The final week of the LCO Split 1 regular season is here. With all 5 places and both initial playoffs games already decided, this week will be one final chance to fine-tune before the best of fives begin.
The playoffs will begin with Peace taking on Pentanet in the upper bracket first round, with the winner moving to face The Chiefs in the upper bracket final.
The lower bracket will begin with Dire Wolves facing off against Order as they look to repeat the gauntlet run of dreams that saw Peace take home the Split 2 2021 title.
But before that, one final week of regular season play must take place. In the opening contest Pentanet takes on The Chiefs, in what could end up being a preview of the upper bracket final (or even the Grand Final) as the league’s leaders look to continue their recording-breaking winning streak.
Peace will look to secure their first perfect week since week three as they take on Gravitas, who nailed the upset of the split the last time they faced the defending champions.
Kanga and Mammoth, both on the outside of the playoff bracket, will look to use this game and this week as a chance to build momentum into Split 2, as well as break the tie for sixth place they are currently in.
Game of the day however belongs to the final contest, as Order take on the Dire Wolves in a preview of the lower-bracket opener.
Taylor’s Pick of the Week: Order (10-9) vs The Dire Wolves (9-10)
These two teams will become very familiar with each other very quickly. Already locked in to next Monday’s lower half of the LCO playoffs, Order and Dire Wolves will get a chance to scout each other tonight in a game with a minor stake.
The team who finishes the regular season in fourth place will gain themselves side selection in the first contest of the best-of-five. Whilst ultimately not the most significant advantage, being able to select your preference of which half of the map you play on can be beneficial in setting your mindset early in a series.
Order currently hold this advantage with the one-game advantage in the standings but have not as of yet locked in and Dire Wolves can theoretically snatch it away — a win here will be needed to guarantee it.
More importantly for Order, however — this game is a must-win for momentum’s sake. The Melbourne-based team failed to pick up a win last week, although they did face Peace and Pentanet. That said, the games didn’t really see them in the contest at all, which will not forebode well for them should they make it out of the first lower bracket game as they’ll face one of those two teams in the second round. Order will look to pick up at least one, if not both wins this week to build confidence coming into the playoffs.
The Dire Wolves will spend this week looking ready to get into uncharted waters. Whilst this organisation is not a stranger to the playoffs — being four-time oceanic champions, after all — all of the members of the roster, including the coaching staff, will step into their first professional best-of-five next week.
Coming into this week, the Wolfpack will also be looking to continue their momentum and settle nerves, and nothing like getting a victory and potentially a small upper hand against their first playoff opponent will be more beneficial in achieving that.
The last time these two teams met the Dire Wolves came out on top in a close back-and-forth contest. I would expect the same again today. Both teams are pretty evenly matched in terms of skill and play style and should create a great game today, and a banger of a series next week.
To pick a winner though? I will go with Order, who if nothing else have the experience edge and slightly bigger clutch factor, which should help them win in a close contest.
Taylor’s Week 9 Day 1 Predictions
Chiefs def. Pentanet
Peace def. Gravitas
Mammoth def. Kanga
Order def. Dire Wolves
LCO’s final regular split Monday concludes with our match of the day in Order v Dire Wolves. Catch up on all the split details in our ultimate coverage hub.