Sentinels’ early exit from Masters Berlin: Upset or Predicted?

The seemingly unstoppable North American VALORANT team Setinels crushed all expectations with their early exit from Masters 3 Berlin.

Before Berlin, Sentinels managed to absolute speed run through the qualifiers to qualify for the event. In Typical Sentinels fashion, they made it look easy. However, events took an unexpected turn when the roster failed to reach even the Semifinals of Masters Berlin.  

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Sentinels came into the event as the favorite and left pretty much every analyst disappointed. Despite all positive predictions from veteran analysts & critics, the team looked a little bit shaky from the start when G2 Esports managed to take one map off from them. Interesetenlty, that was the first map loss for Sentinels Valorant team in any international event. 

Sentinels Pre-Berlin 

During the Iceland Masters back in May, Sentinels’ dominant run shocked the entire Valorant community. With TenZ doing what he does best, and Sick, Dapr & Zombs acting as the backbone of the team, the ShahZaM led North American super-team didn’t even drop a single map in Iceland. 

After Iceland however, the team wasn’t having the best time at home when XSET & 100T were putting up fierce resistance. XSET even managed to beat Sentinels Upper Bracket Semifinals of Stage 3 Challengers 1 NA. One defeat alone cannot prove anything significant but XSET proved that Sentinels can bleed. 

However, their run in the Stage 3 Challengers Playoffs was quite impressive as they won the event by beating 100T with a scoreline of 3-1. Sentinels, 100T, and Envy qualified for the Masters Berlin. 

Sentinels roster in Berlin

Sentinels quite literally followed the “If it’s not broken, don’t fix it” method ever since TenZ replaced Sintraa back in March. Prior to Berlin, everything was looking more than just fine for Sentinels as they had no reason to even add a 6th player or a coach to the team. ShahZaM was playing as the IGL/Coach for the squad, and it was working out pretty well. 

G2 Esports, Sentinels, & F4Q were in Group D of the event. Since Bren’s entire roster had difficulties reaching Berlin, the format was altered so these three teams got 2 matches against each other. Sentinels faced G2 on their opening match. Led by experienced players like m1xwell & Koldamenta with extremely efficient fraggers like Nukkye and Keloqz, G2 posed a formidable threat to Sentinels. 

In a Best of 3 series, Sentinels managed to beat G2 with a 2-1 scoreline. Although victorious, Sentinels suffered their first map loss in an international event. G2 Esports proved to the other teams in the event that Sentinels aren’t immortals. 

Group D & a Battle royale 

Nobody saw F4Q as a threat to Sentinels and G2. Meanwhile, F4Q backed by players like Fivek and Bunny, didn’t go down without putting up a fight. They even took a map off from Sentinels.

Group D of Masters Berlin
Group D of Masters Berlin

On the other hand, the G2 roster looked even more motivated to beat Sentinels on their second match-up in the Group Stage. With an already weak Sentinels in Icebox, G2 started off the series with a dominating 13-3 win. Without losing their posture, G2 also managed to secure a close victory in Split, defeating Sentinels with a 13-11 scoreline. 

The G2 effect 

G2’s winning moment against Sentinels

The loss against G2 didn’t mean anything particular as Sentinels already secured a spot in the playoffs. G2 secured the 1st seed from Group D, leaving Sentinels in the 2nd spot. However, it should be a good time to highlight the fact that G2 barely managed to secure the 4th spot for Berlin. Teams like Gambit, Acend, and SMB were looking solid and even better than G2. So, even according to statistics, Sentinels just lost their first series against the 4th seed of Europe.

A fearless Team Envy 

When the dust settled, it was clear that Sentinels squad had a troublesome road up ahead. Qualifying alongside Sentinels was Team Envy and 100T. Led by the LAN veteran FNS, Envy’s weight was far too heavy for the already weakened Sentinels. 

As predicted by many analysts, Envy showed up as the superior team in their match against Sentinels. After a close 15-13 victory in Haven, Envy closed off the series by winning on Split with a 13-7 scoreline. 

Later, Envy also took down 100T in the Semifinals, booking a ticket for the Grand Final of Masters Berlin. Team Envy alone eliminated two North American teams in one single event, proving their worth in the event. Envy went ahead to face Gambit in the Grand Final.

The disappearance of the TenZ effect   

TenZ was added as a last-minute replacement for Sinatraa. Later it turned out to be the best decision ever made by Sentinels. As his mastery of the game gave the team a huge upper hand in any situation. TenZ’s performance was nothing less than expected, but his last match against Envy was not highlight-worthy by any means. Except for that, Tyson did maintain a strong KD in the group stage. 

Lack of a coach? 

Sentinels’ Valorant team never had a dedicated coach. ShahZaM mentioned many times before coming to Berlin that the team didn’t require a coach. According to him, the team’s functionality was just on point and the lack of a coach didn’t really bother anyone. Although, he also mentioned that the right coach can contribute a lot. So, it’s safe to say that, Sentinels might be opting to get a coach before the Valorant Champions in December. 

What’s next for Sentinels? 

The early exit from Masters Berlin might work as a motivation for the team as the upcoming Champions event will crown the king of Valorant. What might be more interesting is that, teams like Gambit, Acend, and Fnatic will be in the event too. 

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Additionally, Team Envy has also qualified for the Championship. As the Last Chance Qualifier is about to take place, one team from North America and Europe along with two other teams from SA and APAC will be participating too. Gambit, Acend, and Vision Strikers have already flexed their muscles in Berlin. With that said, the Championship event will be a true test for Sentinels’ squad.  


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