EPL Season 15 kicks off with Group A featuring a weakened G2 and a mix of teams with a lot to prove. Can you feel an upset brewing?
ESL Pro League Season 15 is the last tier 1 event before the Major cycle. And Group A will be starting the proceedings with IEM Katowice Finalist G2 and a slew of interesting teams to challenge them. The 5-week long event kicks off on Wednesday, March 9, here's everything you need to know about EPL Season 15 Group A.
- G2 Esports
- Ninjas In Pyjamas
Group A may not be a very stacked group, but the teams all have a point to prove at this event.
G2 Esports: A Weakened favorite
On paper, G2 is the clear favorite for this group. Their run at IEM Katowice looked weaker than what you'd expect. But the fact that they made the finals without NiKo-carrying says a lot about the team's strength. Unfortunately, the streak of bad luck continues as the IGL, Aleksib has been sidelined due to a positive covid test. G2 super-sub AmaNEK will be taking the spot.
G2 is familiar with losing their IGL in a tournament as they played IEM Winter without nexa last year. With the hive mind of NiKo hunter and AmaNEK working together, G2 is still going to be a force to reckon with. They are the favorites for this group but their chances in the playoffs will depend on Aleksib returning on time.
Ninjas In Pyjamas: Teamwork is the key
At this point, it's almost unfair to call NIP a stand-in lineup, Phzy has been in the lineup for almost 3 months and the team looks structurally sound in every match they play. Phzy may not match up against Device but this team can hang with whatever opponent you throw at them. With their improved structure and team play, they will be a tough opponent to take down at this event.
In this group, they have been given a golden opportunity to take a playoffs spot. Maytbe even contend for a top seed as their final game will be against a currently weakened G2. This is their opportunity to rise up despite rumors of Brollan and Device circulating around.
Entropiq: Shot at redemption
CIS's 4th squad, Entropiq was extremely dissapointing at IEM Katowice 2022. Being ranked in the top 10 and after their strong showing at the Major, Entropiq was, in the eyes of many, a lock for the main stage. But losses to ENCE and MOUZ ended their run quickly.
For them, EPL Season 15 Group A will be their chance at redemption. If they fail to make playoffs, this might be the end of their short run as a top team.
Fnatic: Absolute disaster
Ever since IEM Katowice 2022, Fnatic have been spiraling out of control. First they benched Smooya, who had recently signed a 2 year contract extension. Immediately after that Fnatic's superstar Brollan decided to step down, with a potential NIP move being on the table. As it stands right now, fnatic is in a tough spot with their best player being the rookie Mezii or the ultra-veteran Krimz.
EPL Season 15 Group A is gonna be a tough battle for Fnatic. Without a 5-man lineup being finalised, there's very little they can do to prepare against these teams and even the lower seeded squads like MOUZ should be able to beat them with ease.
MOUZ: Time to rise
IEM Katowice was impressive, but it came off the back of JDC, the academy league ringer they had brought in to replace Bymas. With his spot under-pressure, will Bymas deliver a similar level of performance at EPL Season 15 Group A? If MOUZ want to win, the Lithuanian rifler will definitely have to deliver.
On the positive side, Torzsi and Frozen will be the main driving forces for this team while NBK and Dexter set them up for a potential upset run to the playoffs.
For the young Australian org, a long stint in EU might be the perfect experience they need to level up their regional performances. As a young squad, they have almost zero international experience so the official games played in EU will improve them in the long run. For this event, even winning one game would be an overperformance.
ESL Pro League Season 15 Group A will run from March 9 to March 13, with 3 games being played each day.
Following on the success of IEM Katowice's talent lineup, ESL has announce the talent lineup for the first week of EPL, with future weeks likely to rotate some members.
- Tres "stunna" Saranthus
- Pala "Pala" Gilroy Sen
- Anastasija "Heccu" Tolmaceva
- Janko "YNk" Paunović
- Aleksandar "kassad" Trifunović
- Allan "Allan" Hender
- Alex "Mauisnake" Ellenberg
- Alex "Machine" Richardson
- Chad "SPUNJ" Burchill
- Hugo Byron
- Harry "JustHarry" Russell