Friday, August 14th Recap
LGD Gaming vs Team WE (Net: +4.09 units)
In a strange turn of events these two teams reversed roles in this series. Team WE were the team snowballing leads and punting and LGD were the ones scaling and holding on until the opponent screwed up (don’t worry, they had a classic throw in WE’s win, VINTAGE LGD).
This was a really REALLY bad League of Legends series. I’m not particularly surprised with these two teams but it was super sloppy even by their standards. It didn’t go down the way I thought it would even though we got the results. I thought with Killua in and top carry buffs on this patch that Langx would abuse Morgan’s lack of effective pool but he didn’t need to play the carries to force him onto Renekton by taking the Ornn away in three out of four of these games. LGD were the better team today but I wouldn’t call them a better team. Xiye capitalized on a ton of mistakes by Team WE and had a series that reminded me of early career Xiye. Kramer looked good again as well. That said, I don’t think LGD are going to do anything from this point forward.
LPL Total: +4.09 units
KT Rolster vs SeolHaeOne (Net: +2.0 units)
SeolHaeOne kept the gold close but had absolutely no control in game one as they got four drake snowballed relatively cleanly. Game two was an absolute clown fiesta. 53 kills is a season high for the LCK and Aimings 19/0/4 score line is the highest in a major region this season. This was a silly game. Keine managed to get pretty fed on Qiyana, a champ we haven’t seen for awhile. SeolHaeOne look like they’re just playing whatever they feel like at this point. We saw Rumble support, Qiyana mid, Blitzcrank, and Ekko jungle in this series. These champions are perfectly fine in general but were far from optimal in these situations. Kill totals will probably be inflated but unless a team is in dire need of a clean win I think I’ll be looking to overs in SeolHaeOne games moving forward.
DragonX vs Hanwha Life (Net: +2.865 units)
Yeongjae looked decent in his third series appearance and I like what Hanwha Life are doing in general. I think they’re pretty clearly better than SeolHaeOne but still significantly worse than even the middle of the table LCK teams. They have the right idea in a lot of these games they’re just outclassed. DragonX played Lillia and Lucian mid, a combination I think we’ll probably be seeing more and more often as we move forward and they did this on patch 10.15 (Korea moves to 10.16 next week) before Lucian was buffed. Both solo laners, especially Chovy, are extremely good Lucian players so next patch with the big buffs to that champion could prove problematic for teams facing DragonX.
LCK Total: +4.865 units
FlyQuest vs Evil Geniuses (Net: ?? units)
LCS Total: ?? units
Parlays: +1.0 units
Daily Total: ??? units
LPL Summer 2020
Playoffs – Quarterfinals
Suning Gaming -108 (+1.5 @ -256, +2.5 @ -1111, -1.5 @ +205) vs
Victory Five -119 (-1.5 @ +193, -2.5 @ +588, +1.5 @ -270)
Total Maps: 3.5 maps (over -357 / under +260), 4.5 maps (over +153 / under -200)
Kill Total: 25.5 (over -103 / under -125)
Kill Spread: -2.5 @ -119 / +2.5 @ -110
Team Kill Totals: 13.5 / 12.5
Time Total: 33:00 (over -115 / under -114)
SN – Bin, SofM, Angel, Huanfeng, SwordArt
V5 – Biubiu, Weiwei, Mole, Samd, ppgod
There is a surprising amount of history between these two teams. Biubiu and Weiwei were dropped from Suning after Spring split in favor of Bin and SofM so this has a bit of a rivalry attached. It’s worked out quite well for both teams with each vastly exceeding preseason expectations. All four of these players have looked exceptional this season. Just a neat little side narrative.
Getting into this match…
To some extent, both of these teams have been underrated. Suning for more or less the entire season and Victory Five, who had everyone on the bandwagon most of the season had a bunch of people jump ship at the first sign of difficult times. Suning have been “ugly” winners. They haven’t had as many absolute dominations as some of the other top teams. They’ve had a lot of three game series against all different kinds of teams and have had to get a little creative at times and get a little help from opponents mistakes. Victory Five have been a more consistent team.
