The Rumble Stage continued today, and featured critical matches between T1 and RNG for second place and EG and PSG for fourth.
The LCK and LPL face off
T1 and RNG are two of the most storied organisations in League’s history. Each has an MSI title to their name, and have been competing against each other for nearly 10 years. With both teams falling short against G2 on Friday, they were vying for sole position of second place and the chance to prove which Eastern region reigns supreme.
The ensuing game was one of the most surprising of the tournament. T1 were able to get ahead early with a 2000 gold lead at the 20 minute mark, despite picking some scaling picks in the Gwen top and Ezreal ADC. This was partly due to an questionable TP from RNG’s Bin, who TP’d on 4 members of T1 while his team were on the other side of the river:
Shortly after, T1 decided to risk their lead by flipping the Baron. This felt uncharacteristically rash from the normally composed T1, as they didn’t need to force a play with their gold lead, scaling picks, and ability to play for the Hextech Soul. Though they were able to secure the Baron, they were still eviscerated by RNG:
This Baron flip gave RNG a window back into the game, which they seized. While T1 were resetting, RNG took advantage of T1’s lack of vision around the Baron to quickly take it down. T1 were seemingly happy to trade it for the Hextech Drake that was about to spawn, as it would grant them the Hextech Soul. However, they made the incredibly greedy play of taking the mid tier 2 turret instead of immediately heading for the drake. This gave RNG’s Wei time to make his way to the pit:
Securing the soul would have been huge for T1, as it would have added even more poke damage for their Zoe and Ezreal. Not only did they get greedy for the mid tier 2 turret, but they decided to send their Jungler back to base to deal with the pushing top wave, meaning they had no Smite at the Dragon. Without the Hextech Soul, T1 were crushed in the next team fight and RNG won the game.
Although RNG claimed victory, the quality of gameplay did not match the pedigree of these teams. In many ways, G2 were the real winners of this game: neither T1 or RNG look like they are on the same level as G2, while G2 continue to stomp and have emerged as the clear tournament favourites.
EG Step Up
Meanwhile, Evil Geniuses made great strides in their quest to claim the fourth and final spot in the Knockout Stage. They dominated PSG and finished the game with a 17k gold lead, making quick work of their biggest competitors for the spot in the next round. This was a critical win, as assuming neither PSG or the Saigon Buffalos make any upset victories against the top 3 teams, EG can advance to the Knockout Stage by beating them both again.
Not only that, but they went toe-to-toe with frontrunners G2 in the first match of the day. G2 were only able to come back after finding an excellent pick around the Baron pit, and EG should be extremely proud of their performance today. They are currently tied with T1 at 2-2 and will face them tomorrow; with T1 slumping and EG surging, will they be able to do the unthinkable and take them down?
Play Of The Day
Speaking of G2's excellent pick around the Baron, here it is:
After initially finding an isolated Vulcan, G2 pounce as the rest of EG scramble to help their support. BrokenBlade finds an incredible knock-up on EG's carries, while Flakked fearlessly uses his ult to dive straight into the fight and shred through EG.
MSI continues tomorrow, with a potentially spicy game between EG and T1, and RNG's shot at redemption against G2.