Tuesday, February 2nd Recap


RareAtom vs Team WE (Net: +3.445 units)

These were both fairly close, hard fought games by both teams and RareAtom just came out on top in a few key situations. Yimeng didn’t have a bad debut performance but FoFo did get the best of him in this one. Not that I think she’s a bad champion by any stretch, but Syndra leaves you very VERY little room for error in the current metagame and Yimeng had to play her in both games this match. RareAtom were just the better team today and I wouldn’t make any downgrades to WE, they were fine.

Victory Five vs EDward Gaming (Net:-3.505 units)

This was an absolutely brutal beat… V5had game one done and dusted in this one picking up mountain soul, baron, and possessing a 6500 gold lead before punting it away at the elder drake. They could have lost this fight, stabilized, and played the rest of this game out and still won. All they had to do was not get aced. They had multiple opportunities after the fight had gone south to bail and rely on scaling and they just went in anyway. EDG picked up elder, eventually a baron, and managed to grind this game out. Game two was an EDG shellacking and you could pretty clearly tell that V5 were tilted after the result of the first game.


Everything was going according to plan on this one. Feels like getting robbed.

In good news we can probably catch some of the overreaction wave in their next match and after the break. This is going to leave a sour taste in the mouths of many and hopefully it’s something we can capitalize on. V5 are not a bad team but this was a bad loss.

LPL Net Total: -0.06 units


Daily Net Total: -0.06 units



LOL Pro League (China)

Week 5 – Day 3


JD Gaming -926 (-1.5 maps @ -222)


Rogue Warriors +621 (+1.5 maps @ +179, -1.5 @ +1500)


Total Maps Played: 2.5 (over +210 / under -295)

Kill Total: 26.5 (over -116 / under -114)

Kill Spread: -9.5 @ -111 / +9.5 @ -119

Team Kill Totals: 18.5 / 8.5

Time Total: 31:00 (over +112  / under -149)

Starting Lineups:

(Individual player model positional ranking in paranthesis, “living” number)

JDG – Zoom (7), Kanavi (1), Yagao (19), Loken (13), LvMao (20)

RW – Ziv (18), Haro (13), Forge (18), Michi (16), Qiuqiu (8)

Since defeating TOP Esports back on January 12th, Rogue Warriors haven’t won a single game. Admittedly they’ve faced a somewhat difficult schedule of RareAtom, Invictus, Victory Five, FunPlus, and the easy out eStar which they lost 0-2. Before that it was the win against TOP and an 0-2 against Team WE to open the season. I’ve said a number of times that Rogue Warriors are close over this first half of the season but it’s been a few series since I’ve said that. Rogue Warriors have gotten worse and worse. The bottom lane is just killing them every game and when it’s not them, Ziv just can’t seem to hold up at this level. I admire the guy for coming over to a bigger league in the twilight of his career but he’s been getting absolutely bodied this season. The only redeeming characteristic going for RW is Forge and Haro have looked decent but it’s difficult to carry that much weight while looking good, much less “decent.” Rogue Warriors are a dumpster fire at the moment.

JDG still haven’t looked like themselves for the majority of this season either, even in wins. Their lane domination in game two against RareAtom was the only real JDG looking performance we’ve seen all season and it’s reflected in their statistical profile. A bottom half overall economy, mediocre objective control, and not even all of their wins have graded out as “quality” wins either. It’s safe to say JDG are struggling. That said, JDG did look better in the TOP series despite losing 0-2. TOP are a premium opponent and the fact that JDG looked like they had life throughout those two games and how they finished the series before that give me reason to be optimistic.

Rogue Warriors are just what the doctor ordered for JDG.


The question is how to attack this market if we choose to do so.

If you use the implied map odds for this series (83.9% / 20.66%) then this is actually a small value on JDG over the course of a series given the prices (shade over 4%) but I don’t know if I can trust this team in a sweep situation with the form that they’ve showed recently. Not to mention, there’s a reasonable chance that at SOME POINT Rogue Warriors figure something out that works.

