More than a month after recruiting Marcelo “coldzera” David in a big-money signing, FaZe‘s new project finally seems to be bearing fruits after a final between two sleeping giants in the Counter-Strike scene. FaZe appear to have a habit of winning titles when no-one really expects and they have done so again, becoming the only team to win two BLAST trophies this year and securing the highest seed heading into the Global Final event.
FaZe had played some high-quality Counter-Strike in the round-robin stage and they showed again in the final that can indeed vie for one of the top spots in the rankings during the last stretch of the season, even if the final scoreline was a bit too harsh on NiP.
The Swedes, who were playing their first LAN final since last year’s BLAST event at this very same venue, had Nuke under control but fluffed their lines and wasted seven map points as FaZe made a stunning recovery to equalise the score and then take the map in overtime. The Ninjas knew that a victory here would represent their first Big Event title since IEM Oakland 2017, and the pressure seemed to get to them. Dust2 was also highly contested from the offset, but once FaZe kicked their game into a higher gear there was no stopping them.
Nikola “NiKo” Kovač‘s troops opened the first map, Nuke, in convincing fashion with a dominant pistol round, but their lead would not last. As soon as NiP had guns in hand, the landscape of the game changed immediately, with the Swedes taking six rounds in a row to put their opponents in danger of getting blown out. Things threatened to get out of hand, but FaZe tightened up their defense in the latter stages of the half and managed to bring the deficit to a minimum, with youngster Helvijs “broky” Saukants raising eyebrows on the AWP in several crucial rounds.
NiP came out of the break looking scary and won seven of the opening eight rounds of the half to hit map point. The game seemed to be a foregone conclusion, but all of a sudden the Swedes took their foot off the gas. FaZe, on the other hand, upped the pace and, as rounds continued to go their way, they grew in confidence until a 15-15 stalemate was reached.
The Ninjas broke that streak with a strong start to overtime, but the final round of the first half wound up going FaZe‘s way. After switching to the CT side, NiKo‘s troops set up a very tight and compact defense and won three rounds without response to walk away with an unlikely victory.
Dust2 began with NiP taking the lead with a successful T pistol, but FaZe answered back immediately on a force-buy and used that momentum to build a commanding 5-1 lead. The game then comically turned into a festival of team-kills from NiKo‘s side, but they kept their composure to head into the break up 8-7 after the Ninjas had enjoyed a spell of dominance.
Simon “twist” Eliasson went huge after the break and pulled off a crucial 1v2 clutch in the pistol round. The Ninjas would not let that chance go to waste and restored their lead, but things fell apart once their opponents had money in the bank. FaZe took control of proceedings and never looked back, with the finishing blow coming in cruel circumstances for the Swedes as coldzera and NiKo turned a 2v5 situation around.
BLAST Pro Series Copenhagen standings:
1. FaZe – $125,000 + 10 points
2. NiP – $50,000 + 8 points
3. Natus Vincere – $25,000 + 6 points
4. Astralis – $15,000 (+$20,000 from Stand-off) + 4 points
5. Liquid – $10,000 + 2 points
6. Cloud9 – $5,000
BLAST Pro Series season leaderboard: