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The 2022 League of Legends Pro League Summer split is inching closer to the playoffs. With every spot in the standings mattering, every game between the leagues top teams are sure to be incredible. At the tail end of Week 7, the two current best teams in the world are squaring off with potential playoff byes on the line. The 2022 Mid-Season Invitational champions Royal Never Give Up take on Worlds 2021 champions Edward Gaming in the 2022 LPL summer split Week 7 marquee matchup on Saturday, July 23.

Tale of the tape

Royal Never Give Up is coming into this Week 7 matchup with two less series played than EDG, but the same amount of wins. RNG is 7-2 with a game record of 16-9 while EDG is 7-4 with a game record of 16-11. RNG is playing to keep pace with the top three teams in the league in the race for the first seed; meanwhile, EDG is trying to get themselves into the top four which would net them a two-round bye in the playoffs.

As for recent history between the two teams, their last match was back in early March of the 2022 LPL spring split. RNG won their series in a close three-game set 2-1. Going a little back, the two teams famously played a five-game thriller in the quarterfinals of Worlds 2021 where EDG came out on top. It’s safe to say that in the last year, both teams have been evenly matched.

The rosters are, for the most part, exactly the same with the only real change since their last meeting coming from RNG who swapped top laners with BLG and now have Chen “Breathe” Chen instead of Chen “Bin” Ze-Bin.

EDG’s key to victory

EDG’s key to victory is simply their consistency; this roster is the exact same as it was when they won Worlds 2021, so the talent is there. The biggest question mark is their support Tian “Meiko” Ye, who has been underperforming this year; he is EDG’s only member that’s yet to pick up a player of the game honor. However, Park “Viper” Do-hyeon is still putting up impressive performances in spite of his support’s lack of support. Viper is third in the league in player of the game honors with seven and is also the top bot laner in the league in that category. Both teams match up pretty even with each other so for EDG to win the series, they are going to need everyone to be playing at their peak.

With that said, that is assuming everyone on that EDG roster plays against RNG. In their last match against LGD Gaming, EDG actually used their substitute jungler Yu “JunJia” Chun-Chia who has had mixed results with the team but his season debut for EDG was fantastic. Going a combined 5/1/22 in the two-game series, JunJia was a major reason behind EDG’s last win. If EDG goes with Junjia against RNG, that might be the X-factor they need to take the win.

RNG path to victory

RNG is entering this match with EDG as the better-looking team. Despite neither team really playing at their peak, RNG has been way more consistent. With that said, RNG has the opposite problem in their bot lane. Shi “Ming” Sen-Ming has been playing very well all split, but it’s their carry Chen “GALA” Wei who has been slacking. GALA has only managed to pick up a single player of the game honor so far in the 2022 LPL Summer split.

GALA and EDG’s Viper are similar players, but GALA needs to step up to stop EDG from taking the bottom lane. But if GALA does perform well, unless EDG unlocks their Worlds 2021 form, it should be a wrap for RNG.  RNG’s jungler “Wei” has been one of the best junglers in the region so far in the 2022 LPL summer split while EDG is having an internal battle to see who will even be their jungler.

For the other two lanes, EDG is actually favored when looking at stats, according to Oracleselixir.com. Li “Flandre” Xuan-Jun is a stronger top laner when it comes to carry potential outplacing Breathe in key statistics like damage per minute, damage share and earned gold per minute. With Breathe playing the weakside for RNG, if he can prevent Flandre from carrying the game they should be in good shape.

The real battle could come down to the mid-lane. Both EDG’s Lee “Scout” Ye-chan and RNG’s Li “Xiaohu” Yuan-Hao have four player of the game awards with Scout barely edging out Xiaohu in stats like KDA and damage per minute.

The matchup essentially boils down to which team will play closer to their peak. And with RNG doing that more often than EDG, it’s hard to not expect an RNG victory here.