ESL Road to Rio (NA)- Gen.G vs Cloud9 – April 30, 2020

Gen.G (-145) vs. Cloud9 (+115) – 4:00pm EST

     North American ESL Road to Rio features two matches from group A with Gen.G facing Cloud9 and the Evil Geniuses taking on Triumph. I’ll be staying away from the EG match unless Triumph is able to steal the first map. In that case I’ll be looking to back EG live if I can get them close to even money. Bookmakers see the matchup between Cloud9 and Gen.G as the closest contested match of the day and have set Gen.G as a short favorite. Gen.G currently sits atop group A with a perfect 3-0 record, although one of those wins were against Orgless who forfeited the tournament after losing to Cloud9. A Cloud9 win would go a long way for group seeding as it would force a three way tie among themself, Gen.G and 100T. If Gen.G wins today they will pull themself even further away from the pack and have a good chance to close out as the top seed. Being the top seed in group play is very advantageous as you earn a bye to the semi-finals in playoffs. Motivation shouldn’t be too much of a factor as a win for either team will go a long way.

     There isn’t too much dividing these teams as they rank 23rd and 24th globally for counterstrike. In the first match of group play Gen.G was able to pull an upset over 100T. It was an impressive win, but I’m not sure how much weight it should carry. 100T fired their coach after that match and have looked like a much better team sense. Cloud9 was able to pull off an upset of their own against Evil Geniuses as a +240 underdog in their last match. Cloud9 impressed me in that matchup which was a battle from start to finish. It may be worth noting that Cloud9 lost their first group play match against Triumph by a score of 2-1. Gen.G later beat Triumph by the same score line. Cloud9 holds a 1-0 record head to head against Gen.G. Ultimately, I think Cloud9 carries some momentum from their EG upset into todays match and I won’t pass up on the plus money play in what should be an even match.

     I’m also going to make a play on the over as I think this match has a great chance to go the distance. Cloud9 will continue to use their first ban on Mirage and Gen.G will use theirs on overpass. If either of these teams don’t do that, they will be at a huge disadvantage to their opponent there. I expect Gen.G to pick nuke as their map. They should be able to take Nuke as they have won there at almost a 70% clip over the past few months. Cloud9 should pick train as their map. They have gone 9-3 there over the past few months as Gen.G has only played the map three times in the same span. It’ll be interesting to see what the third map ends up being. Neither team has too strong of an advantage over the other on any of the remaining three maps. Personally I’m hoping to see vertigo as each team has struggled there lately. It’ll be interesting to see how things shape up, but in the end I expect Cloud9 to get the job done. In my opinion, Cloud9 has the higher ceiling and I expect them to step up in such an important match.

Miner’s Money Picks: Cloud9 (+115) & total maps o2.5 (-115)

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