I wouldn't have thought that 100 Thieves could stay up with Team Liquid for so long this season. But the new team has managed quite well and has definitely surpassed my expectations, which might be more of a slap in the face to TL more than a compliment to 100T, but maybe not.
Either way, both of the teams find themselves in a three-way tie for third with Clutch Gaming (another newbie to the scene.) I'd make predictions about TL's consistency and whether I think it's rational to expect the Thieves to steal the show this weekend, but if there is one thing this split has taught me, it's that predictions are pretty much as useless as they've ever been.
So let's pause the fortune telling and instead look at the two teams' forms as of late.
Despite managing to lose five times this season, I still get shaky at the thought of them facing off against my beloved Echo Fox. You can say it's all in my head, but I think the way TL started the split is the way they can finish it.
Two of the five losses TL took came in week five and six against current first place team Echo Fox and last place team Golden Guardians, which tells you everything you need to know about consistency in this squad.
When they're on top of things, they're incredible, but when they lose their footing, they can fall a very long way. And if you compare their early season performances with their current state, you'd see that they've done just that.
If you've read any of my past articles this split, you'll know that I hate teams that play meta-slave with a passion. And TL, by far, are the worst offenders of this great sin. While it proved effective to play the same thing over and over again in the beginning of the season while everyone was getting their heads on straight, it's shown to be worthwhile to throw in some personal spice during champion select now that we're almost to the end of the season. GGS have done it to good effect as a means to find their few wins, and so have the league leaders.
This, I think, spells one of the main issues that TL, a team with great individual players, but at the moment lacks fire in their game play. It almost seems like they've gotten complacent and have consequently begun checking off their to-do lists instead of adapting and throwing surprise into the mix against teams they need it for.
It seems like a really small note, but I think it would go a long way for TL to add different champions with different win conditions and play styles to their competitive pool for week seven and onwards. More weapons means a much more dangerous team down the line and in the post-season.
I hope to see it, and I'm sure 100 Thieves don't.
Speaking of which.
The bot lane Aphromoo and Cody Sun have been the highlights of 100T's debut season without a doubt. This last weekend alone, the ADC managed to net himself twenty kills, eight assists, and refused to die even once.
Against FlyQuest, sure, but also against second place Cloud9. In this week of varied level competition, they managed to gain major ground.
While the Thieves might have the same issues as TL when it comes to consistency (they've both lost the same amount of games,) they certainly don't exhibit the same kind of tired team compositions. Meteos has shown a liking to Jax in the jungle, mid laner Ryu has shown some love to Taliyah, and Aphromoo has picked up not just Thresh, not just Blitzcrank, but even Bard in his quest to support.
It's great fun to watch, especially when it all goes well for the new team which is something I'll be hoping for this weekend.
I know it's more reasonable as a third party spectator to say that I hope both teams play at their best on Saturday, but there's something so rewarding about seeing Doublelift lose,that I just can't help but cross my fingers for another Codymoo special on Saturday.
Be sure not to miss it: Saturday Mar 3rd, at 2:00 PM right over here, m'kay?