Friday, August 28th Recap
Gen.G vs Afreeca Freecs (Net: +12.618 units)
This was barely a series. Gen.G averaged more than a kill per minute on their own across three games tallying 84 in under 80 minutes. Unfortunately a series like this is what happens when a good team loses to themselves. T1 don’t lose that series if it’s a best-of-five. Afreeca get credit for the win in game one but three, as mentioned previously, was just a huge T1 punt. Can’t help but think a T1 vs Gen.G series would have been significantly more interesting.
We cashed on all of our alternate overs here as the model projections came in strong.
Suning vs LGD Gaming (Net: +5.15 units)
LGD probably should have taken game three of this series after a sloppy through but LGD immediately and in very on-brand LGD fashion threw it back. Otherwise a pretty sound beating delivered at the hands of Suning. I expected this to be at least a little bit more competitive than this even though I was fairly bullish on Suning. We get to see some players like SwordArt return to the Worlds stage and a few finally get there after a long career or trying. Suning absolutely deserved this and they’ve improved steadily over the course of the season. They should be an interesting team to watch and should represent China well at the World Championships. LGD aren’t out yet and will get another chance against the winner of Invictus/FunPlus.
MAD Lions vs Schalke 04 (Net: +5.37 units)
After a weird game one draft that included a blind first pick Akali, MAD ran it right back with that confidence I spoke of yesterday and trusted their plan with a minor adjustment and dominated the rest of this series. Schalke really struggled when their bottom lane wasn’t able to maintain wave control because their 7:30 shove/back/herald set play is suddenly off the table and they need to make in-game adjustments, something they haven’t really needed to do. I anticipated they’d struggle against the versatile and deep toolbox of the MAD bottom lane and that’s what came to fruition.
It’s a bummer to see the Schalke miracle run end, along with my beer bet future on Schalke +100,000 to win worlds but we made out quite well on the day with a big MAD Lions win. This line was egregious, no if’s ands or but’s about it.
Daily Total: +23.138 units (+62.05% ROI)
Probably my best day of the year. I didn’t go back and look but they don’t get too much better than that. Good way to make up for arguably my worst day of the year last week. Funny how that balances out. Onto the next one!
LPL Summer 2020
Regional Qualifier – Round One
Invictus Gaming -164 (-1.5 maps @ +137, -2.5 @ +376, +1.5 @ -370) vs
FunPlus Phoenix +128 (+1.5 maps @ -175, +2.5 @ -556, -1.5 @ +265, -2.5 @ +680)
Total Maps: 3.5 maps (over -312 / under +233), 4.5 maps (over +167 / under -217)
Kill Total: 28.5 (over -110 / under -119)
Kill Spread: -4.5 @ -112 / +4.5 @ -116
Team Kill Totals: 15.5 / 12.5
Time Total: 33:00 (over +118 / under -154)
Invictus – TheShy, Ning, Rookie, Puff, Baolan
FunPlus – GimGoon, Tian, Doinb, Lwx, Crisp
One of the previous two world champions will be eliminated tomorrow morning and they’re both playing the closest thing they still can to the lineups that did just that with four out of five members on each team that represented them at their respective championships.
I’ve talked a lot about GimGoon since his return mid-season. While he unlocks Doinb and Tian to play more toward the bottom side of the map, he also limits the things that they can do with the top lane. He’s a specialist that’s excellent on his specific champions and at playing weak side with those champions. Hell, he’s one of the best to ever do it if that’s all the top lane is but it also telegraphs that to other teams who can craft game plans accordingly. We did get to see his Jax in the last series which was interesting so maybe old Gimmy has some aces up his sleeve. The reason I mention this is because you really REALLY don’t want to leave TheShy to have a field day on the weak side of the map against your top laner. I don’t care who it is. That’s his wheel house.
FunPlus have other problems but the biggest one is named Rookie. There is a very reasonable argument for Rookie as the best player in the world right now. Similar to Caps early in G2’s season, he dragged a team that struggled to start the season kicking and screaming to the finish line on so many occasions it started to get old (but not really…). Doinb has struggled with champion pool issues this season and can’t seem to find much that’s working for him besides Galio and a few other things here and there. That simply won’t suffice against Rookie.
To me, FPX have the stronger bottom lane but Lwx and Crisp haven’t been quite as sharp as they’ve been for most of the year. That doesn’t mean they can’t be but you don’t really want to see the strongest asset you have in lanes not in peak form.
Everything points to Invictus in this series. The model graded Invictus as the #3 team just behind JDG and just ahead of Victory Five in my final rankings. A lot of people are pointing to an 0-3 loss to LGD with concern but we’ve seen a lot of playoff series this past few weeks represent “off” days, a poor read on the meta, or even just a flat out underperformance. Most of them have been recovered in the next series. TSM, Cloud 9, Afreeca (back to earth), Schalke today (back to earth), LGD 3-0 into 0-3 twice, etc. The point being, don’t overreact to one bad series. Is this an excuse? No but this line feels like an overreaction to me.
