With playoffs being only moments away, it is time to take a quick look at the new LEC playoffs format.
Since there are multiple scenarios about which teams will make it through each stage, this will not be an extensive analysis of each possible outcome. Rather, the focus of this article will be on the format itself and offer some occasional predictions on key matchups.
Before moving any further, it is important to present a figure of the current playoffs format for reference. Please note that all matches during playoffs will be best-of-fives.
In the first round, there are three best-of-fives taking place. In the first match, Fnatic faces off Team Vitality and Splyce go against SK Gaming. Here, it is important to point out how those matches were decided. As the third-place team, Fnatic earned themselves the right to pick their opponent between the team that ended fifth and sixth in the standings of the regular split – that would be Team Vitality and SK Gaming, respectively.
Another important point to go over is the choice of Fnatic to go against Vitality. There has already been quite a discussion around the subject with most sources agreeing on Fnatic’s bad record against SK is the main reason behind the decision. Indeed, Fnatic has a 0-3 record against SK (counting the remade match on the first day of LEC regular split), while their score against Vitality is a tie (1-1).
Also, it is undeniable that Vitality’s performance during the second part of the regular split has been disappointing. Going into playoffs with a three-game losing streak and performances that were nowhere near the level that would be expected from a team like Vitality, they do not seem like a very formidable opponent for Fnatic. SK on the other hand, look like a team who has been pulling it together making its composition work beautifully and going into playoffs with a three-game winning streak, including their win against Schalke 04 during the tiebreaker for the last playoff spot.
When it comes to the second game of the first round, as already explained, SK comes in strong and confident. Splyce, however, despite their dominant performance and incredible growth as a team in the second half of the regular split, they did exhibit some significant weaknesses and inconsistencies during their last game against Fnatic. Whether they manage to make it further into the playoffs or not will depend heavily on the work we did during those last two weeks in preparation for their match against SK.
The first round will take place on March 29 and 30.
SECOND AND THIRD ROUNDS
This is where things spice up a bit more! In this round, the winners of round one will face each other in the third match of the playoffs. During this round, a juggernaut match will also take place with Origen going against G2 Esports – the second team during the regular split and the first, respectively.
The winner of this juggernaut match will move directly to the finals while the loser will move to round three where they will face off against the winner the third match.
Putting the juggernaut match under the microscope, any kind of prediction would be a long shot. Indeed, G2 has a 1-1 record against Origen for the regular split and it is undeniable that Origen has exhibit incredible growth and dominance mostly over the second part of the split. It is also a fact that G2’s performance had been rapidly declining over the second part of the regular split and all seem that started when they lost their first game of the split to Origen in week 5.
Given the performances of those two teams over the past few games, Origen seems to be the favorites to take the win in the juggernaut match. However, the amazing level of individual talent that the G2 roster brings should not be underestimated.
The second round will take place on April 5 and 6. The third round will take place on April 13.
The format of the final match that will determine the LEC Spring Split 2019 Champion as well as how the two finalists will be determined should be clear by now.
Concerning those two teams that make it to the finals, and as explained earlier, the scenarios about which team makes it through each stage are numerous. However, making an educating guess based on the teams’ performances over the past several games and their overall growth during the regular split, the two teams most likely to make it all the way to the finals would be Fnatic and Origen.
The finals will take place on April 14.
You can also follow Eirini-Eleni @Esk_Dhg.
Featured image via LoL Esports.