Liquid vs ENCE
[ft_boxes box_style=’info’ ]Match: Liquid vs ENCE (IEM Katowice 2019 Champions Stage) | Prediction: ENCE +1.5 (Maps handicap) | Odds: 1.70 | Bookmaker: Betway | Match start: 2019-02-28 18.50 GMT +1[/ft_boxes]
Team Liquid is fan favourites to make it to the grand final, and rightfully so. They were one of two teams to finish Legends Stage with a perfect 3-0 record. The other team that managed this was Astralis, who they would likely face in the final. Their run in Legends Stage went like this:
Round 1 vs. Avangar: 16-12 Win
Round 2 vs. NiP: 16-13 Win
Round 3 vs. NaVi: 2-0 Win (16-14, 16-9)
Two of the three teams they played have made it to the final stage of the tournament. This should fill them with confidence knowing that they have the capability of defeating these teams.
However, with each match they’ve played so far being rather close, is there potential for someone to cause an upset?
ENCE are living up to the true definition of the underdog. Many expected them to make it from Challengers to Legends. Few expected them to make the leap from Legends to Champions. They now find themselves sitting amongst the final eight teams remaining at Katowice.
Wins over Avangar, G2, and BIG is what it took for them to secure a place here. However, it’s important to note that they did start the Legends Stage 0-2 after losses to both Renegades and Hellraisers.
When you compare the teams that Liquid had to defeat to qualify for this stage, there is a gap in quality difference. Will this become the downfall on ENCE?
They’ve made it this far, can ENCE feed off the hype of being underdogs and pull off the biggest upset of the tournament? The odds aren’t in their favour, but if you have faith in ENCE, they could reward you with 3.55 odds on them to win the series.
A more realistic option would be the 1.70 odds on the +1.5 Match Handicap for ENCE. This means if ENCE wins just one map during the series, you’ll earn your bet.
I always love an underdog, but I can’t see ENCE overcoming Liquid in this case. ENCE have done superbly to make it this fair, but I think their exit from this major is on the horizon.
I believe Liquid is too strong across the board to make enough mistakes to see this series slip away from them. There’s the potential of them to drop a map depending on how the vetoes fall. That’s why betting on the ENCE Map Handicap could bode well, but I can’t imagine Liquid losing two maps to ENCE tomorrow.