Astralis "expected" to compete in ESL Pro League

Astralis announced on Tuesday their intention to remain in the ESL Pro League.

In a brief statement, Anders Hørsholt, CEO of the Astralis Group, confirmed that "a number of the world's top CS:GO teams" recently met with ESL in Paris with a view to discussing "a long-term agreement" for the ESL Pro League, which has been trimmed down from 48 to 24 teams ahead of Season 11.

Mr. Hørsholt added that negotiations regarding the final term sheet "are still ongoing", with an agreement expected to be reached "in the near future."

Astralis expect to remain in the ESL Pro League

Astralis were one of the 24 teams that made up a preliminary list revealed by ESL on Friday. None of them had officially committed to the league, but NiP and Complexity quickly took to social media to affirm their commitment to the tournament.

The announcement comes at a time when the B Site league, which will be produced by FACEIT, is reportedly still looking to fill four membership slots. According to a recent report from ESPN, Cloud9, Dignitas, MIBR, MAD Lions, Gen.G and c0ntact are the initial franchise partners of this 12-team league, which will have two qualifying slots.

Astralis are one of just two organisations with more than one ESL Pro League trophy, though their last title came back in Season 8, at the end of 2018. Liquid won their first and only title in Season 9, in Montpellier, while mousesports were crowned champions in Season 10, which came to an end in Odense.

