Cloud9 tied the LCS split record wins this spring with a 17-1 record. They then cruised through the playoffs to become champions for the first time since 2014. Many have lauded them as the best NA team of all time. Not only was every member a first-team all-pro, but Blaber was also awarded the MVP in a tight race against his teammate Nisqy. Many have lauded them as the best North American team ever. C9 has not made any roster swaps between spring and summer, nor are they expected to do so in the near future. Nothing will stop this team from repeating in the Summer.
Cloud9’s biggest strength is their mid-jungle synergy. As a result, Blaber and Nisqy were the top two players last split, and going forward they will certainly be able to recreate the amount of map control and pressure as they did in the spring.
That said, they clearly weren’t the whole show, or even the main act, in all of their games. Zven and Vulcan were able to dominate the bot lane on nearly every matchup and Licorice was able to create agency for himself in what seems like the worst era for top laners in recent memory.
The two major contenders for Cloud9 are TSM, TL, with EG and FLY as dark horses. With the recent roster moves (and drama) surrounding TSM and TL as well as the level of success demonstrated by EG and FLY in the Spring, these teams are best poised to take the throne.
Team Liquid, despite their tragic ninth-placed finish in the Spring, are the most likely to beat Cloud9 this summer. The reason for this is their mid-jungle duo being, on paper, the biggest contender in the league against C9. The Jensen/Broxah pair did not get a lot of time to congeal in the spring.
Not to mention the drama being espoused from the TL camp regarding Doublelift. With the six week break between Spring and Summer, as well as the Doublelift drama shifted to TSM, Jensen and Broxah will be a force to be feared in the Summer Split.
That said, they did lose the best ADC North America has ever seen. Tactical is something of an unknown, there’s every chance that he might experience a radical growth during the split, especially being surrounded with all the talent that he is surrounded by. On the other hand, it is much more likely that he is not cut out to deal with lanes like Bang/Zeyzal, Doublelift/Biofrost and Zven/Vulcan. It is safe to say that botlane, despite CoreJJ’s prowess, will be Team Liquids’ weak side. If the team can replicate the level of play they demonstrated in their final matchup of the season against Cloud9, they can certainly give the defending champions a run for their money.
It’ll also be interesting to see how Jatt’s coaching changes the team. There likely won’t be much of a stylistic change. Instead Jatt will need to focus on bringing some cohesion and identity to the squad.
TSM and Doublelift are back together. Though not to everyone’s pleasure. Everyone knows the power of a Doublelift revenge tour, but the question is whether or not it will be enough to pull up a Bjergsen-Spica Mid-Jungle duo. This isn’t to say that the two won’t be a passable mid map for TSM. It’s hard to ignore Bjergsen’s recent performance. The three-time LCS MVP hasn’t had a standout split in a couple of years. Also, it goes without saying that Spica has far from proven himself. This combo is likely to get dunked on by Blaber and Nisqy. In fact, the boys in blue will likely make it look like a match against an academy team.
The Dark Horses
Evil Geniuses found themselves a third-place finish this spring and have every opportunity to improve this summer. They have a formidable mid-jungle duo as well as an above-average botlane. The issue is that while both are good, they are not nearly as good as either of the duos of Cloud9. Svenskeren did not look nearly as good in the spring as he did in 2019. Jizuke, while he improved over the course of the split, could not find any consistency.
Bang and Zeyzal are the same, either feast or famine, with most of the feasting coming from teams that were worse than them in the standings. They’ve also leaned into the feast or famine theme with the recent acquisition of Huni. His recent performances haven’t been as good as they used to be. All told, it is going to take a lot of work for EG to make it to C9’s level.
FLY had a season where once again many believed they overperformed. A second-place finish is nothing to sneeze at and the team even made the permanent adjustment of having Solo in the toplane. They also have a couple of tough contenders in their midlane and jungle with PowerofEvil and Santorin respectively. The main issue is that the team just seems to be a level below Cloud9, with a lot of distance to make up. Much like the Evil Geniuses squad they are far from prime candidates.
Cover Photo Via LoLesports
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