KT Rolster v Invictus Gaming: Game One
Invictus Gaming (“IG”) took the first game of this series versus KT Rolster (“KT”) with exceptional team fighting. Despite losing this game, KT commanded the early game and were in a great position. Score found the first two kills of the game in a bottom lane four-man gank, and even another kill on TheShy top. A skirmish in the middle lane gave KT pressure which allowed them to bring down a Mountain Dragon. IG Rookie did find a successful gank in the bottom lane, but they mostly bode their time for the mid game team fights.
This approach was profitable for IG. At 16 minutes, IG won a team fight in the middle lane two-for-zero, taking the mid Tier One too. This pressure lead translated to an Ocean Dragon and a bottom lane tower a couple of minutes later. IG showcased superior team fighting at 20 minutes when another one erupted. They smashed KT four-for-one, and destroyed another tower to add to their growing snowball.
IG secured more objectives, and yet another team fight began in KT’s jungle. IG slaughtered KT, getting a clean Ace and the Baron buff.The team quickly regrouped and started their Baron push. They walked the minions down the middle and bottom lanes, taking all the structures left available to KT in these lanes. The Inhibitors fell, and IG kept pushing to end the game. After the first Nexus Tower fell, KT attempted one last defense. It was terribly unsuccessful, with KT getting clean Ace’d and losing their Nexus just before 30 minutes.
IG controlled game one, and continued to do so in game two. They were even more dominant, amassing absolutely massive leads from very early on. A 3v3 around the Scuttle Crab resulted in two kills for IG and one for KT. A few minutes later, the team fights were already starting, and IG was happy to win them. A fight at five minutes in the bottom lane resulted in five unanswered kills going to IG, which would give them pressure to secure an Infernal Dragon and the First Tower bonus bot. IG won the next team fight after taking the Rift Herald four-for-zero too. This allowed them to take two towers in the middle lane.
The game was essentially decided by this point. IG was accumulating more and more gold, and KT appeared helpless. Though KT almost found a winning fight in the bottom lane around 15 minutes, they ended up chasing kills too far and giving more to IG. At 20 minutes, IG had a 10 kill lead, four unanswered towers and a 7k gold lead.
With such a huge lead, it wasn’t surprising when IG decided to go to Baron Nashor. They secured the buff for free, and regrouped to push bottom and top. They took the outer towers in these lanes and the bottom lane Inhibitor. IG did lose a couple of members, but it wouldn’t be enough. They respawned and continued the push in the mid lane a couple of minutes later. IG pulled the trigger as they destroyed the Inhibitor Tower, decimating three KT members. With only two opposing players alive, IG easily finished off the KT Nexus at 25 minutes, bringing them to match point.
KT won their first game of this series in what may be one of the best base races of all time. They finally slowed down this game and though they were in a deficit most of the match, it was a manageable one. IG tower dove Smeb to get First Blood onto Ning, which snowballed the carry v carry matchup in the top lane. KT was able to trade objectives and towers effectively this game, keeping them in this game. The team fights were much closer too, the first one around Infernal Dragon went three for two in the favor of KT, while the Dragon went to IG.
At 20 minutes, IG did have a gold lead, but it was only 1k. For the next few minutes, both teams continued to trade towers; TheShy was dominating the split push and both squads fought for vision around Baron. The match exploded at 28 minutes. Here, Rookie and TheShy dove Smeb in the bottom lane, pushing from the Tier Two Tower all the way to the Inhibitor, taking it for free while KT stuttered around Baron. A minute later, KT decided to rush Baron. They did secure it, and the team fight afterwards resulted in four deaths for each side. TheShy was the only one alive for IG and he tried to Teleport in for the win with the Inhibitor down. Score, and later Mata, did manage to fend him off, and the game continued on.
There was another fight that reopened the bottom Inhibitor after it respawned, but also halted IG’s push. Soon after, the teams decided to trade Elder Dragon for IG and Baron Nashor for KT. KT was now able to push their minions and siege, and they did so in the mid lane. In an epic series of events, the four man squad of KT burst into IG’s base, while the top laners battled in KT’s base. Nexus Towers in both bases fell, and the split camera came up for viewers. It was a battle on inches, with both teams desperately hitting the Nexus at the same time. KT barely managed to beat TheShy’s Fiora with a very narrow margin, and IG’s Nexus exploded at 40 minutes.
In a slow, methodical fashion, KT won the fourth match to bring the series to game five. Similarly to last game, the pace was much slower and allowed KT to play cleanly. Smeb, who was the victim of much bullying the prior games, found a great outplay. He got First Blood in a 1v2 onto Ning when he got ganked. KT, with tremendous pressure in the bottom lane, secured the First Tower bonus uncontested. KT kept it up, taking the Cloud Drake and another tower in the top lane. They also killed the Rift Herald, but IG guarded the dropped Eye and they were unable to use it.
