What happened in the VCT NA Stage 2: Challengers 2 Qualifier
The VCT NA Stage 2: Challengers Finals is going to be nothing short of spectacular. The teams that have already advanced along with the teams that may still make it are among some of the best in the world, not just in North America. Up next for NA Valorant is the Stage 2: Challengers 2 Main Event. The open qualifier saw yet another wild bracket filled with 128 teams. Some things went exactly as predicted while some others went off of the beaten path. Here is what happened in the VCT NA Stage 2: Challengers 2 qualifier.
The first four teams that advanced to the NA Challengers Finals tournament are 100 Thieves, Version1, Team Envy, and XSET. Three of them participated in Masters 1. Sentinels and Immortals both made it to the Stage 2: Challengers 2 Main Event. If only one of them makes it to Challengers Finals, then half of the teams from Masters 1 will be missing. That is because FaZe Clan was eliminated by T1 and Gen.G Esports lost to a revitalized TSM. While unlikely, if Sentinels and Immortals do not make it to the top four, the only Masters 1 teams in Challengers Finals will be the three already qualified.
After a shocking upset by Built By Gamers, Sentinels had a lot of questions to answer going into Stage 2: Challengers 2. They did not drop a single map throughout the open qualifier. In fact, the most rounds they gave to a team was against Rise on Haven. Valorant can be extremely random, so anyone thinking that BBG defeating Sentinels was anything more than an anomaly was proven to be sorely mistaken. Running through Valkyrie, Neebs and Weebs, Grapefruit Techniques, Rise, and Noble was a breeze for the reigning North American Masters champions.
What in the Wardell? TSM showed up to Stage 2: Challengers 2 with a vengeance. Matthew “Wardell” Yu ended the qualifier with a 1.91 K/D, finishing the final day 52-18-7 against Gen.G Esports. After coming in second place during First Strike, many have felt TSM fell off. It simply appears that they were biding their time and laying in wait. They were preparing for their chance to return to stardom. With the addition of Braxton “brax” Pierce, TSM has had a fire lit under them. Dropping only one map to Soniqs throughout the qualifier, TSM reminded NA Valorant just exactly who they are. The Main Event will no doubt see more of that.
Again, Valorant can be kind of random. North America has a massive pool of talent that is being showcased in these Challengers qualifiers. Stage 2: Challengers 2 saw some victories that many wouldn’t have expected, but truly don’t come as too surprising. T1 is a very good team, finding their groove against FaZe Clan. The newly signed SoaR roster lost their second series to O.O.D.A. Loopers. Pittsburgh Knights also lost their second series against Elmerz Glue. The first round saw CLG Red lose to StarlessGG. The list goes on and on. It truly shows how special North America is in the Valorant scene. So many orgless players have the goods. The scene is going to be overflowing for a long time and that is a good thing.
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