The series versus TSM is over and frankly it was depressing. For the last two weeks, fans and analyst have been saying how EG could beat TSM, but it probably wouldn’t happen. It was never if EG could get into a game-winning position, it was if they could pull out the victory.
The series was predictable. Peter Dun in an amazing interview with Stackedlol pretty much said this. They knew about the Nocturne. They had counterpicks for Lucian ready. They knew Jiizuke was not going to get Ekko. They knew Spica wanted Udyr and to deny Hecarim and Olaf. This stuff was incredibly telegraphed, but despite this EG threw games three and four. Writing about the series is just plain demoralizing. But the question from here is what does EG do? What are the takeaways?
What people often don’t know is that Coach Dun arrived in NA near the end of February. While there isn’t a public date, it has been stated that he arrived around the same time Broxah did, the 17th of February. Now if one were to take into account the smaller than normal LCS season, Peter Dun didn’t really have a full split with the team. He was able to do some coaching over Zoom and Discord, but he has stated numerous times how limiting it was and how hard it was with the ping difference. But he arrived. EG since then has broken out many weird picks which is in line with his philosophy.
Fans saw Mundo, Neeko, a lane swap and almost a Wukong and Annie versus TSM. Now it is impossible from an outsider’s perspective to know how good of a coach someone is and how well they are doing. Unless one is part of the team, it is frankly just guessing. What fans can do though is take into account interviews, performances and what the team is trying to do.
EG want to build their League of Legends teams around him. Coach Dun is even helping out with EG Academy and EG Prodigies, their Amateur team. It is obvious that any team with a brain would not commit so much to a coach if they didn’t believe in him and trust him. One split of placing fifth against the second seed with him not there for half of it seems quite decent. There have been comments roasting the coaching staff on the 400 IQ 18 Harvard degree sites Reddit and Twitter and these are unwarranted.
EG as a brand are doing incredibly well in League of Legends. Their Academy and Prodigies teams are turning heads and taking names. In their first two years back in the LCS, they made playoffs every split. EG are proving that they deserve the spot in the LCS and it’s going to be great to see how the brand is doing further down the line.
Let’s be blunt. Deftly had an awful performance versus TSM and it is understandable why fans had such a visceral reaction. He flat-out trolled game three getting hooked by Naut WAY too much. And in game four after the dragon take, EG forced a bad fight, but Deftly made an even worse choice to try to avoid getting knocked away by Alistar. He flashed in and still got knocked away and died with exhaust and Stopwatch still up. Now to be clear, it is not fair to single handily blame one player for what happened that series. Remember when Svenskeren missed Smite on Baron? Do you recall when they didn’t engage on any dragon fight or when Jiizuke missed his R so many times? League is a team game and just saying “DEFTLY KEKW” is not productive.
Despite all of this, it is at the very least understandable why some people think Deftly should get the boot. Will it happen? Probably not, at least not yet. Coach Dun on Hotline League the other week sung Deftly’s praises and sounded very committed to him. Deftly also had the second highest DPS of any ADC in the Regular Split despite IgNar constantly roaming. He also had the lowest deaths of any ADC. Deftly has a lot of pros and to just point out the cons is simply delusional and biased.
And in a scenario where EG decides Deftly isn’t good enough for the sake of argument. Who do they get? Shoryu from their Academy team? Their breakout ADC from EG Prodigies, Shiro? Do they grab someone else from Academy? Get Sneaky? Cody Sun? Luger? The point is that there is not an obvious candidate to choose that wouldn’t cost an exuberant amount of money and who would be a clear upgrade. This isn’t to say that Academy sucks, no one can say there is an objectively better move. Shiro is the one that is the possible exception with such an insane upside, but he probably could use an Academy split before the LCS.
Deftly struggled in Playoffs, but EG should stay committed to him because he can clearly perform on a high level. He just needs to stop throwing big fights.
Summer / Worlds Hopes:
One question many EG fans might have is if they stand a chance of getting to Worlds? Well, there is a chance. Dignitas got exposed versus 100T who were also exposed for the last few weeks. So for the sake of argument once again, say Dignitas fall off and 100T stay even with EG. That would place EG around fourth or fifth. Now what is important is that fourth seed gets double elimination while fifth does not. And remember, the Summer Split playoffs has eight teams instead of six. As of now, EG are only one game behind 100T and two behind TSM and TL. There is certainly a chance that they can yoink a top seed.
It is worth noting that EG went 0-2 versus IMT and Dignitas. If they clean up these games and maintain the pace versus the top seeds, EG can make a run. And while probably not likely, if NA was to somehow win MSI, they get 4 seeds for Worlds. This would drastically increase EGs chances at making a Worlds 2021 appearance. EG probably wouldn’t get the first or second seed. They are a peak Play-Ins team. This isn’t an insult, look at Liquid last year or even Fnatic or Splyce in the past.
While fans won’t know anything for certain until everything is said and done, don’t count EG out.
EG have until June to prep towards summer, with time off and the ability to work out the kinks. Regardless of if EG make a run this year, they are an organization who are committed towards success. They have a ton of coaches who support Academy and Amateur. This isn’t even to mention their work with colleges around the USA to support esports. Peter Dun has said this journey with EG is not a one year venture. It is about building up support, scouting players and promoting from within. LCS fans should be happy to have such a great org in the scene.
“From Our Haus to Yours”