I'm excited for the ESEA LAN that is happening this weekend. We are going to see CS:GO on American soil, something that has been sorely lacking (in my opinion) from the CS scene lately. While cloud9's extensive bootcamp in Europe and subsequent quick exit from Dreamhack proved to us that being in Europe for a long time prior didn't necessarily lead to better results, I still think that CS changes when you change continents. The environmental factors every country has invariably have an affect on how players perform. Just as one tournament is not enough to prove who the best team is, playing in only one continent will only give you some of the picture. By playing in as many different environments as possible, you get the most detailed idea of who the best teams really are. I also like that some lesser known teams from North America can make the trip to the LAN and not incur huge expenses. It gives LAN exposure to up and coming players from the North American scene and gives them much needed experience playing in front of lots of people.
Short of any concrete proof of Fnatic cheating, I think we have to assume that flusha, jw and olofmeister are all clean players. This makes fnatic the best team in the world for now, so it was really good that they could come to this tournament to give legitimacy to it. jw's response on reddit, pronax's post and even flusha's post on facebook has really softened me to them. I admit that I still have some suspicions about flusha, but they are people and deserve to be treated as such. Short of any evidence to the contrary, I assume that they are just trying to be the best team they can be. I want to see them do well and prove to people that they are not cheating at all.
I want to see Denial do well, as they are an up and coming team that could make some noise if they believe in themselves and play as well as they do pugging in America.
The team I'm rooting for the most, of course, is cloud9. I hope that they can shake off their loss in Europe and pull through and do well in this tournament. I also want iBuyPower to do well, mostly for the sake the North American Scene. We need good teams to make North American teams taken seriously. We also need good teams, because people like cloud9 and iBP can only scrim against each other so many times before it turns into anti-stratting. There's a reason that no matter how much Australian teams play against each other, if they don't play against European teams, they'll never get good enough to compete on the international scene.
We will have to see what happens!
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