Gun to my head I’d take JDG -1.5 but I’m just passing on this series. It feels like a get right spot for JDG but I’m not convinced enough to back them here. Based on their numbers, this would be similar to BiliBili vs TT or OMG. Would you lay this kind of line (-900) with those teams? Because, statistically, that’s what JDG are right now. If you believe this is the momentum shift and the full on get right spot where JDG look like old JDG again then I think you could take the -1.5 maps here but I’m passing.


Other Markets:


I typically like playing the underdog first props in situations like this especially when the favorite hasn’t exactly been clean but there’s a VERY strong chance that JDG just lane kingdom this series out really hard and Haro hasn’t exactly been an objective focused jungler in his career, much preferring to gank to get things started. If I was more confident in JDG’s form I’d love the under time total here but I’m going to pass on that as well.

If you’re looking for a sweat on this one RW first blood is where I’d look. Haro likes selling out for it. Even though he hasn’t been doing that as much this season, I could see him trying something whacky in a spot like this.


My Picks:


No wagers




TT Gaming +168 (+1.5 maps @ -209, -1.5 @ +488)


eStar -208 (-1.5 maps @ +169, +1.5 @ -690)


Total Maps Played: 2.5 (over -112 / under -118)

Kill Total: 26.5 (over -108 / under -123)

Kill Spread: +5.5 @ -118 / -5.5 @ -112

Team Kill Totals: 11.5 / 14.5

Time Total: 32:00 (over +112 / under -150)

Starting Lineups:

(Individual player model positional ranking in paranthesis, “living” number)

TT – Zs (19), H4cker (10), Irma (5), Rat (20), ShiauC (5) (AVG Rating: -0.236)

EST – Chelizi (10), Xiaopeng (17), Twila (16), SamD (9), Teeen (9) (AVG Rating: -0.0556)

Weirdly enough both my individual player model AND my economy/objective model agree with this price overall. This is a pretty sharp number. If you’re going to take a more quantitative approach to this and evaluate what we’ve seen so far, TT are coming off of their first match victory of the season with an upset over Victory Five where they punished Invincible in his top lane debut, V5 brough in Aodi and Trigger but lost a few very close fights around dragon off the back of Twila’s Neeko counter for Yone. It was a very VERY poor series for V5 more than a particularly good one for TT although I did like their draft plan.

eStar have handled the “bad” teams they’ve faced so far this season in OMG and Rogue Warriors but have struggled to punch up. Their past three series have been against Invictus, FPX, and LNG. ShiauC is unbelievably good and has been the sole reason for four out of the five wins this team has had and the only reason they’ve been in a few of the games they’ve nearly stolen from better teams. I think it’s safe to say that he might be the most “in prison” player in the professional scene right now. Get this guy on a stud roster.

Going into the season I had some hopes for both of these teams but much of it hinged on their prospect players starting and performing decently. We haven’t really seen much of them. Insulator hasn’t played yet and Captain was benched after a few series in favor of Twila’s veteran voice, which was needed given how poorly TT’s overall decision making has been in the past year or so.

This is going to be another no play on the side. I do think eStar are slightly better and deserve the nod here but I’m not paying this premium to play them and the line on the dogs here isn’t enough for me to bite either. Like I mentioned at the top, this is a sharp line.

Other Markets:


There’s a reasonable chance this turns into stinking garbage heap of a series. My model likes a play on the under but I’m passing on this one. eStar have been very volatile in how the games look in their wins. I could also see a lot of throws from either or both of these teams.

This series and this slate in the LPL stinks but sometimes you just don’t have a lot of plays. Don’t force it if it’s not there.


