The 2016 NA Spring Split has been the most competitive and unpredictable season so far. Rookie team Immortals have placed first in the regular season to much surprise as Team Liquid is still cursed to be fourth and Team SoloMid has fallen completely. Over the next two weeks we will see six teams in North America battle it out to be crowned the kings of their region.
This split’s playoff bracket format will be unfamiliar to most with all games played in a best-of-five format. The lowest placed team that wins their quarterfinal match are guaranteed to face the highest placed team in the regular season. Subsequently the 2nd lowest placed team that wins their quarterfinal match will face the second placed team in the regular season.
For example: If the 6th placed seed, Team SoloMid wins their quarterfinal match they will be playing against Immortals. However, if Cloud9, the 3rd placed seed wins their quarterfinal match they will instead be playing Counter Logic Gaming.
The winners of this playoffs will compete against the other regional champions in the 2016 League of Legends Mid-Season Invitational (MSI).
- Third seed, Cloud9 (12W – 6L) will play against sixth seed, Team SoloMid (9W – 9L).
- Fourth seed, Team Liquid (10W – 8L) will play against fifth seed, NRG Esports (9W – 9L)
- The winners of the quarterfinals will play against Counter Logic Gaming or Immortals depending on their seeding.
Cloud9 vs Team SoloMid
TSM and C9 have had very different seasons. TSM has been inconsistent throughout the entire split and at times they look like the star-studded roster they were meant to be and at other times they are a team that induces constant face-palms. Cloud 9 however, has had a shaky start this season and eventually started to find consistency after Hai found comfort in his newfound support role.
Both TSM and C9 should find themselves comfortable in a best-of-five match, showing their full potential. Despite the difference in seeds this should be a well contested match, viewers should expect a 3-2 victory either way.
Predictions: Cloud 9 55% | 45% Team SoloMid
Liquid vs NRG Esports
Liquid and NRG have both had inconsistent seasons with changes in their roster throughout the duration. After replacing IWillDominate with Dardoch and Smoothie with Matt, this roster has proven to perform well despite some player’s inexperience. NRG at times have had a lack of cohesion and this may be because of their language barriers.
Depending on whether each team shows up on the day, I expect a very close best-of-five set with Liquid ultimately taking it out 3-2.
Predictions: Liquid 55% | 45% NRG Esports