TSM win ‘El Clasico’, Liquid and Flyquest get their first wins

No teams are left unbeaten coming out of week 2, showing how close this summer split is going to be

by Ryan Payne | @Payney_94 | Jun 12, 2017, 7:15pm BST

TSM’s performances seem very reliant on Svenskeren so far

CLG had made a fine start to the summer split going 3-0 without really playing at their best, and hoped to really state their intent at the number 1 spot by beating a TSM team that has had a slow start to the split, coming into this game at 1-2.

Game 1 picks:
CLG (blue) – Gragas/Lee Sin/Fiora/Varus/Blitzcrank
TSM (red) – Kennen/Kha’Zix/Galio/Caitlyn/Lulu

TSM once again put Bjergsen onto Galio mid, where I don’t think he’s looked particularly effective so far. To try and stop him impacting in the game, CLG took a top lane match up into mid with Huhi picking Fiora.
It turned out to be a good choice, as CLG started well early on, getting 2 kills bottom before rotating around the map, going 7-2 up in kills when they took Baron at 20 minutes.
Huhi was able to comfortably split push on Fiora, winning a 1v1 fight against Hauntzer’s Kennen, letting his team mates start start the next Baron, knowing it was 4v4 until Huhi could join them. They managed to grab the other 4 kills and get Baron, giving themselves a 9k gold lead.
The game slowed down until the next Baron spawn, where TSM took a 5v4 fight, picking up a kill onto Dardoch, meanwhile Huhi was in their base taking down one of the nexus turrets when Hauntzer backed to stop him, only just managing to hold him off whilst CLG cleaned up the fight at Baron, taking out the rest of TSM. Using the time window from this fight, CLG ended the game at 38 minutes with a big 14k gold lead.

Game 2 picks:
CLG (red) – Renekton/Elise/Ahri/Varus/Blitzcrank
TSM (blue) – Gragas/Lee Sin/Taliyah/Ashe/Thresh

TSM took a much better comp into Game 2, with a more aggressive bot lane, and better pick potential across the rest of the map with Bjergsen put back onto a carry in Taliyah.
Both teams had the potential to snowball like crazy in this one.

It would be TSM that would be the ones to snowball, as Svenskeren put in a fantastic performance on Lee Sin, controlling everything about the game from objective control to kills. After TSM were able to pick up two double kills at bottom and middle, they fought a convincing fight outside Baron pit, getting 4 kills for 0 deaths and forcing CLG to start throwing everything at them in an all or nothing attempt to salvage the game.
It didn’t work for them however, as TSM’s strong cc and clean team fighting saw them punish CLG repeatedly for being even the slightest bit out of position.

TSM won the game off of a CLG engage as Bjergsen was taken incredibly low, but he and his allies were able to re-engage and get 4 kills, ending the game at 29 minutes up 28 kills to 7.
Svenskeren finished 13/0/12 on Lee Sin with the best performance we’ve seen from him for quite some time, the highlight being the zero deaths, something he has struggled on a lot in the start of the split.

Game 3 picks:
CLG (blue) – Galio/Graves/Ahri/Xayah/Rakan
TSM (red) – Renekton/Lee Sin/Taliyah/Ashe/Thresh

TSM went with almost the same comp as Game 2, taking the extra damage from Renekton in the top lane instead.

This game was incredibly close throughout with the two teams trading kills and objectives early on, before neither team could win a convincing fight as the game approached the mid point. Hauntzer and Darshan were both huge front line tanks with the two of them diving into their enemies’ backline, causing chaotic fights to break out where the focus from the carries wasn’t present and neither side could gain the advantage. That was until Hauntzer’s Renekton started to dish out more damage than the Galio, and TSM managed to win a big fight 3 for 1 in the mid lane.

Baron went down to TSM at 30 minutes, with both top laners once again taking the brunt of the damage and both going down in a 1 for 1 fight.
The further the game went on, the more damage TSM seemed to have compared to CLG, winning a 4 for 1 trade that took them 9k gold ahead. Despite this, CLG mustered up all their skill and took out 3 TSM members in the mid lane, pushing through into the base and destroying one of the nexus turrets and getting the second very low, until they were stopped by the reviving TSM team who swept them aside, picking up the ace and running it all the way down the mid lane to take the CLG nexus, the win and the bragging rights in an exciting and mechanically high series.

CLG will be disappointed to have lost after being so close to victory, and after winning Game 1 of the series.
For TSM they will be happy to have secured the win, despite still not being anywhere near their best. Game 2 will be their highlight, and will be hoping to pull out plenty more performances like that before the split is over.

