The ESL Pro League Season 14 starts next Monday. Yep, August 16th is the big day; the end of the players’ summer break and the start of a brand-new chapter in competitive CSGO esports. Twenty-four teams are eagerly waiting for the start of this one. The format is well-dispersed and the stage has been set for quite a while now. The only downside of betting on EPL S14 is the fact that it’s not a LAN event.
But, we’d be lying if we said we still aren’t used to online events. They’ve been our everyday routine for almost two years now. If we haven’t gotten used to them yet, we won’t get used to them ever!
With that in mind, let’s start with our analysis and see if betting on EPL S14 is worth your time and effort. Hint, hint – it ought to be!
EPL S14 Preview – Interesting Facts
This is the fourteenth season of ESL Pro League. Heroic won the last iteration, EPL S13, after beating Gambit in the grand finals. However, we have to note that Seasons 11 and 12 didn’t have proper finals. Instead, they had smaller, regional events due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
There’s $750,000 in ESL Pro League Season 14’s prize pool. $175,000 goes to the winning team, $60,000 to the runner-up, $30,000 to the semifinalists, and so on. In addition to cash prizes, ESL Pro League S14 also awards Pro Tour and BLAST Premier Points .
The winner of this event gets a direct spot on the BLAST Premier World Finals. The event is scheduled for mid-December this year and will feature whopping $1 million in prize money. It’s going to be a great way to finish 2021 CSGO esports calendar year, that’s for sure!
The event is set to feature 24 teams. It will begin next Monday with the first round of group stage matches. More about the format can be found in the following section:
The group stage kicks off next Monday with the opening round of matches. There are four round-robin groups with six teams in each. All group stage matches are bo3 and the three best teams from each group advance to the playoffs.
But, the playoffs seeds are dynamic. You see, group winners advance to the quarterfinals while second and third-place finishers advance to the round of sixteen… or in this case, round of twelve. Once in the playoffs, the stage remains packed with bo3 contests but the format switches to a single-elimination bracket.
There’s no room for errors in the playoffs. One mistake, one poor match and you’re out of the equation. The bo3 do allow one mistake in terms of a lost map, but lose two and you’re out. The same principle works all the way through to the grand finals. That’s when there’s an extra map to be won because of bo5 rules.
ESL Pro League Season 14 – Group Stage Overview
You can’t start betting on EPL S14 without knowing the complexity of its group stage. With 24 teams involved, six per group, things could (and will) get tricky. We’ll have plenty of hot clashes to lo and behold, guaranteeing high-value betting options on all fronts.
However, every ESL Pro League S14 group will be played separately. The action kicks off next Monday with group A. In fact, here’s the schedule for each of the four groups:
August 16th to 20th
August 21st to 26th
August 27th to 31st
September 1st to 5th
Now that you know when each group starts and ends, here are more detailed looks into the participating teams as well as potential end-of-the-line standings. Mind you, though – CSGO gambling websites only feature bets on group winners. It’s just something to think about before you start betting on EPL S14 next week!
Bad News Bears
Logically, group A is the first group we’re going to see on the fourteenth season of ESL Pro League. The group favorites are pretty clear – Heroic, Astralis and Vitality. However, the lastter might actually go down without a fight. Considering their poor track record over the last couple of months, I wouldn’t be that surprised to see ZywOo’s Vitality without a spot in the playoffs.
If we assume Heroic and Astralis will take the top two sports, who could beat Vitality to the third?
Well, Spirit is the likeliest candidate, though we shouldn’t count ENCE and Bad News Bears out either. The Finns could be in for a good event on their end, though Spirit’s form and tactical supremacy will be difficult to overcome.
Don’t get me wrong! Group A might come down to the very last round. With Astralis vs Heroic scheduled for the fifth, we could be in for a wide-open group right until the final clashes. That’d be a fine way to wrap up group A and an even better introduction for the things to come in group B.
If you’re going to be betting on EPL S14, don’t sleep on group A! Heroic to win at +155 seems like the most logical option, but considering the way Astralis played in Cologne, things might not be that straightforward. In fact, if it does come down to the final round, I’m positive Astralis will take Heroic down, top the group and head straight into the quarterfinals. Astralis to win group A currently sits at +200, a fine return considering all circumstances.
Next up, group B! The action in group B kicks off on August 21st and it sure does have a fine set of teams at its disposal. It’s not the tightest group out there, but a fight for the third spot is guaranteed to go down in a four-way battle.
