With sdy surpassing even s1mple’s performance, and the AWPer pulling out miracle after miracle, NaVi took down NIP at IEM Cologne.
After NIP's annihilation, NaVi locked their spot in IEM Cologne 2022's Playoffs. The defending champions will enter the LANXESS arena with the hopes of going back-to-back. The team now guarantees a quarter-finals spot and awaits the winner of Movistar Riders and Vitality in the Upper Finals. If they are to win the match, they will go straight to the Semi-Finals.
NIP continue to fight their way towards the arena, now dropping down to the lower bracket. Their opponent will be the winner of G2 and ENCE, a must-watch game for sure.
Map 1 - Overpass - When everything fails, s1mple prevails
The game started off with NaVi winning the pistol round with a successful retake. The pistol-round conversion meant that it was round 4 when NaVi finally felt some pressure from the Swedish side. Oleksandr "s1mple" Kostyliev was left all alone with NIP wiping the rest of his team with only 2 casualties. But with his AWP in his hands, the GOAT turned the dire situation into another awe-inspiring highlight.
That set the tone for the whole game. NIP managed to pick up just 2 rounds in the first half as S1mple and Viktor "sdy" Orudzhev dominated the defense of either site. Moving over to the T side with 13 rounds already in the bag, NaVi quickly shut NIP down 16-3.
Map 2 - Nuke - Flawless CT side
Moving onto Nuke, NaVi started right where they left off, winning the pistol round. S1mple added further salt to the wounds as he even threw in a knife kill for good measure. They built on the pistol round victory converting it into a 5-1 lead. But a 1v2 clutch from Hampus "hampus" Poser finally gave NIP their second. The Swedes started to build back into the game coming within one round of NaVi, but the Ukrainians pulled ahead again. The half closed with an 8-7 scoreline favoring NaVi.
The second half saw NaVi pick up yet another pistol round. The half then saw a repeat of Overpass as NaVi's CT side absolutely annihilated every attempt from NIP. NaVi closed the series out with a 16-7 win on the map moving on in the upper bracket at IEM Cologne.
"It was hard, especially for me individually" - sdy after powering NaVi over NIP at IEM Cologne
In the post-match interview, sdy gave some thoughts on the game and his recent performance.
It was hard, especially for me individually, because on nuke, we have a ton of rounds, and I keep forgetting roles. Its hard for the team to play like that, but we stil won it so its fine.
The first game in the event was super bad for me, i did a lot of mistakes, everythign went wrong, but we won so thats good. This game I'm hitting every shot, I'm playing a lot of dm and aim bots.
I was just practicing my aim and focusing on game plan. When you focus on game plan, everythign else is background, nothing matters. When you play the game, the game comes to you and its good.
With this victory, NaVi have locked in a spot at the LANXESS arena. The team will be looking to defend their title and becoming the second team ever to win back-to-back IEM Colognes.