After a couple nice 3 game slates, we’re unfortunately back to a 2 gamer, as there are only 2 Blast games on Thursday. Lock is at 9:30 am EST, and the games are:
Heroic (82% implied win probability) vs Saw
Vitality (95%) vs 9z
Sub Risk/Roster Changes
Vitality have announced that RpK will be benched and the team has signed Kyojin to replace him (interestingly they don’t appear to be bringing back Nivera, who is technically still on the roster). However, that move will not be until AFTER Blast Premier. RpK is still playing for now. Nivera is in the player pool but will not be playing.
9z are a South American team that isn’t particularly good within South America. Beyond that, they’ll be playing with a standin in Eastor. He’s probably technically an upgrade in skill, but both he and “try” are primary AWPers. One of them will have to rifle, which will obviously hurt their stats.
No sub risk or recent roster changes from either Heroic or Saw.
This had the potential to be a really boring slate, however to their credit Draftkings made the pricing super tight. You literally can’t fit a Heroic/Vitality 3/3 that includes Zywoo (or Cadian for that matter), even in the flex. In fact there are only 5 separate 3/3’s of Heroic + Vitality possible. This makes the slate a lot more interesting. Given that we are almost forced into 3/2/1 (I’m even okay with 2/1-2/1 or 3-1-1-1 on this slate because of pricing) that makes the slate a lot more interesting.
Given that Saw and 9z are basically the same price across the board, I expect more of the ownership to go to Saw. I’ll definitely have plenty of them, both as one-offs and stacks, but it’s worth noting that even though Heroic are technically the smaller favorites, they’ve looked unbeatable since adding Sjuush and Refrezh. Everyone except for Arki score very similarly, which means the ownership is likely to flow to the cheaper players. Stadodo and Just will almost definitely be underowned compared to rmn and Mutiris.
Meanwhile, Vitality have looked straight up badlately. Everyone except for Zywoo has a negative KD over the past 3 months. Now, they probably still aren’t “lose to a team that’s been mediocre in South America” bad, but I definitely see a path to them winning 16-10, 16-10 while Heroic wins 16-8, 16-6 or something like that. In that case, a 9z one-off could be the better play. I’ll have minimal stacks, but plenty of one-offs. Max is my favorite play, as I’m worried about try being moved off of the AWP and not playing as well. Of course, you could take the chance that Eastor will be rifling and stick with try. Eastor himself is interesting, as like I mentioned he’s probably the most skilled player on the team given that he’s spent his career playing in Europe and has decent numbers. Really any of the 5 players are in play, it just depends how much money you have left.
For Heroic, I expect Refrezh to be incredibly popular as he’s only $6.4k. He might even venture into highest owned player on the slate territory (Zywoo will likely retain the crown). His role has definitely evolved into a decent one for Heroic, but his sky high ownership will be price driven more than anything. Meanwhile, Sjuush got off to a hot start for Heroic and has since cooled off. He’ll likely have fairly low ownership even though he’s 2nd cheapest on Heroic. In GPP’s I like finding the extra money to get up to him over Refrezh at least in some lineups.
It’s RpK priced at the bottom for Vitality. It was definitely a strange move to announce that he was leaving/being benched ahead of time, and it’ll be interesting to see how that plays out. Either he could play relaxed and stress free, thus playing much better than he recently has been, or he could have entirely stopped caring and play too stress free, resulting in bad plays. I’d lean towards the former, which means I like RpK in this spot. Everyone else except Zywoo is frankly too expensive, but I’ll of course have some of them mixed into my lineups.
If you can afford it, Zywoo is definitely the top captain. He’s far and away the best fantasy performer on the slate. Cadian is likely the only player who can challenge him in terms of raw upside, so he makes for a good pivot.
Teses is interesting in the mid range, I suppose Sjuush and Refrezh are too. I really don’t love anyone else on Vitality, but I’m sure I’ll end up with some RpK, Misutaaa, and maybe even ApeX if I max enter.
From the underdogs, you could I suppose go one off captain to really load up in the rest of your lineup. Max is my favorite play for that but I also don’t mind Rmn or Mutiris because they’re so cheap. This is definitely not an easy slate so feel free to get creative.
Good luck on Thursday!