The four teams moving on from the Play-In Stage are decided and the Main Event finally set to begin on October 12th. So how did these four teams do in the Play-In Stage? How will they perform during the Main Event? Will any of them have a shot at advancing? Here are some things fans can take away from the Play-In Knockout Stage.
DAMWON Gaming: Dark Horse Run Begins
It turns out that the Korean region is pretty good at League of Legends. After a dominant performance through all of the Play-In Stage, they only dropped a single game to Lowkey Esports in the Knockout Stage. While the top half of the map still performed as expected, with Top Laner Jang “Nuguri” Ha-gwon flexing his dominance over the competition with various Kleptomancy Top Laners, there was still the same issues for the team. That issue being the inconsistent play from the bot lane tandem of ADC Sin “Nuclear” Jeong-hyeon and support Cho “BeryL” Geon-hee. While they were able to have some great games at times, it’s clear that they’re still a huge weakness going into the Main Event.
Now that DAMWON find themselves in a group filled with amazing Bot Laners, will Nuclear and BeryL be able to step up? If they are to advance, the rest of the team will likely need to help cover for this comparative weakness.
Clutch Gaming: Ruthless Aggression
To say Clutch Gaming cleanly made their way through the Play-In Stage would be a lie. While their finals matches were a clean and dominant performance when it mattered most by all of Clutch Gaming, their group stage performances, mainly against Unicorns of Love were rough at times. This led to Clutch having to play an extra tiebreaker match against UOL, where Clutch was finally able to pick up a win against the CIS representatives. From there, Cutch rode the momentum to a quick 3-0 victory over Royal Youth, highlighted by a deathless series by Cody “Cody Sun” Li-Yu.
With Clutch now in Group C, Cody Sun and Heo “Huni” Seung-hoon are now able to get their revenge against both Fnatic and SK Telecom T1. As such, Group C has become a lot more interesting.
Hong Kong Attitude: Continued Resilience
Despite the doubt in the team, Hong Kong continues to fight and move forward, qualifying for a spot in the Main Event. While many counted out Hong Kong after their abysmal performance in the group stages, the Hong Kong Attitude looked solid in their victory against Isurus Gaming in the Knockout Stage. Their great performance was led by the likes of Jungler Lee “Crash” Dong-woo and Mid Laner Chen “M1ssion” Hsiao-Hsien, who all had great performances against Isurus.
Now as Hong Kong find themselves in a group of death against G2 Esports, Griffin, and Cloud9, they’ll have a rough road ahead of them. Will Hong Kong pull off the impossible and fight their way into a playoff spot? While it’s very unlikely, hopefully Hong Kong will be able to keep their heads up high and go out fighting.
After dominating their group, dropping only one game against Isurus Gaming, Splyce found themselves in a tough match. Facing off against the CIS representatives, Splyce would have an intense match against Unicorns of Love. In the end, Splyce had to play the role of heartbreakers as they knocked out the fan favorites 3-2. Their victory was thanks in part to the play of ADC Kasper “Kobbe” Kobberup and Mid Laner Marek “Humanoid” Brázda.
Now Splyce can continue to play the role of the heartbreaker in Group B. Awaiting them is Kim “Doinb” Tae-sang and FunPlus Phoenix, looking to make a huge run in their first international appearance; Đỗ “Levi” Duy Khánh and GAM Esports, hoping to finally make a deep underdog run into the playoffs; and Chu “FoFo” Chun-Lan and J Team, who look to have a strong showing as the first seed representatives for Taiwan in their final season as the LMS. Which dreams will Splyce crush as they fight for their own spot in the playoffs? Only time will tell.
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 LoL Esports Flickr.
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