The model grades Victory Five as the #5 team in the league. For most of the season they were top three. Suning were quietly top six for most of the season and have dropped to #8 in the past week. Victory Five are, deservingly, the favorites here. They grade even or better in every category and that more or less falls in line with what we’ve seen on film from them. In my opinion they should be favored by slightly more than this so they’re a value here.
Suning do have the film advantage having just watched Victory Five against FPX. They also won the regular season series 2-1 and will have side selection for this series which I think is slightly more valuable on this current patch than it normally is due to the power of Caitlyn as a blind pick for blue side.
Strangely enough, I think Suning have been underrated all season and are being slightly overrated here but the side selection angle can’t be understated. Suning had a 66% win rate on blue side, 52.4% on red over the course of Summer albeit on different patches. Through two playoff series thus far, blue has been chosen by the higher seed every single chance possible and has a 6-2 record. Caitlyn has been banned in 7 out of 8 games and has a win in the one game she got through. On patch 10.15 when she was buffed, she had a 60.7% presence rate, 19 bans, 18 picks and a 12-6 record piloted by a blend of good and bad teams (4 of the 6 losses were by ZWuji, Xubin, and Wings). The case and point being that while she isn’t unbeatably broken it’s an extremely potent blind pick strategy and having the draft equity of not having to ban it for potentially three or more games in a series provides you a lot of wiggle room. I rarely dive this deep on patches or side selection because I think it’s usually overrated but on this specific patch with two competitive teams I think it could be a massive deal.
I think Victory Five are the better team and probably should be favored by slightly more but the fact that Suning have watched a series AND have side selection for this one shrinks that number down to a point where I don’t find any value on a side here other than spreads. One of the best ways to beat Caitlyn is to get ahead of her and Victory Five have been an exceptional early game team this season so I wouldn’t rule it out.
I’ll be making a small play on the Suning map spread because I think it’s very possible they jump out to a two game lead in this series while Victory Five figure things out and that provides very little margin for error for the lower seed but it’s also completely possible Victory Five are one of the better equipped teams to handle the Caitlyn pick or that Suning simply don’t have much else with Aphelios in his nerfed state currently. We could see a lot of Senna and Ashe in this series. Regardless I think it’s fairly unlikely we see a sweep with these two teams as evenly matched as they are and giving a slight edge to Victory Five plus the side advantage to Suning makes me think this goes at least four in more situations than the over 3.5 maps implies. I usually hate playing map totals. It’s not a good indicator of how close a series or two teams can be. As I’ve said you can have a close 3-0 but I think we’ll see a break of serve at some point here.
Underdog Win: 26.785
“G” Projected Total: 25.98 kills
I’d anticipate a slugfest of a game here but I do think with more on the line that we might see something more like last series, a tighter, cleaner, closer set of games. There are more outs to an under than an over to me. Victory Five snowball usually an under, Suning and V5 both opt into scaling or split, leads to an under. Overs definitely in play but I think we’re getting a small value on the under and I’ll play it for half a unit on each map.
V5 game times: 29.96 / 30.89 / 28.34 (average / in wins / in losses)
SN game times: 33.11 / 32.32 / 34.27 (average / in wins / in losses)
Projected Time (avg of avg game times): 31.53 minutes
Odds Weighted: 31.48 minutes
Lean to the under but we’ve seen some longer, whacky games from these two so again half stake.
First Blood: V5 43.90% / SN 42.86%
First Tower: V5 56.1% / SN 52.38%
First Dragon: V5 46.34% / SN 40.48%
First Herald: V5 43.90% / SN 42.86%
These are double juiced and priced appropriately. Pass unfortunately.
