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It was the final every Counter-Strike fan wanted, and one fitting for the game’s return to its most fabled venue. The two best teams in the world, a grueling seven-hour series, the LAXNESS crowd roaring their approval – all the things needed to remind the world exactly this Esports thing is a big deal. Finn “karrigan” Andersen’s FaZe side needed to win two maps on the bounce to do it, but they have firmly cemented themselves as the best team in the world with the competitive season coming to a close in Cologne. Check out Gamelevate as we run you through exactly how they did it with our IEM Cologne grand final review.
FaZe Crown Themselves The Best In The World
FaZe Clan reached the summit of the world rankings for the first time since 2018 back in April, but actually saw themselves drop just behind NAVI ahead of the 2022 IEM Cologne grand final. The arrival of Robin “ropz” Kool has proven to be the missing link the team were waiting on, with FaZe sweeping the three biggest titles in the competitive CS:GO calendar this year: IEM Katowice, the PGL Antwerp Major, and now IEM Cologne.
It’s no coincidence that the return of LANs and the huge atmospheres that come with these grand events has seen FaZe become the world’s number one team either; established pros like Håvard “rain” Nygaard and Russell “Twistzz” van Dulken have an abundance of experience on the stage, and there’s no player in the world that has an affinity with a crowd quite like karrigan.
The Danish IGL has been able to cluster together a team where everyone gets to play the hero, eliminating the risk of being over-reliant on one or two stars performing each time they step into the server. Over the course of the five map grand final at Cologne, all four of karrigan’s FaZe teammates finished with a 1.00+ rating and over 90 kills across the series.
S1mple Scoops The MVP Award, But NAVI Fall Short
“I think this was the hardest final that I’ve ever played, and all ten players from this final and the coaches, they get a huge amount of experience.”
– When these are the words the greatest of all time has to say after a match, you know you’ve just watched a classic.
It’s been a tough couple of months for Oleksandr “s1mple” Olehovych Kostyliev, with a host of circumstances outside of the server pulling his attention away from the world of CS:GO, however the Ukrainian leaves Cologne with another MVP award under his belt. S1mple broke the record for the most amount of individual awards at BLAST earlier this month and takes his tally of tournament MVP awards to 21 with his dominating displays at Cologne.
The Ukrainian ended the tournament with a 1.25 rating, 0.84 kills per round and a final kill/death ratio of +95. NAVI might have ultimately fallen short in their quest to be the best, but there was very little more S1mple could have done for his team in the server.
IEM Cologne 2022 Appendices
- FaZe Clan’s win in the 2022 IEM Cologne grand final not only sees them standing alone as the world’s number one side, but also puts them one step closer to the fourth season of the Intel Grand Slam. The side only needs to win more ESL official events to scoop up the $1,000,000 prize that comes with the achievement.
- Should FaZe complete the Grand Slam, Twistzz will become the first player to complete the achievement twice (having done so with Team Liquid in 2019).
- S1mple won his second MVP award at IEM Cologne, becoming the first player to do so. He also became the first player to win multiple MVP awards this year.
- 1.15M Peak viewers tuned in to watch the FaZe vs NAVI Grand Final, beating out the 1.12M set by FaZe vs G2 at IEM Katowice 2022 to become the most watched non-Major CS:GO match ever. It also marks the sixth-most watched series in the game’s history, only behind the grand finals at IEM Katowice Major 2019, ELEAGUE Major 2018, ELEAGUE Major 2017, PGL Major Antwerp, and PGL Major Stockholm.
IEM Cologne 2022 Grand Final Scores
Inferno (FaZe Pick) – NAVI 13 – 16 FaZe
Overpass (NAVI Pick) – NAVI 16 – 13 FaZe
Ancient (FaZe Pick) – NAVI 19 – 16 FaZe
Mirage (NAVI Pick) – NAVI 9 – 16 FaZe
Nuke (Decider) – NAVI 14 – 16 FaZe
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