Sunday we have a 3 game slate from IEM Katowice. Lock is again at 9:30 am EST, and the games are:
Astralis (70% implied win probability) vs Spirit
G2 (51%) vs Gambit
Navi (67%) vs Liquid
Sub Risk/Roster Changes
Spirit haven’t played Patsi yet in this tournament, and I don’t expect them to in this matchup either. It’s still unclear what the substitution policies are at Katowice, as Nivera was able to play map 1 for Vitality on Saturday (Liquid’s map pick of Nuke) and then subbed out afterwards. It’s not outside of the realm of possibilities that Spirit pick Nuke in this matchup. They haven’t picked it recently but it’s the only map that’s going to be available (Mirage will be banned by Astralis) where they have a better winrate than Astralis over the past 3 months. I don’t know if Xyp9x would even sub out if Nuke was Map 1. Even though this is the “early” game there’s no guarantee we get map picks by lock since there are actually games before this one that aren’t on the slate. I’m going to leave Xyp in my pool for most of the lineups I build.
Liquid have gone away from picking Inferno recently, so there’s a decent chance it goes unpicked on Sunday. At the same time, Navi have lost on Nuke a couple times of late so it’s not a lock that they pick it, Liquid even could as they did pick it once recently. Maybe Navi opt instead to pick Inferno where they know they can beat Liquid. Flamie is only $200 cheaper than Boombl4 and Boom has been much better lately, I’m unlikely to use Flamie unless I need the value from both him and Boombl4.
None of the other 3 teams sub.
Pricing is pretty tight on this slate. Astralis and the good DFS players on Navi (S1mple and Electronic) are all priced up. Even the coinflip game between G2 and Gambit is priced pretty well, with maybe 1 notable exception.
That exception is Hobbit. He’s been Gambit’s best player besides Sh1ro, Sh1ro only outscores him by .05 fp/r over both the past month and past 3 months, yet Hobbit is $6.8k while Sh1ro is $9k. I personally think Gambit is going to win this matchup, but that’s definitely my based on my subjective opinion from watching both teams vs hard data. Hobbit is one of my favorite plays to save a bit of money, and I like Sh1ro as a top end play as well.
On the G2 side, they have some pretty gross fantasy numbers. Niko leads them over the past 3 months at .61 fp/r, which is only good for 11th on the slate (reminder, there are only 30 players on the slate).Things aren’t any better over the past month, as Niko still sits in 11th on the slate, right behind…Boombl4. Now, G2 as an actual team are better than the sum of their fantasy parts, so I’m not saying to lock in Gambit, but no one on G2 is a particularly strong fantasy play right now. If you do want to play G2, I’d go Niko > Hunter > Amanek in terms of prioritization. Niko and Hunter for their raw upside and Amanek for his price.
Spirit’s pricing definitely makes things interesting from that game. Astralis have looked surprisingly mortal of late, only going 10-8 on maps over the past month. The addition of degster makes this Spirit team dangerous, yet they have 3 guys; sdy, chopper and magixx, sitting below $5k. sdy has the best fp/r over both the past 3 months and the past month out of the group, and he’s also the cheapest at only $4.2k. He’s so cheap I don’t even mind pairing him with Device and/or Dupreeh. Mir and Degster are also worth a look in stacks, as like I alluded to I do think Spirit is live in this spot. If Spirit does win both of them have huge upside.
Speaking of Device and Dupreeh, they’re going to be who I look to when I play Astralis. Everyone else is priced up pretty close to them while scoring far less fantasy points per round, so I’ll do my best to find the extra money to get to them. I’d rather use a <$5k Spirit member as my 3rd in a stack but if you’re set on 3 stacking Astralis I’d go Magisk as my 3rd. He and Xyp9x have comparable fp/r but Magisk is cheaper and doesn’t have any sub risk.
S1mple has managed to get his fp/r to .999 over the past 3 months, and is at 1.02 over the past month. I can’t recall ever seeing anyone score that high outside of Asia or South America. He is simply on another level right now. Somehow, he’s still only a few hundred above the rest of the field, when he should be at $12k or so. I’ll be using him in every lineup, as I don’t expect Liquid to come out and dominate this series which means S1mple will be doing S1mple things. If you want to stack with him, Electronic and Boombl4 are the best partners on Navi. I also don’t mind running him with a Liquid player or two, in the hopes that the series goes 3 games and S1mple carries Navi.
Oddly enough, taking over the IGL role seems to have actually helped Fallen’s fragging performance. He’s finally looked like the player that we all expected when it was announced he was going to Liquid. If Liquid is going to win, he’s going to need to continue to play well, so I like using him in any Liquid stacks. Elige and/or Naf are the logical stacking partners. Naf has come back down to earth a bit after a fantastic start to his return to being a rifler, and Elige is edging him out in fp/r over both the past month and past 3 months.
Did I mention that S1mple is putting up over 1 fp/r lately? Yeah, he’s my top captain on this slate. I’m going to use him in the majority of my lineups. If you insist on pivoting off of S1mple; Device, Dupreeh, Sh1ro, Hobbit, Degster, mir, and Niko all technically have the upside to put up a bigger score than S1mple. Of all of those pivots, I actually like Dupreeh the best. When he goes off, he goes big, which is what you’ll need to beat out S1mple captain on this slate. Dupreeh actually averages the 2nd most 4 kills per rounds played over the past 3 months, of course trailing only S1mple.
You can also look to the other side of the same game to Elige. If Liquid wins it’s likely Elige puts up a big performance.
I’m not likely to go super cheap at captain, although sdy does let you fit basically anyone else you want. I think you’re leaving a lot of raw points on the table by doing that though, so I’m not likely to myself.
That’s it from me, good luck on Sunday!