We are headed for one of the most wide-open LCS splits in recent memory. Team Liquid’s longtime stronghold on the league was broken in the Spring by an upstart Cloud9. The odds say this is C9’s split to lose. I’m not so sure. There were lots of factors that led to the last split being a complete C9 domination in LCS. Not all of those factors were C9’s great play. Doublelift seemed to be struggling with motivation, Impact was doing his feed in the spring split strategy, TSM drafted one good composition in the whole split. No shade to Evil Geniuses or Flyquest, but those are not the best teams to challenge C9. I think this split we’ve got two traditional powers ready to challenge again.
Here they are, the LCS Betting Tiers listed with their odds to make the final followed by their odds to win it all:
The “Just stop” Tier: Immortals (+1200, +5000), Dignitas (+2500, +10000), Golden Guardians (+800, +3300), Counter Logic Gaming (+2200, +8000)
This tier is named after the phrase you should say whenever someone is trying to talk you into any of these teams making the Summer Final. Just stop.
- Immortals (+1200, +5000)
This is probably the worst team in the league. They have below average players at every position outside of the jungle. So what do Immortals do? They go and bench jungler, Xmithie. I hope this is management seeing the writing on the wall with this team and deciding to give young talent a shotg, but the rest of the roster doesn’t make any sense then.
- Dignitas (+2500, +10000)
This might be controversial: I think Dignitas are going to be truly bad. Aphromoo did not look like an LCS player last split. Froggen’s style is just not effective in today’s League of Legends. V1per is an average at best LCS top laner and they signed Dardoch. Dardoch has been a great early game jungler throughout his career. He has also made some of the worst decisions and plays I’ve seen a pro player make in late game teamfights. He has also had personality issues on every single team he’s ever been on. This team could blow up quick.
- Golden Guardians (+800, +3300)
That +800 number to make the final is baffling to me. That has an implied odds of 11%. Does anyone truly believe that in 11% of the outcomes for the Summer Split Golden Guardians make the final? Closer is a legitimate rising star. He is one of the best junglers in the league. GGS have that over the other team’s in this list, but a jungler rarely wins games alone. Damonte was a good, not great mid laner in the academy league last split. I think he will be pretty consistently outclassed at this level. They could squeak into the playoffs again, but make the final? Get outta here.
- Counter Logic Gaming (+2200, +8000)
CLG is much better than they showed last split. With Pobelter, they were a middle of the pack team statistically. That’s where I expect them to finish this split. They are a new team with a new identity. There’s reason to believe they will grow into a playoff team in the summer. That +2200 and +8000 started to look really juicy and then I remembered “Just stop”.
The first round exits tier: Flyquest (+500, +1600), 100 Thieves (+400, +1400)
- Flyquest (+500, +1600)
There’s a lot of power rankings floating around out there with Flyquest as the second best team in the LCS. I get it. They made the final last split. PowerofEvil was a legitimate MVP candidate. Ignar is a very solid support. But go write down every roster on a piece of paper. Can anyone really say they would take the rest of Flyquest’s roster to make the playoffs? They eeked out a lot of wins and ended the regular season with a GSPD that had them ranked second worst in the league. They got hot and made minimal mistakes in the playoffs. I just can’t see that happening again.
- 100 Thieves (+400, +1400)
100 Thieves are the playoff gatekeepers of NA LCS. They are going to win a few games off the talent of Ssumday alone. They are also going to win some games off of solid late game shotcalling and teamfighting from veteran Meteos. Cody Sun and Stunt are an above average bottom lane. Ryoma is improving? They just aren’t good enough to keep up with the league’s elite. They don’t dominate lanes outside of top, they don’t play aggressive LoL, they just survive. In LCS, surviving will be good enough to make the playoffs. 100 Thieves will not make or win the final.
The “No Value Boys” Tier: Evil Geniuses (+175, +650), Cloud 9 (-1000, -250)
- Evil Geniuses (+175, +650)
I like Evil Geniuses. They should have made the final last split. They were statistically the second best team in the league. They can win through every lane (save for Top) and the meta is going to favor Svenskeren’s champion pool. They could legitimately make the final. There’s just no value in these numbers. +175 puts them at 37% to make the final. That feels pretty steep with an improved TSM and TL on the horizon. If you want to bet them, I wouldn’t call you crazy.
- Cloud 9 (-1000, -250 )
I would call you crazy to bet either of these numbers for Cloud 9. Cloud 9 were absolutely dominant in the last split. They have a legitimate argument for the best player at every position. This number has them as a near guarantee to make the final. That’s wild for a few reasons: spring split was at its lowest importance ever this year and multiple teams showed signs of motivational issues. Blaber was not forced to play meta champions by any legitimate challengers. Zven has always been a better weak side player and ADC just got buffed. Finally, Doublelift has never lost a split after changing teams. Cloud 9 will stay the same team in summer. I just think a couple of other teams might have caught up.
The Big Value Boys: TSM (+300, +1000), Team Liquid (+500, +1600)
- TSM (+300, +1000)
TSM have the best mid laner in LCS history, the best ADC in LCS history, a top 3 support in LCS history, the best young top laner in the league, and an average LCS academy jungler. I am not sure what TSM saw in Spica to plug him into this collection of talent. He stands out like a sore thumb. The rest of the talent is as good a team as LCS has ever seen. We’ve seen great players carry below average junglers before. With ADC buffs coming, give me Doublelift to make and win finals at +300 and +1000.
Gambling Positions: 1u on +300 to make finals, 1u on +1000 to win finals
- Team Liquid (+500, +1600)
Team Liquid is one split removed from being the most dominant team in LCS history. They made an on-paper upgrade in the jungle over the offseason with Broxah. He was not good last split, but everything about Liquid was strange. I would count on Broxah to figure it out this split. They lost Doublelift, but it was clear relationships had soured there. Their replacement, Tactical, is a very good academy ADC with high upside. Impact had an atrocious spring split, but he often does and then figures it out. The true upgrade for TL came at the coaching position. Longtime NA caster, Jatt is moving in to lead this team. Jatt has long been thought of as one of the best minds in LoL. His understanding of the game stands out on every single broadcast. If he can manage the personality side, TL is going to be very good.
Gambling Positions: 2u on +500 to make finals, 2u on +1600 to win finals