Since the implementation of franchising, the NALCS has gone through a lot of changes. Immortals is gone (a crying shame), relegation is gone, and best of threes are gone. They stated in this release, that fans weren’t watching because there were too many games. It was also mentioned that they would consider bringing them back. Well after a full season of single games, it is time Riot brings back best of threes in 2019 and here are some reasons why.
1. The more League of Legends the better
Yes, Riot did say that in their report people were saying there were too many games but, League is one of the most, if not the most popular esport in NA. It is more likely that they were trying to fit too many games into a small amount of time. The suggestion, spread NALCS out throughout the week.
This wont be a popular opinion as the other series like EU, LCK and LPL play during the other days of the week, but the times could easily be made to not overlap. One possibility is to have it be something like the Overwatch League which is four days a week. Even with multiple best of threes a day this would make it so those days are so long.
Another suggestion might be to split the series up over a couple days like baseball does. Have teams play two games a day instead of three but not against the same team. For example TSM plays TL and Echo Fox three days in a row (if needed) but never twice on the same day.
These are just some ideas, but the point is that it allows for there to be more games. League is a fun esport to watch and people will watch their teams play, especially knowing they are there for the long haul thanks to franchising.
2. Strategy matters more
In these single games the strategy has completely changed. Because the teams are playing each other in only one game, they aren’t able to make adjustments like they used to. When teams were able to play each other multiple times in a day they were able to see what the team did and try to make interesting changes to win the series.
This kept teams from cheesing too hard and walking away with a win. The teams would see what they did and ban out that pick so it didn’t happen again or they made a plan for it. It is important to note that in this meta just about anything goes seemingly, so making cheese picks work for now. That being said, the meta will most likely revert to something like what it was before.
Best of threes also was able to show who was the better team or who had the better coach. The changes and adjustments hinged on the players abilities and the coaches as well. Of course single games have their own strategy but it is much more intricate and arguably more interesting. Instead of having one game to prepare for, they have at least 2, maybe three, and have to make adjustments much quicker. This tests the mind of the team and org as a whole more than in single games.
Lastly, now that teams are using their academy players more, best of threes would allow for them to play even more. The endless amount of strategies with more games for more players on the roster would be exciting. It could keep players from getting fatigued and also allow for teams to develop their talent even more.
3. It will improve the region as a whole
Rift Rivals just showed us that even with taking talent from other regions, NA as a whole has a lot of work to do. Having just 18 games a split instead of the minimum of 36 in the best of threes also limits the amount of chances for NA to get better. Scrimming is good, but actually playing on the stage in high pressure situations is much harder as there is more on the line. By playing more games in situations where it matters it will allow NA to learn more and have a better chance at Worlds, which should be everyone’s top priority.
Also, having best of threes gives coaches more chances to test things out. This meta has especially been hard for NA to master, it seems. While LCK, LPL, and even EU teams are trying new things and adapting well, NA looks lost at times. In Rift Rivals their refusal to ban Aatrox and Heimerdinger was surprising. To be fair, the new Aatrox came out right before Rift Rivals, but Heimer has been used in EU multiple times and to great success. The coaches in NA could see more and test out new comps due to having more games. This would hopefully better prepare them for international success.
Finally, the LCK does it, and best of fives are in the playoffs and at Worlds. So, why not take notes of what arguably the best region is doing and use them in NA? Making the jump from planning for a single game and best of fives is tough and it may be putting NA at a disadvantage.
Best of threes are definitely a lot more League. People may see this as good or bad, again we have seen a system like the Overwatch League have some success with their schedule. Either way you look at it, Riot needs to try the system again and bring some new twists to it. The NALCS and League as a whole is growing and this is the right time to try things out. Hopefully Riot will do what they said and at least look at doing best of threes again.
What do you think? Are you for or against Best of 3s? Leave a comment below and let us know!
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