The NA LCS semi final weekend will open up today with second seeded Immortals taking on third seeded Cloud9. Both teams have plenty to prove so we can expect a thrilling encounter. Immortals earned a first round bye through their regular season success, while Cloud9 trounced Team Envy to earn their spot in the semis. A 5 game series will determine who will compete for the LCS title in Toronto and who will have to settle for the third place match.
Immortals are on a quest to rectify their let down from last split. Like last time they got off to a dominant start in the regular season. However, this time they’re looking for more than a regular season triumph; they’re after post season success. They’re a fairly new team with some experienced names on their roster who are looking to make a name for themselves. Meanwhile Cloud9 are seeking to return to their glory days. It has been nearly 2 years since Cloud9 last saw North American dominance in the LCS. They have had plenty of shake ups om their roster and management, causing a slight decline in team quality but have since slowly restructured their initial base for success.
The first match up between these two came right at the start of the regular season. The match went to a third game where Immortals would edge out Cloud9 for an opening night win. This entire series was a neck and neck race as each of the 3 games breached the 40 minute mark before a nexus fell. Cloud9’s mid laner Jensen established himself early as the team’s carry as his performance was the team’s bright spot in the loss. The second match up yielded the same result as the first, only this time Immortals appeared more dominant. They kept Cloud9’s bot lane in check as they denied ad carry Sneaky any kills in the two games. In contrast, Immortals ad carry Wildturtle only saw death once and was able to slay 12 champions on the other side.
The key factor in Saturday’s match up will indeed be in the bottom lane. Sneaky has improved his performance as the split has progressed so it is likely that he steps up to the plate to push Cloud9 through. The only issue will be if Cloud9 can find consistency in the support role. Their line up has changed back and forth all season between Smoothie and BunnyFuFu. It is unclear who head coach Reapered will select but whomever earns the job will need to keep it to see Cloud9 through to victory. This is going to be a great attack point for the Immortals tandem of WildTurtle and Adrian to expose.
As I have mentioned before (take a look) experience wins playoff matches in the LCS. Although Immortals were able to handle buisness vs Cloud9, I’m going to predict that the opposite happens this time around. Cloud9’s Sneaky and Meteos will be able to bring out the Cloud9 of old to find themselves back in the LCS Championship. Immortals have several high level players on their roster, but as a squad they have not accomplished much and I cannot see that changing in the LCS now. It will take Cloud9 4 games to find their third victory.
Let’s put the rejections to rest now, turn on that Twitch stream, and watch the battle. Til we meet in Toronto summoners.