After four weeks of intense competition, we’re now left with two teams set to face off in the finals. On one side, the European first seed Fnatic, now the hope of the West. They’ll be facing off against the Chinese second seed Invictus Gaming, looking to continue the dominance of the Asian powerhouse. While both teams want to lift the Summoner’s Cup at the end of it all, only one will be able to do it. Which team will rise above the other? Which team will take it all? Let’s find out.
Fnatic: Western Hope
After a quick and painless 3-0 over Cloud9, Fnatic has made it into the Finals once again. Leading the way was mid laner Rasmus “Caps” Winther, who made up for his poor performance in the quarterfinals by dominating Nicolaj “Jensen” Jensen through the whole series. Meanwhile top laner Mads “Broxah” Brock-Pedersen controlled the jungle during the whole series and dictated the pace of the whole game.
That’s not to say the rest of Fnatic didn’t make huge plays themselves. Top laner Gabriël “Bwipo” Rau looked unstoppable on Viktor, ending the series with a 12/2/16 statline over two games. At the same time, ADC Martin “Rekkles” Larsson was unkillable during the whole series as he ended with an incredible statline of 10/3/32. While Fnatic can win the game through any lane, support Zdravets “Hylissang” Iliev Galabov continues to be a reliable playmaker for the team.
Together, the team has been nothing short of amazing, as they’ve allowed both Caps and Bwipo to take over the game. Meanwhile the bot lane continued to be a solid duo that holds their own regardless of matchup. If any western team were to have a shot to win it all, it will be this team. Whether it’s enough is another question.
Invictus Gaming: Ruthless Aggression
If Invictus Gaming weren’t the new favorites going into the semifinals, they definitely are now. After the destruction of G2 Esports by a score of 3-0, Invictus Gaming reminded the world just how good they are. The two star carries of the team in mid laner Song “Rookie” Eui-jin and top laner Kang “TheShy” Seung-lok were the biggest stars of the series. Both players impressed on Jayce while TheShy had an insane performance on Aatrox. Meanwhile Rookie looked amazing on Leblanc, destroying Luka “Perkz” Perković and the rest of G2.
Meanwhile jungler Gao “Ning” Zhen-Ning out-jungled Marcin “Jankos” Jankowski throughout the whole series, completely shutting down the Polish jungler. While the top half of the map was completely dominant, the bot lane duo of ADC Yu “JackeyLove” Wen-Bo and support Wang “Baolan” Liu-Yi quietly had an amazing series as well. JackeyLove had a great series on a variety of champs thanks to the support of Baolan, especially on Braum.
The road for the team is set, they’ve showed that their choking ways are behind them. Only one team stands in their way. While Fnatic spoiled their groups stage results, Invictus Gaming now has a chance to win the war by defeating them in the finals. Will we see Invictus Gaming raise the Summoner’s Cup at the end? Or will they fall short once again? Only time will tell.
If we base it off their three matches during the group stages, this will be a close and exciting series. While Rookie and TheShy has a slight advantage over their Fnatic counterparts, Broxah is the better jungler between the two. The difference in the jungle may play a bigger role in the solo lanes than the solo laners themselves. Meanwhile, the bot lane is a fairly even matchup as both lanes are capable of holding their own. If anything, the bot lane of Invictus gaming may hold a very tiny advantage due to their capability of carrying the game.
While Fnatic has the advantage 2-1 from their matches in the group stages, both teams come into the finals looking absolutely amazing. While I want to believe in the West, it’s hard to bet against Rookie and the rest of Invictus Gaming. Because of that, I predict Invictus Gaming taking the finals 3-2 and lifting the Summoner’s Cup in the end.
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