Taking a look at the most unvalued and underrated players on every team that qualified for VCT Masters Copenhagen.
The idea of any of these talented players being considered “underrated” is a bit of an oxymoron. These are 60 of the best players in the world. Even if a player isn’t a name brand member of these teams, he’s still a world class VALORANT player. Here is the most underrated player on every VCT Masters Copenhagen team:
OpTic Gaming are flushed with talent at every role. There’s an argument to be made that Jaccob “yay” Whittaker is the best Duelist, while Masters Reykjavik MVP Jimmy “Marved” Nguyen is widely considered the best Controller. Add on Victor “Victor” Wong’s recent form and Pujan “FNS” Mehta as an elite in-game leader (IGL) and there’s little room for anyone else.
Enter Austin “Crashies” Roberts. Once considered the best Sova in previous Sova-heavy meta’s. His contributions often go overlooked on a stacked Optic roster. On an Optic team that utilizes a fake heavy play style, Crashies plays the role of a supportive teammate. He’s extremely valuable on executes, with the highest KAST% (75%) on the team, but can be used as a pawn for his hyper skilled teammates to bait certain positions.
Moreover, Crashies is willing to play the support role, but also has the ability to frag out when needed. In terms of placing players in the underrated umbrella, Crashies might even be the most overlooked. The willingness to play with bad buys to help the team and the wherewithal to understand situational VALORANT makes him a constant value to the overall gameplan.
By no means is Guild’s Nikita “trexx” Cherednichenko an underrated entity in Europe. He’s often the most effective player on Guild’s roster. During the Challengers Stage 2 run, trexx has flexed onto four unique agents and continuously put up huge numbers. At times, he's been a ruthless entry on Raze or Jett, but can play a more passive Cypher or Sova to balance.
When on a team featuring Saif “Sayf” Jibareel and Leo “Leo” Jannesson, trexx has the highest average ACS (230.7). In games where trexx has a 215+ ACS, Guild has gone 3-1 with a win over M3C. If a Guild run were to happen in Copenhagen, trexx would need to be the catalyst.
Similarly to Optic Gaming, LOUD simply has too many superstars. All five starting members can overwhelm teams by pure skill. The combination of young superstars Felipe “Less” de Loyola and Erick “aspas” Santos is lethal. It’s the definition of a super team, with each player being elite in their roles.
No, Sacy won’t put up the gaudy numbers of his teammates but he’s an essential piece to the puzzle. Excellent in a wide variety of situations and one of the best players with utility in the world. We often see it’s not the most explosive players who win championships, but the ones with top tier situational understanding.
Despite some inconsistency in 2021, NagZ was gifted the Chamber role in 2022, which has helped play to his individual strengths. His ACS has risen 25 points since Champs (191 > 215 ACS) and he’s able to be an aggressive minded threat next to Angelo “keznit” Mori. He’s gone from a potential liability to one of KRU’s strengths.
There’s few rosters internationally as well structured as South Korea’s DRX. Each player fundamentally understands their role and virtually no team runs as clean of executes as DRX. If you’re looking to watch superior teamplay, this team has a much deeper understanding of agents, maps and utility than most.
A major reason for the crispness in DRX’s play is their IGL Kim “Zest” Gi-seok. Zest often bottom frags, as is typical with smoke playing IGL’s, however, he’s always trading and setting up teammates in the meantime. The 78.8% team KAST in Korean Challengers shows all members are working in cohesion and don’t let opposing teams play the game.
FunPlus Phoenix has virtually no weakspots and it’s less on individual efforts and more so on out-thinking their opponents. It’s a team with five heads all needed to survive the more Duelist dependent teams in Europe and their style works.
For example, Kyrylo “ ANGE1” Karasov’s contributions as IGL will constantly make prepping for FPX an impossible task, but difficult mid-rounding as well. ANGE1 is the teams bottom fragger, but his impact on the game is massive. FPX has made counter-strating an art and ANGE1 is the center of their strategy.
