IEM Fall 2021 – North America Group B Preview

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IEM Fall: North America starts today! On the line are five spots at the PGL Stockholm Major, and a chance to play on LAN against international opposition. Today, we take a look at Group B to see which teams are likely to advance out of the group, investigating their previous form and seeing how they stack up against the competition.

Four Brazilian squads are playing in Group B, resulting in a highly competitive group filled with teams that are all very familiar with one-another. Only three of the following squads are able to advance, so let’s take a look at who stands the best chance!

Logo for FURIA eSports FURIA (1584 RMR Points)

FURIA Esports sits in 3rd place, in the last of the region’s three Legend’s Status slots at the major. It will be the goal of FURIA to hold on to this position — doing so will let them bypass Stockholm’s New Challengers Stage, guaranteeing a finish in the top sixteen. However, recent roster changes saw Paytyn ‘junior’ Johnson replaced by André ‘drop’ Abreu, have put the team in unknown form.

Despite these changes, FURIA is still the top team in Group B, and a likely contender for tournament champions. It would be a massive shock for them to finish anywhere outside of the top two positions, earning their way into the playoffs. Unfortunately, IEM Fall’s best-of-one format is most disadvantageous to the FURIA squad, making upsets significantly more likely.

Logo for Evil Geniuses Evil Geniuses (1310 RMR Points)

Despite entering the 2021 RMR circuit with a 600-point advantage, the Evil Geniuses sit in 4th place following a series of roster moves and a last-place performance at cs_summit 8. Evil Geniuses has been active internationally, but often in losing efforts: The team has won only one series throughout IEM: Cologne, ESL Pro League Season 14 and the BLAST: Premier Fall Groups.

Luckily for The Evil Geniuses’, the competition at IEM Fall should be fairly weaker than the top teams of Europe. Their placement in Group B will depend entirely on their form against this domestic opposition. They should finish among the middle of the group, but could easily jump into the top two or slip down to the bottom depending on which Evil Geniuses we see on the server.

Logo for 00Nation 00Nation (1300 RMR Points)

In 5th place, 00Nation — formerly known as O Plano — cling onto the last North American qualification slot to the PGL Major. The team recently returned from an up-and-down European tour that saw them beat the likes of Fnatic and LDLC, but they were unable to take down teams such as Dignitas and the Copenhagen Flames.

All 00Nation want is to hold onto that 5th position. To do so, they’ll need to secure at least third place in the group, and then defeat an opponent from Group A in the 5th Place Decider. A squad such as GODSENT could pose a threat to this goal, but 00Nation should be able to keep stable and finish among the top half of the group.

Logo for GODSENT GODSENT (0 RMR Points)

IEM Fall marks GODSENT’s first RMR event, having missed out on cs_summit 8. The squad is young, but have already taken impressive victories over Extra Salt, Team One and FURIA Esports. A mix of veteran Brazilian talent and young stars from some of Brazil’s best teams, GODSENT may very well enter IEM Fall with nothing and leave with a ticket to Stockholm.

Expect to find GODSENT fighting it out in the middle of the pack, looking to slip into the top half of Group B. They’ve shown the talent required to beat the best teams in this group, but inexperience as a roster could cost them a much-needed victory against anyone.

Logo for Team oNe Team One (0 RMR Points)

Team One enter IEM Fall with 0 points after barely missing out on cs_summit 8. In a similar fate to the Evil Geniuses, the team returns to North America after an unsuccessful trip to Europe, where they failed to win a series across IEM Cologne, ESL Pro League Season 14 and Pinnacle Cup II.

Team One’s odds in Group B aren’t great. They’ll likely collect a win or two, but it’s unlikely for the squad to move on past the group stage. Still, the team continues to grow in both talent and experience, and are a name we’ll be seeing a lot more of come 2022.

Logo for Triumph Triumph (0 RMR Points)

Triumph failed to qualify for cs_summit 8, and so they arrive at IEM Fall with 0 points. The team has drastically reshuffled their roster over the past several months, but have struggled to find success regardless. Their most notable recent victories include RBG Esports and ATK, but they will be playing competition above that level here.

Realistically, Triumph should wind up at the bottom of the group. The roster was simply put together too recently to have high hopes for them at IEM Fall. An upset victory over the likes of Team One is always possible, but a 0-5 record may be all that Triumph exits with.

Joshua Treadway
Joshua Treadway
Esports writer with an interest in technology and culture. Believer in North American Counter-Strike. Universally Beloved.

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