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With the start of the 2020 season having come and gone, it’s a wonder about how the second half of the spring split will end. However, for the LEC, one thing is certain: the kings of Europe are not alone.
Although starting out with a strong 6-0, their matches seemed strained and many of the players looked shaken after their matches. In the aftermath, we saw them fall to 7-3, with some of their most recent matches seeing their stars destroy their own KDAs. So, the question is, what went wrong? And will this trend continue? We dive into G2’s rise and fall from their thrown, and the challengers that stand against them.
G2 came onto the scene after rebranding from Gamers2 in 2016. Owned by Carlos “Ocelote” Rodriguez Santiago, a former professional League of Legends player, G2 came in like a storm, headed by their star mid-laner Perkz.
Within their first split, they rose to the top of the LEC, the EU LCS at that time, but were able to snag the championship trophy out from the previous top teams. From there they have had a string of successful showings in their region, with some intermittent spurts of glory in the international tournaments.
However, that changed in the 2019 World Championship Tournament, as the world watched G2 make what could only be described as an epic run for a never-before-seen back to back win. After acing the Mid-Season Invitational, they went all the way to the finals of the World Championship, beforfe falling to FPX from China in a quick 0-3. They are currently looking to repeat their complete dominance, but now it seems a bit strained and weak when compared to their World Championship showing.
One of the most polarizing changes to the G2 lineup was the acquisition of Caps from the rival team, Fnatic, at the beginning of 2019. This announcement also came with the lane swap of Perkz to the ADC position. Yet, with the beginning of the 2020 season, they made the surprising move to swap Perkz back into the mid-lane position, with Caps filling the ADC role. Although it seemed to be all well and good for the first few games, their last few have seemed somewhat rocky. Indeed, their match against Misfits, which was their first loss of the season, Caps went 0/8 in their match, marking it as one of the worst performances of his career.
Since the team decided on the lane swap, there seems to be more holes in the G2 teamwork then there was before. Even though they won 6 games straight throughout the opening weeks, their games have been anything from stomps, or even clean. In their first game against MAD, G2 were down in gold, kills, and dragons at 19 minutes, which was very unnatural for them. In their subsequent games, G2 looked to give up key objectives, allowing themselves to be out rotated and letting their macro-game slide away from them; almost always winning off of the enemy team’s mistakes.
They also have been noted as making questionable dives and plays. Not only have many of their deaths have been solo deaths as well as failed contests for objectives, but their early-game lane ganks were all very scattered. Although many succeeded, they were not clean, allowing return gold to be granted to the enemy teams.
The last issue I hold with the team is that, with all of their success since their inception, this is the first time that they seem so shaky. They have been able to reach and win the finals, pretty much every time since their creation. Their main competition, Fnatic, were always there to meet them, but that was about it. Only one team would stand between them and glory.
This time, however, there are quite a few teams making a run for the top. At the end of 5 weeks of play, there are 6 teams all within a match of pushing each other down the ladder. Origen, Fnatic, Misfits Gaming, Rogue and MAD Lions all hold a positive win record that could see their rise in placement within a single week of play.
With all this information, G2 are looking a bit grim heading into the latter part of the Spring Split. Although their score line, 7-3, looks decent on its own, within the context of the rest of the league, they are nothing more than a decent team looking to make their mark.
However, this does not mean they can have a late-stage resurgence going into the Playoffs. G2 could easily make a late resurgence and run through the bracket pretty unremarkably. Yet in order for this to make an impact, they will have to clean up their act and their coordination if they hope to pull away from the rest of the crowd.
As to what this means for their odds, it is safe to say that G2 are a bit shaky. However, they still have the superstar lineup that they always have since their finals showing in the 2019 Worlds Tournament. In terms of upcoming odds, they will be swinging more towards the even side but it is still a safe bet to put your money on G2 for upcoming matches.
In the long-term, G2 can still be contenders for the crown and for a repeat championship. The question is whether they will be swapping Caps and Perkz back to their original positions, as the current setup may put too much strain on their gameplay.
Look towards G2 having a resurgence but be reserved until the pack thins out!