In one of the most entertaining international matches in recent memory, Team WE of the LPL ended the second game of MSI in quick fashion, beating Flash Wolves of the LMS in 29 minutes and 50 seconds.
Team WE’s first-ever MSI match would gift fans the first appearance of Bard, a champion that has seen small buffs in recent patches, in the group stage of the tournament. Flash Wolves were looking to survive WE’s early-game pressure and scale enough to give them a late-game victory.
WE started the game aggressively, forcing Flash Wolves under the towers on low health as WE looked to take an early-game gold advantage with their superior CS.
WE’s Kled pick for top laner Ke “957” Chang-Yu paid dividends in the early game. As soon as Kled hit level six, 957 popped his ultimate and charged headfirst into the enemy Rumble, which had been stunned by the ganking Elise, to secure an easy first blood and push WE’s advantage to over 1,000 gold.
Flash Wolves showcased a complete lack of respect towards Team WE’s Elise, who had been waiting to gank the Rumble mere minutes after securing first blood. Rumble overextended and gifted WE another kill in the top lane. Kled was able to use this early advantage to take first tower and successfully use the extra item advantage to split-push, causing major problems for Flash Wolves early on.
Flash Wolves were caught completely off guard, but still managed to pick up a crucial kill in the mid lane for their jungler Hung “Karsa” Hau-Hsuan to keep them in the game.
The kill onto Team WE’s mid laner burst Flash Wolves into life as the team cruised down to the botlane, securing three kills and their first tower to keep them in the running. WE were quick to respond, as the Kled, who had been split pushing all this time and causing problems for the Rumble, managed to get a second inner tower and open up the map control for WE.
WE’s entire strategy was to avoid the team fight and keep splitpushing. Even if Team WE were caught out in a lane, one of the sidelanes would keep pushing. WE continuously tried to force Flash Wolves to deal with Kled or face losing a tower.
Even if Flash Wolves forced a fight onto the other four members of WE, 957 always had a teleport that he could use to join the fight and help out the team.
The Kled had, arguably, the best play of the tournament. After split pushing down botlane, three members of Flash Wolves roamed down to kill him. Flash Wolves were able to take the 957 and take away his Guardian Angel all while WE were using the play to take Baron under Flash Wolves’ nose. WE’s Kled would then pull off the survival of the century by dealing enough damage to bring back his passive, Skaarl, and escape with a sliver of health straight after WE were able to secure the Baron.
This play led to a five-man group-up by WE in the mid lane to storm the base, take the Nexus, and win the game. 957 finished the game with seven kills, four assists, and more importantly, no deaths on Kled.
Flash Wolves will now set their sights on G2 Esports of the EU LCS later on today, while Team WE face off against North America’s TSM in the final match of the day.