The finals of the sixth season of ESL Pro League will come to Denmark this fall, according to multiple sources.
Season 6 of the ESL Pro League will span seven weeks beginning on Aug. 22 and ending Nov. 11. The finals will take place Dec. 5-10 in Denmark, likely in Odense, the third largest city in the country, though that is not certain. This will be the first season of Pro League after the mass layoffs of production and graphics personnel by ESL last month.
Counter-Strike in Denmark has become increasingly popular with Astralis winning the ELEAGUE Major and climbing to the top of the world rankings earlier this year. With talented teams like North and Heroic also in the mix, Denmark has become a CS:GO hotspot. Small LANs like Copenhagen Games have existed for years, but now fans will have a prime opportunity to show how supportive they are of their countrymen. It can be expected that Astralis will do everything in their power this season to play in front of their home crowd in the playoffs.
Season 5 concluded in Dallas, Texas last month with G2 Esports beating North in a best-of-five final to claim $225,000 of the $750,000 prize pool. Both teams traded blows in and out of the server with Kenny “kennyS” Schrub calling North cocky and Kristian “k0nfig” Wienecke responding by saying “Good luck Kenny, I’ll fuck you up.” It was received as a bit of friendly banter but apEX made it clear after the event in an interview with Slingshot, saying “We don’t like each other. We think they are way too cocky.”
ESL Pro League has been under heavy scrutiny over the number of playoff spots for the North American regions after both Astralis and FaZe Clan failed to qualify last season. Europe has significantly more world class teams, yet each region has six playoffs slots. Some professional players suggested Europe should be granted eight spots, due to the lopsided balance of teams. It appears Season 6 will use the same 12-team playoff format as done in past seasons.
It’s been a busy week for ESL, which announced yesterday the unbanning of the infamous match-fixers from their events, and implemented a new 5 year ban moving forward for future offenses. The ex-iBuyPower players — who are still banned from Valve sponsored events — will now likely form or join teams in an attempt to reach ESL Pro League. If they form a new team, they will have to begin at the lower ranks of ESEA before having an opportunity to reach Pro League. The announcement inspired fans of North American teams and left them guessing just where these formerly banned players will play in the near future.
ESL did not initially respond to request for comment.
Photo Credit Helena Kristiansson