A day of upsets at BLAST Paris CS:GO Major marred by potential competitive integrity breach

How could this happen at a Major, no less?

It was an exciting but otherwise unremarkable opening round of matches at the BLAST Paris CS:GO Major Legend Stage on May 13, with many of the events top squads surviving their first best-of-one unscathed. The same could not be said, however, in round two.

Top squads G2 Esports, FURIA, and 9INE all face shock early exits as they prepare for day two of the Legends Stage, with G2 falling against Vitality and Bad News Eagles in their opening matches after a dominant display during last weeks Challenger Stage.

But all eyes were on FaZe Clan, who joined the aforementioned squads at 0-2 after dropping best-of-ones to world No. 1 Heroic (16-7) and British representatives Into The Breach (16-12). ITB received a high seed after their EU RMR blitz in April, while, despite their status as one of the worlds best CS:GO squads, FaZe entered with a far lower seed after scraping past the Last Chance Qualifier and Challenger Stage.

Related: Broken seeding just made top CS:GO teams BLAST Major journey much harder

However, following ITBs victory, a video surfaced online revealing television screens that featured a live producer feed of the game were positioned in view of the ITB team booth. The video was sent to HLTVs Danish Nohte Allana, who posted it on behalf of the anonymous recorder.

It is understood the screens only displayed a select few rounds at the end of the map following the conclusion of the G2-BNE series. There was no evidence suggesting ITB had used this information to their advantage, as the squad on multiple occasions executed T rounds into a stacked FaZe bombsite. And, with such a distance between the players and the producer feed monitors, it would have been next to impossible to decipher the images.

However, the question of competitive integrity must be asked of tournament organizer BLASTespecially at a Major tournament, no lessas to how this lapse of judgment could occur.

While a vocal minority made outlandish claims of ITB cheating and demands the match be replayed, those with cooler heads instead turned their ire to BLAST.

[The] worst thing about this is people will now try and bring down ITBs win over FaZe even though they almost certainly didnt even notice the screen, said analyst Janko YNk Paunovic following the map. But we cant know for sure and thats why BLAST shouldve never allowed something like this to happen in the first place.

Dot Esports has reached out to BLAST for comment but has not received any response at this time.

Around the grounds, the upsets kept coming, with FURIA caught napping in their best-of-ones, winning zero T side rounds in heavy losses to Monte and Ninjas In Pyjamas, while 9INEone of the top-seeded squads out of the EU RMRswent down to Team Liquid and GamerLegion.

Related: BLAST Paris CS:GO Major: Scores, standings, and results

Natus Vincere was strong in their opening map win against GamerLegion but fell unceremoniously to Team Liquid, who themselves sit comfortably at 2-0 and may yet qualify for the Champions Stage after being written off during last weeks 3-2 reverse sweep at the Challengers Stage.

The BLAST Paris Major Legends Stage resumes today, May 14 at 4:30am CT.

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