharest
2016-11-04 14:13
lol you clearly don't have any idea about the stuff that you're talking about
2016-11-04 08:51
#66
 | 
Japan Th3Koala 
We will see bro
2016-11-04 09:37
I guess we'll even then it doesnt matter if VP qualifies for the Playoff and if they beat them there when then'll have the chance to play against each other. VP should be the favourites vs NiP
2016-11-04 14:14
Well, it seems like I was correct :)
2016-11-05 04:15
#45
 | 
United States GeT_ReiCh 
NA winning against VP, this polak is out of his mind
2016-11-04 00:39
#48
 | 
Poland Cazzorel 
weak b8
2016-11-04 00:44
#23
 | 
Germany Bier 
ye echofox will get destroyed
2016-11-03 23:14
but they have NA best IGL
2016-11-04 00:25
#42
 | 
Germany Bier 
nrg has the best igl
2016-11-04 00:34
#78
Brollan | 
Sweden LoxXy 
NRG isnt NA the majority of the team are europeans
2016-11-05 15:03
Yeah, such a shame they got placed to such a stacked group :/ Would love to see Sean achieve something great. Either way, group's going to be insane, I hope G2 can deliver, they looked weak recently.
2016-11-03 23:16
1st.
2016-11-04 09:49
#2
 | 
United Kingdom Bravid 
Damn son only number 2
2016-11-03 23:03
#3
cromen | 
Denmark ilnert 
Shtizzz still in roster FeelsBadMan
2016-11-03 23:03
Yo les noobs
2016-11-03 23:03
Yo les noobs
2016-11-03 23:08
#5
Skadoodle | 
North America asun2 
e
2016-11-03 23:02
2-0 VP 2-1 NIP 1-2 G2 0-2 EF
2016-11-03 23:03
Echo Fox 4-16 2-16
2016-11-03 23:04
VP vs NIP (vp win) - 16-9 G2 vs EF (g2 win) - 16-4 NIP vs EF (nip win, EF out) - 16-2 VP vs G2 (VP win, through to playoffs) - 16-10 G2 vs NIP (NIP win, g2 out, NIP through to playoffs.) - 13-16
2016-11-03 23:10
agree with winners/losers but the round count is a bit too low for loser of match 1, 2, and 3.
2016-11-03 23:14
first matches are VP vs. EF and G2 vs. NiP
2016-11-03 23:20
#54
 | 
Australia JonoMate 
Wrong opening matches and loser and decider matches are bo3
2016-11-04 03:20
Echofox 1 Round 1-16 xD
2016-11-04 23:53
gsl system m8
2016-11-03 23:19
Really dumb group. VP, NiP, and G2 are all teams that should be going through, and EF is boned AF Still rootin for NA tho, I bet if echofox gets to play nip somehow they win. Interested to see what kind of wacky nuke plays echofox can pull off, if any.
2016-11-03 23:05
Agreed, this group is way too stacked. Sad for ef, would love to see Sean succeed as well :(
2016-11-03 23:19
Echo Fox has been sitting on their hands for the past couple of weeks. This is the biggest event they will play in for a while and we know that Seang@res loves anti-stratting teams and is very good at it. While it would still be a large upset for Echo Fox to advance they could potentially win 2 bo1s and make it out.
2016-11-03 23:57
#38
 | 
World Vidua 
Neither VP nor NiP need strats against Echo Fox and G2 doesn't have strats at all. Sean can do nothing.
2016-11-04 00:03
All good teams run strats, not running strats is a recipe for disaster.
2016-11-04 00:38
#51
 | 
World Vidua 
Yeah, that's G2.
2016-11-04 01:33
I would laugh so much if that happens^^ that would mean two additional top 10 teams out (c9 is already out) but NiP and VP can switch from GOD to BOT team really fast, I can even seen them losing in BO1^^ G2 of course, too
2016-11-04 00:10
I specifically said they can beat NiP because NiP is a really predictable team.
2016-11-04 01:34
G2 don't deserve going through if Shox, Scream, and Bodyy dont show up
2016-11-04 23:55
echo fox xaxaxa
2016-11-03 23:03
RIP echo fax
2016-11-03 23:03
not so ez for nip
2016-11-03 23:03
gl
2016-11-03 23:03
0.88 SMITHZZZ XDDD fucking bot hahahaha
2016-11-03 23:04
Yo les noobs
2016-11-03 23:09
sean 0.90 ....
