The Biggest Esport Match-Ups Taking Place This Weekend
The top Esports betting sites are doing their utmost to fill the massive void which has been left in the sports betting market.
While many eSports events opt to take part in large arenas with thousands of people watching live and millions around the world, the setup in which tournaments are played out has largely always been online using Local Area Networks (LAN). This essentially means all participants connect to the same network and play each other online.
The biggest advantage of this approach rather than always just playing online remotely is latency. If all players are connected on the same network, then they will encounter the exact same experience. The main advantage to LAN is that while they all connect to one network, no internet is required.
The integrity of betting on Esports is something which has been queried in the past, with punters worried participants will have far easier means to cheat, which in theory they do. Gambling.com spoke the director of research at the University of Nevada Las Vegas, Brett Abarbanel. An expert in this field, Abarbanel explained the challenges in the Esports world and the measures being taken to prevent them in episode four of The Knowledge Podcast series.
>> Listen to the full Knowledge Episode 4 Podcast here
We have an in-house Esports expert, Jason Redmond, and it's over to him to take a look at the inevitable betting action that will take place over a busy weekend in the online Esports arenas.
5 eSports Matches You Can Bet On This Weekend
Overwatch League - Week 7
For the third season of the Overwatch League, developers Blizzard wanted to expand align the sport closer to traditional sports by implementing home and away systems that will allow every team has two home events. However, with the current situation, this has been postponed but the matches themselves will continue online. Blizzard will also reschedule matches to reduce issues surrounding the locations of the teams since it is an international league.
1 - Seoul Dynasty vs. San Francisco Shock
Last seasons winners San Francisco Shock lived up to their name by clean-sweeping the Vancouver Titans in the final 4-0 following a season-long dominant display from the Canadian outfit. However, revenge won't take too long as both teams are in the West Division in the Pacific Conference. The Titans have handily dispatched their first two opponents and now it's over to SF Shock to prove why they are the reigning Overwatch League champions.
Consisting of largely the same roster of last year, SF Shock easily dispatched Dallas Fuel 3-1 in week 1 with Dallas Fuel's "Decay" being the only player to really cause them any trouble. 2019's MVP "sinatraa" remained as impressive as ever in his opening week match despite the need to change from one of his mains, Mei, to Doomfist in order to counter Fuel's shield-heavy approach to the match.
Seoul Dynasty made it to the Finals last year through in the losers bracket but were knocked out in the first round by Hangzhou Spark. They have yet to have a game this season which means we aren't totally sure what to expect of them. San Francisco Shock though have experience already testing out the new META (Most Effective Tactic Available) in competition meaning the Dynasty still have some rust to shake off.
2 - LA Valiant vs. LA Gladiators
Both teams have already tasted defeat this season having just played three matches between them. With the other two teams in their division being last year's finalists, winning is needed to even stay in touching distance of them during the regular season
LA Valiant put up a scrappy performance against the Titans but ultimately it was a comfortable win for last year's finalists. It was evident going into the final map that Valiant were desperate to just try hold out from the inevitable and it became an ugly affair by the end. The only indications of momentum from LA Valiant came from the fans in the crowd as they got behind them. However, without a live crowd in front of them, I don't have a lot of faith for the outfit to create any momentum at all.
It was a very different story though when the Titans faced the Gladiators. Rather than a display of dominance and skill, it was very much a war of attrition, grinding, and breaking the Gladiators over time. Ultimately, it was just the Titan's experience as a team including great support play and effective Genji Ultimate use that turned the tide of the match on map 3 but some incredible metaplay pushed the game to Map 5 and brought the Titans all the way to wire.
The simple fact that the Titans were shocked and lost the first map to the Gladiators and never quite pushed them out of the game proves that the Gladiators get down and force mistakes from the best while Valiant simply get desperate. Expect a one-sided demolition.
Rocket League Championship Series - Week 7
While the Overwatch League has yet to have a matchweek online already, the Rocket League Championship Series moved to an online on March 5th and has maintained it's high-quality coverage and viewership. While the Championship live events has been cancelled, the season has continued and we've picked three games from this weekend's matches to take a look at.
3 - NRG vs Ghost Gaming
In Ghost Gaming's last outing Atomic was everywhere, setting up excellent passes to his teammates as well as scoring to keep his team in it against Cloud9. However, Ghost lost the midfield boost far too often which slowed them down and it degraded into a game of reactionary defense rather than building any forward momentum.
The weak link in NRG's team right now is GarrettG who has been inconsistent. When he's on the top of his game, he's one of the best players in the RLCS but in the past couple of weeks, his inconsistency must be building some doubt in his teammates. One simple mistake leads to goals being scored. Rotation and trust in position is key and any uncharacteristic actions cost games.
G2 were the much better team against NRG, and had their finishing been more successful, NRG would have faced an embarrassing defeat. Both teams are just not at their best right now but NRG looked incredibly inferior in their game while Ghost Gaming faced a reinvigorated Clould9 team looking to make something of their season
4 - Pittsburgh vs Cloud9
Cloud9 have had a resurgence following a poor outing earlier in the season but looked like a different team against Ghost Games and are now a formidable force once again
They came out of the game incredibly quick, scoring within 20 seconds of each map against Ghost Gaming so expect something similar against a nervous-looking Pittsburgh Knights.
When it comes to possession, ayyjayy and Retals likes to hold possession and try to air dribble for Pittsburgh but Cloud9 attacks with blistering pace and quick passing meaning dispossession can easily lead to a Cloud9 counter attack and they are clinical in front of the sticks.
This could be an extremely one-sided affair with Pittsburgh offering little to challenge Cloud9, it could be a game of trying to save face and keep their pride intact.
5 - FC Barcelona vs. mousesports
It seems silly that despite it being a completely different world, Barcelona are a dominant force. If the football team have Messi, the Rocket League team has Flakes who has just been nothing short of incredible for this team. Skillful, fast, and relentless, I don't see anyone stopping him right now.
While mousesports are a good team, this is a Barca team that can respond well under pressure as well as pull out results when they have their backs against the wall. They turned around a 2-0 deficit against a Monaco side that were fighting for survival in the Championship Series. to win 3-2, almost assuredly sealing Monaco's relegation
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