Red Bull Home Ground Final Recap: G2 Esports and Team Liquid put on a show
The very last day of Red Bull Home Ground meant one thing. The grand finale. Team Liquid faced G2 Esports in an intense matchup that went the distance as we got the full best-of-five experience in the grand Valorant match-up.
The first map of the series took us to Icebox, home ground of Team Liquid. It’s fair to say that a heated battle emerged right off the bat. Liquid kicked it off on attack with the first two rounds going their way. G2 retaliated quickly with two of their own, before Liquid did more of the same. The half was a back-and-forth battle as G2 were great on retakes, while Liquid kept fragging out, leading to a 6:6 split at half time.
The second half saw more of the same tight action. Liquid picked up the pistol on the back of a 3k from Dom “soulcas” Sulcas, as well as the following round. Yet again, a very back-and-forth affair was on display, with Oscar “m1xwell” Cañellas Colocho and soulcas taking the spotlight as they engaged in a fragathon on Icebox. Team Liquid managed to bring it to 12:9, getting close to bagging their pick. G2 had other plans, however, as a 3k from m1xwell was followed by a heroic 4k from Aleksander “zeek” Zygmunt. With one round to tie things up, a joint team effort from G2 led to overtime.
The overtime was perhaps one of the best ones we’ve seen so far at the top level. The first round of overtime saw Team Liquid plant the Spike on A site. Ardis “ardiis” Svarenieks took out three on the retake, making it 4v1. Unfortunately for them, it was none other than Adil “ScreaM” Benrlitom that was that one player remaining. Whipping out Jett’s Bladestorm, he single handedly took out four G2 players to deny the plant, take the ace, and bring his side the first round victory. This round was followed up by an overall team effort from Liquid, making the clock run out and G2 failing to plant in time. Liquid took Icebox in the end at 14:12. We were in for a treat for the whole series.
Split, G2’s home ground, came out to be a much less complex affair than Icebox. G2 started out on Split’s attack and despite losing the pistol round, followed up with four straight round wins, Team Liquid, being down 7:3, managed to clinch the two final rounds of the half to bring the score within reason going into the second half on the back of a 3k by ScreaM.
G2’s defense was impenetrable on Split. A great retake and defuse led by Jacob “pyth” Mourujärvi on the pistol led to m1xwell‘s side taking the first two rounds, making it 9:5 already. Round three went Liquid’s way as ScreaM and co. were looking to make things close. This was all she wrote, however, as G2 cleanly won the last four rounds necessary for Split to go their way, at a total of 13:6. Patryk “paTiTek” Fabrowski’s 1v2 clutch to defuse the bomb in time showed just how proficient this G2 side is on Split.
Haven, much like Icebox, turned into an extremely tight map. The first half saw G2 start out as the defenders and shift into fifth gear for the first four rounds including the pistol, denying Spike plants initially. Liquid finally switched on for the following four, as the team’s premiere fragger, ScreaM, was joined by his teammates on the offensive. Later rounds saw the teams trade blows as the half ended with an equal 6:6.
This time around, Team Liquid took control early on on the defense. Four straight rounds went their way, including two defuses. With Liquid just needing two rounds, G2 finally woke up, primarily led by zeek and mixwell to turn things around. Three rounds went their way, bringing it to an equal 11:10 for Liquid. Liquid managed to retake the bombsite after a joint effort from ScreaM and KRYPTIX to get them to match point. When everyone though it was over, ardiis whipped out a fantastic Shock Dart lineup to deny the retake by Liquid by destroying KRYPTIX‘s ultimate. This brought the map to 12:11 as another over time was surely upon us. That was denied by ScreaM, however, as he stuck the defuse in just enough time before paTiTek managed to take him down, closing out Haven in Liquid’s favor 13:11.
There’s not much to say about Bind. The fourth map in the grand finale of Red Bull Home Ground saw the wrath of G2 Esports, as they went on to decimate their opponents. After having a relatively quiet Haven, ardiis led the charge in frags, getting 21 over the span of merely 16 rounds. That’s all it took for G2 as they steamrolled Team Liquid on attack 9:3 as Liquid managed to get in three retakes to get themselves the three rounds at the half.
G2’s defense was quick to shut down Liquid’s attack. Straight four rounds was all it took for G2 to close out Bind in express fashion, 13:3 as the last round saw a team ace emerge, showing that everyone was on board to take it to Ascent, the decider map of the series.
It was time for the final map of the series. It was now do-or-die time for either of these teams at Red Bull Home Ground. The first half of Ascent put G2 on attack and Liquid on defense. At once action got heated as Liquid managed to retake two sites in an effort to get both rounds, as well as follow up with round number three. This streak was broken as G2 finally managed to out-frag their opponents. At 4:1 for Liquid, G2 woke up to get the lead after strapping four rounds behind their belts. A back-and-forth engagement ensued as the half culminated in yet another draw at 6:6.
G2 Esports was then put on the defending side. On attack, Team Liquid took the pistol as well as the follow up round to put themselves up by two. A successful retake led by Travis “L1NK” Mendoza and his 3k initiated a five-round rally by G2, broken up in between by only one round taken by Liquid. ScreaM woke up to make it 11:10 with an excellent 4k on Jett. After a great retake to force the defuse, G2 was one round away from becoming the champions of the event. Being left alone on back site of B, pyth caught ardiis and paTiTek just in time to take the win for his side at 13:10.
G2 Esports beat Team Liquid in a thrilling BO5 with a 3-2 score in maps and become the champions of Red Bull Home Ground.