We’re finally going to have the first high-tier event of the year, with the iBUYPOWER Masters 2019 set to take place from January 19-20 at the AVALON Hollywood in Los Angeles.
Although the iBUYPOWER Masters 2019 is part of the iBUYPOWER Masters series of tournament, it’s also different in its own way. It’s bigger than ever before. Case in point, headlining the event are the winners of the Intel Grand Slam, Astralis. The organizers have also decided to invite other high-ranking teams as well, including FaZe Clan and Team Liquid. More importantly, the organizers have also doubled the prize pool this time around. From $100,000 previously, the iBUYPOWER Masters 2019 will feature a whopping $200,000 prize pool.
With so much on the line, and all of the participating teams capable of pulling off a win, the iBUYPOWER Masters 2019 is an interesting way to start off the year.
iBUYPOWER Masters 2019 Outright Betting Odds
- Astralis at 1.50 odds to win.
- Team Liquid at 6.00 odds to win.
- FaZe Clan at 7.00 odds to win.
- Fnatic at 15.00 odds to win.
- Cloud9 at 17.00 odds to win.
- compLexity Gaming at 18.00 odds to win.
- Luminosity Gaming at 21.00 odds to win.
- Ghost Gaming at 33.00 odds to win.
All iBUYPower Masters 2019 odds courtesy of 10bet.
Judging from the slate of teams alone, you’d think that this is Astralis’ to lose, and you really wouldn’t be wrong.
Astralis closed out 2018 on an absolute tear, winning 4 straight LAN tournaments from November to December, and going 8 out of 11 during the second half of 2018. In total, Astralis won 10 LAN tournaments in 2018 alone, collectively earning $2.5 million in prize money alone plus the $1 million from the Intel Grand Slam award by virtue of winning 4 premiere ESL or DreamHack events in 10 tries.
Come to think of it, Astralis have more to lose than to gain by playing at the iBUYPOWER Masters 2019. If they win, it’s going to be pretty much business as usual for the all-time Danish squad. But, if they lose and don’t end up winning the tournament, it’ll be considered a massive upset, regardless of who ends up beating them.
Having said that, it’ll be interesting to see which teams end up giving Astralis a close run for their money.
Who’s Going to Beat Astralis?
If there ever was such a time that Astralis was vulnerable, it’s probably now.
Fresh off of a relatively long winter break, Astralis probably aren’t in mid-season form just yet. That bodes well for the 7 other teams playing at the iBUYPOWER Masters 2019. Team Liquid, in particular, will be looking to finally avenge their losing streak against Astralis, especially since they’ll be playing in front of their home crowd.
Of course, on the topic of beating Astralis, another team that’s fully capable of doing so is FaZe Clan. They’ve done so many times in the past, and though their latest roster, with Finn ‘karrigan‘ Andersen out of the lineup, is unproven, they’ve proven time and time again that they can win by relying on firepower alone.
Outside of those two, the rest of the teams aren’t pushovers either. Both Cloud9 and Fnatic showed a lot of promise to end the year, especially the latter, who came so close to beating Astralis at the Semifinals of IEM Chicago 2018. Meanwhile, compLexity Gaming, Ghost Gaming, and Luminosity Gaming, all have some serious potential and could play the role of spoilers against any team in the tournament, including Astralis.
Which team do you think will end up winning iBUYPOWER Masters 2019? Should we pencil this in as another win for Astralis? Or will another team use this chance to make a statement? Be sure to let us know your thoughts in the comments down below.