Cresting the 20 minute mark, KT had amassed a 4k gold lead. They did so with minimal kills, using their winning side lanes to work the map and minions waves to carve out advantages one at a time. They took a couple more towers, while IG managed to find an Infernal Drake for themselves and a middle lane tower. These gave them some better map positioning and hope for the late game, but it would prove insufficient to overcome their deficit.
More objectives fell in the favor of both teams, when suddenly the very slow game burst open. The teams both collapsed in the bottom lane, and a messy team fight started in the bottom lane. Members were disjointed as they fought in the lane and jungle, but eventually the kills racked up for KT. Soon four IG members were on the death timer. KT took this chance to rush into IG’s base and smash the Nexus at 36 minutes off of one play.
IG finished what they started two matches ago and knocked KT out of the World Championships. It was a long road, but they led the match the majority of the time. It began with a First Blood for Rookie. From here, IG focused on objectives, taking the Herald and Ocean Dragon. During these objective takes, there were always kills falling for both squads. KT did make proactive plays, but when they did IG would capitalize, like when they got the First Tower bonus, another tower and an Infernal Dragon while KT ganked the top lane.
KT did trade some towers and find some kills of their own, so IG’s gold lead was only 2k at 20 minutes. IG secured another Infernal at 22 minutes, and there were a couple of fights. Towers and Dragons fell, but the match blew up at 32 minutes. IG, after losing a member, took a 4v5 team fight win, with JackeyLove popping off, flashing forward, and getting a Quadra Kill. His superb play resulted in an Ace and a Baron buff.
This first Baron gave IG multiple towers and the middle Inhibitor. They ended up being pushed back by KT, but turned around to take the Elder Dragon. This allowed them to take the bottom Inhibitor. By 40 minutes, the middle Inhibitor had respawned, and IG looked to retake it. A team fight went one-for-one in KT’s successful defense of it, but they were in no position to contest the second Baron, and IG took that shortly after. A couple of minutes later, IG pushed through the middle lane and retook the Inhibitor. Then they immediately started the final team fight, where they slaughtered three KT members. Amidst a roaring crowd, IG knocked out Korea’s first seed team with the Nexus kill at 42 minutes.
Royal Never Give Up v G2 Esports: Game One
Royal Never Give Up (“RNG”) started the series off strong with a win over G2 Esports (“G2”). Jankos was able to successfully gank the RNG bottom lane and get First Blood for Hjarnan, but RNG was in control at every point after this. Uzi and Ming pushed Hjarnan and Wadid out of lane and got the First Tower bonus off pressure alone. RNG pushed the tempo by taking the Rift Herald, top and mid towers and the Mountain Drake. While G2 managed to pick up one tower, RNG was commanding the map.
The game blew wide open for RNG at 19 minutes. Here they were able to pick a team fight in G2’s jungle and kill four G2 players while losing none of their own. This allowed RNG to destroy two towers in the bottom lane and an early Inhibitor. With the bottom lane pressure, RNG began to set up for Baron.
The Chinese squad killed their second Mountain Drake, Perkz, and another middle lane tower. Their first attempt at Baron was spoiled by G2. But at 27 minutes, RNG brought down Baron Nashor in complete darkness for G2. They reset and quickly took multiple towers. They took the first Inhibitor mid, then turned for the bottom one. Instead of take that, though, they chose to take another fight. RNG completely obliterated G2. They killed four members and went on to the Nexus at 31 minutes.
G2 clapped back and proved they were competitors in this series with a win in the second game. Though G2 secured this win, RNG had a grasp on the early game. Uzi and Ming again got the First Tower bonus in their lane through pressure, which allowed them to move around the map and spread their lead. Perkz secured First Blood in the top lane, but traded his own life for it. There were a couple of fights that went one-for-one, and one where G2 got Rift Herald but lost two members for it. It was worth the sacrifice when at 16 minutes G2 found two kills, which led to two towers with the help of the Herald.
At 20 minutes the game was quite close. Three minutes later, G2 attempted to pick off Xiaohu in the top lane. Unfortunately for them, they missed all their skill shots, and RNG collapsed to clean up a kill on Wadid. Wunder was caught out a little later, which gave RNG another tower. This match was decided at a 27 minute team fight. Perkz was almost caught out, but managed to survive in a 1v5. His team came and backed him up, and the ensuing team fight gave G2 the Ace and the Baron.
