MSI 2019: 13 Champions 1 Trophy
The League of Legends Mid-Season Invitational a.k.a “mini-Worlds” kicks off today at the GG Stadium (VCS Studio) in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. The Play-in stage of the event will feature eight teams from the developing regions, as they battle to make their way to the final stages and a shot at the MSI Trophy.
The eight participants are divided in two groups of four. Both groups will feature a double round-robin group stage after which the top team of each group will advance into an elimination bracket against the North American and the LMS champion.
The initial schedule for the event has been slightly altered due to national days of mourning in Vietnam following the death of a former Vietnamese president Le Duc Anh. As a result, May 3rd and 4th matches will be pushed down to May 5th and beyond. They group stage will commence on May 10th in Hanoi, Vietnam. While the semi-final and final will be played in Taipei, Taiwan.
The play-in groups are divided as follows:
Group A (CIS, SEA, Japan, Brazil)
- Vega Squadron
- DetonatioN FocusMe
- INTZ e-Sports
Group B (Turkey, Vietnam, LATAM, OCE)
- 1907 Fenerbahçe
- Phong Vũ Buffalo
- Isurus Gaming
It is refreshing to see new names coming up from the play-in regions as 5 out of the 8 teams are newcomers to the global stage (If we don’t count MEGA as the Bangkok Titans). With each of the teams winning the trophy in their respective regions it is difficult to predict how each of the regions will scale up to one another in terms of relative strength. In terms of past global stage experience DetonatioN FocusMe from Group A and Phong Vũ Buffalo in Group B are the teams to look out for.
The play-in stage will conclude with an elimination bracket where Team Liquid and Flash Wolves await the group winners. The PVB home squad can rely on the home crowd offering support as they will have to face Team Liquid if they reach eliminations.
The main event commences after all is said and done in the Play-in stage. SK Telecom T1 (KR), Invictus Gaming (CN), and G2 Esports (EU) await the Top 3 teams from Play-ins in the main event. This will arguably be the most competitive MSI in history as the raw talent power between the three teams seeded straight into the Group Stage is Over 9000. All 3 teams had relatively dominating local splits, clean playoff runs all hinting at an entertaining conclusion of the 2019 Spring Split at MSI.
Matches kick off Wednesday May 1st at 11:00 CEST / 5:00 EDT at Twitch.tv/riotgames
The full schedule is available HERE.
Happy International Workers’ Day.