After all Western sides fell at the hands of their Eastern counterparts, NA and EU’s remaining sides must now make their way through the lower bracket of MSI 2023 if they have any hopes of a deep run. The draw has created two regional matchups, the LEC’s G2 Esports go up against spring winners MAD Lions while LCS champions Cloud9 take on Golden Guardians. Each match will be decided in a best-of-five as the winners progress through the lower bracket while the losers will be sent home.
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- May 13th 2023: G2 Esports vs MAD Lions (18:00 CEST)
- May 14th 2023: Cloud9 vs Golden Guardians (18:00 CEST)
Credit: Riot via Twitter (@LoL Esports)
G2 Esports vs MAD Lions
With neither side coming into this one in good form having both been dismantled by Korean opposition, it’ll largely be down to which team can regain their mental fortitude quicker when finding a winner.
G2 as an organisation have shown their ability down the years to find wins against the MSI odds and you can never count out Caps in particular, whilst MAD themselves managed their Spring LEC title after a disastrous start to the split which they turned around through an unlikely lower bracket playoffs run.
G2 may take some solace in the fact that they were the only of the two sides to pick up a win in their round one loss. That said, their talisman in the mid lane has not been in ideal form and has looked shaky at times so far in the tournament. With that in mind, I’m inclined to lean towards MAD Lions on this occasion and could see them taking the series 3-1.
Prediction: G2 Esports 1-3 MAD Lions
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Cloud9 vs Golden Guardians
Credit: Cloud9 via Twitter (@C9LoL)
Golden Guardians has become a pseudo-home favourite in London over the last two weeks having made their way through the lower bracket in front of the home crowd. They were cheered nonstop during their loss to JD Gaming in round one and harnessing that may be a difference maker for them against Cloud9.
C9 come in as favourites on paper though, booking their place at MSI as LCS champions and will still have plenty of arena support with many fan favourites on their roster. Either side will be itching to get at least one best-of-five win at the tournament and this may be their only chance with the prospect of further Eastern opponents on the horizon.
I’d give the edge to Cloud9. They’ve shown to be the stronger of the sides throughout the split so far and have more of a clutch factor out of the two. GG and several of their players are playing on this sort of stage for the first time while international competition is nothing new to Cloud9. Perhaps through hope more so than expectation, I’m going for a 3-2 win for Cloud9 to give us the first five-game series of the tournament so far.
Prediction: Cloud9 3-2 Golden Guardians
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Header image: G2 Esports via Twitter (@G2 League)