As we approach the end of the group stage, Thursday marks what is most likely our second to last 4 game slate of 3 EU games plus 1 NA. The games on Thursday are:
G2 (79% implied win probability) vs AGO
Navi (51%) vs Heroic
Complexity (51%) vs Vitality
100T (66%) vs Gen.G
Thursday is looking like a pretty tough slate. Not so much in terms of pricing, as it’s fairly loose, but in terms of parsing thru all the studs and deciding who to actually play. Zywoo, S1mple, and BlameF are all on the same slate, not to mention Nexa and jks, who are studs in their own right (despite what Pat may say in discord). It’s fairly easy to fit 2, maybe even 3 of these guys in the same lineup, but the question becomes how do you pick which one(s).
Zywoo, S1mple, and BlameF are a clear cut above the rest of the slate in fp/r over the past 3 month, on top of that all 3 are within .03 of each other in that stat. Even further, all 3 are in complete coinflip games (Zywoo and BlameF are of course facing each other). Meanwhile, Nexa and jks are a definite step down in terms of fantasy points per round, but their teams are larger favorites to win, and they come at a slightly discounted price (although Nexa is only $200 less than Zywoo). You can argue that Nexa is actually a tier below jks (who is kind of in a tier 1b by himself), but at the same time he’s the best player on the biggest favorite on the slate. Honestly, I’d be lying if I told you I liked 1 or 2 of these guys better than the others Thursday. My plan is to get as much exposure to all of them and in all combinations with each other as I possibly can.
To do that, I’ll need to fill out my lineups with some value. 100T is probably the best spot to do this, as Liaz is only $6.6k and jkaem only $7.4k even though they are decent sized favorites. I much prefer them to the similarly priced combo of Jackz and Amanek, as the G2 duo averages far fewer fp/r despite G2 actually having a better map win percentage over the past 3 months.
I like Poizon, Konfig, and oBo for Col, but at $7.8k, $7.8k, and $7.6k respectively, it’s not a crazy amount of value. I’ll definitely try to fit Poizon in particular where I can.
For Vitality, RpK is a nice value at only 5.8k. After his outburst last time out, apEX may garner some ownership at only $6.0k, which is why I prefer RpK (from a raw points perspective they project very similarly).
Flamie is only $5.0k for Navi, and Perfecto comes in at only $5.8k. It never feels good to roster Navi players not named S1mple or Electronic, but they are viable options on this slate.
Now, while I actually like the 100T value I’m not a huge fan of the Vitality and Navi value, the upside typically isn’t great, even in wins. Where plan on turning for most of my value plays is to the underdogs, Gen.G and AGO. Gen.G is still kind of in limbo, as daps announced he is leaving the team but hasn’t actually left yet as they look for a replacement. I’m not 100% sure he’s playing Thursday, but frankly I only see it as an upgrade if they do get a stand-in (like last time out, he should be nowhere near your lineups). In their 1st game out after announcing his plans to leave, Gen.G got 2-0’d by EG. However, the map scores were 16-14 and 16-13. Any team capable of putting up 27 rounds in 2 maps against EG is capable of beating 100T. I’ll have plenty of BnTeT, Koosta, and Automatic, with maybe even a tiny bit of s0m mixed in if I need the extreme savings his $4.8k price provides.
The most likely outcome of the AGO/G2 series is that G2 win, probably even winning 2-0. However, even if AGO can just keep both maps close they could put up decent enough fantasy scores for their prices. If they manage to win, they likely smash value. mhL is the obvious play here, his fp/r stats are still near the top of the slate yet he’s priced tied for 3rd on his team at $5.6k. I’ll mostly be running one-offs as it’s less likely multiple players hit value in a loss, but on the chance that they pull off the upset I’ll have a bit of Fiku and/or Furlan stacked with him.
The one team I’ve yet to mention at all in this write-up is Heroic. They should go massively overlooked Thursday, and if they can take down Navi they could be the team that wins someone the slate. I’ll be sure to have a few stacks here, everyone except Borup is in play.
If someone offered me even money on whether stud group of Zywoo, S1mple, BlameF, jks, or Nexa score the highest on Thursday vs the other 35 players in the field, I’m taking the studs every time. For that reason they will make up the vast majority of my captain ownership on Thursday. The only other places I’ll likely turn are BnTeT and mhL. Both have slate top score upside, just at much lower chances of hitting that upside. That said, even if they put up just a good game (70ish fantasy points), the extra savings may be enough to make them the tournament winning captain. The last player I’ll consider a bit of at captain is Poizon. As more of a midrange captain he opens up some unique roster constructions, and his fantasy points per round have actually been approaching elite levels of late.
That’ll do it for me, good luck on Thursday!