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Known as the biggest Counter-Strike: Global Offensive league around, season 17 of the ESL Pro League will see 44 global teams compete across two months of intense action. The main action for this tournament begins on 22 February 2023 when the Group Stage gets under way, with the Grand Final taking place on the 26 March. 

The teams at ESL Pro League Season 17

Season 17 of the CS:GO ESL Pro League promises more thrills and intense action. This is thanks to the teams that are taking part in the league. While the full 32-team line-up hasn’t been confirmed for the Group Stage (as teams are yet to qualify from the Conference Stage), here are the entrants we know so far:

Partner Teams

Partner Teams are permanent fixtures with the ESL. As a result, they didn’t have to participate in any specific qualifying rounds to get the Pro League. The Partner Teams are: 

  • Ninjas in Pyjamas
  • Fnatic
  • FURIA Esports
  • FaZe Clan
  • Evil Geniuses
  • Complexity Gaming
  • ENCE
  • Astralis
  • BIG
  • G2 Esports
  • Heroic
  • Natus Vincere
  • MOUZ
  • Team Liquid 
  • Team Vitality

Qualifying Teams

Alongside the 15 Partner Teams, a further 17 teams will gain their place at the ESL Pro League Season 17 through certain qualifying criteria. 

Three teams earned their place into the league due to their ESL World Ranking. These teams were the highest ranking teams that were not any of the aforementioned Partner Teams. They are:

  • Cloud9
  • Team Spirit
  • OG

Three teams have also qualified through the ESL Challenger tournaments. Those that qualified are: 

  • Movistar Riders (ESL Challenger Valencia)
  • paiN Gaming (ESL Challenger Melbourne)
  • Outsiders (ESL Challenger Rotterdam)

There will also be 11 teams that qualify through the Conference Stage. This is how this breaks down: 

  • European Conference (three teams)
  • North American Conference (two teams)
  • South American Conference (two teams)
  • Asian Conference (two teams)
  • Oceanic Conference (two teams)

How ESL Pro League Season 17 works

When down to the last 32 teams, the ESL Pro League has two main sections: Group Stage and Playoff Stage. Here’s a quick look at how they work.

Group Stage

Four groups are created with eight teams in each one. Each game is best of three. A triple elimination bracket is then used to sort out not only which teams qualify for the Playoff Stage, but also in which section. 

The team that manages to win all three matches in the Upper Bracket progresses to the Playoff’s Round of 8. The team that loses in the Upper Bracket final progresses to the Round of 12. 

Outside of the Upper Bracket final, a loss results in teams falling into the Lower Bracket. The winner of this bracket progresses to the Round of 16. The loser goes to the Last Chance final. The winner of the Last Chance final qualifies for the Round of 16. 


The Playoff Stage follows a single elimination format and begins with 16 teams. All matches are a best of three. The exception is the Grand Final, which is a best of five. 

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