My Picks:


No wagers


LOL Champions Korea

Week 4 – Day 1



T1 -238 (-1.5 maps @ +158, +1.5 @ -1000)


Nongshim RedForce +195 (+1.5 maps @ -204, -1.5 @ +548)


Total Maps Played: 2.5 (over -112 / under -112)

Kill Total: 22.5 (over -120 / under -109)

Kill Spread: -5.5 @ -115 / +5.5 @ -114

Team Kill Totals: 13.5 / 8.5

Time Total: 33:00 (over +101  / under -132)

Starting Lineups:

(Individual player model positional ranking in paranthesis, living number)

T1 – Canna (10), Ellim (8), Cuzz (2), Faker (7), Clozer (11), Teddy (1), Gumayusi (4), Keria (9)

(AVG Rating: “Young Guns” Clozer+Gumayusi -0.296 / “Vets” Faker+Teddy +0.151)

NS – Rich (9), Peanut (4), Bay (10), Deokdam (6), Kellin (1) (AVG Rating: -0.0568)

There’s a lot of rumors flying around that Zeus might get a start soon for the struggling Canna. He turned 17 on Sunday and is now eligible to play so keep an eye on that.

Nongshim came out with a win against KT Rolster, one that many people, myself included, found to be a bit of an upset. KT were a complete no-show, mindlessly fighting directly into an Olaf’s hands in game one but Nongshim definitely earned the win in game two with maybe their most impressive single game performance of the split, at least to me. It was a sight for sore eyes to see them come out strong but I’m not yet convinced. Bay has still only had a couple of passable games and he’ll be up against stiff competition here.

It’s been talked to death in The Esports Department Discord this week by yours truly but the long and short of this handicap is as follows: if Clozer is playing take Kill Total OVERS and if Faker is playing I like the moneyline. There are a few reasons for this but the generic summary is that, for whatever reason, T1 seem much more poised in games with Faker in the lineup. They see the big picture, the macro game. With Clozer, they tend to break down into more solo queue-esque games with a lot more skirmishing without reason and overall aggression. In many ways it’s a story of young and fiery vs old and patient. Add in the Zeus rumors and we’re in full-fledged “wait for lineups” mode.

For these reason it’s tough to handicap this game without the lineups which aren’t announced until shortly before game time, if at all. T1 rarely make “sense” with their substitutions. It doesn’t seem to matter to them who is in and when but this could potentially be a pivotal point in their Spring season further down the road. Seems like it’s “Faker time” right? Don’t rely on that.

So you really have to handicap this series a few ways.

First, what is your overall image of Nongshim? For me they’re still a “prove it” team. I was optimistic before the season started but they’ve had only a couple of wins grade out as “quality” so far this season and Bay has been, in my opinion, one of the worst players in the entire LCK so far. Could they get better? Sure but I need to see it first.

Second, which T1 lineup are we seeing and how does that match up against your evaluation of Nongshim? I think if we get Faker + either ADC or either jungler I like T1 on the moneyline A LOT here, as well as the map spread.. This team is significantly better than their record and even more so with Faker in the lineup to help eliminate some of the sloppy errors we’ve seen from the other lineup. Perhaps more interesting though is the handicap with Clozer in. To me, T1 should still be favored I just like it slightly less due to the volatility and would probably pass and just stick to kill total overs.

Third is the trajectory for these teams. Something that hasn’t been discussed so far are the “what if’s?” What if Nongshim start to round into form? What if T1’s young guns start to shape up after I’m sure the coaching staff has been laying into them during practice and VOD reviews? What if both shape up? What if we see a poor series from Faker if he plays? What if Faker plays but it’s also Zeus’ first game against a talented top laner in Rich? It’s certainly possible to see any of these narratives or questions answered.

To me, the most likely outcome here is a T1 win regardless it’s just a matter of how much. If you separate the Faker/Clozer splits, T1 grade out as my #3 and the model likes them to win this series significantly more than this number implies. I mostly agree with that. With Clozer in this is a “fair price” and a pass. If we meet in the middle somewhere I think it’s reasonable to just blindly take T1 here under the assumption that we get a 50% chance of Faker but with this added wrinkle of Zeus potentially debuting I’d rather just wait. There’s more than enough wiggle room on this number that I can fire when lineups are announced.


