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EG falter to a strong Astralis in EPL S15

Evil Geniuses have a tough road ahead of them, and are arguably the team with the hardest schedule in Group D. Their journey in EPL S15 kicked off today with a BO3 against Astralis, and they will have to face Navi and Heroic back to back. How was their first showing?

Astralis dominated the series with a 2-0 win, preventing EG from even reaching double digits in either game. But, as the analyst desk pointed out, hope is not lost for EG. Astralis were looking much stronger than they’ve been recently, with Glaive looking consistent and Konfig seeming to be at his peak. In addition to this, this was the team’s first outing with their new coach Trace, so a lot of things were hard to predict.

Evil Geniuses’ first mistake seemed to be the Veto. They have played so few games that their map pool hasn’t really shown itself yet, but Vertigo doesn’t seem like the best choice for them at the moment. They banned it in a recent game vs Carpe Diem, left it open in a BO3 vs Pain (didn’t need to play it since they won 2-0), so their only game on the map was a 16-10 loss vs BIG. 

The team handicapped their pick right at the start by having a very poor T-Side off of a ninja defuse from Konfig which stole a clean pistol round away. This kicked off Astralis’ 6 round win-streak which eventually concluded in a 11-4 half. A pistol round loss just made everything worse for EG in the second half, and they were too far behind to manage to claw the game back despite a much better looking CT-side.

As Mauisnake pointed out after the series ended, it seems like the team needs more time to jell together. T-sides are not  good, utility usage and teamwork hasn’t been the best and their trading is one of the worst in the entire tournament. EG has the pieces and resources, but the puzzle just isn’t clicking together yet. 

The same problems surfaced in Overpass and the victory was an even more dominant 16-8. EG started it off on the CT side with a clean pistol win, but as soon as Astralis got their footing the NA team fell massively behind. Konfig and Glaive were dominating the opening duels, Stewie’s force calls weren’t working out and the team lost some crucial close rounds. 

It wasn’t all bad though. EG’s core of Brehze and Cerq looked much better than in any previous games. Brehze had a very dominant showing on Overpass and Cerq had his moments on Vertigo, but unfortunately this upgrade in level comes simultaneously with a dip in autimatic’s and stewie’s performance. The IGL hasn’t gotten his previous form yet and Tim looked considerably worse today. 

There is still hope for this team to be all that fans want them to be, but they need to solidify their fundamentals. A consistent map pool needs to be opted into and the teamplay and trading must be better. They have the firepower, especially if Brehze keeps playing like he did today, they just need to make the pieces fit. Let’s see what they can do tomorrow versus Navi.