League of Legends LCS Spring Playoff preview: FlyQuest vs. Golden Guardians

League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games.
League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games. /
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Smoothie, Bjergsen, and Broken Blade of TSM, with Hauntzer of Golden Guardians. League of Legends.
League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games. /

Top lane

No lane, in my opinion, is a bigger mismatch in this series than the top lane. Games in this series could be won or lost by whether FlyQuest is able to keep V1per falling behind in the early game and not allow Hauntzer to get out of the laning phase with the advantage.

This will be an almost herculean task, as Hauntzer averages a 279 gold advantage at 15-minutes. That’s second in the LCS to only 100 Thieves’ Ssumday – who was the best top laner of the split in my opinion.

On the other hand, V1per has averaged a 258 gold deficit at that 15-minute mark, one of the worst in the LCS. Worse yet, some of V1per’s most played champions over the split have been Irelia, Aatrox, and (his signature pick from his soloQ days) Riven. These are all champions that should be expected to have an advantageous early lane, as opposed to someone like Urgot (Hauntzer’s most-played champion on the split) who gets stronger as the game hits that mid-game point when most pro games start to be blown open or already decided.

V1per also “boasts” the worst damage per minute and damage share numbers on his team, despite playing these hyper carries. Whether this can be attributed to his team not playing around him enough or just his own misplays (and I think it’s the latter), V1per doesn’t appear to be leveraging his champion’s power spikes well. On the other hand, Hauntzer seems to not only survive but thrive until he can start playing around his team and being useful.