The LEC may not be as far along in the playoff race as the LCS, but with G2 Esports, Splyce, and Fnatic as Europe's clear front-runners, teams vying for top six or playoff byes can't afford to drop games in these last three weeks. In week seven, the reborn Misfits Gaming butt heads with a stagnant Origen lineup, and G2 and Fnatic limit test against each other.
Misfits' recent surge is likely the most surprising comeback story we've seen in the LEC. After the theoretical super-team split apart from some of their most veteran players, coaching staff fully committed to running their lineup of rookies. Since then, they've managed a 2-2 record with an impressive win over Fnatic.
Picking up wins is nice, but the most impressive thing about "Misfits 2.0" is the players are hungry to prove themselves in the LEC. This is why Origen, who are on a three-game losing streak, should be afraid.
Arguably Origen's best player, Erlend "nukeduck" Våtevik Holm has been left on an island in Corki/Twisted Fate hell, while Adam "LIDER" Ilyasov has been having a field day with pop-off champions like Qiyana, Akali, and Sylas. It's easy to see the trust that Misfits have in LIDER to carry, especially because of Thomas "Kirei" Yuen's aggressive early game jungle picks.
A win here could set Misfits up for a 2-0, given they face easier competition in exceL Esports on August 3. For Origen, however, they need to control Misfits carries and put a stop to the surging roster if they have any hopes of edging themselves back into the top of the table. Origen is currently tied for fifth with Vitality, and Misfits are creeping up on them. Missing playoffs is a real possibility if they don't turn on the gas.
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If G2 and Fnatic are facing off, there will always be implications and they will always put on a show, period. Earlier in the split Fnatic became the first to challenge G2's dominance, and their meeting in Spring gave us one of the greatest European matches of all time. This weekend's battle will be slightly different , but equally as hype; the victor could decide who among G2, Splyce, and Fnatic secures a playoff bye.
A win here for G2 could break up the tie between Splyce and Fnatic, given they both win their August 2 matches, and set Fnatic up for a much harder path to finals. There may be six games left in the season, but victories against top teams are crucial as things come to a close. Winning the hard games counts doubly, and for a team that's only two losses apart from G2, there's a world in which this win could push Fnatic to first place.
Onto the match itself. The odds may not favor one side or the other since these teams have a history of playing to each others' level. In the current meta, however, Fnatic could have an edge with Tim "Nemesis" Lipovšek's proficiency (and consistency) on meta mid laners like Twisted Fate and Corki, but Mads "Broxah" Brock-Pedersen has been having low moments that have weakened Fnatic's jungle/mid strength. Their early game has been lacking, but they can hit their stride in the mid game by being persistent in looking for plays.
For G2, Marcin "Jankos" Jankowski has been one of the best and most stable players on the team, while Rasmus "Caps" Winther has had some ups and downs over the last two weeks. G2's bot lane is looking to be one of their main sources of strength these days, and Luka "Perkz" Perković's Yasuo has been steamrolling the opposition. Setting Jankos up with champions like Elise and Olaf that can take over early, and handing Perkz comfort picks in the bot lane could allow G2 to run away with the game and take their revenge against Fnatic.
Misfits play Origen on Friday August 2 at 12 p.m. PDT, and G2 play Fnatic on Saturday August 3 at 12 p.m. PDT.