Nimer’s Notes: MSI Semifinals

Welcome back to MSI! This week we have a competition set up for the semifinal stage of MSI, and things seem weird on the surface, but I’ll help explain the structure of the contest.

In order to provide enough options, we’re hosting one contest that covers both semifinal days: this means that you have to put your money down on Thursday, but have to wait for the second semifinal on Friday to complete before prizes are given out. It’s a while to wait, but this is how we can ensure the best experience for all of you.

With that aside, let’s break down the players to pick up!

(Featured Image Courtesy of LoL Esports Flickr)

RNG is a Steal

Despite finishing the groups in 1st, RNG is the cheapest team in the draft because it’s facing SKT, which has not lost a Bo5 since last year’s MSI. That’s a foreboding task, if SKT has managed to recover from its disappointing form in groups.

Since RNG is a team that forces teamfights, has trouble closing games due to improper lane assignments, this is set to be a long, action filled series, and I recommend getting at least 3 of RNG’s players. I’d take Li “xiaohu” Yuan-Hao, Jang “Looper” Hyeong-seok, Liu “MLXG” Shi-yu, and even Cho “Mata” Se-hyeong. All four players have had solid performances, boasting some of the highest kill participation in group stages: a testament to how much RNG likes to fight together. I’d skip on the ADC just because there are two better candidates.

One of them is Bae “Bang” Jun-sik. Despite SKT’s poor group stage, Bang was still a standout player, boasting the highest KDA of ADC’s at 5.5, and second in kills among them. He’s been SKT’s bright point, and if SKT is going to fight back, it will be perched on his shoulders.


The CounterLogic Approach

I’d say CLG is favored against Flash Wolves only based on group stage performances. While Flash Wolves has shown up against the likes of SKT, it did not win a game against CLG in groups, partially due to CLG’s strong early game snowballing. Because of this, I’d recommend Trevor “Stixxay” Hayes as an ADC to go with Bang: purchasing all of RNG’s cheap players lets us afford more expensive flex picks, and passing on Stixxay would be silly. He had the most kills of all players, with several multi kills on the likes of Caitlyn and Kalista. There is a risk he could receive a ban on at least one of those, but he’s largely ignored in teamfights so he can just freely auto away. Him and Bang should make for a killing point combo.

There’s other approaches to this draft, but honestly RNG’s prices are such a steal for the kind of game we’re going to have, it’s hard to argue why pick CLG over RNG members when RNG is more likely to have bloodier games? Zaqueri “Aphromoo” Black is a great play maker for CLG, but so is Mata for RNG, and he’s $1,400 cheaper. That kind of extra salary can open up to bigger carry picks and more flexibility.

Good luck, have fun, and enjoy the competition!

(All statistics courtesy of Oracle’s Elixir)