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Team Vitality the Team to Back in October

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After a short break for the ESL Pro League in September, the Counter-Strike tournament circuit is in full swing and we’re set for a ton of tournaments in October.

IEM New York Europe kicked off the action, being played from October 6-11. As always, there was a huge variety of wagering options, from futures to match-by-match moneylines and the usual props.

We’ll see more of the same going forward and for Europe there are two key events set to be played out within the next two weeks. For bettors looking for a squad to back, for better or for worse, you’ll need to look no further than Vitality, who will be in non-stop action for the remainder of the month.

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Which events are Vitality playing in?

Vitality has already starred at one event this month, closing out IEM New York Europe in third place, losing only to eventual winner FaZe.

This gives us some insight going forward, as the French squad will feature at two more events this month. With just two weeks remaining in October, the events will come quickly. DreamHack Open Fall is the first, kicking off on October 15.

Vitality enters as third favorite to take home the trophy at a solid +500 on BetOnline. The tournament will last for 10 days, featuring four groups and a double-elimination playoff stage.

There won’t be much of a break for the squad afterward, as they head straight into BLAST Premier Fall on October 25. This event will be a touch more relaxed, with only a group stage deciding which teams advance to the Fall finals and which will battle it out at the Fall Showdown for another shot at the finals.

The event will be played in a GSL-style group format, meaning two wins secure advancement from the group, while two losses spell elimination.

What are Vitality’s chances?

As previously mentioned, DreamHack Open Fall sees Vitality enter as third favorite, and the squad has been drawn in a rather favorable group featuring Mousesports, OG and Fnatic.

Considering Vitality’s performance at IEM New York earlier in the month, they are set for another impressive tournament and all signs point to at least a place on the podium. They should breeze through the group stage, and the only teams I see as a threat to them are Astralis and Heroic.

Both of those teams are in the same group, meaning Vitality will likely have to face one of the two in the early stages of the playoffs. Regardless of the result, the tournament playoff features a double-elimination bracket, so Vitality would have to lose twice to be eliminated. As such, there is a very good shot they make it at least to the top three.

When it comes to BLAST Premier Fall, it’s just the group stage for Vitality. They are joined by OG, Complexity and Natus Vincere in Group A and are second favorites behind Na’Vi.

This is one where they could cause an upset and actually win the group. It’s difficult to even call it an upset as Vitality should honestly be the favorite here. The only real threat to them is Na’Vi who, while impressing at the ESL Pro League, have shown to be shaky, almost losing to an unranked Cyber Legacy in a disastrous 2-1 showing.

Overall, it’s looking very good for Vitality in October and the best thing to do is back them for success. Let’s take a look at some of the best picks to do just that.

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Due to the nature of esports tournaments, it’s almost impossible to know exact matchups before an event. It all depends on which other teams win or lose their matches. However, we can still make some excellent picks.

First up, at DreamHack Open Fall, Vitality is the favorite to win its group. They come in at an impressive +150 to win it on BetOnline and considering their opposition, this should be no problem. Mousesports, OG and Fnatic should all fold to Vitality, who have a massive advantage in individual skill level and are on a similar level tactically.

When it comes to individual matches at the event, it’s all being done one match at a time with the winners facing the winners. But we do know the opening match, which will be Vitality vs Mousesports.

The odds are quite tight, with Vitality coming in at -118 while Mousesports come in at -109 to win it. The Vitality moneyline is a great pick here as they should really be taking it considering the strength of their squad. We only see such close odds because of the last match between the two teams, which saw Mousesports take it 2-0. However, this seemed like a one-time slip from the French team, who went on to recover at IEM New York with an impressive showing.

Unfortunately, the rest of the matches remain a mystery, but you should back Vitality to take down anyone that isn’t Astralis or Heroic.

It’s a similar story for BLAST Premier Fall. We can’t know the majority of the matches until other games are played out. However, I see Vitality as a strong favorite in their group, so you should back them to win it at +200 on BetOnline, as well as win each individual match, as long as their odds fall above -181.

Na’Vi is the only real threat in the group and, as previously mentioned, they are currently looking shaky. Complexity find themselves without a fifth player and even if they do find one, there’s not enough time to fully integrate him into the team. Meanwhile, OG can be somewhat dangerous, but the team is very inconsistent and you can keep an eye on their form at DreamHack Fall.