With an impressive consistency in performance and a collection of accolades, stavn secures his fourth appearance on the HLTV Top 20 Players of the Year list, sponsored by 1xBet.
Introduction to the Top 20 Players of 2023:
Martin "stavn" Lund has been a model of stability since entering the tier one player scene in 2020, earning his first HLTV top 20 recognition. Maintaining his position on the list every year, stavn's remarkable floor level, consistent tournament-to-tournament prowess, and timely peaks have contributed to Heroic's success and secured him a spot among the elite players.
Stavn's journey has seen him navigate through team changes, adapting seamlessly to new teammates and playing a pivotal role in Heroic's triumphs. The year 2023 was filled with expectations for Heroic, having finished 2022 as the top-ranked team globally. While stavn's individual performance remained solid, Heroic faced challenges on the big stage, particularly in the playoffs of significant events.
Highs and Lows of 2023:
The year began with promise as Heroic dominated the Super-elite IEM Katowice, showcasing their prowess. However, stavn faced difficulties in the playoffs, impacting the team's performance in the grand final. The ESL Pro League and IEM Rio further highlighted stavn's resilience, with standout performances earning him accolades despite eventual playoff exits.
The BLAST.tv Paris Major marked a pivotal moment for Heroic, securing a Legends Spot at the Major. Stavn's contributions were crucial, earning him his first EVP award of the season. The journey continued with IEM Dallas, where Heroic reached 3-4th place, and stavn claimed another EVP award.
The climax of the year came at the BLAST Premier Spring Final, where Heroic, led by stavn, clinched the trophy. Although the grand final saw a quieter performance from stavn, his consistent output throughout the season solidified Heroic's status as an elite team.
Challenges and Changes:
After a successful first half, Heroic faced challenges in the latter part of the year. Mental pressure, close losses, and roster changes took a toll on the team's performance. The 'stabbi' drama involving stavn and jabbi added to the turmoil, resulting in their departure from Heroic.
Transitioning to Astralis, stavn acknowledges the challenges and the need for more practice with his new team.
Reflections and Outlook:
Despite the hurdles, stavn expresses pride in Heroic's achievements in 2023 but acknowledges falling short of trophy expectations. Now, fully focused on Astralis, he anticipates building a formidable team in 2024 and eyes success at the PGL Major on home soil.
Reasons for Ranking 9th:
Securing his second consecutive top 10 placement, stavn's impressive floor level and consistent performance throughout 2023 earned him the 9th spot. With four Exceptionally Valuable Player awards, including key victories at major events, stavn showcased his damage-dealing prowess and above-average ratings. Notably, he excelled in Elite-rated matches at the biggest tournaments.
However, a significant drop-off in playoff performances and lower ratings against top-ranked opposition prevented him from a higher rank. Despite this, stavn's overall contributions and resilience place him among the top players of 2023.