CLG is an enigma. This is the lineup that can give even the best NA LCS teams a run for their money and then look lost against much weaker opposition. Meanwhile, Cloud9 have been consistently showing up and cementing their status as a top 2 team in the league. Could CLG really challenge such an overwhelming opponent?
CLG started the game off by showing their strengths and their shortcomings in a single play. After getting a well-executed tower dive against C9 Impact, the team set up for the first turret of the game. But some puzzling decision-making from Darshan and Xmithie led to CLG narrowly losing the push and giving up the bonus gold to the enemy team.
CLG proceeded to camp the top side of the map, and that plan seemed to bear fruit and got them two more kills. That is until Cloud9 caught on and answered with a 4-man collapse onto two lone CLG members. And while CLG were still ahead in kills, Cloud9’s map movement proved to be in a league of its own, and they clawed their way back into the game by taking down one turret after another.
But CLG still had the top lane priority and vision control. With that, CLG pulled the trigger and went for a sneaky Baron attempt. And even though Cloud9 realized what was going on, they were too far out of position to do anything about it, and CLG secured a free 29-minute Baron! Cloud9 still managed to keep up in gold, but they struggled to find an answer to Darshan’s splitpushing Trundle. And while CLG tried their best to throw the game away with some disjointed team fighting, they still managed to outmaneuver Cloud9 and base race them to victory.
The early game had the teams trading kills and objectives in back-to-back skirmishes. But it was a single team fight at the 21-minute mark that decided it all. Cloud9’s team composition hit its power spikes and absolutely demolished CLG in their jungle with a one for five trade. A 22-minute Baron sealed the deal, and Cloud9 were now in full control of the map.
And while Stixxay did his best to keep his team in the game, the snowball from Cloud9 was just too hard to handle. Every team fight had CLG fall short, and it was only a matter of time before Cloud9 got a clean ace and followed that up with a Nexus.
Xmithie’s Gragas was the MVP for CLG’s early and mid game. His ganks and barrel combos turned so many plays in his team’s favor and put CLG in a prime position to win the game. But then the skirmish at a 15-minute mark happened, and C9 Ray proved to be an absolute monster by single-handedly turning a lost fight with a Teleport and a devastating quadra kill on Renekton.
The momentum swung in Cloud9’s favor, and they capitalized on it with two more decisive team fights. But even while Cloud9 secured small leads, the game was still incredibly close. It was then that their lack of a proper AD carry started to backfire. With every team fight, CLG’s Stixxay put on a clinic, while Sneaky struggled to make any significant impact. A 39-minute Elder Dragon was the final nail in Cloud9’s coffin, and CLG broke open their base and marched towards the enemy Nexus. A 2-1 victory for CLG.
What did you think about this series? Let us know in the comments!