The New Legends Stage within PGL Major Antwerp 2022 will start today, the 14th of May. 16 teams will fight for slots for the playoffs. 16 matches will be held on the first game day, all are bo1. Here you will find the predictions for all matches of the first round in the Challengers Stage.
Heroic vs Team Liquid
The duel between Heroic and Team Liquid will open this stage at PGL Major Antwerp 2022. The North American team lost the first two matches in the previous stage, but managed to take three victories in a row, including a triumph over Astralis, and reached Legends Stage. Heroic, who had a brilliant run at RMR, wants to make the playoffs the second time in a row. And in this match, they’re the favorites. Heroic always have a good start to the tournament, and given the fact that Team Liquid have problems, it will be difficult for the NA team to win this match.
Although, these teams met with each other month ago, at ESL Pro League Season 15, Team Liquid made a confident victory with the score of 2:0. But it was bo3, the playoffs, and a lot of things have happened this month.
Copenhagen Flames vs Bad News Eagles
Few expected to see these commands at this stage of PGL Major Antwerp 2022. But they are here, so let’s talk about them. Copenhagen Flames secured a Legends Status at RMR in Bucharest, won three matches of three. Bad News Eagle had a harder way. At RMR they managed to secure a major spot only in the last match against Sinners, made a comeback on the third map from a score of 9:14. Already in Antwerp, a team from Kosovo also played in the last round of matches, clinched the victory against MIBR. But according to many experts, the chances of the BNE in this stage are very small, and most likely the team will finish this stage without victories. I agree with them.
Interesting fact, Copenhagen Flames never win against this roster of Bad News Eagles, won only two maps, and lost six. But today, I think, they will break this trend.
Ninjas in Pyjamas vs Team Vitality
The French team had a successful result in the previous stage because they won all three matches. NiP, who signed Brollan in March, without problems qualified for Major. This will be the first meeting of these teams in such compositions. It will be interesting to see the es3tag’s rival against his former teammates dupreeh and Magisk. It is worth noting that ZywOo finally found itself in the 2020 version, and finished the first stage with a rating of 1.38 for five maps. Here I choose Vitality as a favorite. But it will be a very close match.
Cloud9 vs Outsiders
The former Gambit’s roster will debut under C9’s tag at PGL Major Antwerp 2022. Their first rival is Outsiders, their neighbor in the region. These teams have already met once at Major, it was in Stockholm 2021, and then C9 took a victory with a score of 16:14. Although, Outsiders won the last match against C9 last December. Jame & co finished the last stage with a score of 3:1. There are still questions about their game.
Given that this match will be a debut for Cloud9, I don’t think players are ready to start a new way with a defeat.
Faze Clan vs ENCE
The remake of the EPL’s grand final is waiting for us today. FaZe Clan, the best team in the world right now, will meet with ENCE. The second showed crazy progress since the beginning of the year. They finished 2nd at EPL, took the spot for BLAST Spring Finals, and reached the top-4 of HLTV World Ranking. They have already proved their strength at PGL Major Antwerp 2022. But in my opinion, FaZe Clan will again take the victory over ENCE. They’re too skilled to lose the first game at Major.
FURIA vs Team Spirit
Team Spirit unexpectedly for all, very confidently passed the previous stage of the tournament. They won against Imperial, Eternal Fire, Astralis, and had an equal game with G2. You can see that all players are well-prepared, and lack of experience does not affect the team result. But still, the Russian team looks like one of the worst alongside participants of Legends Stage. In the match against FURIA, I think, they don’t have any chance to win. The Brazilian team reached a new level, they are playing stable from the beginning of the year. Yes, this match is bo1, and everything can happen, but I believe in Brazilians.
NAVI vs G2
In the central match of the first round, NAVI will meet with G2. m0NESY will again play against the native organization. The last time G2 won against NAVI was in Katowice almost three months ago. Aleksib & co looks great at this event, they won all three matches. Although experts think that NAVI is a favorite here, remembering their “tradition” of losing debut matches at events, I think it will happen here as well. They have problems both inside the team and in the game itself. G2 have already warmed up, are accustomed to the atmosphere of the tournament, and have a better chance to win this match.
BIG vs Imperial
In the last match of the first round of Legends Stage, the German team, BIG, will meet with Brazilians from Imperial. The “Last Dance” project clinched the spot for this stage, won against forZe in the last match. BIG stepped up before the tournament by signing the German legend of CS, gob b, as head coach. This signing will positively affect the team. Knowing that the Germans always knew how to prepare for the match in bo1 format, I believe that the victory will be for them. Although it is worth paying tribute to the old men from Brazil, due to the experience they show a good game at this tournament.
PGL Major Antwerp 2022 takes place in Belgium, starting on the 9th of May, and ending 22nd. The event will have three-phase. New Challengers Stage, during 9th-12th, where 16 teams will fight for eight slots for the next phase. Then will be a one-day break, and a New Legends Stage will be played, where 16 teams will try to make the playoffs. Finally, playoffs will take place during 19th-22th May, in a single-elimination bracket, all matches are bo3. The prize pool is $1,000,000.