Map Total: OVER 3.5 maps @ -357 (3.57 units)
Moneyline: Suning -108 (0.58 units)
Spread: Suning -1.5 maps @ +205 (0.5 units)
Kill Total: Map 1 UNDER 25.5 @ -125 (0.625 units)
Kill Total: Map 2 UNDER 25.5 @ -122 (0.61 units)
Kill Total: Map 3 UNDER 25.5 @ -119 (0.595 units)
Time Total: Map 1 UNDER 33:00 @ -123 (0.615 units)
Time Total: Map 2 UNDER 33:00 @ -123 (0.615 units)
Time Total: Map 3 UNDER 33:00 @ -122 (0.61 units)
LCK Summer 2020
Week 9- Day 3
Team Dynamics +1012 (+1.5 maps @ +284, -1.5 @ +1221) vs
DAMWON Gaming -3333 (-1.5 maps @ -400)
Kill Total: 24.5 (over -125 / under -104)
Kill Spread: +11.5 @ -116 / -11.5 @ -112
Team Kill Totals: 6.5 / 19.5
Time Total: 31:00 (over +173 / under -233)
DAMWON are 12-1 straight up, 11-2 against the map spread as favorites
DAMWON are 23-5 against the kill spread as favorites
DAMWON are undefeated against non-top four teams (T1, DRX, Gen.G)
DAMWON are 19-1 against the kill spread in against non-elite teams (avg spread: -7.9 kills)
Dynamics are 2-10 straight up, 6-6 against the map spread as underdogs
Dynamics are 14-15 against the kill spread as underdogs
Dynamics are 1-6 straight up, 1-6 against the map spread against top four teams
Dynamics are 8-7 against the kill spread against top four teams (avg spread: +8.21)
I don’t think I really need to entertain you with the accolades of current form DAMWON Gaming at this point. They’re utterly destroying everyone and have lost just five games against the kill spread as favorites this season going 23-5 ATKS. They also need to continue winning if they want to earn the first seed and fend off both Gen.G and T1 from stealing a top two seed which is unfortunate for our underdogs…
However, Dynamics have been a bit of a punch up underdog this season. While their season might be over already, they’ve have a winning record against the kill spread despite just a single match and map spread win (same match) as underdogs this season. This is partially due to their good fundamental decision making. They’re clearly a bottom half team but Dynamics are certainly not bad and are actually really smart overall. They don’t play like an underdog making desperation plays they’re very calculated and consistently make the best EV play in most situations they’re just outgunned.
At some point DAMWON have to run out of steam right? Probably not. I actually hate that argument but I do think there’s a chance they take the foot off the pedal slightly. They look like the best team in the world right now and they’ve looked hungry but all it takes is a slightly less energetic performance against a team with nothing to lose and that’s a covered kill spread.
Underdog Win: 22.2
“G” Projected Total: 26.325 kills
This should probably be an over but I think there are more situations where it’s an under. If Dynamics steal one then we’ve probably got an under and there’s a chance DAMWON just run them over too quickly to reach this total despite their high KPW. I’m going to pass. This feels funky.
DWG game times: 28.06 / 27.56 / 30.85 (average / in wins / in losses)
DYN game times: 32.97 / 34.85 / 31.96 (average / in wins / in losses)
Projected Time (avg of avg game times): 30.52 minutes
Odds Weighted: 30.02 minutes
Again, all it takes is one half asleep performance by DAMWON and we’ve got an over here. DAMWON have been speed running people and the projections suggest an under play but getting not just plus money but BIG plus money relative to these markets on an OVER on a low 31:00 total is worth a play to me.
First Blood: DWG 51.52% / TD 35.14%
First Tower: DWG 87.88% / TD 43.24%
First Dragon: DWG 42.42% / TD 54.05%
First Herald: DWG 72.73% / TD 43.24%
Value on Dynamics first dragon.
