There is a new star rising in the professional CS:GO scene. After Emil “Magiskb0Y” Reif replaced Jesper “tenzki” Mikalski on the team on July 15, the team had some respectable finishes in Premier and Major events, placing 3rd-4th in StarLadder i-League StarSeries Season 2 and Dreamhack Bucharest 2016, and winning WESG 2016 European Finals. On Sunday, the Danish team also cleaned out the bank at EPICENTER 2016, winning $250,000.
With the somewhat low profile the team has had over the years, at least when compared to CS:GO giants like Fnatic, you might expect that the opposition in the EPICENTER tournament wasn’t that impressive, however, that is NOT the case. Competing in the event were Natus Vincere, G2 Esports, Team Dignitas, Ninjas in Pyjamas, Virtus.pro, Fnatic, SK Gaming, and HellRaisers. Most of these squads are CS:GO royalty, which makes Dignitas’ win especially impressive.
During the best of 2 Round Robbin Group Stage, DIG won and lost a game against each of their opponents, Na’Vi, G2, and NiP. The top teams in the standing from both Group A and B, Na’Vi and Virtus.pro, automatically made it into the Semifinals of the even, while the second and third teams from both groups had to play best of threes, where the second group from Group A faced Group B’s third team and vice versa.
As a result, G2 Esports played and lost against SK Gaming 1-2, while Team Dignitas overcame Fnatic after three matches. Next, Virtus.pro was matched and defeated SK Gaming to make it into the Finals. Naturally, Na’Vi had to contend against Dignitas and lost. This was a surprising result when you keep in mind the CIS team’s results from ESL One New York 2016, where they came out on top. There was something interesting in the Playoffs — nobody swept their opponents, all series ended with a score of 2-1, showing that games were at least somewhat close.
Once Dignitas made it into the Final, they had the first ban and used it to get rid of Train. Virtus.pro answered with Dust2 and DIG picked Nuke. Virtus.pro elected to play Cobblestone. Then, Team Dignitas removed Cache, while VP got rid of Overpass, making Mirage the deciding map of the series if it was destined to come to three matches.
Despite picking Nuke, Team Dignitas didn’t do very well, losing the map, mostly because of the efforts of Filip “NEO” Kubski, Paweł “byali” Bieliński, and Wiktor “TaZ” Wojtas. On the Danish side, the best player in that map was probably their newest acquisition, Magiskb0Y, with a 0.99 hltv rating and 82.7 ADR, which was, admittedly, worse that all three of Virtus.pro’s leaders. That isn’t that surprising in a losing game, to be honest.
The next map, Cobblestone, picked by Virtus.pro, went entirely differently. Magiskb0Y and Ruben “RUBINO” Villarroel went off like bullets from a sniper rifle. Both players had hltv ratings over 1.68 and around 100 ADR, while Mathias “MSL” Lauridsen contributed 121 average damage per round with a rating of 1.26. Starting with the first half, which Dignitas won 11:4, Virtus.pro got clobbered. Once the Polish got the chance to play as Terrorists in the second half, they had to play out of their minds to have a chance of coming back, however, Dignitas did not miss their shots, winning the second half 5:1.
The deciding map, Mirage, went in a similar vein as Cobblestone, with an even more dominating CT performance from Dignitas (13:2). This time, different players were the ones to shine, René “cajunb” Borg and Kristian “k0nfig” Wienecke. Even then, both Magiskb0Y and RUBINO almost matched k0nfig’s hltv rating of 1.48. It seems as if Dignitas dismantled Virtus.pro in the last two maps of the match.
While their performance could be thought to be a fluke, an accident, the fact of the matter is that they did not play weak teams. Instead, they had to go through some of the strongest teams in the world to win their $250k. Complimented by their #5 rank in the hltv team rankings as of the 17th of October, it seems that Dignitas is poised to become one of the world’s elite CS:GO teams. We will follow the team’s progress with baited breath, just as we hope you will as well.