Cloud 9 Grabs Boston Major; Makes History

Cloud 9 has just pulled off one of the game's most historic runs after beating international mix FaZe, 2-1, during the 2018 ELEAGUE Major in Boston, Massachusetts on January 29, Monday (Philippine time).

The Americans picked Mirage, while FaZe got Overpass and as a result of the intense map veto, Inferno was left over as the deciding map.

The first map saw a hotly contested match as Cloud 9 went off to a flying start, getting a huge advantage in the early part of the first half. However, Finn "karrigan" Andersen and co. were able to adjust to the American team's tactics. With the final rounds of the first half going back-and-forth between the two teams, Cloud 9 get a 9-6 advantage in the first half.

Going into the second half, the Americans lost the pistol; however, a good force buy enabled them to take the subsequent anti-eco rounds. Yet, FaZe immediately brought it to 15 rounds on the back of excellent plays by the international squad.

Even as Cloud9 threatened to bring it to overtime, FaZe was able to seal the deal and win the American pick, 16-14.

Meanwhile, the second map was where the Americans brought their artillery in as they powered their way to a sizeable 12-3 lead in the first half. This was followed by a quick rally to match point; however, the Andersen-led team refused to raise the white flag even as the Americans tried to close it out.

However, Tarik "tarik" Celik's performance on the A site in the 26th round was enough to close everything out. Thus, Cloud 9 take FaZe's pick, 16-10.

Finally, on the third map, it was a showdown of skills and strength as both teams bled themselves out in multiple aim duels, crazy spraydowns and massive executes that ensured a close first half. The second half saw the international squad brought it to 14-12; however, the Americans made it 14-14 before a good series of entries by Nikola "NiKo" Kovač made it 15-14.

Then, the Americans made it to overtime on the back of a solid defense by Jake "Stewie2K" Yip, thus ensuring that the dream would stay alive for Cloud9 and the North American region.

The first overtime saw Cloud9 unable to close out the game despite having a 3-0 lead in their CT half, with FaZe summoning intense gameplays to bring it to a second overtime.

In the second overtime, Cloud 9 finally got two rounds on their T half, ensuring that they would have a comfortable run on their CT side and finally close it out at 22-19, thus getting their win.

In the end, Cloud9 won the longest map in a Major final, thus putting their place in the history books and turning the matchup into a true CS:GO classic.

As a result of this, Cloud9 gets $500,000 (~P25 million) for getting their first-ever Major championship as well as grabbing it for the North American region. Meanwhile, FaZe earns $150,000 (~P7.5 million) for finishing second place, with lower-placing teams getting lesser amounts from the massive $1 million (~P50 million) prize pool.

C9, considered by many to be the ultimate dark horse for this particular Major, need to beat nV, Sprout and mouz in the New Challengers stage before losing to G2 and Space Soldiers in the New Legends Stage. From there, they wrecked VP, Astralis and Vega before making it to the playoffs and crush G2 in the quarterfinals as well as send SK packing in the semis.

FaZe was a top favorite to win the Major and would have solidified their claim of making a "FaZe era" in CS:GO through winning it. FaZe won Liquid, lost to Vega, and got QBF and Na'Vi to go to the New Legends stage. In the second round, FaZe destroyed Fnatic and Vega and had a close run against SK to make it to the playoffs. Once there, they had relatively comfortable wins against mousesports and Na'Vi.

This marks the first time that a North American team has hoisted a Major trophy.

Earl Carlo "dreamslayer28" Guevarra is the head editor for Play on WASD. His work is forthcoming in CSGO2ASIA, Crossfire Stars and GAMURS.

Formerly the lead FPS writer for eSports by INQUIRER.

People say he loves fruit juice :)