FaZe Clan sweep G2 to lift IEM Katowice trophy

FaZe Clan sweep G2 to lift IEM Katowice trophy

February 28, 2022

FaZe overcame multiple OTs to take the trophy.

FaZe Clan dug deep to take home the IEM Katowice title after beating G2 3-0 in the best-of-five grand final.  FaZe, who fell short in 2017 and 2018, finally overcame the final hurdle to take home the first major trophy of 2022 and their first-ever IEM Katowice trophy. 

It was FaZe’s Helvijs ‘broky’ Saukants who took home the DHL MVP award of the tournament, with the Latvian AWPer dropping 95 kills across the three maps in the finals.

In an epic final that saw FaZe start 4-11 on Inferno in the opening map to comeback 19-15 in overtime, FaZe were pushed to the limits by G2. It was Robin ‘ropz’ Kool, Russel ‘Twistzz’ van Dulken and Finn ‘karrigan’ Andersen on the opening map who helped FaZe secure the comeback. G2 started strongly on Inferno, and on the back of Nikola ‘NiKo’ Kova? and Nemanja ‘huNter-’ Kova?, it seemed like it would be only a matter of time before they wrapped up the first map after going 15-7 up. FaZe, though, didn’t give up, and it was on the back of an ace from ropz that saw them manage the comeback and take the map in overtime. 

After coming back from being 4-11 down in the opening map, it was FaZe who took an 11-4 lead in the opening half of the second map on Mirage, with Twistzz and broky standing tall. G2, though, weren’t giving up that easily; huNter- and G2’s prodigy Ilya ‘m0NESY’ Osipov pulled their team into a comeback which saw the second map on Mirage last almost three hours, going into the fifth overtime. It was FaZe’s stand-in Justin ‘jks’ Savage—who was only playing because of Håvard ‘rain’ Nygaard testing positive for COVID-19—who managed to put in a crucial few clutches on the B side of Mirage to help FaZe go 2-0 after taking the second map 31-27. 

Heading into the third map, knowing that a loss would end their title dreams, G2 started the third map of Dust2 strongly on the CT half. It was once again huNter-, m0NESY and NiKo who made sure G2 finished the opening half on Dust2 with a slender lead of 8-7. Although G2 started their T half strongly, the experience of FaZe’s in-game leader karrigan showed. With some crucial calling from the veteran Dane, FaZe outsmarted G2 to do a clean sweep and wrap up the best-of-five grand final 3-0. While a 3-0 result might look easy on paper, G2 made it anything but, pushing FaZe to multiple overtimes. 

For G2, it’s another grand final loss. They haven’t lifted a tier-one trophy since DreamHack Masters Malmö in 2017. With the likes of NiKo, huNter- and m0NESY, they will hope to end their barren run soon. 

For FaZe and karrigan, on the other hand, they finally lift the Katowice trophy, having fallen short in the 2018 finals to Fnatic. 

FaZe’s in-game leader karrigan spoke about how much the win meant to him. He even gave a shout out to rain, who had to sit out the semi-finals and finals due to COVID-19. 

A visibly emotional karrigan said:

Third time I’m in the final and winning 3-0 with so many overtimes, with a stand-in, against a great team, is amazing. I should have won in 2018, but I didn’t, now I’m back and winning this IEM Katowice trophy.

Look at the crowd, everyone’s cheering karrigan, FaZe Clan, it’s a dream come true. I rewatched the 2018 IEM Katowice final again yesterday and told myself it’s not going to happen again. I want to win this trophy so bad, and I want to say thank you to all of my teammates and everyone in the crowd.

I kept believing all of the way, I reminded myself when it was 15-11 that I’ve lost that on T side on Inferno. I wanted to show that it’s pretty hard to win 15-11 on T-side Inferno, and we did it. Then we were about to throw it away on Mirage — I’ve never played an overtime game in which I’ve thrown the strat book out of the system and just found solutions in the moment. My team was so good today, I just want to say thank you and shout out to rain who is sitting at home watching.

When I came back [to FaZe] I said ‘give me a year and we’ll win a trophy.’ That was exactly one year ago and he was supposed to be here with me, but we can’t take it away from jks, he played fantastic, but I believe we could have done the same with rain, I just feel bad because it was supposed to be the reunion with him, coming back and winning a big trophy, but I guess we’ll just have to win the next one.

FaZe’s main AWPer, Helvijs ‘broky?’ Saukants, also spoke about the nail-biting grand final and a successful tournament that saw him take home his first MVP award.

Speaking about the final, broky said:

I think it was really important for us to win the Inferno game after such a comeback especially. After we went to overtime we just knew that it was our game after we won so many important rounds. There was this Robin (ropz) round where he just aced on short, I think that won us the Inferno game.

I think the most important thing is to keep up the performance and just keep making playoffs every tournament, and then see what happens next.

CS:GO returns in ten days’ time, when the ESL Pro League Season 15 kicks off. The tournament will be a LAN event held in Germany from March 9 to April 10, 2022, that will see 24 of the world’s finest teams compete with each other to take home the coveted trophy. 

Aditya Chaudhuri

Hailing from the City of Joy, the things that bring me joy are cricket, a good non-tilt CS:GO session, F1 and movies.

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