[toc]A few big events last week are helping bring the esports calendar to a close. But there’s more on tap for the end of 2017 and the start of 2018.
- In CS:GO, FaZe won the ECS Season 4 Finals against Mousesports in one of the closest grand final series in the history of ECS.
- In Dota 2, Virtus Pro come out on top at DOTA Summit 8, following a 3-1 sweep of Fnatic.
- The World of Tanks Wargaming League concludes for 2017 on Sunday with Tornado Energy vs DiNG.
Where to bet on esports
What’s on offer this week at esports betting sites this week?
Following its ECS win, FaZe are favorted to win the 2018 ELEAGUE Major with Bet365 at odds of 5.00.
As well as having many other 2018 fixtures online already, Bet365 have also listed odds for some of the smaller tournaments this week such as the DaddySkins Western League. Despite this quiet time of year, there are odds available for CS:GO, Dota 2, King of Glory, Overwatch, League of Legends and StarCraft II.
SkyBet has kept things a little more current, choosing only to list fixtures that will be taking place this week. That leaves three CS:GO tournaments, one LoL match, qualifiers for the StarLadder i-League Invitational and the KoG King Pro League.
A new addition to the site in the last few weeks is the accumulator builder. Use this feature to build esports accumulators across various titles to get higher odds and potential payouts.
It’s a similar story at Pinnacle this week. Many of the same fixtures as SkyBet are on offer, but the site has split the StarLadder Invitationals into regional categories, which is a nice touch.
Added to that, Pinnacle guarantees better odds than SkyBet on the betting markets it publishes. The main problem of course, is that it’s frequently only match odds that are available for betting.
Despite the quiet period, Betspawn seems busier than ever. It is one of the few sites to include Hearthstone and World of Tanks odds.
Added to that, they’ve gone ahead and published odds for the Dota 2 ESL One Genting 2018 Qualifiers that begin this week. With such attention to detail and range of esports on offer, Betspawn is possibly the best all-round esports betting site in the run up to Christmas.
As far as traditional bookmakers go, Betway is one of the most forward-thinking when it comes to esports. Not only does it have some fantastic esports-specific offers, but it also features a great choice of titles to bet on.
Some sites have chosen to either list future events or just those in the immediate few days. Betway has done both. Small tournaments, large tournaments, current or distant future events, Betway have a multiple markets for almost every major event on the esports calendar.
Keeping things simple, GG.bet has CS:GO, Dota 2 and King of Glory odds online so far this week. The site is easy to use and has access to live streams of your favorite esports tournaments, right within the betting screen.
Fans of slots and casino games will be happy to know there are plenty of esports-themed games available, along with many casino classics.
As far as esports-only betting sites go, Unikrn really does pack a punch. While it doesn’t always manage to list odds for every esports event under the sun, it has a lot of great promotions on offer.
If you want to get to know your favorite esports players a little better, check out Unikrn TV, where you will find a great selection of player interviews and other behind-the-scenes videos.
Unibet has picked up its game again this week and published odds for five different titles. CS:GO, Dota 2, LoL, Overwatch and StarCraft are all on offer at this traditional bookmaker.
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Esports events this week
In the wake of ECS and Dota Summit 8, some smaller tournaments will be available for betting alongside some fairly major qualifying events.
World of Tanks
After months of intense tank warfare, the World of Tanks Wargaming League winner will be decided this Saturday. Tornado Energy will face DiNG as part of the WG Fest event. Tornado Energy is a heavy favorite to win the title at odds of 1.16 with Betspawn, while DiNG currently sits at 4.57.
Main Qualifiers for StarLadder i-League Invitational No. 4 are underway. The main event will run in early February with a prize pool of $300,000 and 300 Pro Circuit Points. In series No. 3, Team Liquid took home first place, with Mineski as runners-up.
ESL One Genting 2018 Qualifiers will also begin this week ahead of the main event beginning Jan. 23. Eight main event spots are up for grabs in the qualifiers to join the eight teams who have already received a direct invite. Virtus Pro, Team Liquid and Mineski are among the invited teams for the 2018 event with a $400,000 prize pool.
Virtus Pro (VP) will go into ESL One Genting 2018 with confidence after its victory at Dota Summit 8, which concluded last week. A total of $300,000 was distributed among the contesting teams including Fnatic. That team finished second after managing to only win one map against Virtus Pro, which won 3-1.
After finishing as runner-up for ESL Season 6 the week previous, FaZe secured a first-place finish at ECS Season 4 Finals last week.
Håvard ‘rain’ Nygaard took the HLTV MVP award after some incredible play that helped the team beat Mousesports 2-1 in the grand final. Mousesports was no easy match for FaZe, which has racked up a considerable amount of prize money in 2017. Just two rounds separated the teams in map one on Nuke, where Mousesports edged ahead to win 16-14.
Proving its tournament experience, FaZe managed to grind its way to overtime in map two (Inferno) and finish 22-18. As the third and final map of the tournament, Mirage was just as close. Each team had almost identical performances on both CT and T side’s of the map, which resulted in yet another overtime. Six rounds were all it took to seal the deal and the $250,000 first place prize as FaZe went on to win 19-17.
This week will give smaller CS:GO tournaments a chance to shine as the top-tier teams settle down before Christmas. Both the Loot.Bet Cup 2 and the DaddySkins Western League will continue to hold matches throughout the week. The latter has a prize pool of just $10,000. To put that into perspective, the total prize pool is less than the last-place finisher prize in the ELEAGUE 2017 Major.
ELEAGUE Major 2018 Qualifiers will begin in Atlanta on Jan. 12. The main event will be held in both Atlanta and Boston with a prize pool of $1,000,000. While there are currently only eight confirmed teams including SK and Astralis, a total of 16 teams will compete in the main event.