Spread: Dynamics +1.5 maps @ +284 (0.5 units)
Kill Spread: Map 1 Dynamics +11.5 @ -116 (1.16 units)
Kill Spread: Map 2 Dynamics +11.5 @ -116 (1.16 units)
Time Total: Map 1 OVER 31:00 @ +173 (0.5 units)
Time Total: Map 2 OVER 31:00 @ +151 (0.5 units)
Prop: Map 1 Dynamics first dragon @ +158 (0.5 units)
Prop: Map 2 Dynamics first dragon @ +126 (0.5 units)
Afreeca Freecs -303 (-1.5 maps @ +107) vs
SANDBOX Gaming +226 (+1.5 maps @ -137, -1.5 @ +543)
Kill Total: 23.5 (over -118 / under -111)
Kill Spread: -6.5 @ -116 / +6.5 @ -112
Team Kill Totals: 15.5 / 8.5
Time Total: 34:00 (over +110 / under -143)
Sandbox are now eliminated from playoff contention but with a lot of prove for these players and Yamato I highly doubt we’ll see them mail it in or mess around the rest of the season. I do think we may see some more aggressive drafting though. Sandbox have actually been drafting consistently well throughout the second half despite a difficult schedule and a lot of losses. We also just saw Afreeca finally drop another game to a bottom half team in Dynamics after being flawless against the rest of the table on the season.
I don’t think Afreeca are falling off or anything. They also need this series and could take a two match lead on KT Rolster which would go a long way toward securing a playoff spot but I do think Sandbox are very live to make this a competitive series. Summit is also one of the only top laners amongst the bottom of the table that I trust to compete with Kiin who was just completely dominated by Canna. Afreeca have consistently destroyed the bottom half teams but I do think they’re pretty overrated as a team. They just happened to be pretty good in this metagame and had a strong read on it right away. As the rest of the league has adjusted they’ve very slightly waned. My model grades them as a below average team (actually, below Dynamics and KT Rolster statistically). I’ll take a stab at Sandbox with nothing to lose vs Afreeca in a high pressure situation.
Underdog Win: 29.62
“G” Projected Total: 25.826 kills
Like the over in this spot especially with a pressure off, looser Sandbox against a potentially tight Afreeca. Mistakes abound!
AF game times: 31.88 / 32.34 / 31.4 (average / in wins / in losses)
SB game times: 31.95 / 33.14 / 31.22 (average / in wins / in losses)
Projected Time (avg of avg game times): 31.92 minutes
Odds Weighted: 31.923 minutes
Favor the over despite the projection. Pass.
First Blood: AF 54.545% / SB 40.54%
First Tower: AF 39.39% / SB 48.65%
First Dragon: AF 30.30% / SB 48.65%
First Herald: AF 39.39% / SB 48.65%
These are priced a little weird and all over the place but I’m basically taking plus odds when they’re offered on the tower, herald, and dragon for Sandbox.
Spread: SANDBOX +1.5 maps @ -137 (2.055 units)
Moneyline: SANDBOX +226 (0.5 units)
Spread: SANDBOX -1.5 maps @ +552 (0.25 units)
Kill Total: Map 1 OVER 23.5 @ -118 (1.18 units)
Kill Total: Map 2 OVER 23.5 @ -118 (1.18 units)
Prop: Map 1 SANDBOX first tower @ +122 (0.5 units)
Prop: Map 1 SANDBOX first herald @ +111 (0.5 units)
Prop: Map 2 SANDBOX first dragon @ +112 (0.5 units)
LCS Summer 2020
Playoffs – Losers’ Bracket Round One
Will write on this tomorrow morning.
Team Solo Mid -500 (-1.5 @ -182, -2.5 @ +203) vs
Dignitas +336 (+1.5 @ +141, +2.5 @ -270, -1.5 @ +612)
Total Maps: 3.5 (over -217 / under +167)
Kill Total: 21.5 (over -103 / under -127)
Kill Spread: -6.5 @ -115 / +6.5 @ -114
Team Kill Totals: 13.5 / 7.5
Time Total: 32:00 (over -132 / under +101)
This series has a lot more layers to it than it might initially look.
First, this is a classic overreaction spot. TSM looked HORRIBLE in their last series so you’d think people are more than willing to back against them but Dignitas haven’t exactly been a team to inspire a lot of confidence.
Second, TSM are a good team that just had a bad series against a team that was being underrated. When this happens it amplifies overreaction quite a bit because it looks like a “bad loss” when the reality of the situation was that Golden Guardians were being undervalued and disrespected. Losing to a good team doesn’t have quite the same sting as losing to what is perceived to be a bad team.