B side for Bad teams, expected
2020-01-28 12:48
#135
 | 
North America Boombl4_2Fat 
+1 ez money for digninjas
2020-01-28 22:27
#10
 | 
United States Frotha 
Obviously
2020-01-28 12:49
Cool beans for astralis
2020-01-28 12:49
B Site has good intentions. They just didn't manage to sign a single top tier team
2020-01-28 12:51
b site league will completely consist of t2-t3 teams, its practically mountain dew league however i still think esl still did a huge snitch move with removing a lot of teams from the pro league and randomly inviting some others
2020-01-28 12:55
I know. B Site has really great talent and probably also production value ideas etc, but in the end it just falls flat because ESL signed every tier 1 team
2020-01-28 12:57
I'd rahter T2 Matches with great casting/production value vs T1 matches with shitty casters/bad production.
2020-01-28 13:02
When you put it like that, sure, but ESL's talent won't be shit though. Their lineup probably consists of Henry, Machine, spunj, Sadokist etc
2020-01-28 13:11
Oh they'll have a great talent lineup no doubt, My example wasn't aimed at ESL/b-site stuff, just as a rule in general, i think matches (Storyline/hype/Understanding what's going) are just just made or broken depending on the people behind the scenes/on the mics.
2020-01-28 13:42
yes i kinda agree but the ESL talent is not worse than the b-site talent and ESL production value is always up there as well i for myself will probably make it team-dependant in case b-site and esl-pro league broadcast at the same time, and then ESL will win most of the time probably.
2020-01-28 13:30
My bad, bad way of putting my example, I explained in #64. Will probably end up watching as much as possible from both either way.
2020-01-28 13:44
You're in the minority. Also, ESL/EPL have been doing this long enough where much of 'it' is formulaic. CS also has a wealth of broadcast talent, so I wouldn't expect any drop-off, or anything significant.
2020-01-28 13:31
#30
 | 
Germany Neckarstadion 
Isn't it for the best that there is a league with all the tier 1 and solid tier 2 teams and another league with the worse tier 2 teams and the rest? Better games this way.
2020-01-28 12:57
Oh yes, completely. But when they both started planning their leagues, I think B Site expected to sign better teams. They definitely lost that battle for being the best league teamwise.
2020-01-28 12:58
no they don't. lol, they were trying to push exclusivity more than any other league and have $2 million buy-in. it's complete cancer. Blast started the whole exclusivity push last year, B site tried to push ESL out by signing teams into exclusivity then Valve told them to fuck off and now ESL seems to have come out ahead.
2020-01-28 14:05
I feel like most people misunderstand the buy-in. Yes, it's there, but essentially you buy into your own revenue stake, thus investing in yourself. As the league developes and sponsors get attached, the value of B Site will go up. At B Site you get a bigger slice of the cake than at ESL. It solely comes down to another formula of monetizing your product which means money in the pocket of team owner orgs. From an organizational point of view it's clever imo. When I say good intentions, I genuinely believe the likes of Moses and Semmler when they say that they're going to up themselves in regards to production value, because that's a point they've been complaining about for years. Now that they've signed with one league long term, they have the time and can put in the effort to evolve on that part. I'm excited to see how far they can push the boundaries of pre-game production. Also, ESL is trying hard to push exclusivity as well. There's even a point in their contract stating that they most obey and refer to ESL's world ranking as the real one - to push HLTV out of that power. Now that future majors are going to rely on world rankings, I still believe Valve with go with HLTV's which could create a conflict whenever ESL is offered to host a future major... unless they aren't offered one.
2020-01-28 14:19
buy-ins are still the worst type of exclusivity. upcoming teams won't be able to buy in and if the league becomes a success it actually gets worse because it will just increase the buy-in. it's basically "rich orgs only". and the CS scene always used to be really open and basically the exact opposite. about good intentions: they hired Thorin, a zero integrity "journalist" that is straight up shilling for them. sorry but fuck them. and the outrage about ESL is bullshit. why is nobody complaining about Blast anymore? Not that ESL are the good guys here but Blast started it and B site wanted to outsmart ESL. You can't really blame ESL for fighting back. And sorry but the ranking thing is the biggest bullshit ever. HLTV ranking is terribly designed and there is no reason why HLTV would have a monopoly on rankings. They are a private business and have a ton of conflict of interest too. If anything it's good to have multiple rankings.
2020-01-28 14:33
Have you researched B Site though? They are letting teams in that can't afford the buy-in, but those teams won't get revenue stakes then. They'll just compete for the prize money. I don't know if that's ideal, but it's certainly better than ESL just cutting qualified teams off. I agree with your point on Thorin, but I guess he knows a thing or two about content. Don't get me wrong. I'll watch ESL because they have the teams worth watching and investing time in, but I don't think B Site's intentions are as bad as you make them to be. I don't think people are complaining over ESL's take on exclusivity, but rather the poor way they handled their communication with the teams that qualified. They just cut them right out of the picture without any warning. Just the silent treatment.
2020-01-28 14:48
