Team Solo Mid solidified the second place spot in NA LCS last week with solid victories over Team Impulse and CLG, and are starting to pull together their season after a poor start. Hauntzer is starting to grow into a stand out performer and contender for best NA top, his laning phase against Impulse was particularly impressive, being triple his opponents CS by 11 minutes. With Bjergsen moving onto more utility focused picks like Zilean, Hauntzer and Doublelift are looking to be the carry forces for the new look TSM and synergy is starting to build with the roles on the teams looking more settled. Cloud9 don’t seem to be able to get away from having Hai on the roster, and with him in the line-up they are growing into a top contender slowly but surely. Hai is even carrying his team from a gameplay perspective in many of his games, his 1/1/13 game on Morgana last week being particularly impressive.
This game is going to be a close one, with both teams struggling to hit top form, but both slowly starting to move in the right direction. The game could come down to the top lane matchup, and whether or not C9 can get themselves into a lane swap; Balls stands no chance against the monster of Hauntzer. TSM would be wise to look for straight up lanes, and get Svenskeren to spend his time in the top half of the map to really turn the screw on Balls and Rush. Overall we feel TSM are looking a little bit more consistent and cohesive, whereas C9 showed some shortcomings against C9, particularly in top early and in the jungle, that can be exposed here. TSM will be our pick here.
TSM to win at EVS with bet365 and Betfair (2.0)
NRG (13/8 with bet365) vs. Cloud9 (1/2 with Coral and William Hill) – Sunday 10:00pm
After an 0 – 2 week last week, NRG will be desperate to bounce back in the race to be the best of the rest behind Immortals at the top of the league, and this game against Cloud9 is the perfect chance to do so. A major issue last week was Moon’s poor vision control, and it has been hindering NRG’s aggressive solo laners throughout the season so far. With Moon now possibly stepping down as the jungler for NRG, it will remain to be seen whether his replacement can improve that aspect of NRG’s macro. Cloud9 have the opportunity to really stamp their authority over the second place spot with games versus TSM and NRG this week, and they will see NRG as the easier of the two games.
We feel the jungle matchup will be the big point of contention for NRG, and whether or not Moon plays will be a big question. We can’t see Moon standing up to the suffocating early pressure of Rush, NRG will need to shield whoever plays in the jungle to protect them sufficiently. Bearing this in mind, we favour C9 for the win here, as they should be able to use their advantage in the jungle to get the ball rolling in the early game.
Cloud9 to win at 1/2 with Coral and William Hill (1.50)
By: Arron “King Dempz” Dempsey – @arrondempers