LCS Week 7 Day 1 Recap: League Wide Parity
The first day of week 7 of the League of Legends Championship Series has wrapped up. We saw expected stomps, the middle of the pack clutter even further, and an upset almost nobody saw coming. 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 (9-5) > (4-10)
TLDR: 100 Thieves slaughter the floundering Immortals on their way to a playoff berth
Summary: The last time these two met, 100 Thieves practically ran the map before a bad engage and teamfight in the mid lane handed Immortals their first win of 2022.
This time, there would be no such respite for IMT.
Despite getting a power pick and getting the early shove, Revenge was out of position and gave up first blood to Ssumday’s Renekton. Even when Xerxe’s Udyr came top to dive Ssumday and even up the kill score, the Jayce would fail to pull away and instead get put in the ground. The rest of 100 Thieves put on an absolute clinic on their way to an easy victory. Closer outfarmed the champion that is supposed to do little but farm on Diana and was far more explosive on the map. Abbedagge tore through the entirety of IMT on the Viktor, going 7/1/3. And the bot lane matchup was never even close.
100 Thieves lock playoffs and put themselves in the conversation as one of the LCS’s top teams. There was always C9/TL and then a gap, but 100T are looking to close it. Immortals continue to look like one of the worst team in any major region.
Game 2 (11-3) > (5-9)
TLDR: Team Liquid take apart a bottom table team to keep up in the race for first.
Summary: To CLG’s credit, they did hang in there for a little bit longer than was expected. Hans Sama didn’t have the cleanest early game on the Zeri, but at the end of the day, this match was unlikely to end any other way. The 5 members of TL were simply far better than the 5 members of CLG. It showed in the individual plays and the macro. CoreJJ got to bust out the Shen support and throw down a clutch ultimate to help Bwipo secure a double kill early on Tryndamere. Even though CLG kept the early game close, there was no real point where TL felt threatened. Team Liquid clinches a playoff berth with this win and keeps within spitting distance of C9. They will need some help if they want that first seed, but it is unlikely someone will catch them for 2nd.
Game 3 (3-11) > (11-3)
TLDR: TSM pull off the stunning upset despite all expectations and outside factors to stay alive.
Summary: When a team only has 3 wins, has been in complete disarray the entire season, and has just fired their coach for conflicts of interest you probably expect them to lose to the league’s top team.
Yet TSM showed they are far more like their longtime rival than they would care to admit with a truly Counter-Logic victory over Cloud 9. This looked like the TSM that was advertised! Even though Cloud 9 picked up plenty of early kills and they always had the threat of infinite scaling with the Veigar for Fudge, TSM outplayed them in the crucial 5v5s. Huni did well on a signature champ (Rumble), Takeover looked comfy on the Ryze, Shenyi looked like his FPX Blaze self on Sett, and Tactical cut back on the questionable deaths while keeping up the aggression on Zeri. For the first time this year, TSM looked like a cohesive 5-man unit instead of 5 individuals. While it is likely far too little far too late for it to mean anything for Spring, it is somewhat of a silver lining for the next split. As for C9, trap games are a thing and anything can happen in a rivalry game, just shake it off and move onto the next one.
Game 4 (7-7) > (7-7)
TLDR: Inspired has his best game of the season to push Evil Geniuses ahead in the race for the final spots
Summary: That was simultaneously the expected result when people drew it up in the preseason and a much-needed breath of fresh air for EG.
After a split of being quite quiet, (not terrible, just not MVP caliber) Inspired showed why he was one of the biggest acquisitions of free agency as EG took a commanding early gold lead and never let it go. There was not a whole lot Dignitas could do about the Viego running them over in teamfights. Nor was there much they could do about Jojopyun’s Leblanc which could 1-shot anyone, or Vulcan who landed clutch engages on Nautilus. The team clicked well and it was enough to take home the win and a much needed one at that. There are so many teams hanging around the .500 mark and so few games left that every one of them matters.
Game 5 (7-7) > (7-7)
TLDR: Golden Guardians shake off the loss streak while continuing Flyquest’s freefall.
Summary: That was a refreshing change of pace for Golden Guardians, and unfortunately more of the same for FlyQuest.
After multiple weeks of having massive questions surrounding their mid and late game and it coming back to bite them, this time the Golden Guardians pulled ahead early and never looked back. The game couldn’t be called close by any metric. All 3 lanes got ahead, Pridestalkr was a monster on the Xin Zhao, Flyquest only picked up 3 kills all game, and it was all GG from start to finish. After losing plenty of very winnable games off of unforced errors, a nice stomping of a team they are competing for seeding with is a nice change of pace. Meanwhile for FlyQuest, things only continue to go downhill. They are now 2-6 since their 5-1 start and the biggest issue has been that few if any of their losses have looked competitive. When FLY lose, they lose ugly. While they probably won’t miss playoffs, they feel worlds apart from the real contenders, the big 3 in particular.