What year is it?
The CS:GO roster for Team Liquid is closing out the year strong with back-to-back semifinal appearances at both the BLAST Fall Finals and the BLAST World Final following their quarterfinal victory over NAVI in the latter today.
Their most recent victory, featuring standout performances from Mareks “YEKINDAR” Gaļinskis and Josh “oSee” Ohm on Overpass and Mirage, is their second straight victory over NAVI in the past month at both BLAST events, equaling a feat they last accomplished during Liquid’s golden age.
The last time Liquid beat NAVI in back-to-back series was during the NA team’s brightest era, the golden summer of 2019. The most recent consecutive wins over NAVI before now were both at ESL Cologne 2019, but those wins actually came at the tail end of a streak of six consecutive best-of-three wins for Liquid over NAVI from the end of 2018 through the summer of 2019.
Liquid’s hot streak in the summer of 2019 was something few if any teams have replicated since. Between June and July, the group of EliGE, NAF, Stewie, Twistzz, and nitr0 lifted trophies at five premier tournaments in a row: DreamHack Dallas, ESL Pro League season nine, ESL One Cologne, BLAST LA, and IEM Chicago. They also earned the Intel Grand Slam season two title and the $1 million prize thanks to this streak.
Sadly for NA fans, the golden age of Liquid came to an end shortly after that summer. The current Liquid team may not be near that summer 2019 level of dominance, despite currently playing with three of the five players from that era plus two new additions that are more than holding their own, but a strong finish to 2022 could set them up to be consistent international contenders in 2023.