CLG hold slight advantage over LMQ ahead of crucial matchup
The jumbled mess of teams at the top of the North American League of Legends scene seems to have finally been put to order, as powerhouses Counter Logic Gaming and LMQ pull ahead of the pack. The four-way tie from last week has been broken, and these two teams are in a prime position to pull ahead even further.
But to do so, they'll have to go through each other.
LMQ and Counter Logic Gaming's match this week not only will give another win to the tied first place teams, but with only three weeks of competition left, could very well determine who has the first place seed heading into playoffs. Simply put, if either team pulls ahead further, they would be in dominant position to claim the title of North American champions. That being said, who has an edge heading into the match? We pulled all the stats and tried to make some sense of it.
Based on the overall team comparison, this matchup is going to be close, possibly the closest we've seen. The team KDAs are just 0.21 apart, and GPMs are less than 3 gold per minute apart. The similarities don't stop there, though—both teams have fairly equitable objective control rates, with less than 20 percent differences across the board. These teams are evenly matched up, and while LMQ does have a single win lead over Counter Logic Gaming, there's no telling who can come ahead just by looking at the team stats.
The player matchups look very close as well. In most of the positions, players appear equal. However, there are some notable divergences that might make all the difference in the world. Yu "XiaoWeiXiao" Xian, LMQ's superstar mid laner, rocketed into the season with some outstanding breakout performances, earning three MVP nods along the way. However, his CLG counterpart, Austin "Link" Shin, has been keeping pace, and actually has a higher seasonal KDA. Shin's performance will be integral to sealing victory.
There's an even bigger edge that Counter Logic Gaming might want to use to come out on top—their bottom lane pair. Yiliang "Doublelift" Peng and Zaqueri "Aphromoo" Black have been on fire lately. While LMQ marksman Li "Vasilii" Wei-Jun does have a higher KDA, Peng is ahead in his creep score rate, kill participation, and most importantly, tends to spike in CS compared to lane opponents as the game lengthens. Li, on the other hand, falls behind if the game goes long.
That all being said, this game could still very well end up in either camp. But Counter Logic Gaming, with the power of the Peng/Black "Rush Hour," have a slight edge going into the match.