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If we were to designate the most anticipated team of these Worlds 2017, Longzhu Gaming would undoubtedly win this title. Yet, the side has come a long way. Formerly Incredible Miracle (you can still see the letters IM below Longzhu in the logo), they have endorsed for years the jersey of the red lantern of the LCK.
However, everything changed in 2017. One year after the name change, a total change of roster. The recruitment of the ex-botlane of the ROX Tigers has served them well. Pray and Gorilla easily entering the top three of the world’s best duo lane.
After a very modest success during the Spring Split, the puzzle pieces finally seem to be assembled at Summer Split. The team gradually became a force to be reckoned with, crushing almost all the teams in their way.
The team only registered four defeats, one defeated against each of the three sacred giants SKT, Samsung and KT. They finished the split in beauty by dominating the SK Telecom T1 in the final of the playoffs. They were the first team to beat them during a final of the split, three to one.
The only weak point of the Longzhu is their relative inexperience. For three of their players, this will be their first time on the international scene. They will have to rely on the experience of the two veterans of the botlane to guide them.
The other question is the Meta. The side usually has a very fast and very aggressive game. In a meta-tank centered on the botlane, they may have to change their game. With their talent, however, this should not cause problems.
Currently, in the group stage, they are top of the table with a 2-0 score having defeated GIGABYTE Marines and Immortals.
Ah, Fnatic. The Fnatic have always had a special history with the Worlds. They don’t just do like everyone else, and lose discreetly. In 2014, they missed their qualification in the quarterfinal to a single base attack of sOAZ. By 2015, they had all the hopes of the West but collapsed in the semifinals against the ROX Tigers. In 2016, they were not there, problem solved.
The only Western team to have ever won a major competition (Worlds/ MSI). Even if it seemed to be centuries ago when the Koreans simply did not have access to the game, Fnatic came back this year with a fan base still as strong. But will the results be there? Nothing is sure.
Currently, Fnatic is struggling with two defeats from two games. They will need a miracle against the team on fire Longzhu Gaming.
1-0 Longzhu Gaming
For the kings of Europe, it is time to confirm their place at the top. After being mocked for years because of their international results (2-8 in the group stage of the MSI 2016), the men of Ocelote seem to have finally awakened.
It began with dominance over Team WE’s in the semifinals of the MSI2017, and the good showing against SK in the final. Of course, all this is based on almost two years of dominance of the US LCS.
This domestic success combined with the lack of international success raises some eyebrows. The pretentious players in their early days do not give G2 the best start in terms of reputation. However, thanks to their performance at the MSI, they have somewhat redeemed themselves. They are finally starting to rejuvenate their enthusiastic community. Good results at these Worlds would be the expectation for both the teams and fans.
Because of their different styles of play, as well as their individual talents, it is very difficult to predict this team. Indeed, G2 Esports are used to playing the mid/late game. Also, their mastery of the rotations could serve them well in the Worlds.
G2, unfortunately, have a losing start as they lost to Samsung Galaxy.
Decidedly, the Royal Never Give Up are tenacious. This year will mark their fourth participation in five years, counting the period Royal Club / Star Horn Royal Club! They are by far the most successful Chinese team in the Worlds, with two finals though they ended up with two defeats against SKT T1 / Samsung White. A quarter-final in the year last, with the same result, again against the SKT. It is little to say that the Royal Never Give Up have a rematch to take against the Koreans.
Through the different eras of the RNG, only one common point, one pillar of the team: the ADC, Uzi. Uzi is one of the oldest professional players of League of Legends, having started his career in 2012. Since then, he has been a major player in the botlane since season 3 in LPL. considered by many to be the best ADC in the world in seasons 3 & 4. Like Forgiven, he is known for his haughty and extremely demanding character towards his teammates. Not forgetting his excellent mechanics and farming.
So, it makes sense to see a team articulated around it. In fact, RNGs have always been known for this strategy. For several seasons they have one strategy, which is their mode of operation translates into “Growing up the puppy”. Puppy is the affectionate nickname of Uzi in the Chinese community.
So far, they have gone to a flying start after victory over 1907 Fenerbahçe. It is hard to predict who will win but RNG might just come out on top.
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