After the 9th week of action in the LCK only one thing has been confirmed: Griffin will definitely be in the playoffs. However, everything else from which team will join Jin Air Green Wings in relegations and which team will take the 1st seed heading into playoffs are still unknown. So let’s see how each team did, where they are in the power rankings and what they’re looking at heading into the final week of the LCK Summer Split regular season! As always, if you missed last week’s power rankings, you can find them here.
10.Jin Air Green Wings (-)
0-2 vs Kingzone DragonX
1-2 vs KT Rolster
One more game. That’s all Jin Air has before they become the first team to have a winless split in LCK/OGN history (excluding when the format was 4 group round robins). While Challengers likely won’t provide another Griffin or DAMWON Gaming this time around, teams like Team Dynamics and VSG have looked solid and should pose a huge threat to Jin Air’s LCK spot. While Jin Air could play spoilers to Griffin and drop them out of first, there isn’t much else they’ll be fighting for in their potential final week in the LCK for a long time.
9.KT Rolster (-1)
Current record: 5-11
0-2 vs DAMWON Gaming
2-1 vs Jin Air Green Wings
After the results of Week 9, one thing is certain: SK Telecom T1 must really hate KT Rolster. Despite being in a great position to avoid relegation, a huge upset victory over SKT by Hanwha has moved KT back into relegation territory. While KT are in a rough spot the fight is not over. Between KT and Hanwha, KT does have the better schedule to finish off the split with a match against a struggling Kingzone. Even if they’re unable to win that match, some 1-2 results could be enough to swing the game record into their favor. The real fight is on now for KT, will they be able to avoid relegation? Or could Week 10 also be the last time fans see them in action for a long time?
8.Hanwha Life Esports (+1)
2-1 vs SK Telecom T1
While it’s too late to climb up to 6th in the standings, Hanwha have looked a lot better in recent weeks and have managed to climb out of relegations thanks to a huge victory over SKT. However they’re not in the clear yet as KT and Hanwha still have fairly similar game score. With matches against Afreeca Freecs and Griffin remaining, Hanwha will need to continue to play at a high level if the want to ensure their survival from relegation. With an even head to head record against KT, it may even be possible that a tiebreaker match is played the two teams. No matter the outcome, Week 10 will be a very interesting one even at the bottom of the standings.
7.Kingzone DragonX (-)
2-0 vs Jin Air Green Wings
0-2 vs Griffin
Perhaps the biggest fall from grace this split has been Kingzone DragonX. With rumors of internal conflicts and a team that simply has too many distractions around them at this point, it’s understandable as to why Kingzone have dropped to this point. While the org has denied the rumors it’s hard not to think that this is definitely having an effect on the players. While the team is not out of the playoffs just yet, they’ll need a lot of matches to go their way in order to qualify. As such it’s time to look ahead to the gauntlet for Kingzone and their final chance to make it to Worlds.
1-2 vs Griffin
1-2 vs Afreeca
With an unfortunate 0-2 week, Gen.G has dropped out of a playoff spot once again as the final week of play approaches. With their final match being a showdown against DAMWON Gaming, this is like the end of Gen.G’s season. However, the team has some great pieces to build off of for the upcoming season with a great bot lane and Mid Laner Lee “Rich” Jae-won showing some great potential in his debut against Griffin. While this season may be a loss, Gen.G will be a very exciting team to follow in the future as their rookie players like Rich and support Kim “Life” Jeong-min continues to develop.
5.Afreeca Freecs (-2)
1-2 vs SANDBOX Gaming
2-1 vs Gen.G
While Afreeca was only able to win one match this week, it was enough to bump them into the final playoff spot for the time being. Going into the final week and a showdown against Hanwha, Afreeca will have the opportunity to play spoilers for Hanwha and knock them back into relegation while improving their seeding for the playoffs. Even if Afreeca are unable to improve their seeding heading into the playoffs, a victory on the final week could be a good morale booster and give the team the momentum they need to go on a solid run and potentially qualify for Worlds.
4.SANDBOX Gaming (-)
2-1 vs Afreeca Freecs
Despite some shaky play against Afreeca, SANDBOX joins Griffin and DAMWON Gaming at the top of the standings with a 11-5 record heading into the final week. While there have been some questionable plays as a team, SANDBOX is still one of the few teams in Korea that have been willing to take a risk. However SANDBOX will have one more big test before the playoffs in the form of SK Telecom T1. If they can take down SKT, they would be able to head into playoffs with a lot of momentum, and more importantly, likely a better seeding as well. If not, SANDBOX could be looking towards a long run ahead of them.
2-1 vs Gen.G
2-1 vs Kingzone DragonX
As previously mentioned, Griffin became the first team to lock in a playoff spot thanks to their 2-0 week. Going into the final week of play, the name of the game is protecting their position. As the current 1st seed, Griffin will need to play a solid game against Jin Air and Hanwha. With Hanwha looking better and better and a chance to take Jin Air lightly, this could be a huge trap week for Griffin. Will they avoid the traps? Or choke at the worst time and drop in seeding? With a 1st seed and a (trip to Worlds as a result) on the line, Griffin needs to be on the top of their game.
2.SK Telecom T1 (-1)
1-2 vs Hanwha Life Esports
One game is all it takes to lose the throne right now. This was the lesson that SKT learned the hard way in Week 9 as they were taken out by Hanwha. As a result SKT fell all the way back down to 4th in the standings. And now SKT enter a very tough Week 10 against DAMWON Gaming and SANDBOX Gaming with a small chance that they miss the playoffs. So, heading into the final week, which SKT will showup? The one that looked lost for most of the series against Hanwha? Or the one that steamrolled through the region and made it back to the top? Because depending on which SKT shows up, they could miss the playoffs.
1.DAMWON Gaming (+1)
2-0 vs KT Rolster
Thanks to SKT’s loss in Week 9, DAMWON Gaming are once again the top team in the power rankings. However, DAMWON should only have one goal going into the final week: take the 1st seed going into playoffs. Despite their recent struggles, DAMWON looked great as they made quick work of KT Rolster this week which is a good sign heading into a week with matches against SKT and Gen.G. With their play looking good once again, DAMWON should have what it takes to defeat SKT and Gen.G in order to secure their spot in the finals as the 1st seed.
To watch League of Legends tournaments, visit watch.na.lolesports.com. For more information on the Split, teams, standings, and players, visit www.lolesports.com. Recaps of former weeks and other LoL content can be found at https://thegamehaus.com/league-of-legends/.
Featured image courtesy of LCK flickr.
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