The Guard and 100 Thieves will square off in the grand finals of the VALORANT Champions Tour 2022 North America Last Chance Qualifiers. Whoever triumphs will represent their area at Champions with OpTic Gaming and XSET. This match is a best-of-five series, the same as the last one in the tournament, except it’s being played to see who advances to the LCQ.

The Guard’s road to the final

The Guard has faced tough competition throughout their journey in the upper bracket, from their first game to their final. With Sentinels first, the match was wild but ended in a 2-1 victory. The new Sentinels players made that game the most watched one of the competition so far. Jacob “valyn” Batio, the squad’s in-game leader, mentioned that after they qualified for the Grand Finals that the team itself did not see that victory favorably. The squad viewed that victory as a bad performance that they wanted to fix, and they succeeded in doing so in their subsequent series against Cloud9. The Guard used every piece of equipment on their squad to defeat a foe they were familiar with from Stage 1 Challengers in a 2-0 clean sweep.

Then, but certainly not least, they faced FaZe Clan, one of the strongest teams in the LCQ. Before this series began, FaZe defeated 100 Thieves 2-1 with a flawless half. The Guard had a significantly longer vacation to get ready for this encounter thanks to their victory over Cloud9. These preparations were revealed when they defeated FaZe Clan 2-0. It was by far their greatest performance of the competition, with the map scores being 13-5 and 13-7.

NA fans could see the team was improving as the competition went on because of their success in the Stage 1 Challengers title game. Nevertheless, it wasn’t solely due to one or two players popping off, unlike that run. The Guard has the advantage of getting through the top bracket and appears to be strong, if not stronger than their Stage 1 form. They could be able to complete their run by reaching their second LAN of 2022 with two map bans on their side.

100 Thieves’ road to the final

Where The Guard faltered in their first series, 100 Thieves’ journey to the Grand Finals is highlighted by one specific game. Following a narrow victory over NRG, they faced FaZe Clan on Ascent, map three, in the top bracket. They were up 9-3 at the break, but they lost the map and the series by failing to win a single round in the second half. The team’s elimination from the upper bracket was caused by a combination of their underwhelming play and FaZe’s heroics.

However, they accepted that defeat in stride and went on to defeat Sentinels 2-1 and sweep Cloud9 2-0 to remain in the game. As a result, the lone rematch of the competition would occur after The Guard defeated FaZe. This time, the lower bracket final of the first best-of-five of the competition wasn’t close. FaZe held onto the first map of Icebox tightly but grew weary as the series progressed. 100 Thieves won the leg as Ascent’s map three caused them to hit the half ahead 9-3. This time, they had the ideal half to defeat FaZe and advance to the NA LCQ Grand Finals.

Similar to The Guard, 100 Thieves is incredibly adaptable and, in some ways, has a larger map and agent pool. Additionally, anything may happen given Derrek “Derrek” Ha’s clutch ability thus far in the tournament. They won’t have the upper hand before the game, but they still have a chance to improve after a dismal start in 2022 and advance to the Champions.

The two teams will lock horns against each other in a mouth-watering contest. The winner will be the third team from North America in the Champions, the biggest tournament in VALORANT esports.

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