eSports continues to expand at a healthy rate, and the time has come were tournament winnings are starting to match those of traditional sports, some even surpassing them.
When it comes to prize money, the Counter-Strike CS:GO scene is not as big as the one of League of Legends or Dota 2. However, this game has a massive following and a number of top teams and players. As a mater of fact, in the last year more and more esports betting sites took Counter-Strike CS:GO bets and odds into their betting offerings.
The Top 5 CS:GO Teams with the highest prize money earned
Is no coincidence that these are the top team in the CS:GO scene, with many tournaments in their curriculum, excellent players and staff and many trophies, check out the most profitable teams in the world, their experience, titles and backstory for everyone.
#5 Natus Vincere – $508,912.25 in 64 tournaments
Natus Vincere is an esports organization based on Ukraine. They are more popular in the Dota 2 scene but are gaining some ground in the CS:GO scene. Their main roster is composed of GuardiaN, Zeus, seized, Edward and flamie. flamie only joined the team in 2015 while the team has already been competing in the CS:GO scene since its release in 2012.
Natus Vincere never really had success in the CS:GO scene and they are only known as a good LAN team. Most of the tournaments are played online and there are only a handful of significant events they were able to win like IEM: San Jose, Starladder Starseries XIII and ESWC Montreal.
They were able to rack up the money recently by having a lot of 2nd place finish while CS:GO tournaments are on the rise. They were able to get a 2nd place finish in DreamHack Cluj-Napoca losing to a powerhouse team in EnVyUs. They also placed 2nd in the recent ESL ESEA Pro League Season 2 Finals losing to another powerhouse team in fnatic.
#4 Team EnVyUs – $541,424.45 in 28 tournaments
The american esports organization is renowned as a competitive call of duty team which is one of the most popular games in the US today. They entered the CS:GO scene by acquiring Team LDLC’s roster in shox, SmithZz, kioShiMa, NBK and Happy. Like NiP back in 2012, EnVyUS also started as a powerhouse with their player’s history of winning games back when they were as LDLC and even as VeryGames.
The team started competing on February 2015. They would string a number of 1st place finishes and eventually go to a slump from late February to July. From here, they would announce a swap of players from their french counterpart in Titan. They would acquire apEX and KennyS from titan and give up shox and SmithZz in return. kennyS is one of the best awpers in the game and looked to be an uneven swap but shox an extremely good player back in LDLC carrying the team to 1st place finishes.
The roster change happened a month before the upcoming CS:GO major (ESL One Cologne 2015). Only after playing a few games together with the new roster, they were able to finish 2nd place in ESL One Cologne and lose 0-2 to fnatic. They participated in 4 more events winning 2 out of the 4 as they look to improve their chemistry and strategies. They were one of the favorites coming into DreamHack Cluj-Napoca since fnatic were in a slump at this time. They managed to secure their first major title against Na’Vi.
After securing the title, they are currently in a slump right now getting eliminated immediately in their next 2 events.
#3 Virtus.pro – $766,970.51 in 67 tournaments
The organization switched their CS 1.6 team to CS:GO in 2012 with a roster containing kucher, ANGE1, evil, craft1k and AdreN. They were a subpar team entering the CS:GO scene with their only notable success was eliminating the dominant Ninjas in Pyjamas in Starladder Starseries V where they would break NiP’s streak of 87 straight maps won. They added the renowned GuardiaN a couple of months after winning against NiP in starladder replacing AdreN. They never piled up much success finishing 2nd to 4th places throughout 2013. They would eventually disband and leave the scene for almost half a year.
They re-entered the scene in 2014 with a fresh young roster in TaZ, Neo, pasha, Snax and byali. They would immediately win their first big tournament together and defeat Ninjas in Pyjamas 2-0 in EMS Katowice 2014. After a few more events trying to improve their chemistry and training to get better, they would place 1st 6 times in 2014. They were only winning small events with low prize pools but they were also competing in the major events throughout the year. They never reached success in the major events in 2014.
Virtus.pro gained more attention by having one of the most lovable players in CS:GO in pashabiceps. A lot of people love to watch his streams and videos online. VP was also known as the team that loves to be the underdogs but also losing most of the games that they are the favorites. This showed inconsistency with the team’s roster.