That same model, my objective/economy model, that grades Invictus as the #3 team has FPX #12 and a fair amount below league average in most measures. FunPlus’ strongest marks were in … well they only have two that are above league average and those are dragon rating (which IG are even better at than they are), and post-20 gold differential, which Invictus are significantly better than them in. By the numbers this isn’t a close series and the model suggests a heavy play on Invictus as a “strong value.” I happen to agree.
Invictus have had their issues but one of the things they’ve been good at is developing a number of different strategies over the course of the season. They’ll have a number of options at their disposal in this match. FunPlus will be significantly more one-dimensional as they have been for a majority of 2020. FunPlus are going to have a really difficult team creating any kind of equitable situation in the draft given Doinb and GimGoon’s limitations against the strength and verastility of TheShy and Rookie. Combine that with side selection and I think Invictus are going to have a massive strategic edge in this series to put their strongest players in advantageous positions unless FunPlus can come up with some creative solutions to get out of this situation.
I’m going to be making a heavy play on Invictus here. As depressing as it is, FunPlus were barely a playoff caliber team and their playoff performances didn’t really do much to change my mind on them. These players are still very good and FPX are still a fundamentally sound and highly intelligent team but they just haven’t shown the ability to play anything close to optimal LOL in its current state and that’s been a struggle for them all season long. FunPlus are like G2 earlier in the Summer except they never flipped the light switch and “figured it out” like G2 has. In other words they’ve brought a knife to a proverbial gun fight and unfortunately for them, with their season on the line, they have to face one of the best teams in the league in Invictus. FPX could win this series, like I said these players are still very good but this line is severely mispriced and should probably be closer to -250 or -300 range based on my evaluation. FPX are getting respect only because they made playoffs, their name brand value, and because of the way in which Invictus lost their last series.
Underdog Win: 26.03
“G” Projected Total: 30.88 kills
26 out of 43 Invictus games fell under the 28.5 kill mark for the season but only 8 of their final 21 games went under this total. IG averaged 31.43 CKPG in the second half of the season.
23 out of 41 FunPlus games fell under the 28.5 kill mark for the season and 9 of their final 19 games. FPX averaged 28.11 CKPG in the second half of the season.
The regular season meeting in week four went three games of 22, 21, and 37 kills combined.
Unlike a lot of the matches we’ve had this week, these two teams have a large amount of their combined kill totals end around these numbers. The playoff/regional average total is around this number also. I’d lean toward the under but I’m going to pass on the total here.
IG game times: 30.37 / 29.64 / 31.76 (average / in wins / in losses)
FPX game times: 31.89 / 32.47 / 31.21 (average / in wins / in losses)
Projected Time (avg of avg game times): 31.13 minutes
Odds Weighted: 31.12 minutes
Again a lean to the under but the number is just about right for me. I’d anticipate these games to be more competitive than not and both of these teams can play out a number of different game scripts and styles as well as make in-game adjustments. I wouldn’t rule anything out.
First Blood: IG 37.21% / FPX 56.1%
First Tower: IG 55.81% / FPX 36.585%
First Dragon: IG 53.49% / FPX 63.41%
First Herald: IG 46.51% / FPX 43.9%
Value on FPX first blood and IG first tower. I actually like the under 4.5 dragons at +146 as well. Invictus tend to win extremely quickly when they do win and given that that’s my anticipation here and we’re getting a reasonable number on it regardless of that consideration I’ll make a play on that. FunPlus are no slouches to snowball endings either although there haven’t been many of those in the latter portion of Summer.
Moneyline: Invictus -164 (6.56 units)
Spread: Invictus -1.5 maps @ +137 (2 units)
Spread: Invictus -2.5 maps @ +376 (0.5 units)
Prop: Map 1 total dragons slain UNDER 4.5 @ +146 (2 units)
Prop: Map 2 total dragons slain UNDER 4.5 @ +146 (2 units)
Prop: Map 3 total dragons slain UNDER 4.5 @ +144 (2 units)
Prop: Map 1 IG first tower @ -133 (1.33 units)
Prop: Map 2 IG first tower @ -137 (1.37 units)
Prop: Map 3 IG first tower @ -133 (1.33 units)
Prop: Map 1 FPX first blood @ -137 (1.37 units)
Prop: Map 2 FPX first blood @ -137 (1.37 units)
Prop: Map 3 FPX first blood @ -137 (1.37 units)
LEC Summer 2020
Winners’ Bracket – Semifinals
Later tonight / early tomorrow morning
G2 -333 (-1.5 maps @ -141, -2.5 maps @ +246, +1.5 @ -833) vs
Fnatic +247 (+1.5 maps @ +111, +2.5 @ -333, -1.5 @ +500, -2.5 @ +1300)
Total Maps: 3.5 maps (over -254 / under +184), 4.5 maps (over +196 / under -263)
Kill Total: 29.5 (over -120 / under -109)
Kill Spread: -6.5 @ -110 / +6.5 @ -119
Team Kill Totals: 18.5 / 11.5
Time Total: 33:00 (over +108 / under -141)
Funny how that works right? This is why you can’t overreact to regular season results. Three weeks ago everyone was all doom and gloom for these two teams. We’re in winners’ bracket semifinals and look who’s here?