Third, the state of the game itself lends itself to more coin flip scenarios than usual right now. It’s much easier to lose a game right now especially as a team that doesn’t close windows. What I mean by that is that TSM are a team that is playing for their 55% instead of pushing their limits to go for a potential 70% win rate. TSM play very low risk, conservative League of Legends and this style has served them well because their players are excellent laners particularly in the solo lanes. This has a lot of benefits, you rarely get “blown out” early because you aren’t taking risks, and you force the other team to beat you. In the LCS that’s a tremendously effective strategy (just ask FlyQuest). However it’s not without it’s vices. When you play this way you allow teams a lot of opportunities to stay in games that could otherwise be done already and that’s what I mean by closing windows.
TSM are going to struggle with teams that are versatile. If you’re able to competently play both uptempo and scaling looks then TSM’s very vanilla approach to the game is highly exploitable in much that same way that Team WE’s is in the LPL. It’s much more difficult in the draft to ban out a combination of early and late than to force a team into whichever you prefer which allows teams to dictate in the draft against TSM despite the equity a player like Bjergsen earns you by drawing bans on things like Zilean that don’t traditionally demand it. In short, teams can choose to go over top and draft hard scaling without the fear of being run over by Team Solo Mid OR they can choose to go underneath without having to expect much contest in the early game.
So the question becomes whether or not you think Dignitas are versatile enough or good enough at one of these to make this series competitive. My thought is no, they aren’t. Playing scaling against a team that doesn’t punish you isn’t too difficult so that’s certainly an option for Dignitas but this is a team, despite the startling amount of “do nothing” games they’ve had, that prefers to get the action started early via Dardoch. A lot of their “do nothing” games were symptoms have poor drafts that didn’t offer much in the way of agency for the players to get a lot done. Golden Guardians laid out a good game plan to attack TSM although I think their win had more to do with overall execution than specific draft edges for the most part.
Another angle is consistency. I’ve been preaching that I want consistency from my teams, especially favorites and that I’m going to be siding with the teams that do the optimal thing consistently. My issue with TSM is that while they’re consistent in their approach and execution, I don’t think they’re operating in a space that I’d consider optimal. I’m a little less trustworthy of them than other favorites.
One more thing. The psychological aspect. Doublelift and Treatz were utterly destroyed in the last series and while I don’t think Johnsun and Aphromoo are the same level as FBI and Huhi, they’re more than competent as a bottom lane and are capable of good ceiling performances. Bjergsen looked furious at times during last series. So there is a chance that confidence is completely shot and we see something truly unbelievable here. I’d think this crew of veterans will put things aside and take care of business as we’ve seen before but don’t rule it out.
I think TSM take this series down purely on quality and side selection alone but it wouldn’t surprise me to see Dignitas take a game. A lot of people are operating under the assumption that because of how bad Dignitas have been and how good (mostly) TSM have been that this is a really simple handicap. TSM are exploitable. You have to execute well but they are exploitable. They leave a lot on the table in terms of min-maxing their win percentage in exchange for consistency. The thing is the overall quality difference between these two. Looking at a 3-1 or 3-0 TSM win here.
TSM had one of the best first tower rates in the league this season at 66.6% while Dignitas sat at just 36.8%. There’s some value in the TSM tower props. I also like the under although Dignitas potentially playing an extremely aggressive look in a few of these games makes me slightly less confident in this. I still think we’ll see lower scoring, especially since I think TSM will have their way in this series.
Moneyline: TSM -500 (5 units)
Spread: TSM -1.5 maps @ -185 (1.85 units)
Spread: TSM -2.5 maps @ +193 (0.25 units)
Prop: Exact TSM 3-1 @ +210 (0.25 units)
Kill Total: Map 1 UNDER 21.5 @ -127 (1.27 units)
Kill Total: Map 2 UNDER 21.5 @ -116 (1.16 units)
Kill Total: Map 3 UNDER 21.5 @ -116 (1.16 units)
Prop: Map 1 TSM first tower @ -175 (1.75 units)
Prop: Map 2 TSM first tower @ -175 (1.75 units)
Prop: Map 3 TSM first tower @ -175 (1.75 units)