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The Six Invitational group stage is over and the playoff bracket has been set. Some teams have disappointed while others have made huge upsets. Here are the best storylines and teams to watch heading into the final week of the biggest Rainbow Six Siege tournament this year.

Teams have gathered in Paris, instead of Montreal, this year to compete in person, although no fans are present. Siege is a completely different game online, so Ubisoft has gone the extra mile in bringing teams from North America, Asia, Latin America and Europe to the City of Light.

Check out our post on when, where and how to watch the Six Invitational streams before the action kicks off on May 19.

Teams to watch at the Six Invitational

Six Invitational Bracket
The Six Invitational Bracket. | Provided by Ubisoft

Rainbow Six Siege completely changes when you leave the latency behind, meaning that it was anyone’s tournament to win when things kicked off in the group stage. The playoff bracket starts at 5 a.m. ET on May 19.

Spacestation Gaming falls early in the Six Invitational

The defending champions, well-armed with the freshly non-retired Troy “Canadian” Jaroslawski, fell into the losers bracket early at the Six Invitational. After going through some roster turmoil leading up to the event, the championship squad was almost knocked out before the playoff run. Oxygen Esports’ win over Giants Gaming gave them another chance at a run for the crown.

“GGs to MKers, OxG and NiP today. Clearly not a good day for us,” Canadian tweeted after the group stage. “Thanks to OxG blessing us into playoffs though.”

There is hope that Spacestation Gaming can turn it around with the format switch to best-of-three. The squad barely lost to Parabellum in group Stage 7 – 8. Alec “Fultz” Fultz landed 22 kills alone. The reigning champs aren’t out of it yet, but they’ll need to go on quite the run to defend their title. Spacestation Gaming plays oNe Esports at 2 p.m. ET on May 19 via Stream B.

Team Empire
Team Empire walk through Paris. | Provided by Kirill Bashkirov for Team Empire

Team Empire, the Russian heavyweights

The Russian squad, Team Empire, secured the first seed in Group A of the Six Invitational by going 8-1 throughout the group stage. Danil JoyStiCK Gabov has been an animal throughout those first nine games, winning five MVPs awards leading up to the playoffs.

“Best day in my life, it’s so good that Invitational happened,” JoyStiCK said in a Tweet at the beginning of the group stage. “Cause Lan it’s amazing.”

Team Empire faces off against Oxygen Esports at 8 a.m. ET on May 19 in one of the anticipated matchups of the Six Invitational. The Russian squad has one of the best chances to take the whole tournament if they keep playing the way that they have been. It’ll come down to whoever finishes strongest during close matches.

Canada’s Parabellum and Italy’s MKERS

There’s been upsets, surprising dominance and two amateur teams rising through the ranks to qualify for the Six Invitational. They are the first Tier 2 and 3 teams, as well as the first squads from Canada and Italy, to make it to the event. Oxygen Esports is the only North American team to beat MKERs, while Parabellum won against Spacestation Gaming, Ninjas in Pyjamas and Giants Gaming.

These two teams represent an underdog story in Rainbow Six Siege this year. They could make a deep run, judging by how things have gone this year. If there is one thing to be learned through watching the group stage, it’s that anyone can win.

MKERS face off again Cloud9 at 11 a.m. ET while Parabellum plays G2 Esports at 2 p.m. ET on May 19.


Aron Garst looks at esports from a different point of view by tackling the ways games are molded and broken by players around the world. He covers Call of Duty, Fortnite, Super Smash Bros, and everything else for Upcomer. You can read his previous work at WIRED, Rolling Stone, ESPN and elsewhere. Rise up red sea.


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