It’s Tuesday, so it’s time for another round of ESL Pro League CSGO matches. In the more interesting game of the day from a betting perspective, Mousesports face Heroic.
Mousesports (no prices available) vs Heroic (no prices available), Draw (no prices available)
So far, Mousesports have been steaming ahead to the LAN finals, whilst Heroic are languishing in the lower part of the table. Mouz did stumble against Virtus Pro in their last game, losing both maps, and also lost a map to LDLC the day before. They will be looking to get back on track here, as will Heroic, who have looked promising but have only won one map out of their past six.
Map One – Nuke – Mousesports (6/5, 2.20 Betway Esports) vs Heroic (3/4, 1.75 GGBet)
Mousesports are not really a Nuke team, and their pick of it against Swedish mix team TzatzikiKlubben in the Dreamhack Austin qualifier is no more than a diversion. ESL Pro League losses to LDLC (16-10), Virtus Pro (16-11) and Astralis (16-11) stand out, and in their most recent two matches on the map they have really struggled on T side. Against Astralis they still retained the services of Nikola ‘NiKo’ Kovač and their reduction in firepower is alarming given this pattern in ineffective T-side executions. They did manage to beat Team Kinguin, 16-5, however they started on the CT side and racked up 13 rounds against a rival who usually perma ban the map. That fixture was the only time Team Kinguin have played the map. Thus, that form is pretty much meaningless.
The German based side’s form in general is difficult to get too much of a read on. They have been fortunate enough to play against some of the weaker and more out of form teams in Pro League, and we sense that this game may define their season. Similar could be said for Heroic.
However, Heroic, on the other hand, have demonstrated some excellent form on Nuke. They have played the map frequently both online and offline, with mixed success, but it was at IEM Katowice that they shone. Beating both North and Virtus Pro demonstrated their capabilities at Cedar Creek. They have shown they can play both sides of the map well against teams that are of a higher calibre than Mousesports. As such, this should be a relatively straightforward victory for the Danes. Odds of 3/4 (1.75) with GGBet seem generous.
Map Two – Cobblestone – Heroic (23/20, 2.15 Leo Vegas Esports) vs Mousesports (23/25, 1.92 GGBet)
Cobblestone is another map which would not be top of Mousesports’ preferences, but which would be chosen on occasion by Heroic. Heroic had some great successes on Cobble back in November 2016 at IEM Oakland, where they beat both Mousesports and SK Gaming. Since then, they have been less convincing, losing to some mediocre teams such as LDLC and BIG. In Katowice, it did not appear that they had turned a corner considering Cloud9 beat them 16-7.
The issue is that Heroic’s CT side, which used to be very strong, seems to have dropped off a little. Whereas before they were taking double figure rounds from top tier teams on defence, they are now not gaining a sufficient enough advantage to offset a very poor terrorist side. Heroic are yet to play a meaningful T side that could be classed as anything better than average on the map.
On the plus side, they must be aware of this and have had almost a month to rectify this. Opposite to Heroic, Mousesports have a very strong T side, but are considerably weaker on CT.
Mousesports’ recent Cobble appearances have seen them beat HellRaisers, with their coach Sergey ‘lmbt’ Bezhanov replacing Denis ‘denis’ Howell, Kinguin, LDLC, BIG and Na’Vi. The latter game should be ignored given NiKo produced possibly the finest ever individual CounterStrike performance, dropping 37 kills to almost single-handedly win the map. A return destruction by the same side combined with losses to Spirit and GODSENT temper our enthusiasm for them.
Ultimately, this map could go either way, but Heroic have more individual ability and less obvious weaknesses in their lineup. Mousesports’ level of form is known, and given that it is likely that Heroic have revised their executions and rectified their T side issues, there is far more up side in backing them to win this map at odds against. Regardless of that, this match should be a pick’em and odds of 23/20 (2.15) will seem very generous if they show up in shape.