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If anyone thought Team Liquid would overcome a post-MSI hangover quickly, they were dead wrong. Liquid dropped yet another game, this time to CLG, to join SK Telecom T1 and Invictus Gaming as MSI semifinalists who look like they’re sleepwalking through the Summer Split.
This has led to a lot of movement in the power rankings this week. We still think Liquid are the best team in the region, but they aren’t playing like it right now. If the malaise continues, it wouldn’t be surprising to see them fail to win the LCS and complete the mythical four-peat.
To see how far they’ve fallen, our League analysts ranked each team from one point (worst) to 10 points (best):
Here’s how we got to this point after week two.
Split of sorrow: Echo Fox, 100 Thieves
The 100 Talk podcast has labeled this the “split of sorrow” for 100 Thieves. They’re not wrong. The team is clearly the worst in the region and is trying all sorts of experiments just to find a roster that works together. At this point, they’d probably settle for a duo lane that gels.
Echo Fox aren’t in as dire of a strait. They have that one win over Liquid from week one to hold onto. But they can’t look back to that performance too much longer or the losses will start piling up.
Signs of life: FlyQuest, CLG, Clutch Gaming
In contrast to the teams at the bottom, each of these squads showed some spark in week two. FlyQuest got a win on the board with a decent victory over TSM. It wasn’t the most impressive thing in the world, but when you’ve lost three times, you’ll take that W.
CLG went into their match vs. Liquid as big underdogs and promptly spanked the defending champs. One of the things that teams supposedly learned from MSI was to innovate, but another key lesson is to play what you know. So CLG drafted Caitlyn—an underrated champion—for Trevor “Stixxay” Hayes and let him carry.
Finally, Clutch Gaming pulled out a 2-0 week by beating Golden Guardians and 100 Thieves. We’re still not sure how consistent they can be, but if they have more weeks like that, they’ll shoot up these rankings.
Taking advantage: Golden Guardians, TSM, OpTic
We still don’t quite believe in OpTic. What they’ve done in going undefeated through two weeks is impressive, but the best team they’ve played so far is probably a 1-3 FlyQuest. Just last summer, Misfits looked unbeatable for several weeks before falling out of contender status quickly.
The good news is that the teams ahead of them, TSM and Golden Guardians, have issues of their own. Golden Guardians got absolutely smashed by Clutch’s early game and then lost tempo against C9 before bringing it back. And TSM looked like they’d never practiced the Sona-Taric bot lane duo before, even though it was their own Academy team that debuted the strategy in North America.
New kids on the block: C9, Team Liquid
C9 rose to the top of the rankings by winning three straight, but then a loss to Golden Guardians on Sunday left a bad taste in our mouths. Still, with Liquid continuing to look apathetic, it was enough to send them to the top of the rankings. It’ll be hard for them to stay there given how chaotic the first two weeks in the LCS have been.
All photos via Riot Games