As the LCK wrapped up last week, the stage is set for the teams to compete for a spot at MSI
LCK Spring Split concluded last week with DK finishing at the top of the league. It was not a shock for DK to be there as they have been the most dominant team in the entire split. Also, the format for the LCK has changed with the rebranding and now we get 6 teams in the playoffs in a single-elimination bracket. Having said that, in this article, we will break down the two upcoming series on Wednesday and Thursday respectively. Hence, let’s get right into it.
- Read More: LEC Spring Split Playoffs Round 1 Recap
LCK has looked like a one-team show at the moment. Despite that, T1 has looked better as of late and HLE has the potential to be better. Gen.G is the hardest team to gauge given the rest of the league barring DK is not as strong. This reason can be extended to all the playoffs teams in the LCK as DK just looks like they are a cut above everyone. The winner of either Quarterfinals advances to the Semifinals. Thus, with the Quarterfinals starting tomorrow, let’s talk about the matches.
Nongshim RedForce vs Hanwha Life Esports
NS made their way into the playoffs spot with key wins late in the split. However, it is clear that NS is the worst team in the playoffs. There seems to be a gap between the top 5 teams in the LCK and the rest of the teams in the league. NS is yet to win a single series against one of the top 4 teams and that does not bode well for their playoff campaign.
In contrast, HLE has had some very good games and some questionable games. HLE is a newly assembled team so it has taken some time for them to gel together. However, some of their key problems still exist. The jungle position has looked inconsistent for this squad and they have some consistency issues. Morgan has looked okay and they need more out of the bot lane. Thus, this series is a good momentum builder for HLE.
There is not much to dissect for this series. It is hard to see NS winning any game against HLE given how their record against winning teams is not good. HLE, on the other hand, should try to build some momentum for the future series in the playoffs. With that said, this series should be a 3-0 win for HLE and they will await who DK will pick to face in the semifinals.
DRX vs T1
In contrast to the other series, this one is a more competitive one between DRX and T1. T1 ended up as the 3rd seed while DRX was the 4th seed.
T1 has looked much better as of late and that goes to show how good this team can be. As of the last 2 weeks or so, T1 has stuck with the same lineup of Canna, Cuzz, Faker, Teddy, and Keria. This one looks to be their best lineup so far and is possibly the main lineup they will stick to in the playoffs. The jungler may or may not change based on opponents or games to get an edge. They have performed really well and will be the biggest threat to DK this split.
Comparatively, DRX was the team that performed higher than expect. With them having a complete roster reshuffle and building a team around Pyosik, they have performed pretty well. They play well together as a team and try to play the LCK controlled style.
T1 is a better team in this match up but DRX is not to be underestimated. This series might just come down to whether T1 gets the early lead and snowballs or DRX hangs on in the early game and scale up and take the right team fights. T1 also matches really well against DRX currently with their early game being one of the best in the league. If T1 does win and in a convincing fashion, they will likely face Gen.G and have a real shot at making the finals. For this series, we would go for 3-1 T1 given DRX is an opponent that will contest with T1.
To conclude, the first series for both HLE and T1 are very important to win by dominating their opponent. The stronger showing they have over the other, the higher the chance of dodging DK in the playoffs in the semi-finals. Regardless, as a top team in the LCK, you want to beat every team and that is the standard. Nevertheless, HLE and T1 should be favorites to win their series, and DRX and NS can look to cause some trouble and get some experience into their rosters. LCK playoffs start tomorrow with NS vs HLE as the first series of the Spring Playoffs 2021.