Jul 9 2014 - 6:13 pm

Fnatic pushing hard to reclaim LCS title

Week seven of the League of Legends Championship is over, and only ten games remain
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Week seven of the League of Legends Championship is over, and only ten games remain. And the tension has never been thicker, especially in North America, where four teams—half of the league—are tied in first place with 11-7 records.

Meanwhile, over in Europe, Fnatic and ROCCAT are on a mid-season surge, both hoping to put dismal opening weeks behind them. But the team in the lead, Alliance, remain impregnable at the top. The rest of Europe has some serious catching up to do.

With both regions promising some major flux before the end of the season, almost every playoff spot is still up for grabs. Time is ticking down, and while some teams are down, nobody is out in the LCS.

altInfographic by LoLStats

North America’s playoff picture is hazy, but the bottom of the league shows some serious promise, for the most part. Curse and CompLexity both put in 3-1 weeks, and Curse actually came out with the highest gold income of the region. With ten games left, hope is fading, but if both teams can keep on putting in big games, they might actually get a favorable seed into the playoffs. Evil Geniuses, however, look almost without redemption, and another winless week all but seals them into relegation.

The other big news is, of course, the four teams at the top. The only one with a positive win rate last week was Team Solomid, whose 3-1 record gives them a bump up into first place from fourth. Their 7.38 KDA was the highest for North America, and they’ve put themselves in great shape to keep pushing for a playoff bye. Cloud9, however, remain a game behind the pack, and the two-time champs are definitely struggling. If they want to reclaim their title, they’ll have to do better than a paltry 3.0 KDA.

It should be no surprise that Curse claim the team MVP. Support player Alex "Xpecial" Chu managed 35 assists over his four games, giving his lane buddy David "Cop" Roberson tons of kills. Chu seems to have finally settled into his new team after leaving Team Solomid in the offseason, and Curse may very well be on their way to a solid playoff run.

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In Europe, the scene is a bit more disparate.

Alliance lead by a three-game margin, with the rest falling in line behind. The big story here is the 4-0 week from Fnatic, who are on a roll. Fnatic have never failed to finish in first place in the EU LCS playoffs—but they’ve never had quite this steep of hill to climb this late in the season either. But an 8.39 KDA and 1835 gold rate speak to some very dominant games from the team, and Fnatic might have exactly what it takes to shove the region back in line. And while Alliance do have a four-game lead over Fnatic, 3.34 KDA weeks won’t keep it that way for long.

Of the teams at the bottom, ROCCAT have the best shot at making the playoffs. A 3-1 week, coupled with respectable KDA and gold income numbers have them clearly on the right foot as they approach the end of the season. Gambit Gaming and the Copenhagen Wolves, however, don’t stand much of a chance if they keep their play up. Despite their win against Alliance, the Wolves can’t seem to find consistency in their play. Meanwhile, Gambit can’t even manage consistency in their lineup.

Fnatic find themselves with most of the MVP nods, and the bottom lane combo of Martin "Rekkles" Larsson and Bora "YellOwStaR" Kim is really starting to look dangerous.  Together, they managed 30 kills and 76 assists, with only ten deaths.

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Champion picks are in some major flux this week with the new patch changes still being tested out. It should be no surprise that consistent performers like Lee Sin, Lulu, and Elise comprise the top picked champions. Kog’Maw, however, came out of nowhere, and should be on every teams radar heading into week 8.

All screengrabs via Riot Games/YouTube

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