TI8 Group Stage Day 3 will continue the chaos that has been the TI group stage, where the heavy favourites are dropping more games than expected with two teams from North America standing out in their respective groups.
Hands up if you thought the group stage would turn out like this. Almost nobody expected this to happen. We knew that Evil Geniuses and VGJ.Storm were good, but to be good enough to head into the TI8 Group Stage Day 3 with only one loss each and leading their respective groups?
But, then again, both Day 1 and Day 2 TI8 Group Stage has turned out to be anything but how it was expected so far.
Case in point, powerhouses such as Newbee, ViCi Gaming, Mineski, and even Team Secret, are in the bottom half of the standings, with the wildcards, Winstrike, failing to win and surprise teams with their shock-and-awe approach.
Having said that, we should expect the TI8 Group Stage Day 3 to turn out exactly the same way — which is to say, much to the surprise of many — and as always, we’re here to help you make some sense of it and give you picks that are likely net you some money in the bank.
All odds courtesy of GGbet unless otherwise stated.
Team Liquid vs Mineski
Match Schedule: August 18, 0000H (UTC + 8)
Team Liquid has been playing okay so far, which is disappointing considering that they are the defending champions. As for Mineski, it seems that the break didn’t do them any better. Either Tang ‘71‘ Wenyi didn’t have enough time to whip his team into shape, or Mineski have something up their sleeves. We’re betting on the former.
Either way, considering how important upper bracket seeding is during the playoffs, expect Team Liquid to pull off fewer shenanigans and take out Mineski in a relatively quick sweep.
Betting: Team Liquid to win 2-0 at 2.01 odds (GGbet)
OpTic Gaming vs Team Serenity
Match Schedule: August 18, 0230H (UTC + 8)
Who would’ve thought that of the three teams from NA playing at TI8, OpTic Gaming would be the ones finding themselves in the middle of the pack? While Evil Geniuses and VGJ.Storm are leading their respective groups, OpTic Gaming are barely breaking even, winning some games and losing a fair share as well.
As for this particular matchup, considering OpTic Gaming’s success against Newbee, their series against Team Serenity should turn out exactly the same way.
Betting: OpTic Gaming to win 2-0 at 3.9 odds (GGbet)
Mineski vs VGJ.Thunder
Match Schedule: August 18, 0500H (UTC + 8)
VGJ.Thunder took a game off of PSG.LGD and swept Winstrike, suggesting that they are better than advertised. However, they also lost the majority of their games, and are sitting at a 3-5 record heading into the TI8 Group Stage Day 3. That also says a lot about how inconsistent they are, and how most likely they’ll enter the playoffs as a lower-bracket team if they even make it there.
Mineski aren’t exactly the beacon of consistency, but they are easily the better team of the two, and despite their losses, they have performed relatively well, especially Kam ‘Moon‘ Boon Seng.
Betting: Mineski to win 2-0 at 2.46 odds (GGbet)
Newbee vs VGJ.Storm
Match Schedule: August 18, 0730H (UTC + 8)
VGJ.Storm have to start losing some time soon, but unless they’re facing off against the likes of PSG.LGD, Team Liquid, or Virtus.Pro, we don’t see that happening just yet. Especially not against Newbee.
This is not a knock on Newbee, but more of an appreciation of how well VGJ.Storm have played.
Roman ‘Resolut1on‘ Fominok remains as effective as ever, while Arif ‘MSS‘ Anwar has easily been one of the standout position 4 supports of the tournament so far.
Considering that VGJ.Storm aren’t going to meet Virtus.Pro until Day 4 of the TI8 Group Stage, it won’t be foolish to expect them to continue racking up wins until then.
Betting: VGJ.Storm to win at 2.86 odds (GGbet)
TNC Predator vs Team Serenity
Match Schedule: August 18, 0730H (UTC + 8)
TNC Predator have played up to the expectations of many so far. They’re currently in second place and are primed for a spot in the upper bracket of the TI8 playoffs. To put simply, they’ve been good. But, Team Serenity aren’t half-bad either, and even though they sit in the bottom half with a 3-5 record, the surprise Chinese entrants have proven that they can take games off of anybody, including Virtus.Pro and Team Secret.
Betting: TNC Predator vs Team Serenity to draw at 1.91 odds (GGbet)
Evil Geniuses vs Team Liquid
Match Schedule: August 18, 1000H (UTC + 8)
Time for a controversial pick.
We know that Team Liquid are the defending champions, and as well as they’ve played so far, Evil Geniuses have played even better. They are this year’s LFY, who took the group stages by storm in a similar manner last year. The only difference is that Evil Geniuses are proving their mettle against both Team Liquid and PSG.LGD, two of the presumptive favourites to win it all this year.
Evil Geniuses have already swept PSG.LGD and it won’t be far-fetched to see them doing the same to Team Liquid tomorrow in the TI8 Group Stage Day 3.
Betting: Evil Geniuses to go 2-0 at 4.09 odds (GGbet)
Click here for our power rankings for The International 2018.
Which teams do you think will surprise and disappoint in the TI8 Group Stage Day 3? Do you think our predictions will fare better than yesterday? Be sure to let us know your thoughts in the comments down below.