Team Envy have bounced back with their trademark early game snowballing, and Ninja and Seraph both stepped up to have some of the best games of the season. The team might still be lacking in the macro department, but it won’t matter if they blow you out of the water before the 15-minute mark.
Gold Coin United might have lost against Liquid, but they still look formidable. Their adaptation to Piglet’s Karthus pick took some time, but in the end, they did show that they have what it takes to play toe-to-toe with LCS teams. With the pressure being at its highest, can GCU repeat their success and take down Envy?
Top Lane Matchup: While NV Seraph’s performance on tanks remains lackluster, he’s definitely shown that he can dominate on carry-oriented picks. In particular, his Camille was a force of nature that allowed Envy to set up countless plays in the top lane. And this development is even more worrying when you consider that Solo isn’t exactly a standout player on the GCU lineup. Sure, he can hold his own on frontline champions and had a good Rumble game, but unless GCU target Seraph in their draft, Envy will have an edge in this matchup.
Jungle Matchup: There’s no denying it, Santorin is still good. He might have looked lost when his lanes were losing but the same could be said about any other jungler. At his best, Santorin is a smart player with immaculate pathing and great game sense. But the task of putting a leash on LirA isn’t an easy one, and this time Envy’s superstar jungler will be ready for Santorin to challenge him. As much as Santorin has grown, he remains an underdog in this matchup.
Mid Lane Matchup: Ah, Ninja. When his team is getting the snowball going, he can look like one of the best mid laners in the league. but if his teammates aren’t carrying already, don’t expect Ninja to pull through on his own. His play is still inconsistent and has many flaws that a better mid laner could exploit, and If there’s someone that fits this description, it’s Fenix. GCU’s mid laner has been an undisputed MVP on his team so far. With refined aggression that’s brought many standout performances, Fenix will be looking to take over the mid lane, and it’s very unlikely that Ninja will be able to stop him.
Bot Lane Matchup: It’s true that Madlife is far from his old playmaking self, but he’s still a very strong support. In particular, his play on ranged champions like Zyra or Nami has been on point, and he always seemed to find ways to win the bot lane. When paired with a veteran ADC like Mash, this duo is truly a force to be reckoned with. As for NV’s Apollo and Hakuho, they’ve been the lane that receives the least priority from their teammates. Combined with the fact that they’re not superstar players on their own, it will make the bot lane an uphill battle for them.
Just like in every other Envy game, everything hinges on LirA. If he can cover his mid lane, if he can get the snowball going in the top lane, if he can dominate the opposing jungler, then Envy can clinch the series. Even though LirA has shown that he can do it in the past, that’s a lot of ‘ifs’. GCU were already able to put a leash on him once and there’s no reason they wouldn’t be able to do it again. If LirA is taken care of, there’s no one left to carry Team EnVyUs to victory. A 3-2 win for Gold Coin United.
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