Arguably the two best games of the Rainbow Six Siege Invitational 2020 were played on Saturday. First off was the losers bracket semi-finals. Then the nightcap was the two NA teams left facing off in the winners bracket final.
Ninjas in Pyjamas (NiP) used their aggression to defeat the last standing EU team in BDS Esports in the lower bracket semis. This match did not go the way that any of the casters or analysts thought it would go once they saw the map ban phase. The first map was Bank, BDS’s pick. BDS needed to win this map as the next two maps weighed highly in NiP’s favor, according to longtime caster Michael “KiXSTAr” Stockley. After trailing 2-6 (7 rounds needed for a win), BDS stormed back on their defensive half. BDS won four straight rounds to force overtime. It was there that BDS ran out of gas. NiP won the final round of overtime winning the first map 8-7. Most thought the match was over right there.
Border was the second map. NiP’s pick, where they won twice this tournament so far against G2 Esports and DarkZero Esports. More importantly was the score of those matches, 7-2 and 7-3. NiP dominated Border in the past, but not against BDS. BDS showed their own aggression only allowing NiP one round on their defense half. BDS submitted their first three rounds of defense themselves. Allowing NiP to comeback on Border, 4-5. But from there it was all BDS surprising many by beating NiP on their map, 7-4.
With each team winning their opponent’s map pick they went to the decider map was Clubhouse. BDS started on defense splitting the round 3-3, which was the beginning of the end for EU’s last hope. NiP shutdown BDS on their defense allowing only one round win for BDS. NiP closed out the map and the match with a 7-4 win.
The most impressive play of the whole match might have come in the last round of the match when Gustavo “Psycho” Rigal lived up to his name clutching a 1 vs. 2.
PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO PSYCHO@PsychoR6 #SixInvitational pic.twitter.com/n1Mdbv5PvF
— ESL Rainbow Six (@ESLRainbowSix) February 15, 2020
Spacestation Gaming (SSG) vs Team Solo Mid (TSM), NA vs NA, ex-teammates, young gunners and a tasteful new rivalry. This matchup had it all. Like the first match of the day, these teams started off on Bank, SSG’s pick. Also much like the first match the team that picked the map also lost the map. SSG looked strong out of the gate ending their attacking round 3-3. To the surprise of many, Bank was the most balanced map of the tournament so far with the defense only winning three more rounds with a score of 51-48. TSM came alive on their attacking half winning four out of five rounds to win the map 7-4.
Coastline was TSM’s pick for the second match. Unfortunately for TSM they did not stand a chance on this map. SSG surrendered the first round but dominated the rest of the map winning seven straight rounds winning the map 7-1.
To cap off the night these two teams went to Kafe Dostoyevsky. Unlike the first match of the night, the final map was much closer. TSM fired out of the gate winning the first four rounds on the attack. SSG was not going out without a fight, winning the next six rounds with Troy “Canadian” Jaroslawski capping their defensive half with a nice 4K.
With SSG on match point, TSM won the final two rounds of regulation to force overtime. In round 14, Canadian again went off for a triple kill with Smoke’s shotgun to advance to his third Six Invitational Championship game and SSG’s first.
— ESL Rainbow Six (@ESLRainbowSix) February 16, 2020
The final day of Six Invitational 2020 is set for February 16. At noon (EST), TSM will face off against NiP in the losers bracket final. The victor will face off against SSG to see who will lift Sledge’s Hammer at 5:00 pm (EST). No matter what a new champion will lift the trophy. NiP could be the first LATAM team to ever win the Invite while TSM or SSG could be the first NA team to win it all since 2017.
No matter what happens tomorrow this has been the best event in Rainbow Six Siege Esports history.