After a strong start to the 2019 MSI tournament, Team Liquid are a couple losses away from being eliminated. This has come as a huge surprise, considering their 2-0 start to the group stage. However, lackluster performances against other top teams are keeping them at the bottom. They’ll not only need to pick up the pace, but they need to do it fast.
Team Liquid: 1-5 in Their Previous 6 Matches
To start off the group stages, TL faced two of the lesser-talented opponents of the group. As a result, they were able to take away two fairly easy victories. This gave them quite a confidence boost heading into some of their tougher match-ups.
Unfortunately for Team Liquid, their next four matches would end in losses. The first two came against highly respected teams, in G2 eSports and Invictus Gaming. Both matches were disasters for TL and looked fairly easy for their opponents. It’s rare to see Team Liquid on the losing end of a slaughter, but overall they didn’t look polished enough to earn a victory. Instead, they played reactive to their opponents rather than aggressive, which led to their eventual demise.
This streak continued into Day 3 of the group stages, where TL dropped another two matches against SK Telecom T1 and Flash Wolves. Again, these matches were very one-sided towards their opposition. Team Liquid looked discombobulated and showed little effort in adapting their play style to other teams. This resulted in four straight losses, all of which could be considered blowouts.
Day four proved to be somewhat better for TL, as they finally halted their losing streak. They picked up another win over Phong Vũ Buffalo, a team they’ve beaten multiple times in this tournament. Certainly that will help them get their confidence back, but it didn’t seem be enough to get them over Invictus Gaming in the following match. Though the scoreboard showed improvements for Team Liquid, the end result was the same and they dropped to 3-5 through eight matches in the group stages.
One Last Chance
On May 14th, Team Liquid will have one final shot at making the final four of the MSI tournament. Though they hold a one game advantage over Flash Wolves, they’ll need to win out on Tuesday to officially secure a spot. However, their next two matches will be against two very tough opponents, in SK Telecom T1 and G2 eSports. One loss could mean Team Liquid are eliminated from the competition.
Though this isn’t a time for Team Liquid to panic, it certainly isn’t a time to take it easy, either. They’ll need to stick to their roots and manifest their own destiny by doing what they do best.
One thing that has stood out for Team Liquid this season is their bottom lane focus. By establishing a lead for Yiliang ‘Doublelift’ Peng in the early stages of the game, TL are set up better for objective control and late game fights. Doublelift is easily one of the world’s best ADCs, so as long as his teammates ensure his success, then the success of the team will increase as well. His skill and knowledge of the game puts him at an advantage in almost any situation, making him the perfect leader for Team Liquid. As long as Doublelift can have an impact on their upcoming matches, then don’t count Team Liquid out just yet.
Featured Image Courtesy of Riot Games.
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