DarkZero Esports Wins ALGS Championship 2022, Earns Back-To-Back Trophies at LAN
The 2022 ALGS Championship has come to a close. After a long nine game Grand Finals, DarkZero Esports wins the ALGS Championship trophy and the $500,000 grand prize. The Australian squad, formerly under Reignite, have now won two Apex Legends Major LAN events in a row after taking the Split 2 Playoffs in Stockholm about two months ago.
Back at the ALGS Split 2 Playoffs, then Reignite started off the tournament with a major hit to their roster. Due to contracting COVID, Noyan “Genburten” Ozkose was unable to play. The team enlisted emergency substitute Jake “Jmw” Walters and proceeded to qualify for the Winners’ Bracket and Grand Finals. They then made history by winning the entire tournament.
Now with Genburten, as well as Rhys “Zer0” Perry and Rick “Sharky” Wirth arriving to the States without complications, the stage was set for a full strength DarkZero Esports to make their LAN debut as a full squad.
Taking Care of Business
DarkZero started their ALGS Championship journey with some quiet yet consistent play. They weren’t smashing their Group Stage lobbies like FURIA Esports or OpTic Gaming, but they racked up an average of 40 points per set. DarkZero took a single game victory in the first 18 and had a few other top threes, so they were still showing their presence.
After qualifying for the Winners’ Bracket in 13th of 20 advancing teams, DarkZero played another strong and low-key series. They only made it to the top 10 in three of eight games, but amassed 36 points in them. Their reward was sixth overall and five starting points in the Grand Finals.
The defending champions were locked and loaded, ready to vie for their second straight trophy. When the matches began however, DarkZero stumbled at the starting line. Through the first two games, they only earned a single point, bringing them to six total with the starting points. With FURIA and GMT Esports already at the 40 of 50 mark, DarkZero had to get caught up.
While they didn’t make any large strides, the Aussies got back to doing what they do best: being consistent. Four points in game three, eight in games four and five, and seven in game six. Going into game seven, still only one team was on match point. It’s here where DarkZero made their move. In a northern Countdown zone underneath the Raven statue, DarkZero fought their way to seven kills and second place. Their point total was now….49. Just one shy of match point.
Closing out the Championship
GMT and 100 Thieves, the team that just took DZ down to win last game, joined FURIA on match point. DarkZero needed some help to ensure that they would get another crack at the trophy. Early in game eight, 100T and GMT both tried to take the same house in the center of zone and got killed for it. Cloud9 dropped FURIA shortly after. Although DZ only got ninth with one kill that game, it was enough. They now had match point.
Joining them was a whopping five other teams now eager to get their hands on that trophy. Game nine on Storm Point would likely be the final game of the ALGS Championship. The zone centered on Storm Catcher. DarkZero, who drop Shipfall/Gale Station, made their way up the right side of the map. As the second ring closed in, they Valkyrie ulted into a spot on the hill behind the final building in the zone.
With their backs clear and no teams able to push them, DarkZero focused in on being the last squad standing. The team count dwindled to just five, including two other match point teams in GMT and Spacestation Gaming. As the final zone close commenced, DarkZero held the most space by far. When it was down to just one other full squad, they advanced onto Spacestation and took them all down to claim the ALGS Championship.
When Reignite won the ALGS Split 2 trophy without Genburten, Zer0 said in the winners’ interview, “At the next one, Champs, we’re bringing it home with him for sure.” It’s a wonderful sentiment to share and a fantastic goal to have, but in a battle royale esport with RNG being a major factor, you can never be sure that you’ll come out on top.
To actually make good on that promise is truly something special. It speaks not only to the indomitable skill level and consistency, but also to the mental strength and bond that the DarkZero boys have.
Genburten: “Honestly, before this, [Zer0 and Sharky] won Sweden, and I felt like I had so much pressure on me from everyone around the world. I had to fill in the spot of Jmw. I think I proved today that…”
Zer0: “He’s not a cheater.”
Genburten: “I’m not a cheater, yeah *laughs*.”
It is known that this Apex giant from the land down under plans to move to North America and compete in the NA ALGS. Compared to a smaller region like APAC South, NA is the premiere Apex Legends region and plays host to the stiffest competition the game has. DarkZero’s proven that they can hang with the best of ‘em, and their story is just getting started.