After months of a long wait with roster changes and off-season tournaments, we've finally got another international VALORANT event.
NRG, one of the tournament's favorites, will face off against KOI in the first round, while the Giants will face DetonatioN FocusMe in the second round. Both teams will go home after one match, which is brutal.
The first match of the day will be played against North America's NRG at 11am CT.
NRG is expected to win the tournament. Not only are they one of the best teams based on scrim results in the region, according to some players at Dot Esports, but they have added a winning piece to the puzzle.
The second-best team in the world at the time was practically forced to leave the organization if they wanted to compete at the highest level in 2023.
FNS, Crashies, Victor, and head coach Chet, all left NRG. The big names for the team, in Marved and yay, were absent. One player from the previous NRG roster, s0m, stayed his place on the team, likely as a smokes player, while NRG looked to EMEA to recruit a new duelist.
Ardiis is a Masters-winning professional footballer who has propelled the FunPlus Phoenix team to new heights. Ardiis is an integral part of the NRG puzzle. Following the Chamber nerfs, he has big shoes to fill.
KOI has, on the other hand, assembled a group of well-known talents from the EMEA region.
From start to finish, the team is completely different, and I suspect that a few months of training together will not be enough to dismantle a core that is one of the most successful in VALORANT history. But strange things have happened.
At 2pm CT, the EMEA team Giants will face off against DetonatioN FocusMe.
This is a mid-off.
The Giants are a solid team, with former G2 star nukkye alongside former Gen.G player rhyme. They aren't too far from the bottom.
DetonatioN FocusMe is mediocre. In December, they failed to win a map against Paper Rex, Fnatic, or DRX at the ONE Pro Invitational.
The Giants are likely to take this one because of their talented players from EMEA. Plus, a match against KOI in the next round (albeit extremely unlikely) would certainly reignite regional rivalry.