NA CS may be seen as a bit of a meme, but there is no doubt that over recent years things have improved a lot in the region. The general skill level has increased and there is now quite a few teams that could be considered threats at big events.
However, there was one stat that surprised us quite a bit when it comes to NA CS. This week Liquid, OpTic and Cloud9, all three North American teams attending ESL One Cologne managed to make it out of the group stages. Amazingly this is the first time this has happened at an event the size of Cologne where there has been more than one NA team in attendance.
Clearly this is a great result for NA. Having three teams in the top eight is quite the achievement, and if the draw had been a little kinder, we could have been looking at three NA teams in the top four!
Hopefully this is a good sign for the Major. Sure Cloud9 might be the only NA team there, but after two strong group stage performances you certainly wouldn’t want to count them out right now.