Invited teams dominate qualified teams in DPC's CIS Upper Division

By Jack VioletJanuary 25, 2021
With week one of the CIS Upper Division completed, the invited teams proved their dominance against the qualified teams. The first week’s schedule did not see any of the four invited teams playing against each other, showcasing some one-sided series, all ending in a 2-0 score. The invited teams consist of Virtus.pro, Natus Vincere, Team Spirit, and Live to Win, who were all superior in their series this week.
The CIS region seems to be heavily split in terms of skill level between the four invited teams and those that qualified. During ESL’s broadcast, in post-series player interviews with Na’Vi’s Viktor "GeneRaL" Nigrini, Alik "V-Tune" Vorobey and LtW’s Akbar "SoNNeikO" Butaev, all three did not mention any qualified teams when asked about who they believe has a chance to qualify to the Major or who poses a possible threat in the league. It seems that even the players believe that this division is divided in half: those that are fighting to go to the Major, and those that are brawling just to stay in the Upper Division.

NoTechies Struggling

NoTechies, captained by Alexey "Solo" Berezin, have found themselves at the bottom of the league with a score of 0-2. The stack had a tough schedule versus Na’Vi and LtW in the first week, and it now seems impossible for them to make it to the Major. With such a limited amount of games being played, you can’t afford these losses. Even if you’re able to beat the other three lesser teams, you’ve already lost to two teams expected to be strong Major contenders. The lower caliber teams need to make some big upsets in the upcoming weeks if they hope to have any chance of qualifying to the Major.

Week Two Series to Watch

Virtus.pro versus Live to Win will be the first series consisting of two invited teams and is actually the only series between two invited teams scheduled for week two (ESL has scheduled many of the top tier matches to be later in the season). VP is definitely the favorite for this matchup, but LtW has been steadily improving and could prove to be a challenge. Only three teams qualify to the major in CIS, so these matches are valuable. Catch this high priority match on January 29.
Another series to watch is EXTREMUM versus Team Unique. As the bottom two teams of the Upper Division are relegated to the Lower Division, there’s little room for error. Both of these teams are expected to fall into the bottom half of the teams, so these matches are essential for staying out of the Lower Division. Watch EXTREMUM and Unique on January 28.
Hopefully this week proves to be more competitive, and we get to see some close games. Stay updated using our event hub!
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