How to bet the IEM Katowice Qualifiers

Adam Boothe

Wednesday, February 6, 2019 7:56 PM UTC

Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2019 7:56 PM UTC

The first CSGO Major of 2019 is here! IEM Katowice promises to be competitive (at least until Astralis turns up); full of brilliant clutches, incredible accuracy, and fatal hair-pulling chokes at the finish line.

<p>This article is the first of a three-part series covering the Major; the Challengers stage, Legends stage, and the playoffs. The Challengers stage begins on February 13 with 16 teams. This article will offer some insight into the teams, some props and outrights to consider.</p><p> </p><h2>The Format</h2><p>ESL has been listening to the community's concerns about some recent formatting issues at prior majors and has decided to try something (relatively) new. The 16 teams next week will be seeding themselves, so to speak. Basically, it means the consensus opinion of the players will determine 1-16 which teams face-off in the opening round. From that point, teams are given an ELO rating and will be re-seeded each round further but must always play against a team with an identical record. Teams that win three matches will move on to the Legends stage, teams that lose three will be eliminated. When a team has either two wins or two losses they will then play best-of-three series instead of Bo1's. Though this format is going to take longer, it will add further legitimacy to the process. The bonus it gives us more betting opportunities and more data to make informed bets.</p><p>[/]{"component": "embedHTML", "code": "&lt;blockquote class=\"twitter-tweet\" data-lang=\"en\"&gt;&lt;p lang=\"en\" dir=\"ltr\"&gt;The First Round matches for the &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/hashtag/IEM?src=hash&amp;amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;#IEM&lt;/a&gt; Katowice Major Challengers Stage are set! We asked the teams to rank each other for seeding and found some interesting insights.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Highest and lowest ranked? Find out here! 👉 &lt;a href=\"https://t.co/Oo3yguIZcj\"&gt;https://t.co/Oo3yguIZcj&lt;/a&gt; &lt;a href=\"https://t.co/t6mLPDAyxH\"&gt;pic.twitter.com/t6mLPDAyxH&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p&gt;— Intel®ExtremeMasters (@IEM) &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/IEM/status/1093177499222192130?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;February 6, 2019&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/blockquote&gt;\n&lt;script async src=\"https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js\" charset=\"utf-8\"&gt;&lt;/script&gt;\n"}[/]</p><p> </p><h2>The Favourites</h2><p>I think most experts within the community would agree on 6 teams being slightly further ahead in their experience, team chemistry and talent (or a strong combination of two of those); Fnatic, NRG, C9, NIP, Ence, and Vitality. These teams are arguably all capable of being top 10 teams in the world (some currently are). Yet, the other 10 teams in the Challengers stage are not far off and that's what makes this Qualifier one of the most stacked thus far. Not one team is a given to progress.</p><p>I spent part of the week looking for some early markets for futures and props. At the time of writing this only a few books I use have posted some, but there are a few great ones.</p><p> </p><h2>Qualification Props</h2><p>This is always a very testy one for a lot of fans as it is really the only category of prop that matters; which teams will move on, which will not. My criteria for this was not just value-seeking, but also based on current form, map pool, and talent. Many arguments can be made for why my selections will not work out but I think the odds are excellent. Now because the games are still a week away, many books still have not posted lines. So it may pay to wait for better odds, it might not, but if these were the best prices available I am still okay with that.</p><p> </p><p><strong>Teams Not to Qualify</strong></p><p>-Tyloo @ 1.6 [<a href="https://a.oddsmarket.com/record/v?c=150&amp;a=3e56a0bf-7bdf-4fe1-b9a6-d22c7cc3dd2c">Betway</a>]</p><p>-Renegades @ 2.3[<a href="https://a.oddsmarket.com/record/v?c=150&amp;a=3e56a0bf-7bdf-4fe1-b9a6-d22c7cc3dd2c">Betway</a>]</p><p>-Ninjas in Pyjamas @ 8.5[<a href="https://a.oddsmarket.com/record/v?c=150&amp;a=bf7f64f4-cd67-4904-9b00-6ded1d41fd18">Bet365</a>]</p><p> </p><p><strong>Teams to Qualify</strong></p><p>-Winstrike @ 6.0 [Bet365]</p><p>-Team Spirit @ 6.0 [Bet365]</p><p>-G2 @ 1.5 [Bet365]</p><p>-Vega Squadron @ 5.0[Bet365]</p><p> </p><p>Does this mean Winstrike is better than NiP? Absolutely not, but Winstrike might not need to play NiP to qualify. This is the crazy and entertaining part about this format. The re-seeding after the first round is going to put some better teams that were upset by an underdog into a situation where they might have to play other good teams that should both be 1-0, rather than 0-1.</p><p> </p><h2>Props</h2><p>Most Played = Inferno @ 2.2 [Betway]</p><p>Least Played = Cache @ 21.0 and Overpass @ 21.0 [Betway]</p><p>Total Overtime Maps = o9.5 @ 1.85 [<a href="https://a.oddsmarket.com/record/v?c=150&amp;a=4fd3c129-b898-4816-9a61-9f7e8f34295a">Unibet</a>]</p><p>Most Kills = M4A4 &amp; M4A1-S @ 3.55 [Betway]</p><p> </p><p>For those who are not aware, the AUG gun has recently come back into the meta. However looking at some stats in recent professional use it is still not purchased much more and the kill distribution is about a 55-60% advantage over the M4. So this wager represents considerable value.</p><p>Finally the outright winner. I would love to get spicy and surprising with this tip but, until I see otherwise, still have to heavily favour the Danish team, Astralis. The best price I found on them was at Unibet +150. I placed two units on that this week. Every other book has them at around even money which is about the cut-off point in my opinion. There are only 2-3 teams (potentially) who represent a threat; Liquid, MIBR, and Navi [the three other semi-finalists at the London Major]. The next article will not be posted until after this Challengers stage, but if you'd like to get in contact with me regarding tips or questions message me on Twitter [@lockeqwerty]. Here's to coming out on the positive end of it all!</p>
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