LEC Playoff Preview: Splyce vs. SK Gaming

League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games.
League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games. /
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Kobbe, Splyce. League of Legends.
League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games. /

A Target on Their Backs: Humanoid vs. Pirean

It’s no secret that these mid laners are two of the more underperforming players in the LEC so far and thus have been gifted special gank treatment from enemy junglers throughout the regular season. There’s no doubt that the vulnerability of these mid players will have both Xerxe and Selfmade licking their lips at the potential of taking full control of the mid lane 2v2 throughout the Bo5 series.

Despite some of the criticism levelled at Humanoid, he’s remained a vital member of the Splyce line-up due to his strong teamfighting and has even picked up three Player of the Game awards throughout the Spring Split. A versatile champion pool, great teamfight utility and a strong combination with Xerxe to aid with roams around the map all point towards Splyce’s rookie mid laner being a strong member of the roster, but so far, he’s left a lot to be desired.

While Humanoid tops the charts for LEC mid laners when it comes to damage share (27.7% – only behind Special, who’s played 8 games less), this is mainly a by-product of the late-game, double carry compositions that Splyce specialise in. The real issue presents itself in the form of Humanoid’s inability to lane safely and avoid isolated deaths in the mid lane, as he sits among the highest number of pre-15 and isolated deaths in the league.

Similarly, SK Gaming’s Pirean suffers from a comparable set of damning statistics. In fact, the South Korean mid laner is on the receiving end of first bloods in 15.8% of games, sitting only behind Schalke 04’s Abbedagge in that regard. It could be suggested that Pirean simply needs time to adjust to life in Europe and on his new team, however being one of the more experienced members of the SK roster, you’d expect a lot more from him, particularly on a highly placed team.

Expect mid lane to be the focus of today’s LEC playoff series as Splyce and SK Gaming will look to take full advantage of the susceptible and underperforming carries. While the difference between Humanoid and Pirean may not be the deciding factor of the result, it could be a pivotal aspect in the development of the Bo5 series.

The Hunter and the Prey: Kobbe vs. Crownshot

It goes without saying that Splyce are far and away the strongest late game team in the LEC, with an average game time of 36:45, their games last over 3 minutes longer than any other team in the league. And while the competitive meta has constantly evolved over course of League of Legends history, one thing has remained true throughout – AD Carries decide late game teamfights.

Today’s LEC playoff game sees the best AD Carry of the Spring Split (according to the All-Pro team) take on an inexperienced rookie to fight for a spot in the second round of playoff games. Kobbe’s Spring Split was near immaculate, picking up five Player of the Game awards and cementing himself as the strongest ADC in the league on current form. Likewise, Crownshot has made an impressive start to his debut LEC season, providing excellent teamfight damage for SK and somehow taking home two of his own Player of the Game awards, despite being on a team with league leader Selfmade.

In terms of KDA, Kobbe blows Crownshot out of the water (7.3 to 3.6), however in terms of average damage per minute and damage share statistics it’s a very tight affair. Kobbe sits at 521 average DPM, with a damage share of 28.6%, while Crownshot’s DPM is 519 and damage share 28.9%. As you can see, they’re nearly identical, but this is a case of statistics not telling the full story as Kobbe has proven to be a reliable late game carry throughout the regular season, while Crownshot has yet to reach those levels so far.

In the last meeting between these two sides, Kobbe picked up a unique solo kill on Crownshot, so unexpected that even the LEC observers missed the action. Undoubtedly the SK marksman will be out for revenge in today’s playoff game and we should expect both players to look to outdo each other both in lane and late game teamfights.