Will T1 make Play-Ins or Groups at Worlds 2021? – LCK Regional Finals

T1 will finally be back at Worlds 2021 and people will be able to see Faker playing on stage once again. T1 still needs to win one more series in order to advance to the groups stage so there’s still a lot on the line. Who will win? Will the legendary Korean organization rise to glory again or will the new generation reign supreme? Let’s find out!

The LCK Summer Split is entering its last stage as T1 awaits their final opponent of the season to decide if they head to Play-Ins or Group Stage at Worlds.

T1 LCK

© T1 / LCK

T1’s returning to Worlds 2021

After missing out on last year’s tournament, the legendary organization makes their return with a team full of promising youngsters and a living legend. The organization underwent serious changes throughout the year, making space for the new rookies during spring. The strategy of finding the best line-up paid off really late into the season. T1 sacrificed most of the first part of the year to make sure they secured Worlds and it worked.

Canna found his groove a little after a very disappointing spring and the rookie jungler Oner earned himself the starting spot, with strong performances in summer. But T1’s shining point is their bot lane: Teddy and Keria who are extremely consistent, dominating a lot of the competition. Obviously, Faker in the mid-lane with his leadership makes the coordination even better.

LCK Finals Recap – T1 vs DWG Kia

Both of these two teams have come a long way this year: they had ups and downs both in spring and summer, but they made it all to the very end.

DK had a very strong start in Spring, demolishing the competition and earning their ticket to the Mid-Season Invitational. Following MSI, all types of problems started to arise: ADC Ghost was benched, and support BeryL had shaky performances most of the MSI and the first weeks of Summer. This all brought to a situational roster change where jungler Canyon went mid, making space for the substitute Malrang, and moving ShowMaker to ADC. The team finished first with a 12-6 record, beating Gen.G Esports and Nongshim RedForce thanks to a better game record. Then, they demolished NS in the playoffs, and ultimately T1 in the Finals, securing a third consecutive LCK split trophy and tying T1’s 2016/2017 run.

For T1, this series was all about poorly closing out games and missed clutches. Throughout the series Teddy and Canna were in DWG’s crosshair, as one fight after went the way of their opponents making games almost impossible to close out by a monster clutch. Only in Game 3 did T1 bring out Lee “Gumayusi” Min-hyeong instead od Teddy and finally won a game. This was the game where we really saw how intensely fast and dominant T1 can be, but it was all for nought.

The story would repeat in Game 4 if T1 did not try to do many things on the map too quickly and ultimate overextend themselves into losing fights. DWG Kia bounced back from a deficit and claimed the LCK trophy, pushing T1 into the Regional Finals.

LCK Regional Finals – Who’s our money on?

The LCK Regional Finals will determine if T1 makes it into the Worlds 2021 Group Stage or Play-In. Based on the Playoffs final, T1 does look like the team that is winning, but I am not sure if that would be the best result for them.

It’s really hard to make a prediction for the final series as we have two matches that precede it first. First up, Hanwha Life Esports and Liiv SANDBOX kick off the King of the hill bracket. Chovy and Deft have not delivered for HLE this season, and I expect a four game series going the way of LSB.

The followup series between NS RedForce and potentially Liiv SANDBOX is where things get really interesting. Both of these teams are fairly equal in terms of play potential and we are in for a long a drawn out series likely going 5 games. It’s harder to predict an outright winner here, as both teams match up equally in every game state.

Regardless of who wins however, we are in for final in which T1 will not be a favorite. Be it either NS or LSB, both teams dominated T1 twice in the regular season. Unless we see Gumayusi as a starter and a T1 that closes a quick series in 3 games, we might be in for a final they eventually lose. Honestly, that might be even better for T1 as they do seem to need the Play-In portion of Worlds to make up for the bulk of 2021 spent on team building. The team now needs play time and cohesion.

In summary, LSB to win versus HLE outright (x1.6), NS and LSB to play 5 games (x2.75) and T1 to lose finals outright is my set of predictions for the LCK Regional Finals. Odds courtesy of GG.BET.

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