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Hello everyone, and welcome back to the final Players to Watch of the 2020 regular season! Let’s end on a high, shall we?
It’s now Finals week in DraftBuff Fantasy- how are you guys doing? Hopefully you’re all in the fight for 1st! I unfortunately narrowly crashed out of Playoffs by a margin of just a few points (thanks for the int games, C9!), but let’s not dwell on the past. We still have 1 more week to go, and it could be a spicy one! With the top of the table teams in the LCS still locked in a 3-way fight for the playoff byes, and over in EU, Rogue and MAD are going to be fighting it out to get that 1st place finish. If MAD get 1st, they lock a Worlds spot before playoffs even start, thanks to Championship Points! But anything can happen, and as Medic has been reminding us: If you don’t make playoffs, you don’t make Worlds. Take notes, Fnatic and G2.
Personally, I’ll be rooting for MAD to get 1st– I love their style of play and team spirit, but the real viewing this week can be found in Schalke’s near-improbable run to the cusp of playoffs. Will the S04 Miracle Run happen?
A quick reminder too- this week is an LEC SuperWeek! This means every team plays 3 times, and LEC players have their scores normalised. So, for example, if a player gets 50, 40 and then 0 points in their 3 games:
50+40+0= 90 -> 90/3=30 -> 30×2= Their total for the week, which is 60 points
Before we get into things, let’s break down last week’s player scores one last time:
TOP: Huni – 28.22 points
JUNGLE: Jankos – 58.56 points
MID: Special – 29.02 points
ADC: WildTurtle – 82.66 points
SUPPORT: LiMiT – 38.10 points
UTILITY: Upset – 24.32 points
A tough one; Upset was one good teamfight away from hitting the magical 30, and Special & Huni came agonisingly close. However, I’ll happily take the trade off with Jankos and WildTurtle getting a barnstorming 141.22 points between them! Swings and roundabouts, lads.
With that out of the way, let’s get stuck into the final Players to Watch of Summer!
TOP: Solo (FLY, vs CLG & IMT this week)
I know Solo was featured back in Week 2, but I seriously love this guy and what he does for Flyquest.
Solo has had a brilliant split- he came in during Spring playoffs for Flyquest, replacing V1PER, and save for a couple of off games, has not stopped impressing since. His comfort on uber-tanks such as Ornn and Sett, as well as more kill-centric champions such as Renekton, coupled with his low-maintenance laning, has enabled Flyquest’s PowerOfEvil and WildTurtle to focus solely on kills, and also allows Santorin to focus on getting those lanes ahead. When he gets Jungle attention, Solo makes the most of it, but he can win a lane on his own, or at least lose gracefully and be a credit to his team later on in the game. These qualities have been a major part of FLY’s rise to 4th, comfortably sitting in the playoffs spots and keeping the Worlds dream alive.
Last week, a total K/D/A of 5/3/16 earned Solo and his owners a tidy 54.60 points, but these totals aren’t rare for Solo- he’s only had 1 week this split where he registered below 35 points, and has got as high as 65 points before. This week, Solo will be facing off against Ruin and Allorim to lock in the playoffs spot without having to rely on other results going their way. I can only foresee two won lanes for Solo, and him being a major threat later on in teamfights too. I think Ruin is a decent Top laner, and I love Allorim’s style of play, but Solo’s veteran status and better form overall should see him come out victorious without too much sweating involved.
JUNGLE: Skeanz (VIT, vs RGE, S04 & MSF this week)
A potentially risky pick, but the next few picks might be worth taking a chance on, considering the LEC SuperWeek. First up, Skeanz.
After some rough matches for Vitality, the management decided to sub out Nji and put Skeanz back into the roster. Skeanz was a part of the Vitality team that finished rock bottom of the Spring split, but honestly, you wouldn’t be able to tell. Since coming back in, Skeanz has been taking names. He’s yet to post a week with less than 36 points, and last week’s win against joint-1st MAD Lions showed what this team is capable of. Last week, Skeanz posted up 36.30 points with a total K/D/A of 4/5/10, and I imagine he’ll continue to build on this.