B Site is as intransparent as it gets. Their plan was clearly to create an exclusivity league with all the top teams, which would have been terrible for the scene. Now that they lost out they are trying to play the good guys and claim to be open. Of course tier 3 team won't pay $2 millions and 100k fine for not being top 20, B sites adjusts not because of good intentions but because they have no choice. Also letting in two teams while maintaining exclusivity isn't good at all. ESL fucked over some teams but it's still far less exclusive than a buy-in league. ESL basically just reduced the size of their highest league. But yeah, I agree that ESL's behaviour towards the teams they kicked is pretty terrible. They could have least made some type of big relegation tournament or something. But then, again, with B Site and Blast competing with them they probably just wanted to offer the best deal to top teams. This is also why the player organization/union doesn't give a shit. Most of them are high tier players and low tier players getting fucked over doesn't affect them, actually kind of benefits them.
2020-01-28 15:02
I agree with your comment. I just see a lot of people on HLTV commenting as if the buy-in is lost money when technically it's invested money. I still think B Site is decent from a business point of view, but seeing as they failed to sign any tier 1 team, it makes you wonder how appealing they will be to sponsors at the end of the day. Maybe they won't be able to generate any serious money at all. Depends how good salesmen they are. Probably not very good since they weren't able to sell this idea to competitors. No doubt ESL won the prestige.
2020-01-28 15:35
oh, I am sure it's good for business. In general this is good for orgs because they can negotiate the best deal with TOs now. It's also good for higher tier players (who are already making a lot of money). But what's best for the orgs isn't necessarily best for us (the viewers / community). Businesses want stability, so competitiveness isn't really good for them. E.g. mibr has been mediocre for years now but still makes a ton of money and got a lot of invites because they get high viewer numbers. as for why ESL "won" against B site, I guess it's just that they are more established. Their pitch was probably something like "stay with us, we give you a better deal than last year and it is almost as good as b site but we have a proven record, established name...". And they mainly have to convince a few top teams like Astralis. Once 3-4 top teams sign with them all other top 15 team will want to sign with them as well. Wouldn't be surprised with Astralis got some kind of special deal.
2020-01-28 15:48
Top part of your comment: 100% agree. Bottom part: Yes, it seems like Astralis and a few other top teams were invited to Paris with ESL to discuss and negotiate term sheets, which probably means that orgs have a bigger saying in what the contract should look like at ESL. ESL is fine with that as long as they secure the top teams as you said, because that means the rest will follow. I guess that's ESL's edge over B Site.
2020-01-28 15:55
+1
2020-01-28 16:01
Your ranking part is bullshit. ESL can use the ranking they want for their tournaments, that is their right. HLTV isn't official ranking. And maybe read again what valve said about Major invites. There i no use from any ranking. Not ESl not HLTV not xxxx.com
2020-01-28 14:44
Oh, you're right. I'll take the ranking part back.
2020-01-28 14:51
ESL has nothing that hits Valves rule. If some team don't want to play EPL he is free to go. But at B-site you will lose your entry fee.
2020-01-28 14:41
I think you misunderstood me, I agree with you.
2020-01-28 15:02
thoorin gonna cry even more on twitter now
2020-01-28 12:52
well he was kinda right about ESL tho, scumbag move to kick a few teams and invite a few others, especially ENCE who dropped out of MDL and OG who we've only seen once at cs_summit
2020-01-28 13:31
nope if you cut place in a league someone has to go. And to invite OG is an answer to B-site. So B-Site get one big org less
2020-01-28 14:48
#62
chrisJ | 
Poland Chiirs 
Isn't he employed by B site?
2020-01-28 13:39
yeah, and he is also a journalist, totally no conflict of interest there... the guy is peak hypocrisy. Crying about "blastralis" and their conflict of interest and exclusivity in 2019, now he works for blast as a commentator and officially works for B site pushing an exclusivity league. he is literally a shill
2020-01-28 14:08
+1 thorin is more of a snake than tarik, stan apEX, aerial, allu and gabriel “twofaced” toledo combined lmao how can anyone like that guy
2020-01-28 17:33
#21
oBo | 
Korea Moms_touch 
Holy shiet unexpected....
2020-01-28 12:52
expected rip b site league
2020-01-28 12:55
#28
 | 
Sweden Waduhek 
Obviously they are expected
2020-01-28 12:57
New Envy to B site 👀
2020-01-28 12:58
new Envy to trashcan 👀👀😎😎😎
2020-01-28 13:34
Agree👀😎
2020-01-28 14:24
#39
 | 
Latvia Ke]R[4u 
b site for b teams
2020-01-28 13:02
+1
2020-01-28 14:32
#43
s1mple | 
Bulgaria ventsii 
What? Where is that statement that Astralis made which you referenced in the article? Why is it not linked?
2020-01-28 13:07
It's linked in the opening paragraph.
2020-01-28 13:13
Huh, I'm either blind or it didn't show up on my phone :D thanks
2020-01-29 00:44
So all other teams just waste their time in this tournament.
2020-01-28 13:13
#53
Frankie | 
Ukraine d3adLY 
Astralis #8
2020-01-28 13:20
Most big organizations should be giving B-site a year/season or so to prove themselves anyway. Especially since the league is primarily in a region where league viewership has been weak. B-Site at the moment has two teams cashing in on prior legacies, and four teams that would/should be playing in MDL at the moment.
2020-01-28 13:26
#68
chrisJ | 
Poland Chiirs 
C9 wants to emulate Overwatch League. I don't think it is going to work for many reasons. Valve is promoting very open model for majors. With recent changes, teams need to prove themselves all the time to play in major. Now how can they potentially justify having teams that do poorly there or even don't qualify for major? In Overwatch there isn't such a thing, it's all closed circuit. It's the only competition for OW teams. How is B site going to deal with weak teams in a long run? CS:Go is very open and competitive scene. It might be unsustainable, but perhaps some teams are spending too much and/or are mismanagded like C9.
2020-01-28 13:58
