Two weeks up, two weeks down in the League of Legends Championship Series. Here are the major story lines from Sunday’s North American games:
NA is looking like a top contending region
Let the past be the past because the top teams in NA are looking like they can be contenders when the international tournaments roll around. Immortals, TSM, and NRG all look very strong, with great early game plans and map movements. The competition later this year is going to be fierce. It has been a few years since anyone could say that NA has a chance to have a great showing against the rest of the world. It is an exciting time to be a NA fan.
Cloud 9 is lost without Hai
It’s pretty evident that Cloud 9 can’t be a competitive team without the shot-calling of Hai “Hai” Du Lam. Michael “Bunny FuFuu” Kurylois is a good support, but he is new to the pro scene and nowhere as experienced as Hai. The problem is that the other players don’t seem to want to step up and make good calls when Hai is not on the roster, and they simply seem lost. When Hai is present, Cloud 9 looks like a top NA team, but without him it looks deserving of a spot at the bottom of the barrel. If Hai can’t mold Bunny FuFuu into a world class shot-caller, Cloud 9 will need to make some drastic changes in the future.
The mid tier teams are very close
All the middle-of-the-pack teams are so close in skill that it is going to be difficult to predict who will be a playoff contender. Team Liquid seems to have gigantic problems but is loaded with individual top-class players. Team Impulse, which many thought they would be an easy last-place team, is coming together and winning games. The rest of the teams are all in a similar boat. While showing promise in certain parts of their games, they severely lack in others. The middle is wide open.
Cover photo courtesy of Riot Games.