Los Angeles is set to host the globe’s elite teams, all vying for the esteemed world champion title. Coming on the heels of memorable tournaments in Germany and Turkey, Riot Games escalates their game by choosing LA for this year’s world championship, a fitting end to their pioneering partnered league format. North America, celebrating its debut as the host for an international Valorant championship, has spotlighted the game’s soaring popularity in the region.
With formidable teams like Sentinels, OpTic, and 100 Thieves taking the stage, the rush for tickets is understandable. As the odds roll out, enthusiasts can now place wagers on the tournament’s outcome.
Furthermore, several sportsbooks are enhancing the betting experience by offering enticing casino bonuses and promotions tailored to the event.
Introducing the Contenders
Valorant Champions showcases 16 stellar teams derived from three International Leagues and China. An interesting mix, with each league providing three top-tier teams from their region. There’s an additional twist – one slot for each league is awarded based on the Last Chance Qualifier.
China’s representation isn’t left to chance; they have their own qualifiers. The remaining slot? Reserved for the victor of Masters Tokyo this year saw EMEA grabbing an extra position courtesy of Fnatic’s triumph.
A glance at the betting odds reveals the favorites:
A look at the betting odds paints a clear picture of the tournament frontrunners. Fnatic, with odds at +110, emerges as a notable favorite, suggesting that bettors have immense confidence in their performance this season.
Following closely is Paper Rex at +300, indicating they’ve garnered significant attention and are seen as potential challengers for the title. Evil Geniuses, another titan in the scene, stands strong with odds of +450, further emphasizing the team’s recognized strength and expectations.
These numbers highlight the perceived strength and potential of each team and the pulse of the betting community’s sentiment, often shaped by recent performances, team dynamics, and historical achievements.
The entrants are neatly distributed into four groups, determined by their regional Valorant rankings:
- Group A comprises Paper Rex, KRÜ Esports, Edward Gaming, and Giants.
- Group B features Evil Geniuses, FunPlus Phoenix, FUT Esports, and T1.
- Group C houses Fnatic, ZETA DIVISION, NRG, and Bilibili Gaming.
- Group D includes Team Liquid, Natus Vincere, DRX, and LOUD.
Event Structure and Timings
Champions 2023 spans from August 6th to 26th, strategically placed a few months post the Masters Tokyo. The venue? The initial rounds occur at the grand Shrine Auditorium, eventually transitioning to the equally impressive Kia Forum.
The event can be dissected into three main segments:
- Group Stage from August 6-13
- Bracket Stage between August 16-20
- Top Four Finals on August 24-26
Spotlight on the Elite
While favorites like Fnatic, Paper Rex, and Evil Geniuses dominate discussions, there are underdogs and dark horses poised to steal the show.
Edward Gaming, having astonished many at Masters Tokyo, enters with not just impressive Valorant stats but also as a formidable team, boasting players like the exceptional Zheng ‘ZmjjKK’ Yongkang.
DRX, despite being a Korean behemoth, faced turbulence at Masters Tokyo. The world waits to see if they’ve recalibrated their strategies and form for the upcoming event.
Lastly, Team Liquid represents EMEA’s secondary might. Their journey has been a rollercoaster, with highs at Masters Tokyo but a subsequent dip. Yet, under Igor ‘Redgar’ Vlasov’s leadership, they’re anticipated to rebound, potentially challenging even the likes of Fnatic.
The stage is set. The odds are out. Los Angeles awaits a spectacle. Only time will tell who emerges as the world champion of Valorant 2023.