This gives CLG their first defeat of the split, taking them to 3-1 and staying joint top after week 2. TSM improve to 2-2 and will be hoping it’s the last time they have a negative record this split.

Panye’s prediction: CLG win 2-1
Series result: TSM win 2-1

Doublelift will be happy to have won against his former team

Team Liquid pushed Team Envy all the way in their third series loss of the split, and there were positives for them to take and build on going into their series against the undefeated Team Dignitas who once again started with Shrimp in the jungle.

Game 1 picks:
Dignitas (blue) – Fiora/Elise/Orianna/Ashe/Lulu
Liquid (red) – Gragas/Rengar/Taliyah/Caitlyn/Karma

Game 1 started slow in terms of kills, only 5 kills at 16 minutes, the same amount as towers taken. The teams continued to trade kills back and forth, Dig taking an uncontested Baron 22 minutes in and the game once again going into a lull. Liquid attempted to take the second Baron, but Dig had other ideas, leaping in and Shrimp grabbing the steal, following up with 3 kills. At this point Ssumday’s Fiora was huge, over 350 cs at 33 minutes in, helping Dig snowball their lead, winning Game 1 with a 15k gold lead.

Game 2 picks:
Dignitas (red) – Renekton/Gragas/Orianna/Ashe/Zyra
Liquid (blue) – Rumble/Elise/Taliyah/Caitlyn/Karma

A lot of people would have expected Liquid to have rolled over in game 2, as the constant losses start getting to their morale.
This wasn’t the case, as they came back resiliently and took the fight to Dig, picking themselves up 2 kills, 3 towers and an ocean drake in the first 19 minutes, giving them a 3k gold lead. They continued to control the objective game, getting 2 cloud drakes before getting getting a triple kill on Piglet’s Caitlyn and taking Baron, moving into a 10k gold lead at 35 minutes after taking an Infernal Drake.

Liquid didn’t get through this game without a scare, as they saw the potential of Dig’s team fighting ability, getting cornered in the jungle and being hit by both Gragas and Orianna ultimates that saw 4 of their team killed. This allowed Dig to take both the Baron and the Elder Dragon, cutting Liquid’s lead to just 3k after an almost 5k gold Baron Power Play.
The next teamfight was the deciding one, Lourlo (who had been non-existent in Game 1) doing brilliantly to burn through the Dig back line with Rumble, sacrificing himself help Piglet get a triple kill on the low Dig members, with Liquid ending the game at 45 minutes showing great mental resolve to come back strong in that fight after looking like they might throw the game.

Game 3 picks:
Dignitas (blue) – J4/Elise/Orianna/Ashe/Zyra
Liquid (red) – Gragas/Olaf/Syndra/Caitlyn/Karma

Liquid stuck to their plan in the bottom lane, hoping to play around Piglet in the mid to late game, whilst Keane played Orianna for the third time this series, this time hoping to combine it with Ssumday’s Jarvan.

It was another good start from Liquid, getting a quick 2k lead only 5 minutes into the game. Reignover on his comfort pick Olaf was able to grab the Infernal Drake, as Liquid started to take some towers and create some pressure on the map, before Dig took the next Infernal Drake, losing Ssumday in the process.
The fights that ensued afterwards were sloppy from both teams, neither able to take an advantage out of them. Liquid secured their second Infernal Drake, the last of the game, before sacrificing two members to get the Baron.

At 35 minutes into the game, it again looked as if Liquid might throw the game, as a massive team fight broke out just outside the top of Dig’s base with Ssumday leaping into the entire Liquid team, sending them into panic mode and Dig picking them off one by one, getting the ace.
But once again, Liquid regrouped and strengthened their resolve, turning round a Dignitas engage in another brilliant game ending team fight in the mid lane, winning the game in 40 minutes with a 5k lead, and winning their first series of the split.

Dignitas will be upset to have lost this after such a strong start in Game 1, but I don’t think anyone can take away just how well Liquid stayed in the series and how hard they fought for their win that now pulls them off of the foot of the table and to 1-3. Goldenglue and Reignover appear to be building some good synergy, increasing their influence on the game, and Piglet is now being played around better in the late game, letting him turn into the hyper carry everyone knows he is capable of being.

Despite losing their first series, Dig are still joint top of the table at 3-1, and have two more lower teams to play in week 3, a good chance to get back to winning ways and fix the issues they had in this series.

