Welcome to the Week 9 LEC Predictions! We enter the last week of the LEC regular season, and two playoff spots are still up for grabs. With a heavily disputed week, we decided to take a more in-depth look at our picks for this week’s predictions.
Friday, March 15th (W9)
Origen vs. Schalke 04:
Brandon: Origen. Origen is the clear favorite in this matchup against the struggling Schalke. Though S04 was strong at the beginning of the split, the roster has struggled to bring it back together while Origen is finally living up to the expectations they had originally
Manny: Origen. The Duck vs the Rookie is one of the main matchups that will define the result between Schalke and Origen. With the recent results of both teams, it really is difficult to argue against Origen. Throughout the season it has felt that Origen always has had that special something even if they’ve been unable to consistently show it on stage.
Major: Origen. Despite being in second in the standings, Origen’s strength is still sometimes forgotten. The team has quickly and silently become a top LEC team, and no one should underestimate them any longer. Additionally, Schalke has looked lackluster for a while, and it doesn’t look good for them in this one.
Ibriz: Origen. They have been my favorite since the outset because I’ve followed Kold/Trashy to whichever team he ended up on; I am glad to see them do well. I wouldn’t be upset with a Schalke win if it meant denying some other favorites their own playoffs shot, though :>
SK Gaming vs. Rogue
Brandon: SK Gaming. Unfortunately, rooting for Rogue can be borderline trolling, so SK is favored here. Though they clearly aren’t as strong as some top teams, Selfmade is a standout performer and Crownshot is dominant in the games they do win. Rogue simply isn’t in a favorable position and a win would definitely be an upset.
Manny: SK Gaming. SK is in the midst of a heated battle for the last (two) playoff spots and having to face the worst team in the league is a blessing. SK, however, have already dropped a game against Excel and will be gearing up to show their best against Rogue. This feels as one-sided as can be.
Major: SK Gaming. Saying Rogue has had a rough first split in the LEC is putting it nicely. The same goes for SK, who had just the worst week possible last week. Sadly, Rogue is simply the worse team in this matchup.
Ibriz: SK Gaming. I love Rogue, but I have to vote for the scenario that will cause the most chaos regarding playoffs and potential tiebreakers.
Misfits vs. Splyce
Brandon: Splyce. This prediction would be completely different at the beginning of the split, but circumstances have changed. The Misfits roster is struggling desperately to live up to their expectations and stay relevant in the playoffs race. Splyce, however, has kicked it up a notch in recent weeks. They even defeated the dominant G2 Esports. They have a ton of momentum moving forward and it gives them the edge.
Manny: Splyce. When you are one of three teams to take down the best team in the league it is not difficult to argue that you could possibly take down any of the other contenders. This rings true about Splyce. Players that make the difference in this matchup have to be Xerxe and Splyce’s bot lane. This would be ludicrous to even attempt to argue at the beginning of the season but it seems like a favorable matchup for Splyce.
Major: Splyce. Fanatic proved last week that Misfits are massively exposed if top lane goes to hell. Splyce should take note of this and do the same. Despite Misfits’ middling performance thus far, they could still pull out some magic. Splyce needs to stay mindful of that, and put in another performance like the one against G2 last week.
Ibriz: Splyce. I enjoy seeing them succeed and wish Kobbe, in particular, the best in having his talents as the go-to consistent AD carry of the region finally recognized. As the only remaining piece of the original Splyce roster, I hope this is the year he (and Splyce) can return to a similar form as 2016 Summer.
Excel vs. Vitality
Brandon: Vitality. Vitality is a team that likes to play fast and bloody. It’s a hard style to keep up with for many teams, especially with the individual talent on the squad. Excel isn’t quite up to par with the level of Vitality and a win over them would be surprising, to say the least.
Manny: Excel. Excel might already be eliminated from the playoff race, but they can still play spoiler. Vitality will be looking to pick up two important wins in the final week of the regular season, but I think they could struggle against some of the rookies coming in for the experience.
Major: Vitality. Excel is, much to their chagrin, probably Rogue 2.0 at this point. Vitality showed that they can definitely win the matches they should (Rogue) and can do well in the close ones (G2). This is one of the ones they should definitely win.
Ibriz: Vitality. While I can’t sleep on Excel’s upset potential – nor Vitality’s inconsistencies – it would be better for VIT’s playoffs seeding if they took this free win here.
Fnatic vs. G2 Esports
Brandon: Fnatic. This will likely be the best match of the week but is hard to predict. Because of FNC’s six-game winning streak and G2’s recent losses, FNC might have a bit of an edge. G2’s losses have been due to throws and disrespect. FNC is on the hunt back for their top spot and has shown considerable improvement since the beginning of the split. This makes them a considerable threat and capable of making the upset.
Manny: Fnatic. My heart is telling me that Fnatic will do the unthinkable and take down G2 to qualify for playoffs in the most dramatic of fashions. Part of me still believes that G2 is overall the superior team and will do their best to demonstrate that versus Fnatic. Notably, Mikyx will be missing this week due to injury so this could be the perfect time for Fnatic to take their revenge.