In 2015, Virtus. pro racked up the wins with more 1st place finishes (11) but again having disappointing losses on the major events. Their most notable win of the year was ESL Dubai with a $250,000 prize pool where they were the underdogs in every single matchup throughout the tournament. They dismantled the fnatic who were dominant at that time and a newly revamped EnVyUs roster.
#2 Ninjas in Pyjamas – $873,857.64 in 96 tournaments
In my opinion. Ninjas in Pyjamas is the greatest organization of all time in the CS world. They first formed their CS:GO team back in 2012 acquiring three CS 1.6 players (GeT_RiGhT, Xizt and f0rest) and two CS:Source pros (Fifflaren and friberg). The team announced their team with a quote “Five players from two worlds. One team to rule them all” taken from Sauron in the Lord of the Rings.
They created history entering the CS:GO scene, winning 87 straight maps and being known as the invincible and unbeatable team in CSGO. In that 87 straight maps won, they managed to bring home 10 first place finishes from events before eventually losing and being knocked off Starladder Starseries Season V by Virtus.pro. They won the next 5 events after losing their streak.
They lost to an upset in ESL Major Series One Summer, failing to reach the finals for the first time in the team's history which is a testament of how dominant this team actually was. Disappointed from the loss, they went off again on a dominating spree winning 18 out of the 20 events after ESL. The ninjas had a significant lost against the French rival VeryGames in Starladder Starseries VII. This was significant because they lost their next two events to the french team and showing weakness in their play. It is also worth noting that the ninjas never had any roster changes since they were first established.
The second half of 2014 is the time where we were seeing signs of decline from the NiP team. They began losing to lower tier teams and were looking in off form entering into big tournaments. They entered ESL One Cologne 2014 looking shaky and in disarray. They were taking games that could’ve gone either way but eventually winning the closely tight matches. They saw their rivals LDLC in the semi-finals and again winning the series 2-1 and advanced to the finals. They would eventually win against fnatic and take home their very first major title.
After their first major title, they began losing again event after event and even getting knocked off the group stages in DreamHack Stockholm Invitational 2014. After pulling off more strings of losses, Fifflaren announced his departure from the team and led to their first roster change since they were formed.
They announced Mikail ‘Maikelele’ Bill as their stand-in and they immediately reached the grand finals but in a loss against the LDLC in their first major together in DreamHack Winter 2014. They would never reach any first place finishes in any significant tournaments from then on. They would replace ‘Maikelele’ with ‘Delpan’ and then with ‘allu’ but never saw their success as they would keep losing to powerhouses like fnatic and EnVyUs (ex-LDLC).
As of today, they have still yet to acquire a 5th man to replace ‘allu’ since his departure in December 7, 2015 and eventually joined the rising Liquid team in NA.
#1 Fnatic – $1,184,846.31 in 90 tournaments
One of the most decorated teams in esports comes to no shock at #1 after dominating the competition this year. Before dominating this year in the CSGO scene, they have been finishing a handful of 1st and 2nd places in 2014 against the likes of NiP and Team LDLC who were the main competition that year.
Fnatic announced their first CS:GO showing on November 19, 2012. They didn’t accomplish much that year and kept replacing their danish roster. They eventually disbanded and picked up SY_b, the former players of Epsilon eSports on August 6, 2013. They were competing at a high level from this point falling short at every tournament against VeryGames and Ninjas in Pyjamas. They replaced MODDII with pronax before Dreamhack Winter and with the new roster, they were able to secure their first major against Ninjas in Pyjamas.
They signed 2 remaining core members in KRiMZ and olofmeister in 2014 becoming immediate title contenders once again. They fell short at their first major showing with this iconic roster to their swedish counterparts (Ninjas in Pyjamas). They were performing well in the succeeding tournaments leading up to the next major. They had a disappointing run losing to LDLC and placed 5th-8th in Dreamhack Winter 2014.
Fnatic started the new year on form and established their dominance early to the year taking five 1st place finishes in a month coming into ESL One: Katowice. They eventually won 2 straight majors winning ESL One: Katowice against Ninjas in Pyjamas and ESL One: Cologne against Team EnVyUs.
After a string of disappointing losses including a 5th-6th place finish in the next major, ‘pronax’ announced his departure from fnatic. They managed to get dennis from an upbeat G2.Esports team and won the next 4 events they participated in including 2 big $250,000 prize pool tournaments (ESL Pro League Season 2 and FaceIT 2015).
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