That’s right, four-way – it wasn’t a typo! G2 and Virtus.pro are the lone fighters for the top spot. Obviously, G2 has the upper hand in this ordeal. They’ve been nothing short of astonishing over the last couple of months, and I’m certain they’ll be able to transition that form to ESL Pro League Season 14 too.
As for Virtus.pro, they’re far from their best form, no point denying that. But, the likes of YEKINDAR and Jame can start fragging like crazy at any given moment. They are never to be taken for granted, and G2 players know that all too well.
We’re not going with another upset here! While Virtus.pro at +255 and Complexity at +425 seem great, I trust in G2’s ability to qualify for the quarterfinals right away. Once again, G2 are in the form of their lives right now, and I doubt anyone will be able to stop them come the group stage matches. At -106, the return won’t be sky-high, but will be just enough to boost your betting bankroll ahead of the playoffs… Assuming you play the bet, of course.
This is, undoubtedly, the group of death! All six teams have set their claim on one of top three spots leading into the playoffs. And while NaVi alone are considered the heavy favorites to top group C and reach the quarterfinals, the remaining five teams will fight to the death for the two remaining spots.
Looking at their recent track records, Faze Clan could be an important factor in group C. Twistzz and the boys are coming off a solid IEM XVI Cologne campaign where they enjoyed a semifinal run. BIG and Mousesports are always dangerous, and are the likeliest candidates for the third spot. I’d count EG off right away. Stanislaw won’t be playing, plus their form has been terrible over the last few months – do you need more reasons for avoiding EG on your EPL S14 betting slips?
Fnatic Could Be a Dark Horse Too, People Don’t Seem to Trust in Their Rebuilding Process
Heck, even esports bookies don’t trust them – they are dead last to win the group at +2300. For contrast’s sake, EG are one step above with +1400. Of course, this comes down to the communications’ switch from Swedish to English. That’s going to be the biggest obstacle Fnatic will have to overcome if they are to keep this new roster as a permanent one.
At the end of the day, NaVi ought to finish on top of this group. If you’re looking to cash in on this one, group stage betting on EPL S14 should be right up your alley. At -167, NaVi to win group C seems like a no-brainer. If you believe in S1mple and the boys, what are you waiting for?
Lastly, group D! Gambit and NiP are coming into this one as the heavy favorites. Gambit, currently the second-best team in the world (right behind NaVi) expect to win the group and qualify for the quarterfinals. It’s on the likes of NiP, FURIA and Liquid to prevent that from happening.
Sh1ro and Ax1Le will give their best, takes no genius to realize that… but will it be enough against a NiP team that has a lot to prove following recent mishaps? Well, I can’t say with enough certainty, unfortunately.
You see, NiP have a solid roster too… Heck, they had a solid roster even before device’s arrival Now that they have the talented Dane in their starting roster, they’re a level above what they used to be. Still, being level above isn’t a tangible asset. They need good campaigns, they need consistency… and most importantly, they need titles!
Long story short, the fight for the top spots ought to be between Gambit and NiP. What about the third-place, though? Well, that should go down between the two American giants in Liquid and FURIA. Neither of them have been at the top of their game lately, but assuming they reach the playoffs, they might pack an upset-punch.
Outright Betting on EPL S14
We’re almost ready to wrap this puppy up. But, since many of you enjoy outright betting on EPL S14, we’re here to provide you with some useful insight. For starters, here are the tournament winner odds, courtesy of BetWay.
A quick note – these are just the top seven outright winner lines for betting on EPL S14. If you want to bet on one of the underdogs, visit BetWay and navigate to ESL Pro League Season 14 outrights.
NaVi at +350
Gambit at +350
G2 at +600
Heroic at +800
NiP at +900
Vitality at +1200
Astralis at +1400
Unsurprisingly, NaVi is the outright winner here. At +350, the CIS champions are definitely the first name on the team sheet. However, Gambit are right there beside them with the same exact odds to win the event. If you are going to be betting on EPL S14 in coming days and outrights seem interesting to you, Gambit and NaVi seem like the two most logical options.
If, however, you’re on the lookout for high-risk high-reward types of deals, you’ll have to look elsewhere. Are there any good options in the high-risk department? Ther always are! G2 and Heroic stand out, at +600 and +800, respectively.
G2 is in fine form and possess plenty of consistency. Heroic, on the other hand, might not be in the best form lately, but have been at or near the top for a big part of the year. All in all, outright betting on EPL S14 offers interesting options, making it worth checking out before the first-round matches in group A.
Pavo Jurkic has been in the esports betting industry since 2015, actively writing content related to this rapidly growing industry. A dedicated father by day and an avid gamer by night, Pavo Jurkic aims to bring you the freshest esports news and betting predictions. ...
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