As the Finals weekend for the LEC looms closer, we preview the weekend of matches and break down the specifics going into the week.
LEC playoffs so far has been full of upsets with Fnatic being knocked out early, Mad Lions being in the finals, and Schalke04 performing pretty well. Also, the games have been fun to watch. As the finals weekend begins on Saturday with G2 vs Rogue, let’s preview the rest of the playoffs and the individual matches.
LEC Finals Weekend Preview
The first match up in the weekend is G2 vs Rogue on Saturday. The winner of that series will be moving into the Finals to face Mad Lions again. Both G2 and Rogue were bested by MAD in the winner’s bracket, so the rematch is going to be a spicy one. With MAD being comfy in the finals, lets first talk about the semifinals.
G2 vs Rogue
This is the first time both teams are playing one another in the playoffs. So far, each team has won a series against S04. However, Rogue looked more convincing in their win against S04 than G2 did. G2 has looked a bit shaky at the start of the playoffs. Although historically, they have been winning the playoffs through the loser’s bracket since the format was instituted.
Along with that historical statistic, they have also always leveled up during loser’s bracket and must-win games. With Perkz leaving, we will have to wait to see whether that makes any changes to G2 in crunch time. Based on recent performances, G2 will need to step up big to win it all.
On the other hand, Rogue has built up some momentum with the win against S04. They looked much better against S04 than against MAD. As a whole, they had a much better series against S04. To our eyes, it looked more like Rogue was comfortable against S04 than versus MAD. However, just like G2, there are some questions with this team regarding their performances in high-pressure situations.
Contrasting both teams, Rogue is a team that wins off of early game leads. They are a very methodical team that prioritizes earning as much gold through objectives early to have a big enough lead to snowball the game. On the other hand, G2 is more about punishing the opponent’s mistakes and going for dives and skirmishes to gain leads.
To draw some conclusions from their previous series’, Rogue plays a much better game when they can properly apply their methodical style in the game. However, what is also apparent against MAD was that pressuring Rogue in the early game has thrown them off their game. For most games, Rogue was either even or had leads early in the game. However, against MAD, MAD just went even with them early on and then took the series through teamfights.
Rogue’s biggest weakness so far has been their mid-to-late game. They often have issues with decision-making later in the game without a cushion to fall back on. Even with a cushion on, they do start faltering at the mid-to-late game. The game 4 loss to MAD comes to mind as an example of that. Larssen has also played well with the champions he has picked so far. However, his champion pool is a question mark as he has played mostly Orianna, Azir, and Lucian. If G2 does pinch his champion pool, it will be interesting to see how Rogue counters that. So with Rogue, their key to winning is to push the tempo early and avoid mid-game issues.
In regards to G2, G2 has to clean up their mistakes from the past 2 series and their drafting woes. Their drafting has been innovative for the most part but enchanter champions on one of your best players is not the answer. One adaptation they can do is to put enchanters top lane. G2 is the type of team that will roam post-6 to get dives and some skirmishes going. More often than not, G2 wins in those plays. Then they translate that into teamfight wins. So, barring the drafting woes and critical mistakes, G2 still look like a very good team.
Both teams are somewhat similar to one another. Both teams play out their laning phase accruing as much gold as possible. However, the difference is in their approach to that. G2 looks for mistakes and exploits them and pulls off skirmishes while Rogue focuses on objectives. They have had Rogue’s number in the past few games and that should be at the back of Rogue’s mind.
G2 is very versatile as a team and that should give them the edge for this series. Also, G2 should be able to disrupt Rogue’s early game strategy where they take herald and funnel a lot of gold into Larssen and Hans Sama by drafting good lanes for themselves. G2 does the same thing but they utilize that differently. Overall, this is going to be a good match to watch and a barometer for either team going into the finals.
Even though we do not know who will face MAD in the finals, this looks great for a fan of the team. MAD made their first LEC finals and will be vying for the MSI spot. However, the rematch with either G2 or Rogue will be tough for them and they will have to show up.
MAD has done a lot of things right in their playoff run. They are an aggressive early game team who like to make some plays with their rookie jungler Elyoya, who has performed in the playoffs. Their teamfighting has been absolutely phenomenal in all the games they have played. In post-game interviews and such, Mad Lions players have said they have the confidence that they are better at teamfights.
However, even though they have done great at many things in the game, there are still some flaws with the team. Firstly, any team who will face them will have to do something to exploit that Gnar blind pick for MAD. Gnar has gone for that every single match against G2, where G2 played 4 different champions into the pick. Forcing MAD to make a choice to either change on that Gnar pick will disrupt their draft strategy. Secondly, their early laning has not been great. They will have to improve their laning to be true contenders. Lastly, they need to be at least as good as they have been so far to have a chance at winning the finals. All-in-all, MAD are in the finals and they look to be in the driving seat at the moment.
Which team is the favorite?
This is a tough question to answer as of now. With G2 having shaky winner’s bracket performances, it is a question mark. To be fair to G2, they usually ramp up in the loser’s bracket so they should be stronger this weekend. Rogue looked pretty good against S04 but they will need to keep that up to beat G2 at their peak. MAD are awaiting their opponents but they can work on some of their flaws that we outlined. In our opinion, MAD is slight favorites given they have to win one series to win it all. G2 will need to turn it on to win it all and Rogue will need to beat G2, who has historically beaten them, and then a rematch against MAD will be tough.
Overall, MAD would be slight favorites as of now in our opinion and then G2 would be right behind them. Nevertheless, this will be a great playoff weekend for the LEC and we hope there will be some entertaining games for fans to watch. LEC Finals Weekend will begin on Saturday with G2 vs Rogue.