LCS Week 1 Day 1 Recap: A Variety of Styles
The first day of the League of Legends Championship Series has wrapped up. We saw main rosters make their debuts, some teams carry their Lock In hype, and others fall below expectations. I will be breaking down the results of each game in depth and giving a quick headline of how it went.
Let’s get started.
Game 1 Evil Geniuses (1-0) > TSM (0-1)
TLDR: EG continue their momentum as Danny pops off
Summary: Evil Geniuses kicked off the LCS regular season by taking out the debut of TSM’s full roster. It wasn’t easy and TSM did show good signs, but EG were just too good in the end. Shenyi showed great success on Rell as he secured first blood for the bot lane. Keaiduo did lose lane to Jojopyun’s Ryze, but his Viktor was a solid threat in the teamfights. However, EG just had total control of the game overall. Inspired took all 4 dragons, Vulcan’s Leona was a constant source of engage and peel, Impact and Jojopyun were massive AP threats. But the star of the show was Danny on the first ever Zeri in the LCS. He had a solid laning phase, was a nuisance in the teamfights, and when it mattered most at the Elder Dragon fight, he did this.
Yes, that was a pentakill in the first game of the regular season. If this game is any indication, it’s going to be a fun year for EG.
Game 2 FlyQuest (1-0) > CLG (0-1)
TLDR: FlyQuest take home a barnburner of a game to kick off the season right.
Summary: That certainly was a game of League of Legends. FlyQuest busted out the much-maligned Janna smite top lane and won a nearly 50-minute slugfest. Despite Jenkins now having the highest CSD@10, CLG couldn’t turn it into a victory. It was a bloody, incredibly messy game, but FlyQuest just had more in the tank. Johnsun was almost untouchable on Jhin and was capable of completely deleting the squishier members of CLG. Toucouille could do the same on Zoe. This was a better start than expected for FLY, but time will only tell if this enchanter top strategy is a gimmick or a true threat.
Game 3 100 Thieves > Team Liquid
TLDR: The reigning champions choke out the Lock In champions slowly.
Summary: Team Liquid looked completely lifeless in their first game of the season after a great Lock In as they waited to get out scaled and just lied down and died.
Huh, that’s weird. I thought I already threw out all my 2021 writeups.
It was a return to form for Team Liquid in the worst possible way. It was a return to international TL almost 10 months ahead of schedule. Santorin was almost invisible, Hans Sama got out scaled, and Bwipo’s 400 CS Renekton that got ahead early got 1v1’d by Ssumday’s Ornn. It was one of those games for TL.
Meanwhile for 100 Theives, that is certainly a way to show the world that Lock In was a fluke. Just dominate the champions and throw it back to the summer finals! FBI was untouchable on Aphelios ending 9/0/4. Closer completely outperformed Santorin. Abbedagge was the first one to start making plays on Azir and kept up the good play all the way. Huhi gave FBI plenty of room to work and many easy targets. Ssumday survived the laning phase and early game to become far more useful in the critical fights than the Renekton. This was a great game for the defending champions to start their title defense. A solid victory over a quality opponent.
Game 4 Cloud 9 (1-0) > Golden Guardians (0-1)
TLDR: Reigning champs go up against a development roster.
Summary: Cloud 9 could be a lot of things this year. But if this game is any indication, you will never be able to call them boring.
In his first game of coaching, this game was about as LS as it could be. Golden Guardians picked a standard composition (including his old nemesis Renekton). What did Cloud 9 grab? Sona support and Ivern mid. They drafted a significant amount of late game scaling in Gwen for Blaber and Aphelios for Berserker and capped it off with a Gnar for Summit.
While the early game did see a few kills swing Pridestalkr’s way as the Qiyana began to snowball, Cloud 9 quickly showed the world why the unusual picks work.
The carries of Cloud 9 were simply incapable of dying. No matter how hard GG tried, neither Blaber nor Berserker could be dealt with in the mid and late game. If they didn’t burst them out completely, (both went deathless) Fudge and Winsome would be right there with healing and shielding to make it so like the fight never happened. Playing against a team with ocean soul and two enchanters is the type of game that makes players want to uninstall League of Legends. Golden Guardians probably share that sentiment after this game.
Cloud 9 have fully bought into LS’s style of drafting and coaching, and win or lose, they are looking to be one of the most entertaining teams to watch in the LCS.
Game 5 Dignitas (1-0) > Immortals (0-1)
TLDR: Both teams continue their Lock In trajectories. For better or worse.
Summary: In the 21 days between the first meeting of these two teams and this one, Dignitas and Immortals have gone in two separate and unexpected directions.
Dignitas continue to look surprisingly solid. Biofrost and Neo were dominant on lane on the Lux/Caitlyn. Blue was deathless on Leblanc. River continued to impress on Jarvan IV. FakeGod looked great on Gragas and completely shut down his opponents. Dignitas played a complete game and never once really let their foot off the gas. They don’t look like world-beaters, but they are far from the terrible, hopeless, wreck of a team they were projected to be.
Speaking of that…
What has happened to Immortals? This roster was never expected to win titles, but they haven’t looked remotely good in any of their 5 games so far. Forget synergy on the rift, these 5 players look like they don’t even speak the same language! That’s not to say it’s a bunch of great individuals being less than the sum of their parts. Over the course of Lock In and today, all 5 players make convincing cases for worst in their roles. There have been absolutely no positives that have come out of Immortals in 2022. The reason I’m being harsher on them as opposed to say, TSM, is because IMT isn’t known for ramping up and I had issues with their philosophy of roster building to begin with.