The weekend gave LCS fans two semi final match-ups that determined who would compete in the 2016 Summer Split Championship. It was opened up on Saturday with an epic match that saw Cloud 9 edging out Immortals in the fifth game of the series. A day later on Sunday, Team Solo Mid dominated their long time rivals in Counter Logic Gaming by sweeping them in three games. The games provided plenty for LCS fans to reflect on, so let’s review.
The LCS still has a few bugs to work out… literally.
Riot had a little bit of a mishap this past weekend. During game one of Sunday’s match-up between TSM and CLG there were a pair of pauses. TSM mid laner Bjergsen noted that he was unable to see his counterpart’s passive ability. Subsequently, Huhi of CLG, who was on Aurelion Sol, was gaining an unseen advantage. After the second pause to attempt to resolve the issue, TSM were offered a remake with the contingency that Aurelion Sol would not be available for the rest of the series. They accepted and the current game was disbanded and then promptly remade. At this point in the game it was unclear who held the lead. While TSM did have an over gold lead with superior farming and a destroyed turret in their inventory, CLG had an advantage in kills and better jungle control. It’s impossible to say how this game would have ended if the bug were never discovered or if the game were never remade, but the lack of a well functioning client clearly places some implications on the game. Post remake, TSM went on to take game one, and ultimately the series in the next two.
Immortals need to find postseason confidence
Coming into these playoffs Immortals found themselves in a familiar situation. They showed a strong performance as one of the top teams and were looking to make their first big splash in the LCS as a new team in the playoffs. Unfortunately for them, they were greeted with the same result as last split. They were eliminated in the semi final and are now forced to wait another split for their first LCS Championship appearance. While they will compete in the third place match-up against CLG come championship weekend at Toronto, they demonstrated their status as a new organization. They had done everything right up until this point. The semi final match itself was even close as Immortals were able to take Cloud 9 to a fifth game. Ultimately, they could capitalize and conceded the loss, proving that a new mentality must be adopted when entering the playoffs.
Doublelift is finally getting his sweet revenge
It was bound to come. Many thought it would be immediately after the transfer, but it’s finally here. After this year’s summer split when CLG won their first LCS championship, drama ensued in the bot lane and ultimately in the front office. Long time friends and duo partners Aphromoo and Doublelift allegedly were not getting along and each wanted the front office to send the other away. Ultimately Doublelift would leave for TSM, where many fans would follow due to the fact that he was the franchise player of CLG for so long. Many expected the already dominant TSM to come out on top at the end of the split. The LoL community was shocked when CLG repeated as champions and Doublelift was defeated by his former team. This time around Doublelift sits on top. He dominated in the three game sweep and is moving on the championship while the team that birthed his glory remains eliminated.
The playoffs can yield any result
There is an element of unpredictability in the LCS when playoffs commence. Everything we knew and saw in the regular season is tossed into the memory books and teams attempt to look only forward. There is a new patch, a new tier list, and new methods of preparation. For this reason fans can expect anything to happen on the large scale of possibilities. This weekend’s results demonstrated this as it gave two matches that hit extreme opposites of the scale. Saturday gave us a tight race each and every game that went to the fifth and final game before a winner emerged after another neck-and-neck battle. Meanwhile, Sunday’s match-up resulted in a dominant performance in all three games that granted the winning team a sweep. These are the LCS playoffs. There are plenty of ups and downs that we can still expect to see come championship weekend.
TSM is still on top
If there’s one thing that each and every split year after year has proven since the LCS was first established, it is that Team Solo Mid is the giant of the league. The 2013 spring split crowned the first champion of the NA LCS: TSM. Since then, the eSports giants have been a part of all seven championship matches and have arose victorious from three of them. This summer split is no exception. After TSM trounced CLG they will be competing in their eighth LCS championship. If they earn one more win, they will have monopolized half of the titles in existence. Their dominance is and will be nearly impossible to usurp for quite sometime.
We’ve got one more weekend left in this split before the World Championship becomes the focus. Immortals and CLG will open up in the battle for third place. The following day, TSM will look to exert their dominance while Cloud 9 will attempt to tie them in total number of Championships. Until Toronto, summoners.