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Team Liquid has chosen to play against fourth-seed FlyQuest in the semifinal round of the LCS after securing first place in the rankings. This means that TSM will play C9 in the other semifinal match and that Eugene “Pobelter” Park has a chance to get revenge on his former team.
Team Liquid and FlyQuest
After a thrilling 3-2 victory over Golden Guardians in the quarterfinal match, FlyQuest secured a spot in the semifinals. As the number one seed, Team Liquid had their choice between FlyQuest and TSM as opponents for the semifinal round. The decision comes with little surprise, as TSM managed a perfect 2-0 record against TL during the 2019 spring split. Team Liquid and FlyQuest have a split record over the season at 1-1, and they hope to turn around the slump they encountered at the end of the season. After starting a dominating 14-1 start to the season, Team Liquid lost their final three matches, including losses to FlyQuest and TSM.
While FlyQuest narrowly beat out Golden Guardians for the fourth playoff spot, they can’t be counted out against Team Liquid. Although their 10-9 record may seem to suggest they are the weaker team, FlyQuest has the unique insight of their mid laner, Pobelter. Pobelter was signed by FlyQuest after a roster swap that saw Cloud9’s mid laner Nicolaj “Jensen” Jensen move to TL in the off season. Jensen has been regarded as one of the top mid laners in the LCS, and this move was one that hoped to push TL over the edge when it came to LCS dominance. Based on regular season records, this move seems to be paying off. But Pobelter has something to prove in this semifinals match, and his knowledge of Team Liquid’s play style may be what FlyQuest needs to overcome the Goliath that is Team Liquid. Pobelter has confidence that FlyQuest can send a serious message in their upcoming match.
TL too scared to pick TSM because they know they’d get clapped out, we’ll beat them anyway and show they rightfully belong in 4th 🤪
— Eugene Park (@Pobelter) March 31, 2019
FlyQuest could etch their name in history with a victory in the finals of the 2019 spring split. In the 12 seasons of the NALCS, Team Liquid, TSM, and C9 combine for 10 out of the 12 first place finishes. Only CLG has claimed the first place victory apart from these teams who occupy the rest of the spots on the LCS playoffs.
Team Solo Mid and Cloud9
Cloud9 and TSM were among the clear-cut best teams in the LCS throughout this season. While Cloud9 secured a 14-4 record to TSM’s 13-5, they also hold the 2-0 advantage over TSM in the regular season. TSM and C9 have a rich history of playoff matchups that date back to the summer split of 2013. In finals appearances, TSM currently holds a 5-2 record over Cloud9. After a rough 2-4 start to the season, TSM mounted an 11-1 run going into playoffs. Cloud9’s losses have been scattered throughout their season, although they managed to beat Clutch Gaming with their academy roster in the final game of the season.
TSM and C9’s meeting will feature two members of the LCS’s All-Pro team, TSM’s Søren “Bjergsen” Bjerg and C9’s Eric “Licorice” Ritchie. The other three spots on the team all belong to members of the TL roster, being Jake Kevin “Xmithie” Puchero in the jungle, and with Yiliang “Peter” “Doublelift” Peng and Jo “CoreJJ” Yong-in in the bottom lane. Credit must be given to the performance of members of both teams, however, who made it on the All-Pro second and third rosters. Three members of C9 were voted onto the All-Pro second team, including former TSM jungler Dennis “Svenskeren” Johnsen and bot lane duo Zachary “Sneaky” Scuderi and Tristan “Zeyzal” Stidam. On the All-Pro second team, TSM top lane recruit Sergen “Broken Blade” Çelik was honored, as well as the bottom lane pair of Andy “Smoothie” Ta and Jesper “Zven” Svenningsen. With as much talent as both TSM and C9’s rosters have, it wouldn’t be a surprise if this match provides more drama than TL and FlyQuest’s matchup.
Team Liquid dodging TSM?
A few days ago, Steve Arhancet, TL’s CEO and owner, claimed that they would be selecting TSM as their opponent for the semifinal round. While this could have been all a distraction for all possible playoff teams, it isn’t clear whether this comment was made as a joke or whether the comment was made before serious consideration of the competition going forward. TL choosing TSM as their opponent would be bold but perhaps wouldn’t be the most logical move considering their record against TSM this season.
We picking TSM
— Steve Arhancet (@LiQuiD112) March 31, 2019
There is always the chance that this comment was meant to be a joke. Fans of LCS with a good memory might recall that this isn’t the first time TL has avoided TSM in the playoffs. Right before the summer 2018 semifinals, TL opted to play against 100 Thieves over TSM. TSM’s Bjergsen didn’t hold back, saying that TL didn’t “have the balls to pick” TSM in the semifinals match. Team Liquid went on to win the summer 2018 split.
Which of the playoffs teams do you think has the best chance to win it all? Do you think FlyQuest will upset Team Liquid in the semifinals, or will TL continue in their success? Let us know in the comment section below! We cover a lot of League of Legends news updates and encourage you to check in to follow along with the latest.