IEM Katowice 2024 is finally over and we still can’t believe that Team Spirit came out of nowhere and won with ease. The CIS squad only lost one map against Natus Vincere. Other than that, they were unstoppable thanks to donk’s performances, who was the best player on the server in every single match. And by far!
This S-tier tournament taught us many things about the current state of CS2’s professional scene.
Despite upgrading their roster, Astralis were eliminated in the play-in stage after losing against Heroic (13 – 11) and ENCE (0 – 2). If anyone wants to learn a thing or two about karma, this is the perfect opportunity. Astralis signed two of Heroic’s best players, stavn and jabbi, and essentially reset their project. They also sold their former IGL, gla1ve, to ENCE.
Both teams triumphed over them and the odds of these matchups happening at all was extremely low.
Teams like Cloud9, FURIA Esports, BIG, and Complexity disappointed as well. To be fair, C9 did qualify for the group stage at least, but they were expected to do much better once they got there. Instead, they lost the first two matches and were sent home.
Apart from Spirit, three other teams that impressed were ENCE, Team Falcons, and MOUZ. All of them performed way above expectations and qualified for the playoffs. Falcons and MOUZ even played in the semifinals, where they were defeated by Spirit and FaZe respectively.
However, finishing 3rd – 4th at one of the most prestigious CS2 events of the season is not bad at all. It seems that zonic truly is a formidable coach. Because his new team, apart from Magisk and SunPayus, is quite average in the tier-1 division. To start getting top results so soon after taking over is no easy task.
— Danny Sørensen (@zonic) February 11, 2024
One team that failed miserably at this tournament was Team Vitality. FaZe Clan, their most important opponent from previous events, finished 2nd. But they did not even qualify for the playoffs, despite having players like ZywOo and Spinx.
Vitality lost against ENCE (1 – 2) and then immediately lost again against Heroic (1 – 2). Both matches were hard-fought and ZywOo certainly did his part. But some of the other members of the team underperformed. Spinx, in particular, did far worse than we expected and finished the match against ENCE as the weakest player on the server: 26 – 41 / 58.3 ADR / 0.76.