What a finish to MSI we had. It was arguably one of the best competitions we’ve seen in years, and we’ve seen a wealth of new talent come through. Let’s have a look, team by team.
The fairytale story just wasn’t meant to be, but PSG showed there is some incredible talent in the Wildcard regions. Being paired up with RNG for your semifinal match is no easy task, and PSG did fall short in the end, but not before showing they have some seriously powerful claws. Hanabi was the picture of reliability throughout the tournament, as was Kaiwing, which allowed River, Maple and substitute ADC Doggo to thrive- Doggo was one of our best performers throughout the whole tournament. Going into Worlds, we shouldn’t be surprised if Talon can make a deep run past the Groups- after what we’ve seen at MSI, Play-Ins should be a formality. PSG get an A- for their MSI performance. We can’t wait to see you at Worlds.
It’s been an evolution and a half for MAD since their frankly embarrassing Worlds showing. At every step they proved doubters wrong- “they’re not the best EU team! They’ll struggle in Groups! They won’t make it out of Rumble! They’ll get 3-0d by the stronger teams!”. How wrong the naysayers were. MAD took reigning World Champions DWG KIA to Silver Scrapes in their semifinals matchup, and it was DWG that had to make the comeback in that series, not MAD. There were still some shaky moments throughout MSI, but MAD should be proud of their showing, and they should be filled with confidence that they stand a good shot of defending their LEC title and making it back to Worlds to complete their redemption arc. MAD get an A grade for their MSI performance.
This was not the DWG KIA we saw speedrun Worlds and dominate the LCK in Spring. DWG KIA came into the tournament with an air of invincibility about them- one that was shattered in a loss to C9 and then in subsequent losses to RNG in Rumble, and being taken to 5 games by MAD Lions in the semifinals. They put up a good fight in the final, forcing Silver Scrapes to play vs RNG, but for a team as strong on paper and in game as DWG KIA have been, it was a bit disappointing to watch them meander through the stages. The team is definitely missing Nuguri and his top lane carry threat, and Ghost & BeryL really need to up their game. They made it to the final, but that was expected, and they made hard work of it. DWG KIA get a B- for their overall MSI performance.
Royal Never Give Up
All hail the new kings. RNG may be the champions, but like DWG KIA, they showed us that they aren’t infallible. An 8-0 Groups performance was completely expected considering the competition (no disrespect to Pentanet and Unicorns, of course). Their Rumble showing was one of dizzying highs and cavernous lows- dominating wins against DWG KIA were accompanied by losses to PSG, Cloud9 and MAD Lions to see them finish 2nd in the Rumble. Knockouts was a mixed bag- taking down an in-form PSG was great, but considering the poor form we’d seen from an obviously rattled DWG KIA, they should have closed that one out sooner. Overall RNG get a B+ for their MSI showing- we expect them to be back stronger for Worlds.