Worlds 2020: Three Thoughts About the Worlds Play-Ins

Photo by Lintao Zhang/Getty Images.
Photo by Lintao Zhang/Getty Images. /
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Photos by David Lee/Riot Games.
Photos by David Lee/Riot Games. /

Here are the three biggest surprises, disappointments, and takeaways from the Worlds 2020 play-ins.

Thought#2 – MAD Lions have to be realistic

MAD Lions, formerly Splyce, came on to the scene with a bang earlier this year by beating G2 in the playoffs in the spring. They didn’t end up winning the split, but they proved to LEC fans, that they were a very promising team.

They then ran the table for most of the summer, led by their fantastic jungler, Shadow, and potentially, the best support in Europe, Kaiser. The team is rounded out by Carzzy, an up and coming ADC, as well as Humanoid, the latest of the hyped-up mid laners to come out of Europe, and Orome, a solid top laner. They, along with their coach MAC, played aggressively and was known for bringing out different kind of picks that were not always in the meta.

But as the season went on, they started to show leaks. Shadow’s patented Lee Sin was starting to get banned, Orome was losing lane, even when he had decent matchups, and Humanoid was still having some inexplicable deaths.

That being said, we had all seen MAD Lions at their best, and analysts and fans, for the most part, believed that they could return to form and that, if they did, they could be scary once again. They ended up bowing out of playoffs and went on to do the same during play-ins. But what happened to the young, energetic, potential-filled team?

Well, the problem, as well as the bright-side, is that they are still exactly that. Yes, the draft for the team was questionable with the Wukong and Senna picks. Yes, Orome looked like he should just be on permanent Ornn duty. And yes, Humanoid, Carzzy, and even Kaiser didn’t play their best.

And of course, most fingers will point to Shadow, that player that was praised for all of his outplays, jungle pathing and mechanics, looked lost, out of sync, and confused at times. That being said, Oromo is the oldest player at just 22 years old and this is a team of mostly rookies with a coaching staff that is young and inexperienced themselves.

Things may look dark and the players, along with the fans must be disappointed right now. Europe, as well as the fans and everyone in the organization, must have had higher expectations after seeing them at their best. But for a team this young, to accomplish everything they have, they are still well ahead of schedule having made it out of play-ins.

If you told their supporters or those within the organization, that they would make it to worlds in their first year, they would have been delighted. The present will hurt but the future is still very bright for them.