‘Chiu on This’ is a short and regular opinion blast
I’ve been reflecting on the performances of teams and individual players throughout the 2018 year. One of the categories I was thinking of was the most improved player in the year. My initial impression was closely aligned to lurrpis as he stated that the most obvious winner of such a reward would be electronic.
At the end of last year, electronic had proved himself to be a great star player for Flipsid3 before joining Na`Vi. I’d have put him somewhere around the top 30-50 players in the world. This year, he leveled up as the clear second star of Na`Vi and his individual performances made him the second win condition for Na`Vi after s1mple. In terms of overall ranking I’d put him in the top 5 contention. The only firm top 3 I currently have are s1mple, NiKo, and dev1ce. Outside of those, it’s a closely contested battle between Coldzera, Twistzz, Electronic, EliGE, oskar, and Dupreeh.
Among those players, the only one who could contest Electronic for the most improved player of the year award was Twistzz as he also made a jump up from a star player in Liquid last year to one of the best players of the year by the end. Though I’d say his consistency didn’t quite match electronic’s throughout the year and I’d also say that electronic started at a lower ranking so he’d have made a larger jump so to say.
However there is one final player that I can put into this category that I think not only deserves consideration, but is in the conversation of winning the award. I think s1mple is actually the most improved player of the year. Personally, I had s1mple as a top 5 player of the year in 2017. This year he is my number one player. If we’re looking at the actual jump in ratings in terms of raw numbers, he doesn’t compare to either Twistzz or Electronic.
However, I think the jump he made from being among the best players to being arguably the greatest player of all-time is the hardest jump any player can make. He isn’t jumping from a top 5 to top 1, he is jumping from a great player to either the greatest or one of the greatest we’ve ever seen in all of Counter-Strike history. For me, that jump is the hardest that anyone can do and so based on that alone, s1mple is my most improved player of the year.
Finally, if we’re accounting for out of game factors as well, s1mple would win this hands down. Controversy and in-game fighting used to follow s1mple wherever he went. In 2018, he has been a model professional and even though there were times where he could have been rightly peeved at his team (the times when Na`Vi messed around with the potential move to MIBR come to mind), he still continued to play even harder than before. I personally didn’t account for it and I think based on in-game performance alone, s1mple also deserved this award.