This week, Skeanz is up against Rogue’s InspireD, Schalke 04’s Gilius and Misfits’ Razork. These are all potentiually difficult matchups for Skeanz, but just as it’s possible for them to lose all 3, they could just as easily go and win them all too. Vitality don’t fear the better teams- they demolished G2 in Week 1, and most recently took down MAD. Skeanz could be a niche pick, but one that ultimately pays off.
MID: Abbedagge (S04, vs FNC, VIT & MAD this week)
Bet you didn’t think we’d ever see a Schalke player in these articles, eh!
Schalke’s early form was dreadful; they lost 8 games on the bounce before finally picking up their first win, and they seem to have really found some form since. I was one of the many that continually criticised them, but credit where credit’s due; they’re looking hot right now. And you should really consider Abbedagge this week if you need a mid laner; he could be in for a good one.
Abbedagge has always been a major lynchpin in Schalke’s team; he’s undoubtedly a gifted Mid laner, but he’s always been held back by occasional mistakes in his play and occasionally questionable decisions that lose him momentum or make it difficult for him to get back in. However, he seems to have buried these demons, and buried alongside those demons are Nukeduck, Special, FEBIVEN and Caps.
The past 2 weeks he’s varied in form between ‘good’ to being ‘absolutely incredible’, and has been dumpstering his opponents too. Last week, a total K/D/A of 9/1/9 saw Abbedagge pick up 58.84 points, and the week before he notched up an incredible 97.76 points. This week, Abbedagge will be facing off against Nemesis, Milica and Humanoid to potentially see the S04 Miracle Run end in a playoffs spot. These will be tough matches for sure- they are all talented players, but Schalke have the advantageous position of having nothing to lose. MAD are fighting to secure 1st and an automatic Worlds spot, Fnatic are fighting to stay in the playoff spots, and Vitality are fighting to take Fnatic’s playoffs spot. They may well be too nervy to make big plays, for fear of messing them up; Schalke will go for those. Nobody can blame Schalke for missing playoffs, so they have everything to gain from this week, and they’ll throw their bodies on the line for it.
ADC: Neon (S04, vs FNC, VIT & MAD this week)
2 players from the same team in the same article? Sure, why not!
As much as we can credit Abbedagge for being a big part of Schalke’s Miracle Run being possible, it would be criminal to not give Neon a shout out. Since being subbed in from S04 Evolution for Innaxe, Neon has found his feet in the LEC, and has had an incredible past few games.
Neon seems to love Senna, and pairing it with Tahm Kench has seen Schalke pick up 3 wins in a row. He’s not even been just a passenger either- Neon’s been posting seriously big KDAs. Last week saw him pick up 65.70 points, with Neon grabbing 7 kills, 17 assists and not dying once. These were potentially tough games too- XL’s Patrik shouldn’t be written off, and Upset has a reputation that precedes him. Neon has just been really, really good lately. He did even better in Week 7, where be notched up 87.48 points with a K/D/A of 9/4/26; a week in which he and Dreams completely buried PerkZ and Mikyx.
As we said up above, they’ll be facing off against Fnatic, Vitality and MAD Lions. These are opponents that Neon needs to be careful not to write off, but I reckon he can still pull off some results here. All of their opponents have something to lose, which will play perfectly into Neon’s hands. If MAD let Senna or Ezreal through the draft they could live to regret it, whereas if Fnatic or Vitality let them through, it’s likely that they’ll be watching playoffs from home. Neon’s definitely worth a shout here.
SUPPORT: Poome (100T, vs DIG & EG this week)
Poome gang rise up!
I really wanted to like Stunt. He had potential to be just what 100 Thieves needed, but it just didn’t work out. Fortunately for the Thieves though, they had Poome waiting in the wings, and after completely smurfing in Academy, he’s stepped up to the LCS plate admirably.
