North American LCS Recap: Week 2
Week two of the North American League of Legends Championship Series (NA LCS) continues to provide us with interesting games from 100 thieves and C9, but also highlights some of the most negative quirks of patch 8.1. Among those are the stopwatch parties, and the Targon capacity to get big lane sustain.
Day 1 (January 26th)
CG v. CLG (CG Victory): Febiven achieves the first penta of the split, and his team is carried onto a victory. He would later say that CLG was literally “throwing themselves at him”, in colourful language. The first 5 minutes of CLG was stable, their bot lane almost allowed Darshan to go off.
TSM v. OPT (TSM Victory): At just over an hour, it was an extremely long game, and a frustrating one for both OPT and TSM. TSM was provided with just enough team fight wins at the end to claim the game, spending most of it kiting. OPT just failed to engage in meaningful ways, and POE’s Syndra proved lackluster. A critical baron encounter at 41 minutes where Evelynn’s invisibility leads to a bad call must have been crushing for OPT.
C9 v. FOX (FOX Victory): A fantastic game to watch, if there is one you should watch this week, it will be this one. C9 had a fantastic league in the game, but it ultimately fell apart for them, despite the unsealed spellbook abuse (8.1 why were you like this?). Huni shines, but mostly Dardoch, and what his jungle presence could achieve. Big props to Licorice who got picked on early, and continued to remain aggressive.
100 v. TL (100 Victory): TL takes a loss to 100 Thieves, with an impressive performance by Meteos on Sejuani and synergy between him and Aphro. early dives at level 5 put resources onto a Kog which provided great pressure. Doublelift was left trying to match side lanes, and his team could not keep up, even after a critical baron victory around 30 minutes.
GGS v. FLY (FLY Victory): Golden Guardians got early picks on WildTurtle, and things looked good. Then, the game stalled out, and GGS reverted to a turtle strat when they should have pressed their advantage. Their backline eventually became a victim to AnDa’s Zac. As a secondary engage to Flame in the toplane, he was able to crush GGS in areas where they had been corralled. This shows great patience from the FLY jungler.
Day 2 (January 27th)
FOX v. TSM (FOX Victory): Once again, another demonstration of what FOX can do in the late game. Very big lead for TSM which was eventually thrown to FOX when Huni and Dardoch saw an opportunity. Both of which have a great synergy. Fox remains very decisive in their actions, reminiscent of Immortals.
C9 v. 100 (C9 Victory): Clean game from C9, first loss for 100 Thieves. Licorice impresses on Camille, not nervous in his games despite absorbing a lot of pressure. Once more, the double unsealed spellbook from C9 in the botlane created a lot of action top.
OPT v. FLY (OPT Victory): PowerOfEvil finally gets around to playing an impressive Syndra game, which people were looking forward to. FLY didn’t have the Zac to fall back onto, and LemonNation on the Tahm was able to deny J4 any aggression against POE. Akkadian was able to dance around the team fights on Kha because of the double tank, which looked good for OPT.
GGS v. CLG (CLG Victory): CLG attempts to return, as many people this week did, to 1 / 3 / 1 in lanes. Golden Guardians also did the same, prioritizing strong laners like Vladimir for Hai and Gnar. Golden guardians stands now as the only winless team, and the tragedy of it all is that the leads they have been accumulating in the early game have not translated into victories.
TL: v. CG (TL Victory): Team Liquid demonstrates how to close out a game, which will be rewarding for fans. They make a call, get a pick, end the game. Clutch unfortunately continues to lag behind after early deaths by Lira. Clutch never managed to utilize their composition and their ultimate’s to rival Xmithie.
Week 2 Highlights:
- Keep an eye on Hai in the upcoming weeks. Golden Guardians banked a lot on his shot-calling to take them to victories. Sadly, this hasn’t been happening, and their losses are usually born of late-game team fight loses and decision making. This will either change, as synergy grows, or GGS will end very low on ladders.
- 100 Thieves continues to be extremely impressive. Their week 1 victory over OPT was drawn out, and lazy. This week was a wholly different experience. Ryu shines as a pillar of the team.
- Huni is performing very well top lane, making his team competitive. His Gnar gaves were very solid, it may be nice to see something a little wilder when their lead solidifies (crossing fingers for a Lucian game).
- Watch for OPT in the next few weeks, their potential will shine!
Mic quote of the week
“Play Ezreal. Trust me, you pop off on Ezreal, you get a girlfriend” – Hai, to Deftly
For future NA LCS esports coverage, and to make sure you don’t miss important developments, don’t forget to read IMGMR every week.