With the knockout brackets officially decided for the next installment of the tournament, LCS action just got a little more serious as eight teams face off in their first best-of-three series of the year. So far, Evil Geniuses, Team Liquid, and 100 Thieves have shown a plethora of skill as they have been able to knock off opponents with ease.
FlyQuest snuck into the last spot of playoff brackets due to their last gasp victories over Evil Geniuses and Immortals on Day 4. But do they have enough skill on their roster to make a bigger push during the preseason with only one game under his belt?
100 Thieves vs Immortals
Prediction: 100 Thieves (2-0)
With our first quarter-final encounter of the evening, there’s little left to the imagination for the result. 100 Thieves put on a clinic against their opponents this group stage. Despite their loss to CLG, Ssumday and Clozer went on to lead this team to a three-game victory streak as the new-look roster has shown they have what it takes to be a top tier LCS talent.
For Immortals, the prospects for success are rather bleak given their current substitute situation. Potluck has shown brief instances of promise on champions like Taliyah and Karthus, but he isn’t the same kind of player that Xerxe is in order for Immortals to possibly get over that hump in this series. Expect for a swift drubbing from 100 Thieves in this series with most of the carrying power coming from the side of the top lane or even bot lane given the delta in both areas.
Cloud 9 vs. Team SoloMid
Prediction: Cloud9 (2-1)
Cloud9 had a slight hiccup in game one of the LCS lock-in tournament, but since then, C9 and Perkz have been able to lead the way with a flurry of fast finishes. Even still, this may be the toughest match for Cloud9 yet since their loss to EG considering the comfortable schedule they enjoyed immediately after their loss.
On the side of TSM, Huni and co. have a lot more to prove as they seemed lackluster and always a step behind during certain group stage matches. They comfortably beat lesser opponents in GG and CLG, but when it came time to face off against better-equipped talent, the wheels started to fall off for TSM in the games against Team Liquid and 100T.
While we here at EsportsBets expect this series to be the closest of them all this weekend. Cloud9 has a slight advantage with team synergy and cohesion, but TSM has a lot of latent potential on their roster that could pull off a surprise or two depending on the game.
Evil Geniuses vs. Golden Guardians
Prediction: Evil Geniuses (2-0)
In another easy quarterfinal bracket, Evil Geniuses stroll their way into the knockout stages on the back of triumphant performances from Impact. The legendary top laner has made it clear that his ‘impact’ on the league will always be felt. With each and every game this group stage, Impact has demanded pressure and dominated lanes in ways that are reminiscent of his prime.
As EG continue their rampage, picking up a clean 2-0 in this series will be crucial to their confidence going forward. Standing in their way is a diligent Golden Guardians roster who just barely managed to sneak in a victory over CLG to qualify for knockouts. Despite their young roster, players like Iconic have shown promise odds are not looking in GG’s favor to overcome the behemoth that is Evil Geniuses right now.
Team Liquid vs. FlyQuest
Prediction: TL (2-1)
Team Liquid have looked pretty dominant aside from the one-loss they suffered to 100T in their first League of Legends outing. CoreJJ has seemingly continued his form from the NA in-houses as he and Tactical look like the best bot lane in North America by a long stretch. Elsewhere on the map, Alphari has shown why he has been lauded as one of Europe’s best talents for such a long time now.
What’s scary about Team Liquid right now is their dominance without Santorin in the lineup. Armao has come on as a substitute Jungler for TL this tournament as Liquid purposefully chose to go with a substitute to make their training for the offseason a little harder.
The results have been beneficial as Armao has received much-needed practice. But without a doubt, Santorin will need to be reintroduced this series in order for them to come out ahead against FlyQuest in Josedeodo’s return to the team.
Josedeodo helped FLY to their second win of the group stage against IMT, and he will hopefully look to snowball that momentum this series with another positive outing. However, he has a fully stacked Team Liquid and Uber motivated CoreJJ standing in his way.