Poome loves a bit of tank action- he’s at home on champions like Thresh and Nautilus, but can also play casters like Yuumi and Lulu with skill, and his Rakan is one to be feared. He doesn’t often have a bad game, and even in a losing lane he and Cody Sun can lose with grace. Simply put, he’s what 100 Thieves need to pair with Cody Sun.
Last week Poome notched up a total of 15.26 points with a total K/D/A of 2/10/9. This was disappointing, but I can see 100 Thieves and Poome bouncing back from this poor showing in their final week. This week, the 100 Thieves bot lane will be facing off against Dignitas’ Johnsun & Aphromoo, and EG’s Bang & Zeyzal. 100T are more or less guaranteed to make playoffs, considering the 8 team playoff structure the LCS is doing this season, but they still can play for seeding and a more beneficial seeding for the start of playoffs. DIG are pretty much out of the running provided CLG don’t flop this week, and EG are currently really struggling for form. I can see the Poome Gang being very pleased with the performances 100 Thieves put out this week.
UTILITY: Perkz (G2, vs SK, MSF & XL this week)
Wow, it’s been a tough split for G2. They’ve really not lived up to expectations. Obviously, they have had their internal problems with Perkz’s father tragically passing away and suchlike, but it also feels like they just really didn’t have a good read on the meta, and underestimated their opponents after such a long streak of being the undisputed best team in Europe. However, they seem to be back on their feet somewhat and have strung together a 3-match winning streak.
This week is going to be a big one for G2’s seeding for playoffs- it’s more or less a formality that they’ll make it to the post-season, provided they don’t have an absolute nightmare week and all other results go against them. I can foresee Perkz being a big part of this week’s performances for G2. His skill on picks like Kalista, Senna and most notably Caitlyn, who featured in the win against Fnatic, and being content with not having the counter pick to help him out, has made Perkz someone that you couldn’t write off, even during G2’s big slump.
Last week Perkz posted a total K/D/A of 12/3/14, earning 76.42 points as a result, which was undoubtedly a relief for his owners following 2 weeks of rather tame point tallies. In the LEC SuperWeek, Perkz will be facing off against SK’s Crownshot, Misfits’ Kobbe and XL’s Patrik. Crownshot is a superb ADC at the moment; you give SK an inch, and they’ll take a mile. While Kobbe is a great player in his own right, Misfits have had an inconsistent split and I feel that subbing Denyk back in has stemmed the bleeding, but they’ve already lost a lot of blood. XL’s Patrik has really found his feet, but provided Jankos makes his presence known down in the bottom lane to ensure Perkz leaves the lane ahead, I can’t foresee too many problems from Excel for G2.
TEAM: TSM (vs GG & TL this week)
TSM are back to being a great team again, and if you can grab them for your Team slot, you could be walking out of this week with some great points.
Currently sitting tied for 2nd in the table with Cloud9, TSM are on a 4-win hot streak. Their jungler, Spica, might not be the most aggressive in terms of ganking, but what he lacks in PvP action, he more than makes up for in jungle pressure and objective control. TSM are now a team that don’t just lurch from one fight to the next; as soon as they get a small victory, they’re grouping for turrets or heading to a Dragon or even a Baron. All of this means some big points for you.
Last week TSM posted 36.00 points, having taken 19 turrets, 6 Dragons, 3 Barons and 1 first turret bonus. THis sort of control isn’t out of the ordinary either- the team has yet to post less than 24.50 points in a week of play. Their matches this week against GG and TL will be tough- they also have junglers that love an objective- but I have faith that if you put your trust in TSM, they’ll repay it. TSM are stronger overall than GG, and have it in the tank to produce a couple of moments of brilliance against TL that will allow you to rake in the points.
Well, that about wraps it up for this split! Best of luck to you all this week in your Finals matches- may the points be in your favour. I’ll be back soon with some Playoffs and Worlds content for you all- looking forward to it already! Until then, I’ll see you later.