Historically G2 have had Fnatics number more often than not and even with a significantly improved looked Fnatic last week it’s pretty hard to ignore what G2 have done over the past two weeks. G2 just do everything Fnatic does a little bit better and some things a lot better. I have a hard time looking at this Caps vs Nemesis matchup and thinking that Caps won’t completely take over this series by himself. G2 also have the edge at every other position except maybe jungle where Selfmade has been an absolute monster… but so has Jankos and you could argue Rekkles over Perkz but the full bottom lane goes to G2 with Mikyx being significantly more consistent even in this “bad” season than Hylissang. That’s the message here really. G2 have the largest advantage on the map (mid lane) and even the strong points for Fnatic you could debate that G2 have edges.
You have to go all the way back to Spring 2018 playoffs to for the last time Fnatic beat G2 in a best-of-five series. They’ve taken it to a fifth game in two of the three times they’ve squared off since then but G2 also own the regular season series by a wide margin. I’m not ruling out that Fnatic make this competitive but given the recent forms I think G2 likely take care of business here as they continue to ramp up with more practice time and fewer off field distractions.
These games tend to be very bloody but this total is extremely high at 29.5. Even with an average of 28 kills per game over the course of the LEC playoffs, I still think it’s difficult not to take the under in this spot. My only reservation here would be that both of these teams have already qualified for the World Championship main event so we could see a more loosey-goosey series from these two.
Moneyline: G2 -323 (6.46 units)
Spread: G2 -1.5 maps @ -132 (1.32 units)
Spread: G2 -2.5 maps @ +254 (0.5 units)
Kill Total: Map 1 UNDER 29.5 @ -109 (1.09 units)
Kill Total: Map 2 UNDER 29.5 @ -109 (1.09 units)
Kill Total: Map 3 UNDER 29.5 @ -109 (1.09 units)
LCS Summer 2020
Losers’ Bracket – Round Three
Later tonight / early tomorrow morning
Team Solo Mid +201 (+1.5 maps @ -109, +2.5 @ -357, -1.5 @ +408, -2.5 @ +811) vs
Cloud 9 -263 (-1.5 maps @ -118, -2.5 @ +255, +1.5 @ -625, +2.5 @ -2000)
Total Maps: 3.5 maps (over -233 / under +179), 4.5 maps (over +187 / under -259)
Kill Total: 23.5 (over -120 / under -109)
Kill Spread: +5.5 @ -119 / -5.5 @ -110
Team Kill Totals: 9.5 / 14.5
Time Total: 33:00 (over +111 / under -145)
TSM clawed all the way back for the reverse sweep in a rivoting series against Golden Guardians last weekend. Cloud 9 dispatched of Evil Geniuses fairly decisively. It’s fairly surprising to see these two specifically meeting in losers’ bracket but both of these teams have shown their warts in these playoffs despite getting it done. This is for the final North American spot at the World Championships. To the winner go the spoils.
Instead of breaking this series down lane-by-lane which I think is a tired and ineffective way of evaluating a matchup overall I’m going to talk more about the big picture for both of these teams. I mentioned it a lot last week during writeups for both of these teams but to me this series boils down to who has more avenues to victory and that’s Cloud 9. Their late games haven’t been immaculate by any stretch but the fact that Cloud 9 can do a little bit of everything and still possess the most potent early game in the LCS makes it extremely difficult to draft against them. TSM have frequently opted for very balanced team compositions that have a smooth power curve often peaking in the mid game. One of the ways to attack that is how Golden Guardians did, by threatening to go over top of it with superior scaling OR underneath of it. In many ways, Cloud 9 are a superior version of Golden Guardians and their strongest asset, their potent early game, creates so much draft leverage that I’m having a difficult time imagining they won’t have advantages throughout this series.
It’s also worth mentioning here that, to me, Cloud 9 have been severely underperforming in playoffs and toward the end of the season. This isn’t an opinion that many people share. Most people think that Cloud 9 have been “figured out.” If you’re in that camp then it’s as good a reason as any, along with momentum, to back TSM here. If Cloud 9 can improve their execution and overall awareness, something that’s been lacking but isn’t necessarily an easy fix, then I think they’re going to blow TSM out of the water here. To me that’s upside. This line is a little bit rich given the current form for both of these teams but with the upside of a Cloud 9 actually having a good performance for a change pushes strongly in the direction of Cloud 9. To me we’ve been seeing below average Cloud 9 and above average TSM. I like the upside. I also like Reapered’s drafting and adjustments in a best-of-five over TSM’s coaching staff which has been a sore spot for years now. Added bonus, Cloud 9 get side selection.
I’m leaning toward the under in this series but this number is fairly close and it’d be purely on a hunch. The other prop markets are reasonably priced for this series. For that reason I’ll be keeping this simple and sticking to the sides unless something changes this afternoon.
Moneyline: Cloud 9 -263 (5.26 units)
Spread: Cloud 9 -1.5 maps @ -118 (1.18 units)
Spread: Cloud 9 -2.5 maps @ +255 (0.25 units)