In this article, we will talk about all the groups in the groups stage along with predicting which two teams will go through to the knockouts.
After the play-ins have wrapped up, we finally have all of our four groups locked in. Firstly, we will talk about Group A, which by all accounts is the group of death. With two contenders for winning the whole tournament in one group, Group A will be an uphill battle for the teams leading behind the pack.The other groups look very competitive and there are a lot of good teams in this tournament. Let’s talk about the groups and the teams in it and predict which teams will go through to the knockouts stage.
Group A is a pretty top-heavy group with FunPlus Phoenix and DAMWON KIA. The group also has Rogue and Cloud9 who qualified from the play-ins. FPX and DK are the clear favorites to get out of this group while Rogue and C9 will be looking for upsets to find a way through.
The interesting thing about this group is that all of these teams have a different style. DK plays most through the top side of the map, FPX plays through mid lane, Rogue plays through bot lane and C9 is a flexible team.
For us, we are predicting that DK will be first in this group. DK’s top side of the map is the best in the world right now with Canyon, ShowMaker, and Khan. Despite their woeful bot lane, they should still top this group with their roams up top and mid lane.
FPX will be our 2nd team in the group. They have questions to answer regarding the consistency of Nuguri, Tian, and LWX. While Crisp does roam a lot and DoinB is playing a high level, this team still needs to get better and show that they are better than their competition. They have to prove that the losses in the finals of both the Spring and Summer playoffs were anomalies.
C9 and Rogue will be close 3rd and 4th in the group. C9 played well in the play-ins and showed some promise as a team, which is why we have them at 3rd. Meanwhile, Rogue has to find a way to play the mid game and close out games if they have a lead. This group is not going to be easy for Larssen sadly.
Group B is one of the two most competitive groups in our opinion. Even though the group has a favorite, the other teams can make a solid run for the spots. Thus, it will be a slug fest for the 2nd spot in the group. Group B consists of EDward Gaming, T1, 100 Thieves, and Detonation FocusMe from the play-ins.
For us, EDG will be the top of this group in a convincing fashion. They are the most complete team in the tournament, and they will show how good they are at playing around Scout and Viper. With their controlled style, this is the moment for EDG to shine.
T1 and 100T will be close 2nd and 3rd respectively in our opinion. T1 has showed flashes of brilliance as a team and a best of one format suits them. However, their inconsistency as a team is a problem, and sometimes they seem disconnected as a solid unit. These are things that T1 needs to work on and show they have indeed stepped up to be a strong team in the tournament.
On the other hand, 100T is the team from NA that will have the best chance to make it to the knockouts in our opinion. Their style of play fits with the meta of a carry junglers coupled with a strong mid laner. Closer and Abbedagge have played well together to win games. Despite that, their deficiencies in the top lane could cause a problem going forward and that’s something to watch out for.
DFM is going to be 4th in this group in our opinion. They are a solid team, but it will be hard for them to match blow for blow against the other teams in the group. They do have a strong mid-jungle duo but their top laner, Evi, needs to show more versatility in champion picks. Furthermore, they could cause upsets and whether they can, will be something to watch out forth.
Group C consists of Royal Never Give Up, Fnatic, PSG.Talon, and Hanwha Life Esports. This group is the closest out of them all and is the toughest to call. Any of these teams could reasonably make a run to reach the quarterfinals. For us, we went for the likeliest options.
RNG should be top of this group given their past performances. They are still a strong top side team with Wei and Xiaohu. Furthermore, Xiaohu is the best top laner current and RNG’s biggest win condition. Their problem however is Cryin in the mid lane. Cryin as a player has been limited and is a cause for concern going forward. Gala and Ming will also have to return to form to be a strong bot lane once more. Thus, if things go right for RNG, not only will they top the group, but they could go further into the tournament.
The rest of the teams could go in any order and could even be first in the groups. For us at least, HLE will be 2nd given how they have performed thus far. Despite them being in the play-ins, we have seen them playing better as a team. Chovy has yet to pop off so that will be a massive boost when it does happen. HLE’s weakness has improved given Morgan and Willer have played much better albeit against play ins competition. Good signs to work with for HLE as the group stage kicks off.
Fnatic and PSG.Talon will be 3rd and 4th respectively. Fnatic is a very aggressive team to a fault. Even though we expect them to make the group very interesting and exciting, their win conditions are kind of limited. They have to win through bot lane or else this group is a problem for them. For PSG.Talon, they are a strong team but their competition is very strong themselves. In a group like this, it is a matter of inches and PSG will have to step up to show they are better than their region projects them as. They are an all-around good team, so it will be nice to watch them in the tournament.
An update on Fnatic is that Upset will not be playing at Worlds Groups Stage, so it puts a damper on their Worlds run.
Group D is the group which has MAD Lions, Gen.G, Team Liquid, and LNG Esports. This group is also very competitive, and we could see a lot of good games out of them. However, for us, it was relatively easier to predict this group than Group B or C.
MAD should be #1 in this group given how they have looked and progressed with each tournament. They were dominant in the LEC playoffs, and we expect them to continue that. While there are questions thrown at them regarding their effectiveness in the best of one format or Armut’s champion pool, they have answered those questions bit by bit every time. It’s clear they have the best mid game in the group and their teamfighting is phenomenal. With that and a fairly aggressive early game, they should be the strongest team in this group
LNG and Gen.G are 2nd and 3rd in our opinion. While LNG looked strong in the play-ins, their bot lane did not look as good as anticipated. LNG’s top side is still one of the best in the business with Ale and Tarzan. However, Icon’s inconsistency and Light/Iwandy’s play puts them at 2nd for us. Even though they have the best early game out of these teams, it will be hard for them to match MAD’s mid game.
Gen.G is in a tough spot with this group. They are not a team that is equipped to win against an aggressive team and both MAD and LNG are just that. Gen.G prefers a slower paced game and that fits their strengths with Ruler being the main carry. BDD has played well but the problem is Gen.G top side. Clid has not played well for this team and Rascal is far too inconsistent. This will be an uphill battle for Gen.G.
Lastly, we have Team Liquid who will end up 4th. For many of the reason as Gen.G, MAD and LNG’s high tempo style will cause TL a lot of problems. While they still have one of the best top laners in the tournament, it will be a lot of work to keep up in the early game. Furthermore, they play a slow play style and that suits Gen.G, who thrive in that setting. TL has to show us that they are indeed a team worthy of playing better than what they showed.
Concluding the article, DK, EDG, RNG, and MAD are our picks to top their respective groups. Also, FPX, T1, HLE, and LNG will come out of them groups as well. Other teams in group B and C can put up a good fight and cause some upsets so things can be very different when the matches kick off. Regardless, this will be a fun groups stage to watch as Worlds 2021 Groups Stage kicks off tomorrow with DK vs FPX.