There was no movement in the LCO standings between Monday and Tuesday. But despite remaining static, each team still has plenty to fight for coming into the third round with plenty of head-to-head ties cropping up throughout the ladder.
At the pinnacle, The Chiefs (13-1) have continued in their winning ways with their grasp closing in on another 3-0 week. En route, pushing through Pentanet.GG and Dire Wolves, Dragon “Dragku” Guo and co. face Order in tonight’s closing game billed for 9pm AEDT.
Second-placed but never far from any competitor’s mind is Peace (11-3) who as a whole continues to impress on Summoner’s Rift — though they fumbled in the face of Gravitas suffering a surprise loss on Monday. Bouncing back yesterday, Yao “Apii” Jian-Jing continued to build a case as one of the League’s best midlaners turning in a full Mejai’s Soulstealer with a show-stealing performance on LeBlanc (9/0/7) against Kanga.
In spite of their slow season start, Pentanet (8-6) are showing some fast and loose gameplay, their games lead wholly by Choi “BalKhan” Hyun-jin’s blistering pace on the likes of Jarven IV and Lee Sin — something of a double-edged tactic, but constantly presents the Perth squad gift wrapped towers and plates (FT%: PGG 92.3%, LCO avg. 50%).
Sharing the third position with PGG is Order (8-6). The perennial dark horse has had glimpses to toppling the league’s best has never quite met that mark. Despite that, they shut down all the teams below them in standings, outside of Dire Wolves with whom they split 1-1.
Currently placed on the cut-off point for playoff contenders, Dire Wolves (6-8) are baring their teeth with a distinct improvement over these recent Super Weeks. James “Frosts” Paterson and Cameron “Zorenous” Abbott seem to come into their own this split despite earlier setbacks. Their spot in the playoffs is hardly a lock though; the Wolfpack still has a lot of ground to make up in the coming weeks.
Mammoth (4-10) has struggled to find consistency or an in on their matchups, Bryce “Meifan” Zou is often spread too thin before things go lopsided in the jungle as well.
Kanga Esports (4-10) have steadily improved throughout the split and have rallied behind their February signee, Dmitry “fighto” Botov. Against PEACE, he and Jordan “Only” Middleton had some shine this week forcing a sequence of teamfights and a Baron steal almost turning the game — but it wasn’t to be; heartbreaker.
Gravitas (2-12) popped off with an upset, slaying PEACE with Jeung “DaJeung” Da Woon having a stellar run on Sylas (8/1/5).
Hoàng’s Pick of the Week: Chiefs Esports Club (13-1) v Order (8-6)
As I’ve hammed up, in the third round there are lots of rubber matches that will aim to decisively favour one team.
But this late in the season, it’s also about who can actually step to the league’s best. The Chiefs have probable threats in each position and it has proved a tall task to overcome any of their lanes — especially when Draku’s Tahm Kench is running around nullifying kill threats left and right.
Often not far behind his support is chief marksman Quin “Raes” Korebrits, who seems to be on the warpath after stating his intention to be a more impactful player earlier in the split. Recently favouring the often contested picks of Jinx and Aphelios, Raes has been an undeniable ace of the roster, swiftly mowing down champions the moment he’s freed up to begin moving around the map.
But carrying through the bot lane is so pedestrian, and perhaps some teams over-index on Chiefs’ incredibly sharp bot lane duo. Of course, they’ll be across from Nathan “Puma” Puma and Ian “Corporal” Pearse who have been revered for a great early game, so maybe the lead won’t come from there.
Carrying through top though… You can only do that if you’re Kim “Topoon” Ji-hoon. The menace has amassed 18 solo kills this season so far and is frankly, unignorable in the mid-and-late game, even though he’s alone and knocking on inner towers.
In perhaps the most diametrically opposed matchup, Brandon “BioPanther” Alexander is going to have his hands full somehow containing Topoon, let alone bullying him, even with Shane “Kevy” Allen in the back pocket. But top must be at least neutral if a monster upset were to happen.
Otherwise, someone will have to clear the wave Topoon’s pushing at 20 mins, and it won’t be pretty.
In lane though, there’s no team that farms better than Order, so they have that going for them. That said, I have a distinct worry that a slow-paced game won’t favour them. Breaking away from laning though, Kevy really needs to put Park “Arthur” Mi-reu to task, as he did in their Week 4 matchup. But as Arthur stood tall after that victory, I suspect history will repeat itself.
Hoàng’s Week 6 Day 3 Predictions
Peace def. Mammoth
Pentanet.GG def. Kanga
Dire Wolves def. Gravitas
The Chiefs def. Order
LCO Week 6’s final matchday begins tonight. Peace and Mammoth open proceedings from 6pm AEDT. Catch up on all the split details in our ultimate coverage hub.