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G2 Esports: One Step Forward Two Steps Back

G2 Esports Week 5 Recap

In Week 5 of the League of Legends European Championship (LEC), G2 Esports (G2) went up against Excel Esports (XL) and MAD Lions (MAD)

vs Excel Esports (4-4)

Numbers

G2 won the game with a 9.6 gold lead, 23 kills to eight, and 10 towers. Excel was able to get two towers, but G2 got one Baron and the Dragon Soul.

Highlights

Going into the match, most were wondering if Rasmus “Caps” Winther was going to be able to recover from his performance from last week. In week 4, G2 had a very risky strategy, where this week they abandoned Fabian “Grabbz” Lohmann’s draft and made one that was very flexible. Since Martin “Wunder” Hansen and Marcin “Jankos” Jankowski were on Aatrox and Karthus, G2 was ready to play much safer and on champions that were advantageous. Luka “PERKZ” Perkovic played Ornn too, so it was obvious that G2 decided not to play ‘troll’ drafts.

G2 Esports Week 5 Recap
Courtesy of @EXCEL

PERKZ’s Ornn pick showed that G2 was willing to risk less damage for superior play-making. And it worked. First blood went to Jankos after PERKZ got Son “Mickey” Young-min low with Ignite and Call of the Forge God (R), Jankos used Requiem (R) and finished him off. For the rest of the match, Mickey was no longer allowed to engage as Vayne; beating out the two Marksmen strategy.

Most G2 engages started with a Call of the Forge God, followed by intense damage by Wunder’s Aatrox. Apart from Wunder’s KDA, G2 has shown in this game that they have learned to be respectful of their enemy. Their Baron Buff-sized aggro from Worlds has ended and they’ve returned to their dynamic but safe team compositions. On the other hand, even though Caps was no longer the focus, he was still able to collect creep score (CS) while his team was applying pressure elsewhere and he was able to scale up. And remember, Caps is not a bad ADC, he just needs to be patient and less aggressive.

Overall, XL tried to outplay G2, but G2 preferred to ignore XL and get their teammates scaled up and/or rich enough for the late game.

MVP- Jankos

Jankos was amazingly strong during the game. Karthus jungle was very effective and with Requiem and Lay Waste (Q), he was able to collect a lot of kills, 3/0/3 (kill/death/assist) by 15 minutes. Throughout the game fans saw PERKZ give up his kills for Jankos, and even when G2 was not able to secure a kill, the Karthus ultimate would help to reduce a heavy amount of health. Jankos, again is the main shot caller of the team, and it shows when he gives up his life for the sake of the team’s progression.

vs MAD Lions (6-4)

Numbers

The game ended with a 8.4k gold difference for MAD Lions. MAD got all towers down, all Inhibitors, a Baron Buff, and three Dragons. G2 got four towers and two Dragons. G2 forfeited 19 kills, and gained only seven.

Highlights
Last time G2 played against MAD Lions, MAD played for the early game but G2 had picked apart their mistakes and turned the game around. It looked like the same thing was happening in this game, as MAD played for early game again, and lost to G2 by mid game. But they have learned; while they were losing, they setup for a comeback. They built a boat and rode it to victory.
First blood went to Caps after a lane gank from Jankos secured a kill on Matyas “Carzzy” Orsag. This game was also PERKZ’s first professional game as Sylas. On the other hand, the other members of G2 were in their comfort picks with Aatrox, Sejuani, and Nautilus on Wunder, Jankos, and Mihael “Mikyx” Mehle, respectively.
Lead Swap
G2 stormed ahead of MAD in a similar way as last time they played. Following Caps stealing Rift Herald with a well-timed shot to the eye, G2 gained the usual advantage that wins them games. Even with G2 losing, it’s clear that their skill is higher than most other teams of the LEC. Their individual outplay ability, and their open-ended synergies and also their ability to seemingly make a team fight out of nowhere is why they are still the best.
G2 Esports Week 5 Recap
“Gladlions.jpg” via @LEC
But they lost this game, and it’s because of MAD Lions being patient. They waited for Marek “Humanoid” Brazda to get a Rabadon’s Deathcap. They waited to push out lanes. And they waited for Norman “Kaiser” Kaiser’s Taric to have ultimate ready. G2 had more gold and objectives, but MAD had more kills. And if a team fight started, Kaiser had one job: press R and keep Carzzy alive. Because Carzzy was playing Kalista, and her Rend (E) active allows her to pull all her spears out of nearby enemies. Combined with LeBlanc damage, and G2 fell apart during team fights.
At 28 minutes, MAD applied pressure to all three lanes at G2’s base, and left only after taking each Inhibitor. G2 had no chance to outlive Taric’s Cosmic Radiance (R).
MVP
For MAD, Carzzy was the MVP. His damage in team fights secured MAD’s comeback and eventual victory. Although he was only able to do this because of Kaiser’s ultimate timing, the two of them saved the team. Carzzy kept himself alive and killed off G2 during Cosmic Radiance so that G2 could not do anything when the Taric ult disappeared. At the end of the game, he had a KDA of 5/0/11. That means he did most of the damage for 16 of the 19 kills, and was deathless for all of them.

 

Week 6

This week did not go as expected, but not because G2 were a bad team, but because the challengers have become better. G2 might still be relying on PERKZ and Caps’ power play potential but this week showed that Jankos might be the real game-changer for the team. G2 is currently tied for 1st along with Origen, Fnatic, and Misfits Gaming.

vs SK Gaming (2-8)

SK Gaming fell to eighth place at the of the week. For SK, it seems to be a hit or miss in games, all based on their early gameplay. If they win early, they win game. If they lose early, they lose game. Perhaps they have to find a new understanding of how to rotate around the map and reverse a game in their favor. It would be exciting to see them play well.

When the game happens, check the draft. Have they switched to a better early game draft? Is Jus “Crownshot” Marusic playing for the early game or the late game? Is Kangyun “Trick” Kim roaming and assisting as he should? Keep an eye out for SK’s play, they have to play with longer stamina, especially if it’s against G2. G2 can still take advantage of a static strategy without faltering.

vs Team Vitality (1-9)

Vitality has finally won a game. It happens to be SK Gaming, the 8th place team, but a win is a win. Does this mean they have the capability to rise up again?

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Looking at the team and their games, it doesn’t seem to be a question of skill. It seems to be a question about strategy. The team seems to be confident on their rise, but we will have to see. Next week, the day 2 game will be G2 vs VIT, The best team versus the worst team. But G2 has shown that they can still lose if the opposite team baits their aggressive plays and creates a macro strategy that’s better than G2’s, as seen in G2 vs MAD (last week) and G2 vs S04 (two weeks ago). Good luck Vitality!

G2 Esports Week 5 Recap

For more on G2 Esports content or other LoL esports content, check out Mani’s other articles here.

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