Slightly past the Summer Season halfway point, the LCS continues through Week 5 this weekend. Team Liquid had a rough Day 1 and Day 2, losing convincingly to 100 Thieves and Cloud9. This continues a trend for TL on the back half of the year–they lose against the top teams. Unfortunately, Liquid has yet to pick up a win versus 100T, TSM or C9 across five weeks of play. This team has had high points throughout the year, even going as far as a five-game series versus C9 in the Mid Season Showdown Finals. That said, Team Liquid currently holds a losing record to C9 across 2021, while holding a winning record over TSM.
Team Liquid faced Cloud9 in five different stages of competition this year. They met in the Lock In tournament Finals, twice in Spring Split, twice in the Mid Season Showdown, and twice in Summer Split. TL had C9’s number at the start of the year. Liquid won 3-2 over C9 in the Lock In Finals, followed by both regular season matches going in TL’s favor.
|MSS Round 2||1||3|
Once Mid Season Showdown rolled around, though, C9 came out on top. They beat TL 3-1 in Round 2 of the tournament, knocking them down to the loser’s bracket. Then C9 won again in the Finals 3-2 to qualify to Mid Season Invitational in Iceland.
Now TL has faced C9 twice in Summer Season, both of which resulted in losses. Both teams have dealt with roster changes over the weeks, but Liquid is now in a losing position versus C9 across the year. The 8-10 overall record shows C9 has been the superior head-to-head team in 2021. Luckily, TL still has another regular season faceoff and playoffs to catch back up. Redemption is still possible before all is said and done.
Team Liquid has not met TSM as many times as C9 over the course of the year. However, they have had the same number of different stages played against one another. TL and TSM played once during the Lock In tournament group stage, twice in Spring Split, twice in the Mid Season Showdown, and twice in Summer Split. So far, TSM has prevailed in the regular seasons, while TL has won in the tournament stages.
|MSS Round 1||3||1|
|MSS Round 3||3||1|
Liquid beat TSM in their one Lock In match, but never saw each other again in the tournament. TSM turned it back during Spring regular season, taking both round robin matchups. TL took back the reins during Mid Season Showdown, knocking TSM into the loser’s bracket with a 3-1 Round 1 win. Then they met in Round 3, which went 3-1 in TL’s favor again. Liquid went to Finals and TSM went home.
So far TSM looks superior again in the Summer regular season. They have the 2-0 head-to-head record just like Spring Split. With three round robins in Summer, TSM has the opportunity to pull another win over TL. Across 2021, Liquid has a 7-6 cumulative record, so one more TSM win would even the odds. They meet again in Week 7.
“The Big 3”
With TL, TSM and C9 now considered “The Big 3,” their cumulative records matter more than others in the LCS. They have all shown dominance over each other year over year, and 2021 is no different. Interestingly, Team Liquid started strong against C9 and weak against TSM in Spring, followed by beating TSM twice and losing twice to C9 in MSS. Now Summer Season continues forward, and Team Liquid is 0-4 versus both teams. They played C9 and TSM one more time before playoffs, and chances are they will face them at least once each in playoffs. With 100 Thieves the league favorite at the moment, Team Liquid will be competing with TSM and C9 for their slot at Worlds 2021.
Image from LCS Twitter
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