The League of Legends Championship Series (LCS) Summer season is down to its final two matches. Team Liquid (TL) and Team SoloMid (TSM) will clash on Saturday to determine who will face FlyQuest in the grand final on Sunday.
All three teams have already qualified as North America representatives at the League of Legends World Championship (Worlds) 2020. These last two matches determine each team’s seeding for each team’s pride and the LCS championship’s glory.
FlyQuest’s Triumph over Team Liquid
The FlyQuest organization is having its most competitive year in the franchise’s history. FlyQuest finished second in the 2020 Spring season playoffs behind Cloud9, and third in the regular Summer season.
The team has now secured back-to-back finals appearances with their upset victory over Team Liquid (first in the Summer regular season) last week in the upper bracket final. FlyQuest can now win its first LCS title and become the fifth organization to ever do so in the LCS’s history.
FlyQuest has steadily improved over 2020. Its roster features veterans of the global League of Legends (LoL) scene. Many of these players are having a resurgent year with career highlight performances.
Special mention goes to jungler Lucas Tao “Santorin” Kilmer Larsen and bot laner Jason “WildTurtle” Tran.
Santorin and Golden Guardians’ Can “Closer” Çelik share claim to the title of best LCS jungler of 2020. Santorin has showcased proficiency on all styles of jungling, and has adapted well to the current meta of playing carry junglers.
WildTurtle has played in the LCS since its inception as a starting bot-laner. Since 2017, he has played on FlyQuest. This year’s run has been his best with the franchise.
Team Liquid vs. Team SoloMid
Team Liquid will take on Team SoloMid on Saturday in the lower bracket final. After a disastrous spring split that saw the four-time defending champions finish in ninth place, TL bounced back in Summer.
A crucial part of TL’s revival was the change to its bot lane. Team Liquid replaced superstar bot-laner Yiliang Peter “Doublelift” Peng with rookie talent Edward “Tactical” Ra. Despite concerns, Tactical has proven himself worthy of standing alongside the veterans and world champions on TL.
Doublelift rejoined his 2016-2017 team of TSM. Reuniting with franchise mid-laner Søren “Bjergsen” Bjerg and former support Vincent “Biofrost” Wang, Doublelift will look to take down his former team.
TL has the edge in this match. The most significant difference is in the bottom lane two-on-two.
Tactical has performed stunningly well. Doublelift, meanwhile, has had a quiet season, with many mediocre performances and none of the dominance that historically characterized his play.
In the support position, TL’s Yong-in “CoreJJ” Jo has delivered an MVP-caliber performance this season. On TSM’s side, they have rotated between Biofrost and their academy support Erik “Treatz” Wessén.
The lack of commitment to a support with an underperforming bot-laner makes TSM’s bottom side a weak point.
For TSM to win, they will require heroic performances from Bjergsen and top-laner Sergen “Broken Blade” Çelik. Bjergsen has had a fantastic performance over 2020. Broken Blade has been more hot and cold, but can make a significant impact if given priority resources in the draft and on the Rift.
If they can successfully cripple TL’s top-side of the map, then TSM may pull out an upset victory. If not, then the bottom line will carve the path to success for Team Liquid.
Who will be the champion?
The final is most likely to be FlyQuest and Team Liquid. When both teams are performing at their maximum ability, Team Liquid has the advantage.
The counterpoint is that TL has not had all five players perform at their peak simultaneously this year. FlyQuest has overall been a much stabler team in terms of consistency, aside from a brief stint with substitute bot-laner Brandon “Mash” Phan.
The main focus will be on TL jungler Mads “Broxah” Brock-Pedersen. The Worlds 2018 finalist with Fnatic has yet to showcase his prowess since joining TL for the 2020 season. If TL hopes to reclaim their title, Broxah will have to step up and hit new heights in his play.
The Team Liquid versus Team SoloMid match will take place on Saturday, September 5, at 1 p.m. PST. The winner will play against FlyQuest on Sunday, September 6, at the same time.
The English broadcast is available on the LCS Twitch and LoL Esports YouTube channels.