Vitality played two games this week, with Steeelback filling in for Jactroll against Misfits this week. Below is what happened and what to look forward to.
Reviewing Week 4
Versus Fnatic (4-3)
A clean early engagement followed shortly after by a one for one trade against one of the best teams in the LEC signaled the start of the match for Vitality against Fnatic. Going relatively even against Fnatic in most trades, Vitality’s performance looked very good, with Markos “Comp” Stamkopoulos playing solidly and Lucas “Cabochard” Simon-Meslet doing well against a unique champion pick of Singed. However, as seems to be the trend with Vitality, two questionable engagements, specifically one before the Baron and one in an attempt to disrupt the baron, signaled a sort of inevitable end for Vitality. After the 21:30 mark, following the disastrous skirmish attempt, Fnatic became the dominant force on the rift, running down Vitality at every available opportunity. After picking up the Baron, it was one concerted push after another which lead to a Fnatic win after 29:20.
Result: Fnatic win at 29:20 (5-3)
Player of the Game: On the side of Vitality, Cabochard or Duncan “Skeanz” Marquet were the players of the game, with Cabochard going toe to toe well in a difficult champion matchup and Skeanz being integral or at the very least a participant, in quite a few of the kills. However, props must also be given to Oskar “Selfmade” Boderek of Fnatic for an absolutely incredible game on Lee Sin. His mechanics were nearly flawless and played a significant role in the Fnatic win.
Versus Misfits (5-2)
Substituting in Pierre “Steeelback” Medjaldi for Jakub “Jactroll” Skurzynski this game, the game began with a truly questionable top lane gank attempt by Cabochard and Skeanz, leading to an early two kills to Danny “Dan Dan” Le Comte and Misfits. Steeelback taking a kill back in the bottom lane evened out the early discrepancy a bit, and for much of the game Vitality either traded evenly or picked kills for themselves. Questionable decisions seemed to plague Vitality, though. After an overextension by Skeanz and Steeelback that lead to the two being picked off, Vitality attempted to disrupt the Misfits Baron attempt. It was an unwise move as they walked voluntarily into the fog of war to their deaths. After that, the outcome was again inevitable, as the Baron push was for the win. Any engagement Vitality attempted during the push was met with abject failure, and following an ace Misfits took the game at 34:45.
Result: Misfits win at 34:45 (6-2)
Player of the Game: For his first game as a substitute, Steeelback was the most solid player by far for Vitality. While his performance was not as dynamic as one would wish, especially with an outcome like this, he still showed great potential for the team, and could very well be a playmaker and player to look out for in the future.
Previewing Week 5
Versus Schalke 04 (1-7)
After the departure of Konstantinos-Napoleon “Forg1ven” Tzortziou and their surprising win against G2, the mentality of Schalke 04 is likely that of brimming confidence, seeing as though they took down one of the best (if not the best) team in the West. However, Schalke has still shown themselves to be largely in the same position as Vitality in that their prior performances were subpar compared to the other teams that they faced. Once again, the strategy for Vitality should be to keep solid early to mid-game pressure and use the generated advantage for a victory. If Vitality continue to use Steeelback, look for him to be a solid engagement tool, especially if Skeanz can help start things off. However, as evidenced especially in the games against Fnatic and Misfits, Vitality should also be wary of overextension and questionable engagements. They need to only commit when the outcome is either an even trade or a victory.
Prediction: Vitality win
Versus SK Gaming (2-6)
Aside from wins against Schalke and Vitality themselves, SK Gaming has been on the losing side of efforts against all of the other teams of the LEC. With this in mind, and with where Vitality stand right now, this game would be a crucial win and a redemption of their loss to SK in the first week of the split. The first game against SK was largely even all throughout and was an eventually forced loss after 50 minutes of gameplay. Knowing this, Vitality should remember what made the game work in their favor: their composition, their presence at the dragons, and their subsequent team fight potential. The game only ended off of a baron push and a fairly even scoreline, which means that against an opponent like SK Vitality could very easily turn an effort into a win. Comp and Saken were the players to watch for then, and it only makes sense to look out for them now in this rematch.
Prediction: Vitality win
Have thoughts about Vitality and the LEC? Sound off and let Niko hear it @nms_tgh
Images courtesy of Team Liquid, Fnatic, Misfits, and all respective sources
Follow The Game Haus for more sports and esports coverage
“From our Haus to Yours”