Major: Fnatic. Fnatic has turned on the jets in the second half of the split. They are currently on a six-game winning streak and are 6-1 since Week 4. While their last meeting with G2 didn’t go their way, they’re in much better shape overall. With their current momentum and new found form, I think they’ll take this one off G2.
Ibriz: G2. Who cares if they have Sprattel/Promisq? It’s his time to shine. I believe the past few weeks have been the required wake-up call for G2 to get their… stuff together, and I’m still not 100% sold on FNC’s apparent return to form.
Saturday, March 16th (W9)
Fnatic vs. Splyce
Brandon: Splyce. Splyce’s recent surge is very convincing, and they look to be out for blood. Fnatic might be able to win over G2, but Splyce beat G2 so it could be even harder for Fnatic to win this game. This game is a close call to make, but Splyce’s surge won’t stop with Fnatic.
Manny: Fnatic. It is rather difficult to predict against a red hot Fnatic side, yet both games they play will be the Best of the Week as potential Playoff matches. Splyce have also been on a tear, but it feels that Fnatic is reaching new heights. The fact that Fnatic needs one match to qualify for playoffs will be an even more significant incentive to play their best.
Major: Fnatic. While Splyce has enjoyed generally good form, they should be terrified of Fanatic. If Fanatic wins against G2 on Friday, Splyce’s hopes of winning are probably all but gone. Fnatic, again, is on a tear and are showcasing the dominance that got them to Worlds Finals.
Ibriz: Splyce. Okay, part of this may be an innate bias against Fnatic (or love for tiebreakers) but… yeah. Do your thing, boys in black and yellow!
Origen vs. Excel
Brandon: Origen. Origen is now performing to their expectations, and it will spell disaster for Excel. Excel is obviously a bottom tier team and will struggle to face up against the veteran experience of the Origen roster.
Manny: Origen. Excel has been consistently the team that tried but could not get the results. Even though I believe there is a good chance they can upset, Origen have had their mind clear of what is needed of them and should be able to pick up another win.
Major: Origen. This week seems to be a relatively easy one for Origen. Assuming Excel don’t pull off anything miraculous against Vitality, this one is in the bag for Deficio’s squad.
Ibriz Origen. It feels like Origen have finally ironed out their earlier inconsistencies. Now would be a strange time for those to resurface.
SK Gaming vs. Vitality
Brandon: Vitality. SK Gaming’s final push to playoffs will be exceedingly difficult against Vitality. Vitality, over the past year, has overpowered many teams below them with their aggression. Vitality, with their two easy games this weekend, may be in second place going into playoffs.
Manny: Vitality. Vitality was close to taking down G2, and this should be motivation to prove that they are one of the best, if not the best, team in Europe. Excel could potentially have some tricks up their sleeve, and the chance that they shock Vitality is rather high.
Major: Vitality. SK had Vitality’s number last time they faced off. That game came when both teams were in similar positions, too. Vitality, though, has fixed a lot of the problems that plagued them early on, while SK has continued to struggle. While it won’t be easy pickings for Vitality, they shouldn’t struggle too badly if they focus.
Ibriz: SK Gaming. I really like Vitality, but I need SK to win here for more tiebreaker scenarios 🙂
Rogue vs. Schalke 04
Brandon: Schalke 04. Both of these rosters are experiencing difficulties, but S04’s are much less extreme than Rogues. Any win that Rogue picks up can be considered an upset, and S04 is not a bad team by any means. They’ll have a relatively easy game that will help their playoff chances considerably.
Manny: Schalke 04. Once Vander and Finn left Rogue for the remainder of the split it was clear that Rogue would go back to their old ways. And even though Schalke has been in a slide towards the bottom of the table, it should be likely for them to pick up a win against the lowest ranked team in the LEC.
Major: Schalke 04. Schalke’s playoff spot is in grave danger. Both Misfits and SK are in striking distance, but this week doesn’t look good for either of those teams. If Schalke can pick up this win, against a tired Rogue, playoffs are as good as theirs.
Ibriz: Schalke 04. My heart says Rogue, but again, my love of ties and potential playoffs denial for certain favorite teams says otherwise. Go, Schalke!
G2 Esports vs. Misfits
Brandon: G2 Esports. G2 may have dropped some games in the past couple of weeks, but their star-studded roster is still considered the best in Europe. Misfits have great names on paper but can’t quite bring it together like G2, so the odds are against them.
Manny: G2 Esports. Misfits versus G2 was probably one of the most hyped match ups after the second week of play. It is sad to see the Misfits squad fail miserably in the way they have. I feel this week will spell disaster for Misfits who will not only fail to pick up this win, but will also drop from the playoff picture as well.
Major: G2 Esports. It’s not a great week for Misfits. After their beating at the hands of Fanatic, the team is likely not in a good mood. It doesn’t help that mood that they have to play the number one and number two teams. While G2 slipped against Splyce, they bounced back quickly and are likely to end the split retaining their first place spot.
Ibriz G2 Esports. Said it before, I’ll say it again. MAKE THE LARGEST AMOUNT OF CHAOS AROUND 5/6TH PLACE IMAGINABLE.