The play-in of the League of Legends World Championship starts on Tuesday with a packed schedule of matches. Here is a look at two handpicked fixtures and predictions for those matches.
LNG Esports (1.57)
LNG Esports had a solid campaign in the summer season of the LPL, winning 25 of 44 maps to finish much higher than many would have expected. That is not to say they overachieved because they found consistency in a season when some of the best teams struggled for fluency and confidence. Overall, they finished eighth in the summer split, with a 10-6 match record. That is not even close to bad in a league as competitive as the LPL. There will be a difference in pace between these teams because the LCK, where Hanwha Life Esports have qualified from, is significantly slower than the LPL.
In the regular season of the spring split last year, LNG Esports got sufficient production from three avenues. Ale led the kills production with 3.72 kills and 4.53 assists per game with a KDA of 3.26. Light was the most efficient player, with a team-leading KDA of 6.81, built on 3.29 kills, 1.37 deaths and 6.03 assists per map. He even had a creep score of 298. Icon also chipped in with over three kills per map to chip in with the offensive production.
Cloud9 didn’t have a great summer split in the LCS. They finished fourth with a 15-12 record after the regular season. By their lofty standards, that was well below their expected win-loss record. However, they have still managed to qualify for the play-in, where they might find the skill difference in their favor against other middling teams in their respective leagues. In fact, odds of 1.32 are quite strong considering there is a discernible and apparent difference in the offensive firepower between these two teams.
Apart from Vulcan, who is a support player, every Cloud9 player had more than three kills per map in the regular season of summer. While that may seem like expected production, it is also important to note that no player averaged more than four kills per map. The team was led by Zven, who averaged 3.94 kills per map along with 6.5 assists.