Week 2 of the NLC rolled in and we now have a clearer picture of how both groups look to shape up. Let’s take a look back at Week 2 and what to expect next week!
Week 2 kicked off with Riddle Esports vs KOVA Esports. KOVA were still looking for their first win while Riddle looked to build momentum. Locking in Galio, support Tiara would be a constant menace throughout the game. While Riddle had advantages elsewhere, they just could not win the teamfights and KOVA pushed through for their first win.
Barrage Esports vs MNM Gaming was next and this game was as caster Aux said, ‘a wild ride’. Barrage were aggressive from start to finish, and constantly picked fights where even a sliver of an opportunity presented itself. While MNM punished some of their overeagerness well, an incredible fight at 25 minutes in the Baron pit gave Barrage the tools needed to close the game.
Up next, Group B leaders Team Singularity vs Fnatic Rising, who welcomes back toplaner Pride. Some might have been skeptical if it was enough for Fnatic to win, those doubts were then cast aside after they contested and won almost every fight, leaving Singularity reeling. With Febiven’s expected LEC form, Fnatic closed the game decisively.
The last game of the day had Granit Gaming taking on Dusty. Both teams postured cautiously, unwilling to risk all-in engagements. Despite Dusty’s advantages in the early to mid-game (even getting the Ocean Soul), Granit ramped up near the end with botlaner Michigu playing exceptionally. The final fight around the second Elder Drake went the way of Granit and they ended the game after.
Our second day of NLC began with Nordavind vs Godsent, with Nordavind still surprisingly winless. Not anymore after this game. Nordavind still stuck to relying on Chrisberg to be the main carry and he delivered in spades. From start to finish, Nordavind dominated the map and Chrisberg’s Kai’Sa ended the game 8/1/9/
The second match saw Group A’s two undefeated teams in BT Excel and Tricked Esport go up against each other. Excel played their usual game, while Tricked displayed fearlessness in objective contests. But despite their best efforts, Deadly’s Seraphine provided too much healing and safety and Tricked were valiantly defeated. Excel go 3-0.
Barrage Esports vs KOVA esports would prove to be the most crazy and exciting game yet. KOVA started off strongly and countered Barrage’s usual aggressive playstyle. But step by step, Barrage clawed their way back in. Both teams proceeded to skirmish and teamfight at almost every minute, but KOVA having three inhibitors already down, Barrage teleported in and ended the longest NLC game in spring.
Our final game featured Team Singularity vs MNM Gaming. Both teams started out mostly on even footing, but after two successful teamfights around the dragon pit, Singularity pulled ahead. From there Singularity played methodically and took the Baron, pushed their advantages further and sealed their victory.
Day 3’s first game started with last season’s Grand Finals: Fnatic Rising vs Riddle Esports. Unfortunately this match did not have the same tension as the final’s series. Riddle’s Kog’Maw pick did not work out, and Fnatic took every objective on the map and won every fight. They closed a near perfect game decisively in 28 minutes to go 3-1.
Game 2 featured a big mismatch in Tricked Esport vs Godsent. Despite Godsent looking better in recent weeks, Tricked went in as favourites and showed why. As opposed to Fnatic’s complete dominance, Tricked’s slow and steady approach choked Godsent at every turn. The Danish team eventually took the Nexus and won at 27:33.
Up next, Granit Gaming vs Nordavind. Despite Granit’s recent form, Nordavind came in as favourites especially after their win over Godsent. Despite Nordavind holding the lead, Granit patiently waited for their chances and slowly regained control. Nordavind were slowly losing the ability to fight Granit head on, and Granit later proceeded to win a big fight in the Baron pit to claim victory at 43 minutes.
Our final game featured a true David vs Goliath in BT Excel vs Dusty. Unfortunately. this match did not follow the fabled tale. Despite managing to get kills all around, Dusty did not get a single objective. With Excel having a 10k gold lead at 17 minutes in, they continuously hounded Dusty and closed the game at 28 minutes, Goliath thoroughly defeating David in this one!
Preview for Week 3
BT Excel remains undefeated in Group A while Tricked and Granit trail them. Next week will be a huge test for both Tricked and Granit as they face each other on Day 1, a match to determine who will be nipping at Excel’s heels. Who will come out on top?
Godsent and Nordavind are still struggling with form but their week does not get easier, as they both play Excel next week on Day 1 and 3 respectively. Dusty have a long road ahead of them if they wish to avoid relegations, but they are facing Nordavind and Tricked next.
While Group B shows a three way tie, Fnatic Rising have been exceptional ever since they managed to get toplaner Pride back in. And that’s awfully convenient because play Barrage Esports on Day 3! Will Fnatic get their revenge, or will Barrage sink them again?
Singularity have -on paper- an easier week due to them facing KOVA and Riddle, so this could be their chance. With three teams at 1-3, only 1 of them can make playoffs. Out of the three, KOVA has been looking steadier from game to game, but Riddle and MNM can easily pull off an upset too. This could be a fight to the finish.
Week 3 approaches, and once more these teams move forward. Eager to do battle. Which team do you think are dark horses at the moment? Let us know on Twitter @NLClol!