Tiebreaker mind breaker in Week 9 of the LEC
The final week of the LEC has shaped up to be most explosive one this year. Last week we wrote about the importance of Week 8 for Origen, Vitality and Schalke04. Turns out, neither of these teams managed to take charge and settle things for themselves. Vitality fumbled last week entirely losing both matches, while Origen delivered a lukewarm performance (1-1) putting both teams at 7W9L coming into Week 9. Schalke04 had a 1W1L week and at least secured their playoffs spot for good but they are still not guaranteed their 4th spot this split.
Read also: Can Origen make it to the LoL Worlds 2019?
Coming into Week 9 only two teams are eliminated for playoffs (ExceL, Misfits) and none of the seeding is set in stone. While G2, Splyce, Fnatic and Schalke04 have secured their playoffs spot their position in the standings will be determined in the next two days.
Fnatic and Splyce are yet to resolve their battle for 2nd place, and their head2head this weekend will finally determine the second best team in Europe this summer
Splyce winning “match of week” would mean they secure 2nd and get ahead of Fnatic in the head2head. If Fnatic wins they will get away in the standings but equalize the score to 1-1 vs Splyce, opening a potential tiebreaker on Saturday once again. Either way, by the end of Saturday we will get our Juggernaut contestant by the end of this week.
The battle for 4th place is not over yet either. In the new Playoffs system fourth means not being a victim of choice by the 3rd place team (Fnatic/Splyce) in Playoffs. Schalke04 currently sits comfortably at 4th with a 9W7L record. If they have a horrendous week they might up in a tiebreaker scenario with either Vitality or Origen or both by the end of the week.
The final duo
The final two slots for the playoffs are contested by four teams: Origen, Vitality, Splyce and SK Gaming. All four teams have their h2h records either go 1-1 or they are playing between each other this week. This means all four teams can end up eliminated or in tiebreaker scenarios. Let’s attempt to clean up the picture starting with the current lowest placement SK Gaming.
SK sits at 5W11L and still have the theoretical circus scenario in which they make playoffs. First off, they have to win both of their matches against ExceL and OG this weekend. Additionally, either OG or Vitality or both have to go 0W2L to force the 7W11L tiebreaker scenario which SK will also have to win in order to finally make playoffs.
Next up, Rogue. Their situation is not as grim as SK’s as they control their own destiny. At a 6W10L score line and a match against Origen today, the team can secure a positive 2-0 versus OG that will secure a positive result for them in any tie in the standings. The issue arises the following day as both Rogue and OG have radically different opponent strength on Saturday. Rogue meets Fnatic and OG plays SK. In the end, Rogue must have the best week of their entire season in order to make playoffs.
Origen and Vitality are the current gatekeepers of the playoffs race. This weekend, OG meets both of the Playoffs contestants mentioned above, and if they finally perform at their level they can end the playoffs race themselves. But we say this exact line every week and OG is yet to deliver. Maybe Week 9 and their Playoffs spot on the line is the wakeup call they need. Vitality on the other hand does not meet any of the four playoffs contestants, but they do meet Schalke04 on Saturday. If they beat Schalke04 they can open the gate for a tiebreaker for 4th.
In the end, my preferred scenario would be Fnatic beating Splyce on Friday but losing to Rogue on Saturday. Splyce winning against Misfits on Saturday and forcing a second tiebreaker for 2nd. OG and Vitality both going 2W0L on the week and forcing a 3-way tie with Schalke04 for 4th.
Week 9 comes down to each individual team performing at their absolute best in hopes of a better finish of their Summer season.
Watch the whole season unfold in just two days at Twitch.tv/RiotGames starting today at 18:00 CEST.