LoL: Worlds 2021 Cloud9 vs PEACE Play-ins Knockout Recap

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LoL: Worlds 2021 Cloud9 vs PEACE Play-ins Knockout Recap

Cloud9 or PEACE, who will be joining the rest of the competition in the Main Stage?

The Worlds 2021 Play-in stage is at its end, with Cloud9 and PEACE finishing it off with one final best-of-five. This decisive match sends one team to the Main Stage, while the loser will go home. C9 had a fantastic start to the tournament, but had a couple of rough games, which gives a good amount of hope for PCE, who many considered the underdogs going into the day. Regardless of expectations, both of these teams were ready to bring their all and show up in this crucial moment!

Game One

A screenshot from the 2021 World Championship Play-in Knockouts broadcast, showing the Game One drafts between PEACE and Cloud9 with a shot of the C9 roster above.

As is only fitting, the early game of Game One between C9 and PCE was a total bloodbath. Neither of these teams were afraid to step up and challenge their opposition. PCE's early game plan was fantastic though, as they secured First Blood in the bottom lane 2v2 before sending Aladoric on a roam mid to get a kill onto Perkz. While Vulcan killed Violet in the 2v2 to answer back, Babip ganked the bottom lane a couple of minutes later to secure two more kills on the board for PCE.

Honestly, it was a clinic of an early game for PCE. But C9 isn't a team to go down that easily. Blaber and Perkz helped Fudge out by roaming top to kill Vizicsacsi, then take Herald and use it mid for multiple plates worth of gold. Things didn't slow down though. At 13 minutes, Blaber ganked and killed Tally mid while PCE responded in kind by diving and killing Zven under his tower. The opening 20 minutes were crazy altogether, as more kills and objectives were taken en masse.

However, C9 started to take more control of the map around 20 minutes. They won a narrow team fight two-for-zero in kills at 22 minutes, then found a smashing 5v5 in the top river at 24 minutes. Here, C9 completely routed PCE, killing all five members. They couldn't take the Baron though, so things dragged out for a bit. A handful of minutes passed with neither team making a game-winning move, until the 32-minute mark. It was at this point that C9 pulled off a great engage which led to a four-for-zero team fight win. Seeing the opportunity, C9 pushed straight down mid to take the Nexus and a Game One victory.

Quick Stats:

  • Teams: PCE-C9
  • Time: 33:40
  • Kills: 12-21
  • Turrets: 4-7
  • Gold: 56.3k-62.6k
  • Dragons: 3-2
  • Barons: 0-0

Game Two

A screenshot from the 2021 World Championship Play-in Knockouts broadcast, showing the Game Two drafts between PEACE and Cloud9 with a shot of the teams on the Worlds 2021 stage above.

Though PCE was able to hold some ground against C9 in Game One, the same can't be said about them in Game Two. Despite Babip killing Zven for First Blood, Blaber on his Olaf pick showed he was not to be outdone. A 2v3 for C9 in the mid lane resulted in a three-for-one kill trade in favor of C9, thanks to the rampaging Olaf that more than made up for the man disadvantage. With this lead, Blaber ran a train on the early game, slaughtering any foolish PCE members that got in his path.

Eventually, PCE shut down Blaber when he fought 1v3, though Blaber did get a kill in the process. But at this point, the damage was done. Perkz's Ryze, who kept linking up with Blaber, was massively far ahead. This was crucial when a team fight erupted in the bottom lane at 11 minutes. It looked close at first, but C9 flipped it on its head and went up three-for-zero in kills. Trying desperately to find an in, Tally and Vizicsacsi attempted to dive Fudge in the top lane, but Fudge didn't go down and Double-Killed them instead. PCE's tilt was showing at this point and C9 wasn't slowing down.

At as early as 17 minutes, C9 had a monstrous 10k gold lead. In the next few minutes, C9 found a couple more kills while they waited for the Baron to spawn. Right when it did, C9 was on it and killed it without contest. They even claimed four more kills afterward. PCE was lost and had no real way to fight back. Faced with an insurmountable deficit, PCE sent it in one final fight and inevitably lost. C9 killed four from PCE in their base before destroying the second PCE Nexus of the series to set it on match point.

Quick Stats:

  • Teams: PCE-C9
  • Time: 21:40
  • Kills: 8-26
  • Turrets: 1-10
  • Gold: 33.8k-54.4k
  • Dragons: 0-3
  • Barons: 0-1

Game Three

A screenshot from the 2021 World Championship Play-in Knockouts broadcast, showing the Game Three drafts between PEACE and Cloud9 with a shot of C9 Blaber above.

In the potential elimination game, everything was to play for. The one part of the map where PCE was finding some leads, the bottom lane, found themselves in a terrible spot in the opening minutes. At three minutes, after poking Violet down, Zven dove him under his tower and killed him for First Blood. Then, when the supports roamed to the mid lane, Zven killed Violet under his tower for a second time, putting him into essentially irrelevancy. Fudge wanted to get in on the action too apparently, as he solo killed Vizicsacsi at six minutes, but Zven wasn't done and killed Aladoric for his third kill by seven minutes.

It was their last chance to show the world what they're capable of, but PCE simply looked titled and out of answers. Blaber killed Tally in a gank at eight minutes, Zven secured the First Tower bonus bot and C9 claimed an unanswered kill in an 11-minute skirmish. If this wasn't all bad enough, C9 even managed to win a four-for-zero team fight while fighting 4v5. The kills kept coming in, and after another set of them, C9 decided to take a breather and kill Herald instead. With this Herald, C9 pushed straight through the bottom lane, killing PCE members off left and right, and ended the game swiftly, before the Baron even spawned.

An easy 3-0 sweep for C9 at the end of the day. PCE put up a fight in Game One but fell far short in Games Two and Three. Now, C9 is moving to the Main Stage in Group A against DAMWON KIA, FunPlus Phoenix and Rogue.

Quick Stats:

  • Teams: C9-PCE
  • Time: 19:26
  • Kills: 21-1
  • Turrets: 8-1
  • Gold: 43.2k-27.7k
  • Dragons: 2-0
  • Barons: 0-0
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Brandon Sturak
Brandon is a writer and editor for ESTNN with a passion for esports. He writes about League of Legends and esports generally, providing analysis and commentary on both. He is a founding member of Niagara University Esports, while being the previous mid laner and Head Coach for the NU Esports LoL team as well. Twitter @GhandiLoL