2016-11-04 09:50
ez for ANELE
2016-11-03 23:07
There's a difference between a sniper playing for his teammates and the teammates playing for the sniper. I'm co-leading, organizing every defaults, our "bomb site taking", nades, etc .. I'm going first when it's tough eco/buy round, and I'm throwing the nades when we do specific tactics. In the pistol round I'm buying the smokes and flashes. Anyway life is tough sometimes but I'm getting paid very well. I don't care about having 30 frags, 1.50 rating, I don't care having fragmovie about me, I want to win. And you know what? I've been winning since 10 years with all of my teams. I'm not here because I'm shox' best friend. Shox got kicked a couple of times and I've always followed him coz' I like playing with him, we see the game the same way and we have the same work ethic. No disrepect, today we have the best team ever, IG / Outgame. Still a young team but proud of what we've done so far.
2016-11-03 23:10
#20
United States BanU 
1) VP 2) NIP 3) G2 4) ...
2016-11-03 23:12
#24
 | 
Korea Damianlee 
Too easy for Shazam kappa
2016-11-03 23:14
Well Echo Fox, you beat Liquid online. Let's see if your spot pays off
2016-11-03 23:16
3 top 7 teams in 1 group??? why does csgo keep fkin groups up
2016-11-03 23:19
Who made these groups?? Group A compared to this one is a fucking joke abd will produce shitty and unbalanced playoffs. NiP or G2 would have made it out of group in group A. Shitty random draws fuck it all again
2016-11-03 23:28
Nice read, group B is stacked tho
2016-11-03 23:31
1-VP 2-G2 3-Echo 4-NiP
2016-11-03 23:34
#55
 | 
India Ad1_KaM 
Nc b8 m8 i r8 8/8
2016-11-04 03:25
g2>all
2016-11-04 00:04
Will pyth ever be back to NiP lineup?
2016-11-04 00:36
#56
 | 
India Ad1_KaM 
Probably will. But I'm sure the majority of us want to see maikalele staying.
2016-11-04 03:27
#46
s1mple | 
United Kingdom ALB1E^ 
121212
2016-11-04 00:41
ELEAGUE Richard Lewis, seang@res, and fREAKAZOiD at Buffalo Wild Wings youtube.com/watch?v=GE2AixOjEWs
2016-11-04 01:05
Smithzz worse than Pasha HAHAHHAHAHA
2016-11-04 02:37
#65
 | 
Czech Republic erunaico 
No way i though pasha is the ultimate worst playar.
2016-11-04 09:35
ez echo fox
2016-11-04 03:38
Let's be honest, echo fox won't get double digits against any of these teams
2016-11-04 04:11
ez 4 kyle fox
2016-11-04 06:10
Vp will be 3rd in group.
2016-11-04 07:12
#64
 | 
Poland mamba99999 
well, good luck Echo Fox. 1. VP 2. G2, but it can be very close with NiP
2016-11-04 09:34
#69
Europe bueR 
1)G2 2) VP or NiP
2016-11-04 13:37
#72
 | 
Poland gibeq 
VP refuse offer to come to EPL , I think they are going to show us plow mode this weekend
2016-11-04 15:35
#73
 | 
Denmark regnant 
People are counting Echo Fox out, but they fail to realize it was this exact roster that also took a map from Na'Vi last eLeague. This roster also is responsible for knocking Liquid out of the ELEAGUE qualifiers. I see this tournament as ShahZam's opportunity to prove that he is the best awper in NA and in general a world class player. Unfortunately, because of his underperformance on C9, ShahZam has a bad reputation. However, since leaving C9, he's really improved a lot. He's a huge carry for EF and in general an underrated player right now. TBH I see Shahz more as a hybrid oriented awper. His rifling is really good, his pistols are insane, and his AWP is really sick. GL Echo Fox. TL;DR - Don't count out Echo Fox. They aren't a bad team. They could easily upset other teams because they have world class players such as ShahZam.
2016-11-04 15:46
rpk "tits"
2016-11-05 11:36
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