Throughout the history of “Siege” e-sports, we have seen many European teams win major international tournaments. PENTA’s 2017 rivalry with ENCE developed into the G2 Esports dynasty, which was ended by another European group list, Team Empire. Even without the two European power packages, it was Natus Vincere who won the Pro League season 10 finals.
But things have changed. Europe is far from its peak, and goes from being the region to follow to the region that must learn. However, Europeans are convinced that they can return to the top, now at home again, with Team Empire and BDS Esport as favorites to deliver good performances.
Exactly two years and a week ago, BDS Esport was promoted to Europe’s top class. Since then, the team has only had two changes in its lineup and has the most consistent list in the EUL.
The team’s first major international appearance was back in the time before the pandemic, at SI 2020. BDS had just made its first line-up change, with Bryan “Elemzje” Tebessi signing to replace Dimitri “Panix” de Longeaux. Although this was initially a very controversial change, the ex-Team Secret player placed second in BDS statistics at the event, just behind Stéphane “Shaiiko” Lebleu.
It was the beginning of BDS legacy, as the French team had made its international major debut with a fourth place finish at SI 2020. Although BDS finished dead in season 11 of the ESL Pro League, BDS has dominated the EU ever since, with a win in the European Six August 2020 Major, a second place in the European League 2020 finals and a first place in the European League 2021 regular phase.
If that wasn’t enough, BDS, alongside Empire, has been Europe’s best performer at post-pandemic international competitions with a 7th-8th place finish at SI 2021 and a 3rd-4th place finisher at Mexico Major, after taking 1-2 losses against TSM and Team Empire, respectively.
The French squad goes to Sweden Major after producing a third split for the books, after winning all their matches – seven in the rules, two in overtime. Such outstanding results placed them at the top of the standings with 25 points, six more than Team Empires 19.
BDS also does not seem to struggle with the versatility of the map pool. They are flexible when it comes to maps, with Kafe and Villa the only ones not shown during stage 3 by the French. However, it is worth noting that they mainly play the Russian map at LAN events, as they played it four times at SI 2021 and twice at Mexico Major.
At the same time, it is common to see BDS ban Villa, as it is their least played map – with only two top matches played there this year.
Even Team Empires player Danila “dan” Dontsov said in an interview with SiegeGG that BDS is stronger than them in terms of map pool, because he believes that “if BDS had won against [Empire], they should have won Mexico Major ”.
A big reason behind BDS results is Shaiiko. The 22-year-old is the only European League professional to have registered +100 deaths in each stage played this year. In addition, Shaiiko has always finished among the top three players in the split, with him best in terms of SiegeGG ratings during the last two stages – 1.42 and 1.38 respectively.
A key weapon in the BDS arsenal could be their record against Brazilian lists. The French squad has won 13 of 19 maps played against LATAM teams in major international competitions. Oddly enough, four of their only six losses came against their group game rivals, Ninjas in Pajamas.
On paper, BDS Esport are the favorites to make it to the playoffs, along with the Brazilians in NiP. Susquehanna Soniqs, who lost twice to the French in Mexico (1-7, 3-7), and Invictus Gaming, who will play with her coach Ellis “GiG” Hindle instead of Jeremy “HisteRiX” Tan, are also in the group. .
BDS Esports’ first match at Sweden Major will be against Susquehanna Soniqs on Monday 8 November.