In surprising fashion FaZe Clan, following Vega Squadron, are the second team to be eliminated from the PGL Major. The CIS sleeper team in Flipsid3 tactics dealt the final blow and one that could very well be the upset of the tournament. Coming off what many would describe as a “not up to standard performance” in ESL One Cologne, this would mark FaZe Clan’s first tournament since Katowice where they didn’t make top 4.
There are several factors that seem to be hanging over FaZe’s head right now and questions have been raised to what those factors are. Let’s point out the obvious here, this FaZe clan we’re seeing over the past 2 weeks has not been the FaZe we’re used to. This was completely at the forefront of visibility after a questionable “rush-b” pistol strategy that pretty much lost the game for FaZe. I may be singling out one round here but this particular strategy pulls up the most questions for me. Never once have I ever questioned Karrigan’s calls while watching FaZe play, this strat however screams desperation. Could he have finally been out of ideas? If so surely a standard default or A execute could have been the better call.
This is all well and good to say in hindsight but we as viewers have no idea why calls like that are made or whether or not if a different strat was called would of worked out anyway. To concentrate on one more aspect of why FaZe lost the map, the players aren’t looking like themselves either. Kioshima has been consistently praised for his recent performances and Rain often described by the other pro-players as one of the best in the world. However both didn’t turn up to to the Major. Both ended the game with 12 and 10 frags respectively. NiKo, in true solo carry mode faces the same fate he used to suffer with his previous team Mouz, dropping 27 frags with an average 100.8 damage dealt per round.
Moving away from this match, even more surprisingly with FaZe also lost to BIG and Mousesports with 16-8 and 15-19 losses respectively. All three teams that beat FaZe, the 2nd highest rated team on HLTV, weren’t even in the top 10! With what many would consider as an easy draw for team, overconfidence could have been their downfall.
We also must consider FaZe’s track record up until this point: 2nd at Katowice, a win at Starladder, 2nd at IEM Sydney, 2nd at ECS London and 3rd at ESL One Cologne. Apart from their win at Starladder, the trophy was always at arms reach but were consistently denied at the last moment. Burnout could be a factor I guess, as well as frustration.
What ever the issue is, let’s hope this doesn’t hit them too hard as they’re a great team and one that brought in an era of a more diverse top 5. I can’t see any massive changes coming in from FaZe, but the slow decline from the team is hard watch. The player break is coming up so I can see them bouncing back stronger for Malmo at the end of August however, I can’t see this being the end of their run. FaZe Up lads, enjoy the break and then get back to work.