Welcome to The LEC Preview were we here at Gromp News discuss the major talking point going to the third week of the League of Legends European Championship. After Misifts faltering last week, are teams around them going to take advantage and close the game between them and the likes of G2. Also after G2 narrowly beating exceL, is it only a matter of time before they lose? While we only discuss three talking points it’s important to note that we could possibly have one side go 0-6, the unbelievable question is who will it be. Rogue or Fnatic? There are so many questions going into this game week, one thing is a fact though. This LEC has been unexpected and we here at Gromp News don’t expect that to change any time soon.
Fnatics’ redemption begins?
Saturday’s final match of the weekend will see Fnatic face off against Misfits, in what is guaranteed to be an excellent showcase of skill. The best thing about this match-up is the importance a victory is for both sides. Fnatic will need to win as many games as possible if they have a chance of competing for the title at the end of the regular season. Whilst Misfits suffered a reality check, losing semi-convincingly to Vitality. Both of these organisations are expected to beat their opponents on Friday (exceL and Rogue) meaning that a loss here can severely hurt either sides momentum.
If this preview was being written after last Friday’s games, then you could almost guarantee a Misfits victory. However, their inability to defeat Vitality left many doubting if this side can go toe to toe with the ‘higher tier’ teams in this league. Fnatic may not seem like a top side right now but their quality cannot be ignored, despite an incredibly shaky start to the campaign. What’s interesting to note is that Fnatic is increasingly getting better with each game in different aspects. Eventually, everything is going to have to click and it seems that for this team to beat Misfits, their midlaner might be the answer on this occasion. Nemesis was yet again let down by his teammates, something that we here at Gromp News never thought we would say. Maybe it’s time to allow Nemesis to carry the side as even Rekkles on the Sivr couldn’t stop the team losing. With Hans Sama and GorillA looking like a dangerous duo, it’s clear that Fnatic will have to look at other lanes if they want to win. Either way, this match has an old guard vs the new blood feel to it and we can’t wait for this clash to occur.
Vitality’s chance to prove themselves again
Last week Vitality proved that they are a side still capable of competing for the title. After a shaky 1-1 in the first week, Jizuke’s side stormed past Fnatic and Misfits cementing themselves as one of the teams to watch this campaign. It was a completely different Vitality from the one we saw in the first week. Mowgli showed his mechanical ability with some smooth and flawless jungle engages and also Jizuke looked more like the player we saw at Worlds last year. Game week three gives the organisation a chance to prove they have what it takes to be a threat this split, by remaining consistent and going 2-0 again.
Vitality’s biggest test will be the last game on Friday against Origen. The Danish team have had an underwhelming start to their LEC campaign. After beating Fnatic in the ‘El Classico’, the team has faulted in their games resulting in three losses for their side. The players qualities are there, however, there was always a worry when you put together four players who were star men for mid-table sides, and Nukeduck. The side has had one of the toughest runs out of all the sides in the LEC, facing Fnatic, Misfits, and G2. So, their 1-3 record may not seem as bad as previously imagined. Still, many expected them to beat Splyce or at least have a closely contested battle. In the end, Kobbe just seemed to outclass the entire side. We here at Gromp News expect the same to happen this week. Vitality looks like a strong side who seem to have finally found their stride. If the team performs how they performed against Misfits, then there is no way you can bet against Vitality.
Another giant killing for SK Gaming?
Win or lose, SK Gaming have certainly been a pleasure to watch. One point that cannot be denied is that Selfmade, Crownshot and Werlyb deserve to be playing on the LEC stage. The side, as of right now, seems to be in the correct position. They are beating the teams lower than them and losing to the sides above them. However, the organisation will want to change that by beating G2 Esports, who are yet to lose a game this split. While this may be a hard task, it’s not impossible. G2 nearly lost against exceL, a side they clearly underestimated leading up to their match. If this side underestimates SK Gaming then they will surely be punished. Look at what SK did to Fnatic as an example. While SK doesn’t have as much experience as G2, their mechanical ability and built-in synergy has already given the organisation an advantage over other sides. The doubts about Pirien seem to be getting lower and lower and Dreams has also been a solid LEC calibre support. Nevertheless, we here at Gromp News feel that G2 Esports have learned from their mistakes against exceL. As a result, they will prepare for the challenge that awaits them. A shock could be on the cards but, this is G2’s game to lose not SK’s game to win.
SK do also face Origen this week and this could prove to be one of the most exciting games of the weekend. Yet again both sides will want to prove that they are capable play-off challengers. Can the mid-table super team defeat a regional league super team with a Korean in the middle? All will be revealed on Saturday. The key match-up will be Piren vs Nukeduck. Whoever wins this lane could quite possibly carry their team to victory. It’s widely expected that both mid laners will play aggressive champions, and the laning phase could be a crucial factor in this game. Either player is capable of turning a game on its head, as they have already proven this split. Werlyb could also be the x-factor in this equation as his top lane priority jungling has proved difficult for most sides to handle. In the end, we here at Gromp News see SK Gaming narrowly beating Origen in a closely contested contest.
A new top two?
Quite possibly. It all depends on Misfits. With sides like Schalke and Vitality breathing down their necks. Many peoples fears of a top-heavy league seem to be slowly disappearing after only two weeks of action. The fact that we have the last ever EULCS champions currently in 9th, shows the level of competition this league has and if other sides start taking games off G2 and Misfits, then this could be one of the most unpredictable European splits in a long time. Roll of week three.
Friday 1st February
SK Gaming Vs G2 Esports
Schalke Vs Splyce
Rogue Vs Fnatic
exceL eSports Vs Misfits
Origen Vs Vitality
Saturday 2nd February
G2 Esports Vs Splyce
exceL eSports vs Schalke
SK Gaming Vs Origen
Rogue Vs Vitality
Fnatic Vs Misfits
By Tom Daniels (@TheTomDaniels)