With the Intel® Extreme Masters Rio CS:GO Major, a thunderdome is created in South America, prompting ESL FACEIT Group to return to the continent in 2023

After 12 record-breaking days of live competition, Outsiders are crowned
the new CS:GO Major Champions in front of a passionate crowd at
the IEM Fan Fest and the sold-out Jeunesse Arena 

Press release summary

  • Outsiders to become the Champions of the very first CS:GO Major in South America by beating Heroic 2-0
  • Due to several successful expansions, the IEM Rio CS:GO Major became the biggest esports event so far
  • The competition received a lot of attention from the industry and beyond, breaking viewership records and welcoming over 100,000 fans across 12 days
  • IEM to return to Brazil in 2023

Cologne/New York As Outsiders beat Heroic 2-0, one of the biggest esports events ever came to a spectacular conclusion. The Intel® Extreme Masters (IEM) Rio Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) Major Championship in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, broke many records, but above all, it was truly Made of Madness, united people across the globe and promised an atmosphere like no other.

Welcoming 3,500 fans per day during the Challengers Stage and Legends Stage at the Riocentro, IEM Rio was the first CS:GO Major with an audience of this size at these two phases of the tournament. During the Champions Stage at the Jeunesse Arena, ESL created a center stage at its event for the very first time, allowing 14,000 fans to experience the action live across the final four days of the competition.

Meanwhile, fans had the opportunity to join the famous Brazilian streamer Alexandre “Gaules” Borba at esports nascent fan festival. At the IEM Fan Fest, the gaming community from Brazil and beyond was brought together to cheer for their favorite team, meet their idols, acquire exclusive merch, participate in partner activations, and much more.

Esports enthusiasts from around the globe also made sure not to miss any of the action, resulting in a record breaking peak CCU of more than 1,000,000* during the Challengers Stage and a peak CCU of almost 1,400,000* during the Champions Stage. With more than 68,000,000 hours watched,* the tournament became the most watched ESL competition and the third most watched CS:GO competition of all time. Moreover, the CS:GO Major drew the attention of many people outside of the esports industry, with the likes of Neymar da Silva Santos Júnior actively following the event from home.

Following countless intense moments and nerve-racking action, FURIA, Heroic, MOUZ, and Outsiders made it to the semi-finals. Despite the tremendous support of the fans inside the arena, both MOUZ and FURIA fell short. It was then Heroic and Outsiders to enter the stage on Sunday, November 13, to determine who would eventually be crowned champions and go home with the major share of the $1,250,000 total prize pool. 

Eventually Outsiders proved themselves to be the stronger ones, beating the Danish powerhouse 2-0 in the Grand Final. Their win of the CS:GO Major Championship means a great breakthrough for the team, as they have been battling their way up to the top and now claimed their first title of a prestigious competition as a team. 

For his outstanding performance, Outsiders’ in-game leader Dzhami “Jame” Ali earned his very first ESL Pro Tour DHL MVP (most valuable player) award. Moreover, for the players it is their second title secured in the Brazilian coastal city, after DreamHack Open Rio in 2019.

Outsiders on winning the IEM Rio CS:GO Major: “We are so unbelievably happy about winning the trophy at IEM Rio 2022! The whole team has dreamed about this for many many months and now, after a lot of effort by our staff and players, it’s finally come true! We want to thank the Rio crowd for such an amazing atmosphere – you are the best.

The culmination of the IEM Rio CS:GO Major also saw several other highlights as Oleksandr “s1mple” Kostyliev was awarded CS:GO Player of the Decade on Saturday, November 12. The day after, on Sunday, November 13, a showmatch took place between Team Brazil and Team Sweden, with Team Brazil being victorious and raising $20,000 for a good cause: Todos no Podio. Founded in Rio De Janeiro, Todos no Podio is the first foundation in Brazil dedicated to the esports sector. Their objective is to disseminate and promote esports in Brazil, through social projects, facilitating access to hardware, scholarships, game tournaments for children and adolescents belonging to poor communities in Rio de Janeiro.

Last, but not least, right before Outsiders and Heroic entered the stage for their final battle, ESL FACEIT Group announced that IEM will be returning to Brazil in 2023. Featuring 16 teams, a total prize pool of $250,000 and a win in the race to the Intel® Grand Slam, IEM Brazil 2023 ensures that the Madness will strike again soon. Stay tuned as more details about the tournament will be announced.

What we’ve created with the IEM Rio Major is truly unseen in esports. The atmosphere on all days was incredible, and we’re blown away by the passion and enthusiasm of the fans,” said Shaun Clark, Senior Director of Game Ecosystems – CS:GO. “While smashing many records and becoming one of the greatest events of all time, the event was phenomenal. We surely can’t wait to return to Brazil next year and show the world even more magnificent moments.

The ESL Pro Tour for CS:GO continues

Next up in the ESL Pro Tour for CS:GO is IEM Katowice 2023 which will take place at the Spodek Arena in Katowice, Poland, on January 31-February 12. Head over to the official website for more information about the ESL Pro Tour for CS:GO, and stay up-to-date by following ESL CS on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram

For more general information, head to eslfaceitgroup.com or follow ESL FACEIT Group and ESL on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

*According to Escharts.com 


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