Panye’s prediction: Dig win 2-0
Series result: Liquid win 2-1

A big performance from Liquid to get their first win of the split

Cloud 9 and Echo Fox played out the longest and shortest games of the Summer Split so far (correct me if I’m wrong) in this series. C9 were 1-2 and Fox 2-1 coming into this one. Cloud 9 brought Impact back in for Ray in the top lane as they looked to win their second straight series and improve to 2-2.
Echo Fox continued with Grig in the jungle instead of Akaadian.

Game 1 picks:
Echo Fox (blue) – Jayce/Elise/LeBlanc/Xayah/Sejuani
Cloud 9 (red) – Gragas/Lee Sin/Cassiopeia/Varus/Thresh

Gate once again picked Sejuani in the support role as the teams front line tank, freeing up the rest of the team to deal more damage.
Neither team took the better of the early game, the gold was even at 23 minutes with both teams picking up an Infernal Drake before Cloud 9 took the last Infernal and getting a kill to go with it.

Looper’s Jayce was a constant threat in the side lanes, C9 having to send multiple champions to deal with him, but were unable to cleanly get the kill, Looper taking someone down with him every time in a numbers disadvantage and giving his team mates the chance to pressure else where on the map.
Echo Fox took the gold lead at 27 minutes after getting Baron, despite being down in kills. They continued to focus on getting towers instead of kills, C9 staying ahead on kills and Drakes.
Fox managed to secure the second Baron of the game and continued to break down C9’s structures, Froggen pushing into the base whilst C9 take the Elder Dragon but unable to take either nexus turret.

Fox regroup later on and come back to try and break the base down, successfully destroying both nexus turrets, losing Froggen to a brilliant Cassiopeia ultimate from Jensen, saving the game for C9 in that moment. Fox try to backdoor with their 3 remaining members, but quickly get dispatched by Cloud 9’s defense.
Froggen once again tries to backdoor, losing 1v1 to Grig whilst the rest of the teams go 2 for 2 in a fight mid.  As Fox get frustrated in not being able to take the game, Impact baits them in looking for a kill, letting Jensen get a pick onto Looper. Fox manage to take the Elder Dragon but lose Keith and Gate in doing so, the game descending into chaos with every engagement that goes on.

Contractz and Smoothie find Froggen on his own and get the kill, giving them a 75 second window to play 5v4. In that time Jensen finds a kill onto Grig, letting the team bear down on the Fox base in a 3v2 as Looper is taken down by 2 C9 members as he tries to backdoor, and this would be what ends the game, Cloud 9 getting the win in a marathon 61 minute come back, after Fox had a gold lead as high as 8k at one point.

Some stats from this game:
Echo Fox had only 15 kills in 61 minutes, with 1 Drake, 2 Elder Dragons and 2 Barons.
Cloud 9 ended on 31 kills, 3 Drakes, 1 Elder Dragon and 3 Barons.

Game 1 was a crazy and exciting game, and it would take something special in Game 2 to replicate the entertainment.

Game 2 picks:
Echo Fox (red) – Gragas/Lee Sin/Taliyah/Varus/Tahm Kench
Cloud 9 (blue) – J4/Ivern/Orianna/Kennen/Thresh

Game 2 once again saw Gate taking a less common tank pick into support, this time picking up the Tahm Kench who hasn’t seen much play this split as of yet.

After the hour long game 1, game 2 couldn’t have been more different. The first 10 minutes were slow, Fox ahead 2-1 in kills and C9 having a Mountain Drake. In the first big team fight, Froggen managed to cut off C9 off with a good Taliyah ultimate, Fox getting 3 kills off of it.
They fully gained a lead 15 minutes in, collapsing as 5 onto Sneaky and Smoothie in the top lane, killing them both and taking a 2k gold lead. Not wanting to ease up the pressure they were putting onto Cloud 9, they managed to take the Mountain Drake and a kill, going 9-1 up.

With a 4k lead, Fox chose to attempt Baron with 3 members, Froggen and Gate not quite there in time and trying to zone C9 members away. This was in vain however, as C9 collapsed on the pit and took all 3 kills, getting Baron as well, leveling the gold up.
In what didn’t appear to be a situation that could end the game, Froggen attempted to get to the back line of C9 from behind, but was swiftly dispatched of, which allowed Cloud 9 to walk into the base, pick off the remaining Fox members and end the game in just 23 minutes. In a minute’s play that took everyone by surprise, not expecting the game to be ended so quickly after Froggen’s death.

This result evens Cloud 9 and Echo Fox’ records at 2-2, with C9 feeling a lot better right now having won 2 in a row, whereas Fox are now on 2 loss streak and will be hoping to stop the rot as soon as possible.

