Blast Premiere Spring Showdown – June 2, 2020

     We dive in to our second day of Blast Premiere matches on Tuesday with another 8 game slate. On Monday, we went 3-2-1 with our picks, but ended up losing 0.09 units. I made the mistake of playing a -185 line to win a unit, which resulted in a loss of more than half the bankroll I worked up with a great start in the European Region. I warned not to risk too much on the best of ones, and then did it any way. Hand up, that’s on me! For todays slate, we’ll be targeting the same teams in more than one match with the hope to profit even in a split. Blast Premiere may be a battle to consistently profit, but who doesn’t love a challenge?! Let’s get hot on Tuesday!

 

Blast Premiere Record: 3-2-1 (-0.09u)

 

Fnatic (-170) vs Virtus.Pro (+140) – 9:30am EST

     We get the day started with an interesting matchup. Fnatic hasn’t looked like themself since ESL Pro League. They showed similar form dropping their first Blast match to Mad Lions as a short favorite. They played that match on Mirage and lost 16-10, but the score line should have been much worse. Virtus.Pro comes in to this match after winning out the Blast CIS qualifier with a perfect 4-0 record. This came on the heels of a roster switch after Road to Rio. They added Yekindar and dropped Buster. This roster move should pay off for VP as Yekindar is a real stud coming up through the CIS region. I just don’t understand how Fnatic can still be listed as such a high favorite. I think it’s something the book makers have to do since the public will blindly back big name teams, but to be -170 seems like a reach based on current form. I’ll be backing VP at plus money in a match that I see being a lot closer to a coin flip.

Miner’s Money Pick: Virtus.Pro (+140)

 

Ninjas in Pyjamas (-330) vs Saw (+240) – 10:45am EST

     Ninjas in Pyjamas did enough for us yesterday as we cashed tickets in their upset over Astralis. It seems like the team is finally accepting the roster move from Lekro to Hampus. They are back to playing the solid team Counter Strike that they were playing throughout Road to Rio. Each player finished the Astralis match with a positive K/D. Astralis is playing with two new teammates, but Astralis went on to beat Saw 16-4 after their loss to NiP. I think Saw is playing above their skill level right now and I won’t be surprised to see them come in last place in their group. Honestly, I don’t even know if they’ll be able to find a win. In this match we’ll most likely see either Train or Vertigo. NiP should handle them on either map, especially if we see Vertigo. Be warned, this is an extremely expensive line, and in a best of one I wouldn’t put too much on it. I’ll be risking 2 units in hope to profit just 0.6 units. This bet isn’t for the faint of heart, but it’s a match I can’t see NiP losing. An alternative to the money line would be to take NiP -3.5 rounds at the price of -160, but since teams don’t play to win by a certain amount, I see less risk in the money line. NiP knows they can’t lose this match.

Miner’s Money Pick: Ninjas in Pyjamas (-330) *Risk 2u* 

 

 

Mad Lions (-190) vs Virtus.Pro (+155) – 12:00pm EST

     Virtus.Pro will be playing their second match of the day against Mad Lions. Mad Lions beat up on Fnatic in their first match, but I wouldn’t say that win should carry too much weight. As I mentioned, Fnatic is in horrid form. I think that win and the unknown of VP is creating some value on the underdog here. Mad Lions have a lot of talent on their squad, but they’re just 2-2 since Flashpoint. Their only 2 wins came against Mousepsorts and Fnatic. I understand those are some big name organizations, but neither team has been playing to their full potential. Mad Lions lost to both Big and Complexity before those wins. Mad Lions and VP played back in February with each team having 4 of the current 5 players on the roster. Mad Lions took that series on the third map, but their map wins were only decided by 2.5 rounds on average. I think the addition of Yekindar makes VP stronger than they were in February. I also think these odds are inflated based on Mad Lions recent wins. I see this match a lot closer to a coin flip than the odds imply. I’ll be backing the plus money team that should improve with the roster addition.

Miner’s Money Pick: Virtus.Pro (+155)

 

Vitality (-150) vs Ninjas in Pyjamas (+120) – 1:15pm EST

     Well, I hope you’re ready to root for the same teams all day long. We get the treat of another match between NiP and Vitality. This will be the fifth time these two meet for a series since March 22nd. The most recent series was a blowout, but it was NiP’s first match with their new in game leader. The matches prior to that each went the distance with the most recent having all three maps go to overtime. These teams were as even as you could get. NiP has seemed to find form over their last couple of matches after the switch from Lekro to Hampus. I think their level of play is almost back to where it was during Road to Rio. NiP was able to win their first Blast match while Vitality tied their match against Ence. They should have won that match, but their tendency to play loose counter strike came back to haunt them as they blew plenty of rounds they should have won. NiP was able to beat Astralis 16-7 on Train. Regardless of Mondays outcomes, I would be backing whatever team is the dog in this one. These teams are too evenly matched to back a favorite in a best of one.

Miner’s Money Pick: Ninjas in Pyjamas (+120)

 

Mad Lions (-220) vs Dignitas (+180) – 2:30pm EST

     My pick for this match follows a similar thought to my VP pick against Mad Lions. I don’t think the Mad Lions have done anything to warrant a -220 line in a best of one. I know Dignitas has been losing a ton lately, but that roster has a ton of counter strike experience and can realistically beat anyone on any given day. I think the best of one format also favorites Dignitas for that same reason. I don’t think we’ll see Mad Lions get out to a 3-0 start for Blast Premier, so fading them as big favorites twice today will hopefully result in at least a split for profit.

Miner’s Money Pick: Dignitas (+180)

 

Furia (-130) vs Gen.G (+100) – 5:45pm EST

     The only match I will be playing from the American region is the only one with reasonable odds. We have Gen.G taking on Furia in a rematch of the Road to Rio finals. Gen.G won that series with a 2-1 final. Furia was the favorite going in to that match and seemed to be the best team at Road to Rio. I’m sure this is a match that they’ve had circled since that loss. Furia has looked like the best team in the North American region since the start of Road to Rio. I expect Furia to be out for revenge, especially after suffering a loss to MiBR in their first match for the Blast Premiere Spring Showdown. Gen.G is a solid team, but they have a much lower ceiling. Their consistency shows across longer series, so I think the price for Furia is very fair in this one. Furia has also been able to find success on almost every map other than Dust2. This should also give them a slight edge in the best of one setting. I’ll be making the same move I did Monday and play Furia to win a unit. Monday it killed my day, but hopefully it will pay off today.

Miner’s Money Pick: Furia (-130) *1.3u*      

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