LGD, Unicorns advance; League of Legends World Championships 2020 play-ins wrap

Started by vodanhphd, 10-01-2020

LGD, Unicorns advance; League of Legends World Championships 2020 play-ins wrap
  10-01-2020, 10:51 AM
[Image: i?img=%2Fphoto%2F2020%2F0930%2Fr753472_2...format=jpg]

The 2020 League of Legends World Championship main event groups were locked in Wednesday after almost a week of play-in games with Team Liquid going into Group A, LGD Gaming going into Group B, PSG Talon in Group C and Unicorns of Love going into Group D.
Here are the top storylines from the final day of worlds play-ins.

Day 6
The near-failure of LGD Gaming
Last year, while in Madrid, I wrote that a shadow followed my walk to Palacio Vistalegre where the 2019 League of Legends World Championship quarterfinals were held. On that day, the two remaining LoL Pro League lineups of FunPlus Phoenix and Invictus Gaming could have both been eliminated from playoff contention. I compared it to what South Korean fans must have felt in Busan in 2018: excitement that could be a harbinger of doom or a precursor to further pride and hope.
LPL fans likely felt this shadow on Wednesday, especially in Game 2 where LGD picked disadvantageous fights when they should have continued waiting for Su "xiye" Han-Wei's Kassadin to scale. Would 2020 LGD mirror and even surpass 2015 LGD in their failure at worlds? Would they join MAD Lions in being another major region team eliminated by a top team from a minor region?

That Kassadin still scaled, and LGD not only won that game but swept Legacy Esports to qualify for the worlds main event.
Perhaps the real heroes for LGD aren't on the team at all but are the members of Xiye's former squad, Team WE, who scrimmed with LGD prior to their bracket stage games.
If we're sticking with the 2015 analogue, LGD don't match to their own 2015 iteration (who were LPL champions at the time and first seed) as much as they do 2015 Invictus Gaming. In qualifying through the regional bracket, 2020 LGD barely made it through after what was arguably a hand-delivered sweep of iG (due to draft) in playoffs and two losses to Suning before another win over a shaky iG.

[Image: i?img=%2Fphoto%2F2020%2F0929%2Fr752918_1...format=jpg]

This year's LGD iteration has a specific style and focused draft priority (Graves/Kindred/Nidalee for Han "Peanut" Wang-ho) that they inexplicably went away from in a few of their play-in games while also playing over-aggressively and disrespectfully. This was remedied a bit in their two bracket stage sweeps of Rainbow7 and Legacy; however, it's worth noting that LGD still have obvious weaknesses. Got away with their overaggressive play in Game 2 thanks to a fortunate Baron teamfight where Xiye's Kassadin and bot laner Ha "Kramer" Jong-hun's Ezreal were able to deal as much damage as they wanted.
But now, LGD now enter main stage Group C with significantly tempered expectations from the community.
Unicorns qualify with sweep of SuperMassive
Going into groups, the Unicorns of Love were highlighted as a team to watch in their alongside LGD (who were erroneously assumed group victors). PSG Talon topped that group, and LGD also made it through as did UoL after an impressive sweep of SuperMassive Esports.

The most impressive part of UoL's win was their understanding of SuperMassive's playstyle -- even the mid Vayne was an obvious direct lane counter to Onur "Bolulu" Can Demirol's mid Sett, and a strong one at that -- and their flexibility. This is a team that not only understands how they want to play but, based on their drafting, studies their opponents' strengths and weaknesses as well.
Bot laner Ilya "Gadget" Makavchuk's deep champion pool is something that takes UoL from being simply a strong team to a dangerous one. His willingness to play non-traditional carries in the bot lane like Swain, Orianna and Ziggs alongside standard carries like Twitch and Ezreal gives UoL draft flexibility that few teams have.
Even in Group D with FlyQuest, Top Esports and DRX, the Unicorns have the chance to surprise.
Every Game A Sentence
  • LGD Gaming 1, Legacy Esports 0: LGD use their strong solo laners in Renekton and Twisted Fate to spread the map early and the split pressure ultimately defeats Legacy's strong teamfighting composition.
  • LGD Gaming 2, Legacy Esports 0: Legacy benefit from LGD choosing to fight rather than scale, but Xiye's Kassadin and Kramer's Ezreal still take over the late game in a narrow victory.
  • LGD Gaming 3, Legacy Esports 0: Once again Xiye takes over the game on Twisted Fate, targeting Raes' Twitch for a 3-0 sweep.
  • Unicorns of Love 1, SuperMassive Esports 0: Despite tools to get onto the Twitch, UOL bot laner Ilya "Gadget" Makavchuk pops off and takes over the game.
  • Unicorns of Love 2, SuperMassive Esports 0: This is another pop-off game, but this time for Nomanz's Kassadin.
  • Unicorns of Love 3, SuperMassive Esports 0: Another Unicorns composition that showcases their flexibility and preparation, especially with Nomanz's mid lane Vayne into Bolulu's Sett.

[Image: i?img=%2Fphoto%2F2020%2F0923%2Fr750174_1...format=jpg]

  10-01-2020, 11:31 AM
thanks i really needed to know this info, much love symfuhny

  10-10-2020, 08:00 PM
The tournament this year has been fun to watch, although I'm a fan of SKT (aka T1) and they didn't make it.

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