Panye’s prediction: Cloud 9 win 2-1
Series result: Cloud 9 win 2-0

Impact coming back in to help Cloud 9 to 2-2

Phoenix 1 and Flyquest went into their match as the last 2 teams without a win, knowing that whoever lost would be alone at the bottom of the table on 0-4 after Liquid got their first win in the match before.
P1 started the series with Meteos this time, picking Rek’sai, a champion that hasn’t seen much play despite the recent slight buffs.

Game 1 picks:
Phoenix 1 (blue) – Shen/Rek’sai/Cassiopeia/Varus/Karma
Flyquest (red) – Rumble/Rengar/Viktor/Ashe/Zyra

The Rek’sai pick looked like a good choice at first, Meteos picking up first blood onto Lemonnation. The focus on the bot lane continued as P1 collapsed and took the fight 3 for 1, then got themselves Ocean and Infernal Drakes as well as 2 more kills, but still found themselves 2k behind in gold with Fly taking towers and cs’ing better.

Flyquest started to get the edge in fights, gradually evening the kill score, taking an uncontested Baron at 20 minutes with a gold lead of 5k. They controlled the map well, concentrating on taking towers and objectives rather than actively looking for kills, getting their second Baron and 3 more kills, extending their lead to 10k where they wore down P1 through the mid lane into the base, picking off the defense bit by bit and ending the game at 34 minutes.

Game 2 picks:
Phoenix 1 (red) – Urgot/Elise/Lucian/Kalista/Thresh
Flyquest (blue) – Kennen/Gragas/Orianna/Ashe/Morgana

Despite it being a less common pick, Lucian mid has seen success so far in multiple regions in summer. But on a struggling team in a game this important, I’m not sure it was the right choice for P1 to put Ryu onto it. Not only that, but putting Arrow on Kalista and Zig on Urgot top said to me that they were almost expecting to lose, so they just decided to go completely off meta for this game.

For the first 11 minutes, nothing happened at all in this game, no kills, no towers, nothing but P1 with a small cs lead. That was until Fly took the Infernal Drake and the game started to be a bit more active as P1 took a fight 3 for 0. Fly concentrated on the objectives again until P1 engaged in a similar way to before, this time Fly were able to take the 3 unanswered kills.
Fly had the same success in the next fight again in the mid lane, winning with 4 kills for 0 as well as Baron, P1 looking like capitulating at any moment.
That moment would be around 25 minutes into the game, as Wildturtle caught Ryu’s Lucian with the Ashe arrow, Fly’s cc chain locking him down and getting the kill. This wouldn’t have been too disastrous for P1, until Meteos was seen on a ward in the mid lane far behind the Flyquest team, signalling them to go for the 5v3 fight in P1’s base, getting 2 kills and destroying the nexus, ending with a 9k gold lead.

Phoenix 1’s draft in Game 2 made no sense, almost as if they had already given up. It’s going to take a lot of quick work for them to turn this dreadful start to the split around if they have any hope of getting near play-offs, let alone the third place they had in Spring, as they find themselves rooted to the bottom of the table at 0-4.
Flyquest got their first win of the split with 2 solid and well constructed games, focusing on the objectives and not being caught out in bad places. They will be hoping to use this win as a platform to push their way up the rankings in the coming weeks.

Panye’s prediction: Flyquest win 2-1
Series result: Flyquest win 2-0

Flyquest with a clean 2 game win over Phoenix 1 to get their first win of the split

This week has shown that everyone can win or lose any series right now. We have no teams left unbeaten, and only one team waiting for their first win. It’s only been 2 weeks but it looks incredibly harder to predict results and who is going to come out on top, which is going to give us an extremely exciting Summer Split.

My most impressive team of the week is Team Envy, beating Immortals and Liquid, going 3-1 and joint top for the split. With each series they seem to be improving on another aspect of their game, and I’m really excited to see how far they can go with this roster. Nisqy is coming to join them ready for week 3, but I wouldn’t want to see them introduce him this early, as I feel they have a great chance to get a run going.

The most disappointing team this week has to be Phoenix 1. After coming third in Spring, the manner of their defeats have been lacklustre so far, and the second game against Flyquest particularly disappointing. Echo Fox lose both their games this week but I think 2-2 is a fair reflection of how they are as a team. Phoenix 1 should not be 0-4, especially with last split’s MVP. It will be interesting to see where they go from here, whether there are roster changes, and if Arrow can get back to being anywhere near as good as he was in Spring.

NA LCS standings at the end of week 2

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