The 2022 IEM Rio Major has proven to be one of the most unforgiving Major Championships in CS:GO history. It began with G2 and Astralis’ failure to qualify, but reached a new level with the tournament’s Legends Stage. World number one side Team Vitality and reiging major champions FaZe Clan were both eliminated, leaving just eight sides ahead of the Champions Stage. Check out Gamelevate for some of the key storylines you should be following at the IEM Rio Major Champions Stage!
FURIA Flying The Flag
The Rio Major has been hosted with some of the most vibrant and passionate support we have ever seen at an S-Tier event. All these fans have wanted to see is a home team making it to the Champions Stage and playing at a packed-out Jeunesse Arena.
FURIA were the only Brazilian side to make it to the Legends, and qualified through to the Champions Stage with a flawless 3-0 record. The atmosphere from the crowd during the Brazilians’ win over BIG was undoubtedly the best we’ve heard at the tournament so far, and we would love to see FURIA extend that run even further.
NAVI And Cloud9 The Favorites
With the elimination of Team Vitality and FaZe Clan, the path to lifting the biggest honour in CS is wide open for the taking.
Both NAVI and Cloud9 have looked far from their devastating best throughout the Legends Stage, but both successfully managed to evade an early exit with a 3-2 and 3-0 record respectively.
NAVI won their first Major back at PGL Stockholm in November 2021 when they were the game’s undisputed kings, whilst the Cloud9 org famously tasted victory back at the Boston Major in 2018 (albeit with an NA-based lineup).
Who Else Can Cause A Shock?
In a Major where shocks seem to be the order of the day, it’s hard to imagine the Champions Stage being any different.
There are so many teams present with so many unknowns hanging over them it’s hard to predict who is really best placed to make a title charge. Fnatic have won three Majors over the course of CS:GO’s lifespan and return to the Champions Stage having not even appeared at a Championship since IEM Katowice in early 2019.
Elsewhere, Heroic and Outsiders are jostling for the crown of being the ‘best of the rest’ behind NAVI and Cloud9, and both MOUZ and Spirit secured some impressive scalps en route to the Legends stage.
The 2022 IEM Rio Major Champions Stage will take place from 10th-13th November 2022 and will be hosted from the Jeunesse Arena.