Northeption, along with Levitian, is the story VALORANT fans have been wrapped up into coming out of Stage 2 Challengers. Defeating VCT Reykjavik third place Zeta Division caught the world off guard, but after a deeper love at the new Japanese champions, maybe it shouldn’t have?
As for their most underrated player, Daichi “Derialy” Doi fits the description. Fans will quickly come acquainted with star Chamber Kim “Meteor” Tae-O, but Derialy represents the chaos that is Northeption. Firstly, he plays basically every agent, from entry to smokes to Sentinel. He’s a swiss army knife.
Secondly, he’s the one making the plays in micro situations that set up for the heavy hitters to come in and slay. In terms of flexibility, Derialy is one of the most versatile players entering Masters Copenhagen. He understands the strengths of their compositions and will play a huge role if Northeption wants to advance as far as Zeta.
XERXIA is an enigma at the International level. Strong enough to beat any team, but typically finishing at a modest spot. One of two teams to beat the Champions OpTic at Masters Reykjavik, but not able to make it out of groups.
Much like their APAC counterpart Paper Rex, XERXIA isn’t an easy team to prepare against. Starting with Nutchapon “sScary” Matarat, who is not only one of the most undervalued smoke players worldwide, and a phenomenal lurker as well. His kill numbers on Viper and Astra far surpass any other Controller player (233.8 ACS, 1.43 KD). He’s a constant threat positionally and mechanically strong enough to win duels.
For Enzo “Enzo: Maestari, starting as a ringer for Abdrey “BraveAF” Gorchakov at VCT Reykjavik for Fnatic felt temporary. Yet, he found a spot as an Initiator and has become central to this team's 8-0 success in EMEA Challengers Stage 2. His synergy with his teammates when it comes to map control makes him indispensable.
With Emir “Alfajer” Ali Beder turning into a 17 year old prodigy right before our eyes, Fnatic has reached a new peak with this roster. Enzo has made this team smarter with his level of expertise. The structure of Fnatic coupled with earth shattering individual skill makes them the most dangerous team entering Copenhagen.
XSET broke the fourth place curse in large part due to the role of Brendan “BcJ” Jensen. The play of Matthew “Cryo” Panganiban and Zachary “zekken” Patrone opened the door to a North American title, but the XSET role players stepped up in a major way. The 73.6% team KAST shows a team working off utility and contact well, with BcJ’s Initiator plays doing the dirty work.
Paper Rex: mindfreak
Paper Rex were an unknown quantity for Western VALORANT fans entering Masters Reykjavik. No one knew Paper Rex as a team with an advanced set of compositions and plays to bamboozle opposing teams. It’s the explosive, hold-W style of Jason “f0rsaken” Susanato and Wang “Jingg” Jing Jie. Each set play is carefully set up by the support players to completely overtake areas and players.
Aaron “mindfreak” Leonhart , on the other hand, plays the facilitator. Many opportunities Jingg and f0rsaken get come off mindfreak’s viper utility and his ability to block out vision. Paper Rex is predicated on Jingg and f0rsaken taking aim-duels, while mindfreak puts them in the best position possible.
Levitán the surprise region winners alongside Northeption enter Masters Copenhagen with that good momentum. Beating their domestic rivals, KRU Esports, after four consecutive Finals losses has to give them massive confidence. Starting from playoffs gives them an opportunity to make some noise against top tier competition.
Led by their leader and Chamber Vicente “Tacolilla” Compagnon, it’s a team with young, versatile talent. Fabian “Shyy” Usnayo, at 17 years old, was added in June and immediately steps in and contributes. His last minute signing was one of the reasons Leviatán powered through KRU.
It’s a team with fire power, but more importantly, a larger understanding of the macro concepts of VALORANT. The coach Rodrigo “Onur” Dalmagro has come in and taught these players the game at a fundamental level. He's drastically improved their understanding and allowed players like Shyy to shine.
VCT Masters Copenhagen begins on July 10th at 9 PM PST