Counter-Strike: Global Offensive remains one of the most-played first-person shooters around. In 2022, Valve’s modern classic attracted more than 750,000 players daily. It also maintains its spot as one of the most popular esports titles on the planet.
While some argue that the game is showing its age, it continues to dominate the competitive gaming sector. Aside from offering one of the busiest tournament schedules of any esports title, CSGO also boasts an eclectic gallery of professional players. Below, we round up five players to keep an eye on during the 2023 season.
5. Nicholai Reedtz
Better known as “dev1ce”, Nicholai Reedz is hardly a new face in CSGO circles. This Danish esports legend has been playing professionally for almost a decade, entering into the mainstream when he signed up with Dignitas back in 2014. However, it was his five-year tenure with Astralis that cemented his reputation as one of the best CSGO players on the planet. Why have we included him on this list? Reedz departed from Astralis in 2021, signing a contract with Ninjas in Pyjamas. After securing a jaw-dropping list of awards with Astralis, his spell with NiP resulted in relatively little success. It’s unsurprising then that Reedz has chosen to regroup with the team that made him. Heading deeper into 2023, expect Reedz and the Astralis roster as a whole to make a big impact.
4. Mareks Galinskis
Otherwise known as “YEKINDAR”, Mareks Galinskis is one of the finest CSGO players to have come out of Europe. This Latvian pro is a legendary rifler and has amassed an impressive fortune in a relatively short playing career. Since 2022, Galinskis has been playing as part of the Team Liquid lineup. For the past two years, he’s been shortlisted as one of the best 20 CSGO players on the planet. 2022 wasn’t the best year for Galinskis or Team Liquid, but a second-place finish in an S-Tier tournament is nothing to scoff at.
3. Helviijs Saukants
You probably know Helviijs Saukants as “broky”. Another legend hailing from Latvia, Saukants is one of the best AWPers in the world. Despite only joining the competitive circuit in 2019, this youngster has already surpassed half a million dollars in career earnings. After a brief spell with Epsilon Esports, FaZe Clan snapped him up. He’s remained with them ever since. As well as amassing several MVP awards, Saukants is something of a record-breaker. In 2022, he became the first Latvian CSGO player to win at a Major event.
2. Denis Sharipov
Anyone watching CSGO live might be unconvinced about Natus Vincere’s recent performance on the professional circuit. However, it’s hard to fault Denis “electroNIC” Sharipov’s commitment to the game. Currently, Sharipov serves as the in-game leader for the lineup, stepping into the void left by Kirill Mikhaylov’s last-minute departure. Although the team itself has fallen short of expectations, Sharipov remains one of the best CSGO professionals around. Even if Natus Vincere fails to win big during 2023, Sharipov is almost certain to deliver the goods and break a few kill records.
1. Oleksandr Kostyliev
Oleksandr “s1mple” Kostyliev finds his way onto many of these lists for good reason. Another key fixture of the Natus Vincere lineup, this celebrated AWPer remains one of the greatest CSGO players ever to have graced professional competition. As with Denis Sharipov, Kostyliev’s accomplishments tend to get diminished by overall team performance. Nonetheless, he remains a shoo-in for several MVP awards during the 2023 season. It also looks like he’ll pocket his second million before the year is out.
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Publish date: 2023-02-27 13:36:16
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