So much for upsets at ESL Hamburg 2017.
Day 1 saw none of the shenanigans commonly associated with best-of-one series as each of the heavy favourites did what they needed to do.
Tomorrow, ESL Hamburg 2017 will finally move on from the controversial best-of-one series to the proper best-of-threes, with three important matches — 2 Group Deciders and 1 Elimination Match — slated for the day.
Newbee vs Team Secret
At 1.85 odds each to take the series, as per ggbet, Newbee and Team Secret are literally at even odds to take the series, making this one of the closest matchups in the entire tournament.
There’s no history to be found between these two times either. The last time they met was at the Manila Masters, with Team Secret sporting a different lineup and a drastically different playstyle then.
This time around, Team Secret mirrors closely that of Team Liquid. Albeit, they’re not exactly as good as the reigning champions. But still, it’s worth taking note of this, as this creates matchup problems because of Newbee’s preference to pick heroes that typically do not dominate lanes and their tendency to play from behind.
Ultimately, this is a match too close to call, so if you can, try to look for other means of betting on the match.
Betting: Newbee to win at least one map at 1/3 (bet365); Team Secret with +1.5 map handicap at 1.3 (ggbet)
Team Liquid vs Virtus.Pro
If there ever was a matchup worth risking on, it’s this, especially with Virtus.Pro at 12/5 odds, as per bet365, to take the series.
A rematch of the all-time series at The International 7 that saw these two teams stretch a best-of-three to nearly 4 hours, Virtus.Pro is as good of a bet to hand Team Liquid their first series loss of the new season.
Just don’t count on Team Liquid rolling over, especially after Ilya ‘Lil’ Ilyuk criticised Maroun ‘GH’ Merhej and his performance at TI as “nothing special”.
Betting: Total Maps over 2.5 at 1/1 (bet365); Team Liquid to win at 3.0 (ggbet)
Evil Geniuses vs Fnatic
What’s most likely to happen? Evil Geniuses to follow up a 3rd-4th place finish at the PGL Minor with an early exit at ESL Hamburg 2017? Or for Fnatic, a team who were just lucky enough to sub in for HappyFeet, to implode once again?
Fnatic pulling off an Anti-Mage second pick against Newbee proves that they’ve devolved from making baffling decisions that sometimes work to doing things that are just downright foolish.
Fnatic are at least a good (ish) bet to take a game off at 5/6, as per bet365, but if Evil Geniuses show up with their A game, expect this to be a quick sweep.
Betting: Evil Geniuses to go 2-0 at 1.75 (ggbet); Map 1 & 2 Under 37.5 minutes at 1.75 (ggbet)
12:00 CEST — Newbee vs Team Secret
15:45 CEST — Virtus.Pro vs Team Liquid
19:30 CEST — Evil Geniuses vs Fnatic