Counter Logic (4-4), eUnited (4-4) and Trifecta (5-3) all have an opportunity to secure the second and final North American spot for the spring LAN in May. Both eUnited and Trifecta face off against Spacestation this week in a rematch of week one sets. Along with playing spoiler, Spacestation has the chance to clinch the first seed in North America this week with a single set win.
eUnited: Apr. 27, 2018 6:45 ET
Solo – Aquarius (SSG) vs BENJI (eun)
Ryan “Aquarius” Oh Neill has more than proven himself to be a stud solo laner for Spacestation this season. Week after week, the 19 year old Canadian has turned in a solid performance. This culminated last week in a dominating game two against Counter Logic, proving that he is capable of carrying the team out of the solo lane, solidifying himself as a top two solo laner in North America.
This week he will be tasked with going up against the other player in the top two discussion in Ben “Benji” Mckinzey. Benji has been the most consistent member for eUnited this year, and his presence is sure to be felt in this pivotal matchup against Aquarius. This is an incredibly close matchup that ultimately goes in eUnited’s favor.
Most contested god: Cerberus
Jungle – Andinster (ssg) vs screammmmm (eun)
For eUnited, success is heavily tied to their jungler Lucas “Screammmmm” Spracklin. Inconsistency issues that have plagued his career have resurfaced in season five, leading to a shaky split for eUnited. When he is on his game it is not hard to argue for him as one of the best players in the world. Going into the most important week of the season, Michael “PolarBearMike” Heiss is going to need to make sure Screammmmm is in the right mindset to avoid a devastating loss.
Going up against Andrew “andinster” Woodward is going to require Screammmmm to play a mistake free set if eUnited wants to win. The Spacestation jungler has had a fantastic set in the spring and looks to have found his old form. This game may come down to which jungler shows up on Friday, and in a close matchup the advantage goes to eUnited.
Most contested god: Nemesis
Mid – baskin (ssg) vs venenu (eun)
This split, Woonyoung “Baskin” Kim has proven himself to be on the shortlist for best player in the world. While that discussion is tricky, the discussion for best North American mid laner is not. Baskin has performed clearly above his competition this split, cementing himself as the best at his role.
This week he will be in for a tough matchup against the reigning SWC MVP Brandon “Venenu” Casale. Both players are going to play an aggressive style that should provide a lot of action in the game. However, Venenu looks to simply be outclassed in a matchup of that style, and he will need help from his team to keep Baskin from carrying Spacestation to victory.
ADC – BARRACCUDDA (SSG) VS PANDACAT (EUN)
Neither John “BaRRaCCuDDa” Salter nor Maksim “PandaCat” Yanevich have had themselves a stellar spring split. In the case of BaRRaCCuDDa he hasn’t needed to provide his usual impact with the rest of his team playing so well. PandaCat on the other hand needs to step up and provide an impact when Screammmmm and Venenu aren’t able to carry. He has shown this ability in recent weeks, and it looks as though the eUnited ADC is finding his fall 2017 form that helped eUnited to win the 2018 SWC.
This is a matchup between two fantastic ADCs in a meta that has the role at it’s weakest in years. The advantage here does go to eUnited, but the overall impact on the outcome of the game will not be high.
Most contested god: Hachiman
Support – jEFFHINDLA (SSG) VS POLARBEARMIKE (EUN)
Rosario “JeffHindla” Vilardi has been the best support in North America this split. Similar to ADC, the support role has been a struggle. Itemization and farming have left a tough role in a tougher position. However, JeffHindla has seemingly not cared about any of this. Week after week the 24 year old American has put on clinics on how to have an impact as a support. Whether through peeling, setting up, stealing objectives or controlling the field, Jeff can do it all.
This week will feature another rematch between the only other support in North America that can match Jeff’s pedigree. PolarBearMike has been the de facto leader of eUnited with some of the best playmaking ability in North America. This is yet another extremely close matchup, but with how consistent Jeff has been, it is hard not to give Spacestation the advantage.
Most contested god: Athena
These two teams are much closer than their records indicate. eUnited look to have gotten past their early season struggles, giving them a good chance to come out the victors in the week six rematch.
Trifecta: Apr 27, 2018 8:30 ET
Solo – AQUARIUS (SSG) VS SCARYD (TFECT)
The questions surrounding Ronnie “ScaryD” Belair in week one appear to have been answered. Like Aquarius, ScaryD has showcased his ability to put the team on his back and carry them to victory. In their first set, ScaryD was the only player keeping Trifecta from being blown out. While they did eventually lose that set, the Trifecta solo laner has continued to make his impact felt moving forward. He will once again be put to the test going up against the red hot Aquarius who looks to have the advantage in this matchup.
Most contested god: Hercules
Jungle – ANDINSTER (SSG) VS MASK (TFECT)
Since joining Trifecta, Suharab “MASK” Askarzada has continued to prove why he is considered one of the best junglers in the world. Similar to last season with Luminosity, the 19 year old American has dominated his North American competition. His impact has been a major factor in Trifecta being in the strong position they find themselves in to control their own fate. Going up against andinster this week will be a tough matchup for the Trifecta jungler. Both junglers like to play an aggressive style, but in online play, MASK has the slight advantage.
Most contested god: Ratatoskr
Mid – baskin (ssg) vs metyankey (tfect)
In what was originally a lopsided matchup in week one, Baskin against Michael “Metyankey” Fasciano has turned into an intriguing pairing in week six. This has come through the solid play of Metyankey who has shown that he should not be considered a weak link on the Trifecta squad. Unfortunately for Metyankey, he is just simply not on the same level that Baskin has been playing at. That fact is true for just about every player in the world right now. With that in mind, the advantage goes to Spacestation in this one.
Most contested god: Thoth
ADC – barraccudda (ssg) vs zapman (tfect)
Similar to BaRRaCCuDDa and PandaCat, Steven “Zapman” Zapas has not had himself a stellar spring split. Like the two mentioned previously, this is more due to the state of the role compared to the skill of the player. Zapman is still an incredible ADC that will give teams a headache if he is given the chance. Unfortunately, it is hard to see this as being the case when the role is in such a weak spot. BaRRaCCuDDa gets the slight advantage in this one, though the importance of that should not be high.
Most contested god: Ullr
Support jeffhindla (ssg) vs neirumah (tfect)
Neil “Neirumah” Mah has continued to climb the ranks of SPL supports. The 22 year old Canadian has shown great resiliency in the support role, coming back in games to make fantastic plays. This week will require him to keep up with JeffHindla, as Spacestation is not prone to letting their opponents back into games. Neirumah needs to do everything he can to match Jeff’s control of the field and positioning is Trifecta wants to have a chance.
Most contested god: Ganesha
Trifecta has been an underrated team this year. If not for two coin toss Fire Giant steals in their last set against Spacestation, Trifecta would be tied for first going into week six. However, Spacestation has only gotten better as the season progressed. This set is expected to come out as a close fought victory for Spacestation.
Things to watch
Don’t expect to see any Terra this week. Spacestation has shown they highly prioritize her in the first banning phase, and there is very little chance a team will allow JeffHindla to pilot the goddess in her current state.
Watch how the junglers on each team decide to start their pathing. It will give an indication of where they will want to apply pressure on the map. This decision may dictate the outcome of the game as was seen in game three against CLG last week.
Keep your eye on how the teams work to get their ADCs farm. This has seemingly been a bigger focal point for teams to attempt to increase the potential of a beleaguered role. These efforts may have a big impact on the ability of other roles, so watch the level disparities.
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Top image courtesy of Hi-Rez Studios