00 Nation leap up the charts in Dust2 Rankings for August
With the player-break now upon us, July saw the final tournaments of the circuit; but unlike last season it was not a parade of the "dead teams", but rather the opposite as teams continued to keep things competitive. With IEM Cologne and ESL Challenger Valencia giving teams one last chance to prove themselves, this month's rankings have been graced by the addition of not one, but two new teams.
To provide a transparent summary of the ranking process, here is a breakdown of the Dust2 Ranking process:
Our team rankings are chosen based on a series of measurements where each team is allocated points dependent on where they rank compared to their peers. This point-based system puts all domestic and international results, HLTV ranking, the tier of play, and coaches polling into consideration. While we include the HLTV rankings to some degree, there is more weight that is given to the select number of coaches within the scene that are ranking the teams due to their accurate ability in judging play outside of the regional matches.
#1 FURIA (arT, yuurih, KSCERATO, saffee, drop) (-)
FURIA cannot be uncrowned as they take our number one spot four times in a row despite a slightly disappointing month. Things started off rough in July as the Brazilians competed in ESL Challenger Valencia where they fell to both 00 Nation and Sprout to exit in last place.
This was followed up by a 7-8th place finish at Cologne where once again the squad failed to reach expectations. To add insult to injury, FURIA were knocked out by Americas rivals, and number two on this month's rankings, Liquid, who were playing with Mareks "YEKINDAR" Gaļinskis as a stand-in. Is this a sign that FURIA's number one spot might be in jeopardy or is this a red herring right before the player break?
August events: ESL Pro League Season 16
#2 Liquid (EliGE, NAF, oSee, nitr0, YEKINDAR) (-)
July was the first opportunity for a Frenchless Liquid to play with new coach Damian "daps" Steele and stand-in star YEKINDAR. The North American team entered Cologne with no real expectations but with an opportunity to utilize their stand-in entry fragger and allow Jonathan "EliGE" Jablonowski to unlock another level of firepower.
Liquid, with some fantastic performances, made it to the playoffs by knocking out FURIA, but that was their limit as they fell to Movistar Riders in the Cathedral of Counter-Strike. This is a team with a lot of question marks as they go into the player break but one thing is certain, whatever happens with YEKINDAR will be the key to their future.
#3 00 Nation (coldzera, TACO, latto, dumau, try) (NEW)
Talk about coming out swinging. The addition of the GODSENT core put a fire in 00 Nation’s belly and allowed them to race into our top three for August. The new squad was put on full display as they played in ESL Challenger Valencia where they were able to beat FURIA 2-0 in a dominating affair. This was followed by an unfortunate loss to Sprout, which sent them packing from the Spanish event.
The South American squad also made it through the play-in for Cologne with a win for Marcelo "coldzera" David over his former SK/MIBR teammates on Imperial. Unfortunately, 00 Nation could not go any further as they were later felled by FaZe and subsequently Liquid in a very close series. However, these losses are hardly anything to be ashamed of, and 00 Nation look to be headed in the right direction.
August Events: TBD
#4 Complexity (JT, floppy, FaNg, Grim, hallzerk) (-1)
Things have not improved for the young guns of Complexity as they fall back down to fourth place. Highlighted by a failure to make it through the play-in for IEM Cologne, the North American team have unfortunately had another concerning month.
After a few months of disappointing results, Complexity have finally hit a boiling point and decided that now is the time to make a change. Paytyn "junior" Johnson has been replaced by the young Norwegian Håkon "hallzerk" Fjærli. With the amount of potential this young squad has, hopefully they can reverse this slide down the rankings.
#5 Imperial (FalleN, fnx, fer, boltz, VINI) (-)
Despite reports of Lincoln "fnx" Lau and Luis "peacemaker" Tadeu heading out the door, and an underwhelming month of results, Imperial have managed to maintain their spot at fifth.
After their loss in the IEM Cologne Play-in to 00 Nation that resulted in them missing the main event, the Last Dance roster could be bringing in Marcelo "chelo" Cespedes. With this move reportedly imminent and the player break now upon us, it's uncertain what the future holds for Imperial.
August events: TBD
#6 MIBR (chelo, exit, tuurtle, JOTA, brnz4n) (-2)
Last month saw MIBR hit the ground running by asserting their dominance through ECL. This month, however, they were not able to get off to as good a start. Despite an opening victory over Rare Atom in ESL Challenger Valencia, the Brazilians would go on to lose to Movistar Riders and then fail to win the rematch against Rare Atom, a disappointing result for a top 20 ranked team.
Unfortunately, IEM Cologne was not an improvement, as losses to Movistar Riders and TYLOO snuffed out any hopes of making the main stage. With these losses in recent memory, reports suggest that chelo will leave the squad and be replaced with Henrique "HEN1" Teles. Could the addition of HEN1 allow for MIBR to have a breakthrough in August?
#7 9z (max, dgt, rox, dav1d, nqz) (-)
9z was not at Cologne nor Valencia but this does not mean the squad was quiet as they played in two South American competitions. The local tournaments gave them a chance to play with their new addition of Lucas "nqz" Soares.
The South American team was able to win KaBuM! Challenge 2022 but more importantly, their 1-4th finish in FiReLEAGUE secures them a place in the LAN finals in Buenos Aries, the ability to fight for a spot in the Global Finals, and a chance to make their way to the BLAST Fall Showdown. Despite swapping out their experienced AWPer for a 17-year-old newcomer, 9z have continued to look scary.
August events: FiReLEAGUE 2022 Finals
#8 paiN (PKL, hardzao, biguzera) (-2)
Coming off a dominant June, paiN was not able to continue their run of good form as they bottomed out of the Cologne Play-in, failing to surpass MOUZ and Sprout. Despite the overall positive results in the last few months, the team parted ways with Gabriel "nython" Lino and long-standing team member Gabriel "NEKIZ" Schenato. paiN are reportedly targeting Felipe "skullz" Medeiros and Romeu "zevy" Rocco which could prove to be a very interesting prospect for the team.
Only time will tell if these moves can help paiN raise their ceiling above tier two moving forward.
August events: ESL Challenger League Season 42
#9 EG.PA (PwnAlone, ben1337, djay, Jonji, viz) (NEW)
The second new team to the rankings, EG.PA have flourished under the EG banner in a successful month. Led by Josh "PwnAlone" Piguefor, EG.PA were able to qualify for ESL Challenger Melbourne after a strong run in the closed qualifier for the event. The North Americans beat Gaimin Gladiators in the lower bracket to set up a rematch against ATK in the final which they won in two maps.
Despite the uncertainty around the rest of EG in the last month, EG.PA have been able to relax during the player break whilst preparing for Melbourne in September.
August events: TBD
#10 ATK (MisteM, Fadey, motm, b0denmaster, Swisher) (-)
Last but not least, ATK have managed to retain their space in the Dust2 rankings after securing their place last month. The international roster was not that busy this month as they only competed in the ESL Challenger Melbourne NA Closed Qualifiers.
Despite losing to EG.PA in the final and just barely letting a trip to Melbourne slip away from them, ATK were the best team present in terms of average team ratings, putting up a 1.15 average rating while Rhys "Fadey" Armstrong led the event with an impressive 1.37 rating. Regardless of the loss, the squad continues to grow, which bodes well for their future.
August events: ESL Challenger League Season 42