This Baron was used efficiently by G2 as they pushed multiple lanes. G2 found a couple of picks while they sieged the Inhibitor Towers, which gave them easier access to the Inhibitors themselves. They destroyed two Inhibitors before resetting. Once back on the map, they looked to destroy the last Inhibitor bot. Instead of siege, G2 with Wunder at the front, dove RNG’s Inhibitor Tower. They crushed RNG with four kills and their Nexus at 35 minutes.
G2 tried to play RNG’s team fighting style this game, but RNG was very comfortable and it showed with their quick win. G2 killed Uzi at level one, before minions even spawned, and Perkz received the First Blood. Evidently, this set off a fire in RNG. Wadid died in a 2v2 fight bot, while Karsa and Letme dove and killed Wunder. A few minutes later, the top-jungle duo killed Jankos in his own jungle. They were out for blood and surely found it. RNG swapped their bot lane to the top to get Rift Herald and a tower, but lost the First Tower bonus to G2.
The snowball kept forming. Xiaohu solo killed Hjarnan and RNG brought down multiple towers and objectives with the early-mid game. G2 traded sometimes, but RNG was faster and cleaner around the map. At 20 minutes, their gold lead had grown to 4k.
At 21 minutes, Wunder was collapsed and caught out by multiple RNG members. A minute later, when G2 executed the same play onto Xiaohu, RNG easily snuck a Baron, despite Karsa walking on a ward on his way to it. RNG used this efficiently, demolishing all the middle lane structures. Soon after the Inhibitor fell, the last team fight of the game broke out. Three kills went the way of RNG, and they closed out the game at 25 minutes.
If game three was a stomp, G2 paid it back twofold in this game four win. RNG never had an opportunity in this game because G2’s snowball was so good. It revolved around Perkz and his Aatrox, who got First Blood and another kill in a skirmish mid. G2 rotated a couple of minutes later to get the First Tower bonus too. Jankos was essential too, propelling his lanes and even solo killing his opposing jungler. G2 used the Rift Herald to break down the middle lane tower and got a Cloud Drake. And this was only the beginning.
At 15 minutes, a team fight broke out in the top lane. G2 smashed RNG, killing three while losing none. They got a middle lane tower shortly after, as Perkz split push the top lane. RNG collapsed on him, and he looked dead to rights. But to their surprise Perkz fought the 1v3 and got a kill on Karsa. Wadid used his ultimate in the nick of time to get top and save Perkz. All of this amounted to a huge 8k gold lead at 20 minutes.
When 23 minutes rolled around, Baron was on the eyes of G2. Fortunately for them, they were able to get a great team fight, where they killed all five RNG members. This gave them the Baron that would grow their lead exponentially. G2, using all three lanes, found a bunch of towers and two Inhibitors. After resetting and killing an Infernal Drake, G2 went top. RNG forfeited this Inhibitor as well. As G2 pushed the Nexus towers, some members extended farther and fought RNG on their Fountain steps. Three more kills fell for G2 and so did the Nexus at 29 minutes. As Silver Scrapes played during the intermission, fans wondered if the third seed European team could really defeated the Chinese first seed and tournament favorites…
This question was answered with a resounding YES, as G2 defeated RNG in the fifth game of the series. It was an incredible game, that consisted of a G2 snowball. G2 focused the bottom lane from early on, Jankos helped his duo get First Blood onto Uzi at level two. He facilitated his mid laner, who collected a massive amount of kills throughout the game, by ganking and killing Xiaohu. They took an Infernal Drake and found another kill onto Uzi in the top lane. A skirmish top was huge for G2, and Perkz specificall, where G2 got three kills, two of them going to Perkz. Then, Perkz goes back mid and solo kills his opposing laner.
A few minutes later, RNG tried to catch out Wunder. To their dismay, the fed LeBlanc rotated, killed Mlxg and saved his Aatrox. At 20 minutes, G2’s snowball was growing, up to a 6k gold lead now. Perkz continued his rampage, finding kills onto Uzi, Letme and Ming. G2 continued to collect more towers and dragons, building up this lead all the time.
From here, the game slowed down as G2 tried to secure the Baron. A couple of fights went in the way of RNG, and they looked poised to take back the game with their late game Sivir. Finally, at 34 minutes, G2 started the Baron. They secured it at the cost of their jungler and support. When they regrouped, they played to their preferred style and pushed all three lanes. Towers fell, and RNG initiated one final, desperate fight in the mid lane. The weight of G2’s gold lead was too much, and G2 killed three RNG members. With virtually no resistance, G2 brought home a historic win to advance to the Semifinals!
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