I don't think that's necessarily the case: re C9/IGC wanting to emulate the OWL, but emulating most major professional US sports where there is no third party (i.e., ESL), and the teams & players divide most, if not all, revenues. CS:GO is incredibly inflated in all aspects and without broadcast rights, there's little to no profit to be made. I'm starting to get the impression ESL went into scramble mode once those HUYA negotiations stopped.
2020-01-28 14:10
#131
chrisJ | 
Poland Chiirs 
Ye, the money is always issue without broadcasting rights. ESL/Dreamhack owners might be able to make some profit, but most of teams are bleeding money in my opinion. Some probably can afford it, but a lot can't. For example with Complexity offering $1m salaries, I wonder how long before that whole scene is going to crash. It's clearly over invested.
2020-01-28 22:14
#55
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Germany X5ander 
unbelievable, the new Top Tier 1 Team BIG is not part of Pro League, what a joke !
2020-01-28 13:30
BIG belongs to MDL at max, baiter
2020-01-28 14:31
Winning a Dream hack open doesn’t put you in the conversation for tier 1
2020-01-29 08:27
#145
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Germany X5ander 
but they destroyed Heroic / Renegads, which will be part of the ProLeague !
2020-01-29 09:17
Very expected, first blast now ESL
2020-01-28 13:45
nice
2020-01-28 13:55
This is the reasonable decision to expect from solid, top tier teams. Not this new league bullshit MIBR and other ranking-falling teams came up with
2020-01-28 14:16
#82
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Finland Homeless775 
Ok and what now?
2020-01-28 14:26
B site league doomed in this battle as expected for this 1st season at least, all the best gonna go EPL
2020-01-28 17:11
#110
 | 
Brazil Smartzilian 
"EXPECTED" Basically they're sending a message to other orgs to follow them. B site might be formed only by tier 3, at least at the first season. Maybe the orgs gonna wait and see what happens next in terms of production and revenue on B site. It's a reasonable decision by Astralis who gonna defend their dominance.
2020-01-28 17:12
B Site is gonna be for renegade teams who once were something and now are complete trash and the fan base pressure is too much. And I say that being a fan of MIBR
2020-01-28 20:03
guess we’re all watching esl instead of tier 2 b site LMAO
2020-01-28 17:30
B site is tier 1
2020-01-28 20:43
tier 1 talent sure teams tho LOOOOOOL
2020-01-28 22:18
#125
 | 
Brazil Smartzilian 
There will be a lot of people watching actually, despite the low cs level compared with ESL pro. For instance, Mibr fan base is huge and I could say the same for DIG and C9. Also, it might have a good production and content.
2020-01-28 20:54
name checks out +1 i think faceit is in more for the viewership (hence why names like dig, c9 and mibr). i think tho astralis vs liquid alone will draw a lot of viewers too for esl (astralis stated that many top teams r following them), not to mention s1mple vs zywoo
2020-01-28 22:20
Now lets wait for Astralis and Liquid match
2020-01-28 18:16
Am i the only one confused on how some the teams got 2 million dollars to be in that b site league?
2020-01-28 18:28
#124
 | 
United States EmperorTrump 
All of those orgs have investor backing. MAD Lions are in LEC (League of Legends) and Overwatch League that have much higher buy-in and salaries. c0ntact has spots in Overwatch League and Call of Duty League ($10 mil buy-in). B League spot is basically free compared to other esports franchises.
2020-01-28 20:55
expected, Astralis is really a thing now
2020-01-28 19:07
#123
 | 
United States EmperorTrump 
$2 mil buy-in for Tier 2 league lul FACEIT
2020-01-28 20:50
#128
 | 
Brazil Smartzilian 
As far as I know it's not the buy-in, this value is the price to be a partner, an owner of the League. There will be teams that will not pay this amount and yet be playing in the tournament.
2020-01-28 20:58
#139
 | 
United States EmperorTrump 
Nope. Everyone will pay and become "partner". But only fools would expect a return from such investment. Basically every season of this league should generate at least $30 mil from sponsors and other sources to be profitable for partners. It will never happen.
2020-01-28 23:21
If the teams only get worse than the ones listed then HUNDEN Will own that leauge xD
2020-01-28 20:58
As long as there are no Australians 😏
2020-01-29 08:29
Oh we Will see😉😏
2020-01-29 14:48
ez
2020-01-28 21:39
Astralis is going to join B League and bamboozle everyone. Relax and beat tier 100 teams
2020-01-28 23:03
#138
 | 
Australia strikebacK 
BLASTRALIS ESLTRALIS
2020-01-28 23:03
So what?
2020-01-29 01:41
#147
 | 
Australia strikebacK 
MIBR OMEGALUL
2020-01-29 10:18
Says the Australian baiter kid who cheers for Navi. F%ck off
2020-01-29 11:10
#153
 | 
Australia strikebacK 
Someone is mad that his team is fucking garbage. If I could have two flairs I would have 100T as well you ignorant cunt.
2020-01-30 03:29
Garbage but better than Australian shit, fucking POS. kthxbye
2020-01-30 12:38
#157
 | 
Australia strikebacK 
are you braindead? 100T > MiBR
2020-01-30 14:53
#155
zet | 
Switzerland MRKNUSPER 
well NaVi is trash aswell
2020-01-30 12:56
+1. Let that kid, oblivious to reality, cry
2020-01-30 13:55
#159
 | 
Australia strikebacK 
i think you're oblivious thinking we are shit take a look in the mirror
2020-01-30 14:54
#158
 | 
Australia strikebacK 
well Swiss scene is trash as well
2020-01-30 14:53
#160
zet | 
Switzerland MRKNUSPER 
which scene?
2020-01-30 21:24
#161
 | 
Australia strikebacK 
exactly
2020-01-31 10:38
B league is going to be such a financial failure, mark my words.
2020-01-29 09:40
EX PEC TED
2020-01-29 15:02
Well, by kicking some of the teams out of PRO League, ESL might have pushed some better teams towards B site. It might be a bad move for the long term as if the teams paying the $2m buy-in for the event will manage to get good pofits even if the teams quality is shit, they might see the tier-1 teams leaving them from next year. I know Dignitas is not what NiP used to be, but the huge fan base will follow the likes of f0rest, get_right, friberg even after they retire, and with a huge following like that B site will manage to get on board some big sponsors as well.
2020-01-29 16:02
If only they didn’t downgrade the logo..
2020-01-31 22:18
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