The LEC Summer Split Playoffs are beginning with SK Gaming and Schalke. They both start their journey not just towards playoffs but also the honor of representing the LEC at Worlds 2020 in China. Both will have to win three straight series in order to make Worlds, but they have to start somewhere.
Coming in as the fifth and sixth seeds, SK Gaming and Schalke went 9-9 and 8-10 respectively. The miracle run happened and Schalke made it to playoffs. Now they need to take things one series at a time as best-of-five series are very different beasts. Their new journey begins with SK Gaming, here are three keys to victory for Schalke.
1. Play Through Gilius
Playing through a god may seem obvious but, when a best-of series comes about, sometimes teams forget what got them there. It is fine to be limited in playstyles if a team is able to do it as well as Schalke have. They made it this far using this mindset and playstyle, why stop now?
Gilius has shown that he can restrain himself but, there are definitely times that he should not and early in the series will be one of those times. He needs to create plays and put SK in bad situations. The only problem is if the rest of his team doesn’t follow him in, then Schalke fall apart.
There is little doubt that Gilius has been the catalyst to this miracle run. Not only does it seem like he has matured as a player but Schalke are fully in sync with him. Continue to do what works and Schalke can continue their miracle run.
2. Use Advantages in Solo Lanes
Odoamne has been doing this successfully for quite a while and will be going in not only with an experience advantage but also a skill advantage. In many ways, Abbedagge will be in a similar position in this series. During their miracle run, Abbedagge has had some insane carry games.
Because of this, Schalke will want to take advantage of these mismatches. They can do so by picking a winning matchup in the top lane and giving a carry champion to Abbedagge. For mid, picks like Azir, Akali and LeBlanc can give Abbedagge agency and a way to win lane outright.
In terms of picks for Odo, Schalke should just give him whatever he is feeling. He is able to counter-pick if needed or even in most blind situations he knows the ins and outs of the matchup. This gives Schalke a lot of flexibility in their draft and can give them advantages across the map.
3. Don’t Lose Track of Objectives
Truthfully, Schalke have a major advantage in this series all around. The easiest way for them to lose, is if they give over control of the major objectives. These include but are not limited to, Dragons, Rifts and Barons.
For a team like SK, getting early Dragon leads or being are able to use Rifts to break down early towers, can spell trouble for Schalke in a big way. Playing from behind is not something that Schalke have done often during their run. Even worse, trying to catch up in Dragons allows more time for Crownshot to farm and get into his late game.
Schalke need to keep the objectives under control. Again this is obvious in most situations but for a team that feeds off of being able to continuously go forward, longer games normally don’t suit them as well. Too many things can and often do go wrong. If Schalke are able to stay even in major objectives, they should be able to come out on top in this series.
“From Our Haus to Yours”