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HellRaisers has been a top CIS team for a majority of CS:GO, often developing talent and losing them to larger organizations with more money. Once again, HellRaisers is on the rise, but with one of the most stable rosters they have had in years. The 17th -HLTV-ranked team in the world has everything to prove at this upcoming FACEIT Major in London.
You may remember HellRaisers for developing top tier talents such as Tomáš “Oskar” Šťastný, Oleksandr “S1mple” Kostyilev, and Egor “flamie” Vasilyev. This incarnation of HellRaisers features two rising stars in Özgür “Woxic” Eker and Issa “ISSAA” Murad, both of which seemingly came out of nowhere. Both Woxic and ISSAA have been able to perform very well against respectable European teams like Optic, Gambit, and AGO. This team has not had the opportunity to play tier-one teams yet, so the star players have been mostly unopposed up to this point. Their supporting cast of Kirill “ANGE1” Karasov and Vladyslav “Bondik” Nеchуроrchuk have been able to give their star players direction and support in-game. This roster has almost all the pieces to be a top team on paper, but they are one roster move away from being able to compete: Bence “DeadFox” Böröcz has been falling behind the rest of the team for quite some time. He has not had an event with an HLTV rating of 1.00 or more since Bets.Net Masters, where he still had a negative overall K/D ratio. If HellRaisers can get some more frag power help to ISSAA and Woxic, then this team can be deadly to almost anyone.
HellRaisers’s results have been lackluster to say the least. On one hand, they absolutely dominated at the CIS Minor and have qualified for the London Major as the #1 CIS seed, but on the other hand, HellRaisers get bounced out in groups at tournaments like IEM Shanghai (albeit without Woxic). HellRaisers seems to falter at tier-one events; at Starseries I-League Season 5, HellRaisers got demolished and went 1-3 in their Swiss group stage against teams like NiP, North, and NRG, with their only win coming against the Renegades. If you look at results alone, this team does not look like it has much in the way of potential, but there are the right pieces within the team that can create discussion.
Verdict: yes and no
Yes in the sense that HellRaisers can be a great team that can compete on an international stage, but no in the context of this roster. This can be a great team, but they have a ceiling. HellRaisers, like most CIS teams right now, are one roster move away from being a great team with tons of firepower and discipline. In a world where they do make a change after the FACEIT Major, HellRaisers can be a top-tier team that can challenge to make playoffs for most events. External factors can plague this team; the IEM Shanghai did not have their star player Woxic due to illness. This is something that has happened multiple times and may continue in the future. Even if this roster does not change, they will move up the world rankings slowly for a long time, but most likely max out at 10th in the world.
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