Other Markets:

Kill overs with Clozer in. Otherwise pass.


My Picks:


IF Canna, Ellim or Cuzz, Faker, Teddy or Gumayusi, Keria is the starting lineup:

Moneyline: T1 -238 (2.38 units)

Map Spread: T1 -1.5 maps @ +158 (1 unit)

IF Zeus, Ellim or Cuzz, Faker, Teddy or Gumayusi, Keria


IF Zeus, Ellim or Cuzz, Clozer, Teddy or Gumayusi, Keria

Kill Totals: OVER 22.5 on all three maps @ -120 (1.2 units each, this is double weight)

IF Canna, Ellim or Cuzz, Clozer, Teddy or Gumayusi, Keria

Kill Totals: OVER 22.5 on all three maps @ -120 (1.2 units each, this is double weight)




Gen.G -526 (-1.5 maps @ -137, +1.5 @ -3333)


DRX +394 (+1.5 maps @ +107, -1.5 @ +1012)


Total Maps Played: 2.5 (over +145 / under -189)

Kill Total: 22.5 (over -105 / under -123)

Kill Spread: -7.5 @ -110 / +7.5 @ -119

Team Kill Totals: 14.5 / 7.5

Time Total: 32:00 (over -120  / under -109)

Starting Lineups:

(Individual player model positional ranking in paranthesis, living number)

Gen.G – Rascal (6), Flawless (13), Clid (7), Bdd (8), Ruler (2), Life (4)

(AVG Rating: w/ Clid +0.0386, w/ Flawless-0.181)

DRX – Kingen (8), Pyosik (9), SOLKA (3), BAO (12), Becca (10) (AVG Rating: -0.277)

Gen.G have been experimenting with their roster a bit trying out Flawless in their past two series. He looked great against Sandbox and had a decent debut against the extremely difficult challenge of DAMWON Gaming. Gen.G are one of the elite teams in the league and have already faced the other top teams meaning their already impressive numbers are likely to be bolstered by softer competition in the coming weeks.

An excerpt from my last DRX / Brion recap:

Brion probably should have won both of these losses and found ways to lose it. DRX did ahve better scaling in both of those games though so there’s a chance that they would have won anyway but it still feels awful to continue to see teams botch leads against this DRX team. It’s not like DRX are doing anything particularly proactive on defense that I can give them credit for. If that was the case I promise I would but DRX get away with YET ANOTHER one.

I’ll say it again. DRX have just a single graded “quality” win this season. They certainly earn credit for stabilizing and executing on some simple, easy drafts that their coaching staff has done a wonderful job setting up for them but this is, straight up, a fraudulent team. I have their “expected wins” at half their current total and while they get credit for figuring things out as they go I’m simply not buying this. DRX have a bottom half economy, are only winning 40% of the games in which they lead at the 15 minute mark, have terrible differential statistics, and to cap it all off, have more deaths per game than kills (not that that’s necessarily predictive).

This team isn’t good… They’re certainly better than I thought they were before the season and they’re definitely not a dumpster fire team but it’s fair to say this team has gotten very VERY lucky so far.

Unless Gen.G are coasting in this one this is going to be a reality check for DRX. Gen.G are going to smoke this team.

Other Markets:


I’d take Gen.G’s team total overs but there’s a reasonable chance that with the way DRX play that these are going to be clinical 10-2 types of games. Gen.G also sometimes play wtih their food making the 22.5 a bit of a short total that they could potentially cover themselves. I like the team total over for Gen.G but I’m just going to stick to the sides on this one.


My Picks:


Map Spread: Gen.G -1.5 maps @ -137 (2.74 units)


I believe in accountability. For years I’ve tracked all of my picks publicly. 2021’s selections will be via this spreadsheet but it isn’t updated until AFTER the games have started. The Esports Department subscribers get the first look.

Check out The Gold Card Podcast and can find me on Twitter @GelatiLOL

(all lines from Nitrogen unless noted otherwise)

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