North American League of Legends teams are currently enjoying their time off, but not Team Liquid. After their stellar performance this spring, they were invited to the 2019 MSI Invitational. Many of the world’s top talents are attending the tournament this year, making it a tough task for TL. However, they are looking to prove that they can play on one of the world’s biggest stages.
TL Destroys Phong Vũ Buffalo
The Spring Playoffs were certainly a test for Team Liquid, but now the stakes are higher. Their reputation is on the line as they face talented teams from across the globe. In their first matchup of the tournament, Team Liquid faced Phong Vũ Buffalo from Vietnam. Though PVB are a known force in other parts of the world, they were certainly outmatched against Team Liquid.
In three matches, TL handled their opponents with grace and took every opportunity that they could. Jeong ‘Impact’ Eon-yeong had an incredible series in the top lane, totaling a scoreline of 14/7/26. His performance gave Team Liquid the energy they needed to put away the opposition.
Though Impact managed a good scoreline, the rest of Team Liquid struggled in the early stages of the series. Their bottom lane pressure was fairly mediocre compared to how they’ve been playing this season, and as a result they weren’t able to build much of a lead in that regard. However, Jake ‘Xmithie’ Puchero made sure to keep tabs on each lane to ensure that no one was losing too hard. His eventual pressure led to organized team play from Team Liquid, resulting in a 3-0 series win. Their movement and ability to fight as a team made it impossible for PVB to take advantage of their early momentum.
Building Momentum Against the World’s Best
Team Liquid’s momentum is certainly rising after their shutout performance against Phong Vũ Buffalo, however they have a tough road ahead. Top teams, like G2 Esports, Invictus Gaming and SKT Telecom 1 will be waiting for them in the group stage.
Overall, TL has a good chance of making a run at the MSI championship, but they’ll need to play their game in order to do so. It’s clear that they have the pure talent of a championship caliber team, however they can get out of sync in critical moments. This was seen in their Spring Finals win over Team SoloMid, where they started off the series 0-2. If they want any hope of defeating world class teams, Team Liquid must stick to their boundaries and play as a team. They are easily the best team in North America when it comes to team play, and it will be the largest factor in their upcoming journey.
As for the individuals, each member will need to be fully sound in their respective matchups. It’s been clear that Impact is looking to dominate the top lane, but it will be important for TL’s other carries to step it up. Nicolaj ‘Jensen’ Jensen will need to play the same way he did in the Spring Split, as well as Yiliang ‘Doublelift’ Peng. Both have insanely high amounts of potential to carry their team, no matter the situation. As long as they can remain relevant, Team Liquid will make each match-up during this tournament, a great one.
Featured Image Courtesy of LoL Esports Flickr.
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