IEM Rio reaches major CS:GO viewer milestone during first day of Legends Stage

Maybe it really is the biggest Major ever.

Heading into the start of the IEM Rio CS:GO Major, many including the organizers in ESL were hailing the event as perhaps the biggest CS:GO Major ever. Only a day into the Legends Stage, the second of two group stages, it looks like that might be true.

During round one of the Swiss-format Legends Stage, over one million viewers tuned in concurrently during the NAVI vs. Vitality and NiP vs. Fnatic matches, watching two transcendent superstars in s1mple and ZywOo duke it out while one of CS:GO‘s oldest and greatest rivalries in NiP and Fnatic was renewed.

S1mple and NAVI ended up victorious against ZywOo and Vitality after a multi-overtime affair on Mirage, while Fnatic capitalized on an early lead on Inferno to pull away from NiP.

This appears to be the first time in the history of CS:GO Majors that the opening day of a group stage attracts over one million concurrent viewers. Individual group stage matches at recent Majors have reached that number, such as G2 vs. FURIA at PGL Antwerp 2022, but that was a deciding series on the last day of the Legends Stage.

IEM Rio is already a Major for the history books. It’s the first Major to host a crowd at the venue for all three stages, and the IEM Rio Challengers Stage was the most watched Challengers Stage of any Major ever. As the stakes continue to be raised, IEM Rio has the opportunity to surpass the monumental records held by PGL Stockholm 2022: over 71 million total hours watched, and a peak viewership of 2.748 million during the FaZe vs. NAVI grand final.

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