Heading into Week 3 of the LCS, Cloud9 sit tied with 100 Thieves at the top with a solid 5-1 record. Cloud9 could even have continued their unbeaten streak, but a loss to open the weekend put an end to that dream quite quickly. While Evil Geniuses have the secret stuff to beat Cloud9, 100 Thieves and FlyQuest couldn’t figure out how to get some for themselves. 100 Thieves even tried to ban out Blaber completely but that didn’t stop Cloud9 from clawing their way to a victory against a tough opponent. This new week brings new challenges for C9, including a tough Lock In Finals rematch against Team Liquid.
Week 3 Matchup #1: Cloud9 vs CLG
Friday February 19, 6:00 P.M. EST (3:00 P.M. PST) on LoL Esports, YouTube and Twitch
The Lane Matchups
Top Lane: Fudge vs Finn
Jungle: Blaber vs Broxah
Mid Lane: Perkz vs RJS
Bot Lane: Zven vs WildTurtle
Support: Vulcan vs Smoothie
Counter Logic Gaming has not had it easy to start the 2021 season. A team afflicted by visa issues and alleged internal disagreements, CLG couldn’t seem to get anything going through the Lock In. Things continued to look bad after Week 1, losing two matches that saw CLG gain early leads just to throw them away later on. As the only team to finish the opening weekend winless, CLG looked boomed. The start of Week 2 brought just more of the same for CLG fans. Early leads, late losses and questionable decisions overall brought CLG to 0-5 heading into their match against Golden Guardians.
CLG won that match and avoided going 0-6. Now with Broxah finally in NA, things are starting to look up for CLG. Cloud9 do look like clear favorites in this matchup, and aside from a horrid draft, they should lock this win up rather quickly. Though the big pitfall for Cloud9 could be their lack of respect for CLG’s strong early game. The one strength CLG has is their ability to make plays in the first five minutes of the match. If Cloud9 avoids falling for classic tricks, there should be no doubt that C9 takes home the win.
Week 3 Matchup #2: Cloud9 vs Dignitas
Saturday February 20, 4:00 P.M. EST (1:00 P.M. PST) on LoL Esports, YouTube and Twitch
The Lane Matchups
Top Lane: Fudge vs FakeGod
Jungle: Blaber vs Dardoch
Mid Lane: Perkz vs Soligo
Bot Lane: Zven vs Neo
Support: Vulcan vs Aphromoo
Dignitas are a weird team. One one hand, Aphromoo and Dardoch are veterans in the league that have performed at a very high level but could never find the right combination for success. On the other, they are surrounded by players that aren’t really rookies but haven’t been able to stay on LCS starting rosters for long. Combined the two groups are enjoying a 4-2 record and are tied for third with TSM. Not bad for a team that failed to make the bracket stage of the Lock In Tournament.
After beating Evil Geniuses to close out their second week, Dignitas look like a team trying to make a statement. If Cloud9 want to continue to sit at the top of the leaderboard, they can’t afford to overlook this opponent. Dardoch in particular has locked in a new champion every game, meaning Cloud9 have to prepare for the unpredictable. This game may be a first where neither team bans a jungler.
Week 3 Matchup #3: Cloud9 vs Team Liquid
Sunday February 21, 7:00 P.M. EST (4:00 P.M. PST) on LoL Esports, YouTube and Twitch
The Lane Matchups
Top Lane: Fudge vs Alphari
Jungle: Blaber vs Santorin
Mid Lane: Perkz vs Jensen
Bot Lane: Zven vs Tactical
Support: Vulcan vs CoreJJ
The match everyone is looking forward to this weekend. Cloud9 and Team Liquid duke it out Sunday to see a rematch of the Lock In Finals. Though in a best of one, Cloud9 won’t be able to draft poorly out of the gate. Cloud9 has looked solid in the first two weeks of play aside from their one bad draft against EG. Avoiding mistakes before loading onto the Rift is C9’s way to get ahead.
TL on the other hand have looked shaky since winning Lock In. The team compositions were generally focused on aggressive early game plays and winning lane matchups, but they struggled to translate any advantage out of lane. Despite beating CLG, Team Liquid struggled very early to start the game including a level 1 death on Jensen before minions spawned. 3-3 is not the record most analysts would have picked for TL at this point, and they are surely looking to right the ship this weekend.
Featured image courtesy of Riot Games
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