The FaZe Clan Valorant Invitational has been an interesting one already, with a few bizarre moments in the stream that has just begun; most noticeably, along with audio and visual bugs is that the stream has been stalled consistently by the casters instead of showing the FaZe Clan match against China Nguyen.
It seems like this was planned, however; FaZe Clan just got their ego shredded and served up on a platter as they lost to China Nguyen in a clean sweep; two maps and both easily went to China Nguyen.
The decision to not show FaZe Clan competing could have been a calculated move, as they realize that, perhaps, signing four Overwatch League players might not pay the bills that they thought that it would. These are four tried players, familiar with the competitive environment along with arduous practice schedules, just collapsed against an unproven (and largely unknown) China Nguyen.
This is a bit of a surprise, although it prominently and confidently states that signing Overwatch League DPS players isn’t a fast-track to victories within Valorant: a metric that has been adopted by organizations after Jay ‘Sinatraa’ Won left the San Francisco Shock for the Sentinels, and began dominating time and again in most recent matches.
‘Sinatraa’ top-fragged in their first showing of the FaZe Clan Invitational, but it’s becoming more clear that Jay ‘Sinatraa’ Won is simply a unique breed of player, rather than Overwatch becoming a breeding ground for high-level competence and capability.
— VALORANT (@PlayVALORANT) August 6, 2020
Similarly, it is important to note that this is the first invitational that the new FaZe Clan Valorant roster has played, and they’ve only recently begun playing together. With additional practice, it is still possible that FaZe turns into yet another dominant force as they have been in Counter-Strike.
At the moment, however, it’s an extremely unfortunate spot that FaZe Clan finds themselves in.
They were in a weak group going against a relatively no-name team that seemed to guarantee that they would hit the semifinals, if not the finals themselves; instead, they’ve been unceremoniously removed and the footage can’t be found of the match online.
Hiding strategies, or hiding underperforming players?
Fans of the Overwatch League are likely breathing a massive sigh of relief, however, if for nothing else than the relative safety of the rest of the DPS players that seemed poised to step away from the Overwatch League part-way through the season in exchange for a more DPS-centric title. Still, it’s difficult to ascertain precisely what fell apart for FaZe aside from the signings without the footage being in the public domain.