Tuesday, September 29th Recap
LGD Gaming vs Rainbow7 (Net: +7.75 plus +3.0 live)
This went about as expected. Rainbow7 actually look pretty good at everything besides actual fights where they end up looking like a disorganized mob running every which way. Their map movement was quite impressive during this group stage and even in this series but LGD had leads and were able to force Rainbow7 to have to fight blind for a vast majority of this series. LGD had a few overzealous decisions including an incredibly disrespectful Cull buy as Ornn into Kayle by Langx… ooof. Other than those few spots, LGD actually showed more discipline than we’re used to methodically choking out vision on neutral objectives with their lead and taking care of business in their form of clinical fashion.
Rainbow7 should be proud of this performance but we sort of saw what happens when you get a larger sample size and these superior teams can play a little bit looser.
SuperMassive vs MAD Lions (Net: -6.07 units)
This turned into a bit of a slugfest but eventually MAD Lions inability or unwillingness to play certain meta picks came back to bite them as this series went on. Azir was banned in four games first rotation by MAD Lions and the game they left it up they lost to Humanoid being pinned under the tower. Shadow apparently wanted nothing to do with playing Nidalee or Hecarim when presented with the opportunity to do so and while the pick has fallen out of favor there wasn’t even a sniff of the Lee Sin. That last part I’m not as worried about but the fact is MAD Lions felt hamstrung in this series. SuperMassive dropped Akali and Orianna bans in all five games, Twitch and Lucian for their third in two and three games each. Apparently MAD Lions only had one trick up their sleeve. Hell we even saw them bust out the Wukong Senna again.
Frankly I didn’t think MAD Lions played as badly as they did in the group stage in this series. They looked a little bit cleaner and more in character but the second half metagame woes apparently weren’t solved but a slightly looser bottom lane metagame. Props to SuperMassive for playing a fairly clean series all around and sticking to the metagame champs for the most part (the Vayne was a little weird). They were more versatile, more flexible, and MAD Lions weren’t able to solve the first puzzle which was what to do against Akali and Orianna bans. You feel bad that MAD got slightly patched out this Summer but the fact is you’ve had months to correct these issues and pick these champions up and you didn’t and a world class team needs to do better than that. Period.
Live Wagers: +3.0 units
In the Discord we hammered LGD map two once they jumped out to a lead with a severe draft advantage and picked up a nice little cash.
Total Net: +4.68 units
MAD Lions failure to adjust over the past six or so weeks really ended up being the nail in the coffin for them. I mentioned it yesterday because I had faith that they had some creative stuff planned and this team plays significantly better when they’re looser but this was just a colossal failure in preparation. Perhaps Shadow isn’t as good as we thought he is and this coaching staff that was so brilliant and creative for most of the year really failed to deliver when it mattered most. Is this damning? Not necessarily but MAD Lions are going to have some interesting questions in the off season. I wouldn’t be surprised to see them run this roster back again with another year under their belts (a la DAMWON) but some change might be in order if they can make upgrades. You’ve got have a deeper pool at this level and it showed.
Play-In Stage – Day Six
The interesting dynamic about Wednesday’s matches is that the winners have less than 24 hours to prepare and the losers, got to see a series from them from the sidelines today and likely had a few hours extra prep time. This isn’t a massive competitive edge unless unique strategies were shown and I don’t think we really saw anything along those lines except maybe the Vayne by SuperMassive in one game (it lost) and Xiye’s Twisted Fate reappearing despite movement speed nerfs on this patch. I don’t think either of the teams watching could gain a particularly massive edge.
Legacy Esports +513 (+1.5 maps @ +216, +2.5 @ -149, -1.5 @ +1012, -2.5 @ +2500)
LGD Gaming -769 (-1.5 maps @ -294, -2.5 @ +119, +1.5 @ -3333)
Map Total: 3.5 maps (over -145 / under +114), 4.5 maps (over +312 / under -455)
Kill Total: 25.5 (over -127 / under -103)
Kill Spread: +8.5 @ -106 / -8.5 @ -122
Team Kill Totals: 8.5 / 16.5
Time Total: 32:00 (over -114 / under -114)
While I think Legacy have looked solid at this tournament and that they’re a more challenging opponent for LGD than Rainbow7 were, I don’t think it’s by enough to really change my stance on this matchup being severely LGD favored. For all intents and purposes it should be treated like yesterday’s matchup and while Legacy might be an upgraded foe, LGD have also looked much much better than they have at any other point in this tournament. They were more disciplined than we normally see albeit a bit cocky in a few spots.
If Legacy are going to make any noise in this series it’s going to have to be through their outer lanes. I criticize LGD for a lot of things but their primary weakness as a team excluding their mid and late game decision making, is that Xiye doesn’t quite measure up to the truly elite mids in the world so elite teams can really punish him in isolated matchups. Legacy isn’t to that level and Tally isn’t the person to do that which is my main concern here for them.
As good as Babip is I think the Peanut is going to prove extremely challenging. Legacy scored first blood in just a single game so far this series and less than half the time during the Summer season. Their gold leads were primarily gained by their lanes outplaying their domestic opponents. We’ve seen at this tournament that they’ve had to adjust. Their overall per minute economy is down even in the wins, they aren’t getting these massive lane advantages that they’re used to through Topoon and the bottom lane to allow Babip to gain a tempo advantage. Josedeodo has had a great tournament and we saw what Peanut was able to do to him this morning. I suspect a similar fate for Babip, even with some scouting ahead.
It wouldn’t surprise me to see Legacy take a game here or even remain competitive in one or two but LGD are once again the side.
We’re getting a much better price on LGD first blood in this series than we did yesterday even though the moneyline gap isn’t that large. I’ll be playing LGD first blood on the first three maps. LGD have scored first blood in every single game this tournament.
LGD’s totals are coming down as the tournament goes on. Legacy were bloody in wins but toothless in their losses to Liquid. LGD are more in that vein so I’d expect these games to be lower scoring.
I’ll also be taking Legacy to take first herald. While LGD have landed it in most of the games we frequently see herald as a traded objective in response to dragons or a bottom lane first blood. Underdog heralds have been a profitable position overall when the numbers are based on a moneyline price not that herald rate particularly separated by wins/losses.
Spread: LGD -1.5 maps @ -294 (2.94 units)(Nitrogen)
Spread: LGD -2.5 maps @ +119 (1 unit)(Nitrogen)
Kill Total: Map 1 UNDER 26.5 @ -120 (1.2 units)(Bet365)
Kill Total: Map 2 UNDER 26.5 @ -119 (1.19 units)(Nitrogen)
Kill Total: Map 3 UNDER 26.5 @ -114 (1.14 units)(Nitrogen)
Prop: Map 1 LGD first blood @ -175 (1.75 units)(Bet365)
Prop: Map 2 LGD first blood @ -175 (1.75 units)(Bet365)
Prop: Map 3 LGD first blood @ -175 (1.75 units)(Bet365)
Prop: Map 1 Legacy first herald @ +125 (1 unit)(Nitrogen)
Prop: Map 2 Legacy first herald @ +125 (1 unit)(Nitrogen)
Prop: Map 3 Legacy first herald @ +125 (1 unit)(Nitrogen)
Unicorns of Love -149 (-1.5 maps @ +147, -2.5 @ +437, +1.5 @ -357)
Papara SuperMassive +118 (+1.5 maps @ -189, +2.5 @ -714, -1.5 @ +261, -2.5 @ +713)
Map Total: 3.5 maps (over -323 / under +236), 4.5 maps (over +162 / under -208)
Kill Total: 27.5 (over -118 / under -111)
Kill Spread: -1.5 @ -119 / +1.5 @ -110
Team Kill Totals: 14.5 / 13.5
Time Total: OTB
This series is much more intriguing. SuperMassive showed a fundamentally sound series in a five game slugfest against MAD Lions this morning but it remains to be seen if they can do the same thing against a more versatile team. The Unicorns of Love a similarly aggressive team in the draft in the sense that they’re willing to take risks on counterpicks and non-meta champions. So far we’ve seen Orianna in both mid and bot, Ziggs, Kassadin, Swain bottom, Skarner jungle and looking into AHaHacik’s super server account we’ve seen him playing Lillia, Karthus, Evelynn, Ekko even though he’s yet to play any of these on stage at all in Summer of 2020. Sound familiar?
Now the difference here is that I think the Unicorns are willing to take risks enough that they’d actually play picks like Nidalee and not shy away from them due to nerves or lack of team confidence. Expect everything and anything from Unicorns of Love and unlike a lot of “cheesy” teams they don’t often march these types of picks out without good reason. We saw the Swain as an excellent punish against the low DPS team composition from Talon. These are the kinds of unique adjustments that UOL can and will make.
I grade these two teams very similarly in terms of individual abilities and versatility but they exercise these points in very different ways. Unicorns of Love are a versatile team because of their willingness to counterpick. while SuperMassive are versatile in that they play almost all of the meta champions at any given time to a proficient level. On film, SuperMassive are a more disciplined team while Unicorns of Love are a bit more clumsy but also more explosive, which makes sense given their risk taking identity.
I usually favor a more fundamentally sound team in a longer series as long as they’re not at risk of being cornered in the draft. Given that preference and that consideration that these teams grade out near equally I’ll be taking the underdog here. While I think UOL might offer a more outside the box challenge in draft I do think that fundamentally SuperMassive make fewer mistakes and possess a very strong grasp on the current metagame. We’re also getting them at plus money.
By the way, imagine two months ago we’d be saying MAD Lions were predictable drafters…yeesh.
I’ll be taking SuperMassive on the moneyline and a light play on the -1.5 maps but my main play for this match will be on the over 3.5 maps. I’m not always a big fan of map total betting as you can get a close series even if it’s a 3-0 if all three games were close but in certain cases you have two teams that punch and counterpunch well a lot of the time and that’s what we have here. Unicorns aren’t quite clean enough fundamentally to reliably sweep a team as good as they are but they’re also unique enough that it sometimes takes teams a little time to adapt. Keep in mind, these teams haven’t played each other like the #3 vs #4 matches we saw this morning where the two faced each other already in group stage. This will be a fresh look and there will likely be a fair amount of adjustments that need to be made on both sides which should lead to a longer series.
Unicorns games get bloody. SuperMassive games tend not to be when they’re winning. 27.5 is a fairly high total but given that I think this should be a competitive series and likely one with some back-and-forth, these games could vary greatly from map-to-map. I’ll be passing on kill and time totals as well as props for this reason. If you feel strongly one way or the other about these teams then bet accordingly. Overs in UOL wins and unders in SuperMassive wins.
Map Total: OVER 3.5 maps @ -300 (3 units)(Bet365)
Moneyline: SuperMassive +122 (1 unit)(Pinnacle)
Spread: SuperMassive -1.5 maps @ +263 (0.5 units)(Pinnacle)
Parlay (2): SuperMassive/UOL OVER 3.5 maps + LGD -1.5 maps @ -130 (2.6 units)