Melany M. August 30, 2019
The 2019 LCS Summer split has come to an end. Team Liquid took its fourth consecutive title over Cloud9 in one of the most exciting series of the season. While the regular season is over, there’s still one more gauntlet to run before 2019 World Championship: the regional finals.
Team Liquid qualified as first seed after winning the summer split. Cloud9 qualified as the team with the most championship points after earning 40 points in the spring and 100 points in the summer. The third seed will be determined through the regional finals.
The event is a single-elimination King of the Hill bracket, meaning that only the winning team in each round gets to advance to the next stage.
The top four teams in championship points, excluding Team Liquid and Cloud9, will compete at the regional finals. This year, the contenders for the third seed are FlyQuest, Team SoloMid, Clutch Gaming, and Counter Logic Gaming.
NA Regional Finals Round 1
Clutch Gaming vs FlyQuest, September 6
Clutch Gaming is coming off a miraculous run in the playoffs. After a shaky start to the season, Clutch Gaming made adjustments to its coaching staff and secured a spot in playoffs.
In the quarterfinals, Clutch had to face TSM. History repeated itself as Clutch knocked TSM off playoffs and kept the Worlds dream alive. In the semifinals, the squad took Team Liquid to five games in a series that was way closer than most expected.
Clutch fell versus CLG and took fourth place. It earned them enough points to make it to the regional finals. Clutch is looking hot right now, and may be the team to watch in the regional finals.
FlyQuest’s season wasn’t as exciting, the team finished in ninth place in the summer and went home early. The team from spring and the one from summer look like two completely different squads. FlyQuest was supposed to come back stronger in the summer and climb further up the ranks, but it just didn't happen.
FlyQuest fell short in the summer. The team got some surprise wins, but it wasn’t enough to put them back into contention. This is FlyQuest’s final chance to go to Worlds.
NA Regional Finals Round 2
Counter Logic Gaming vs Round 1 Winner, September 7
CLG, just like Clutch, is coming off of a semifinals appearance. CLG took the summer season by storm and qualified to playoffs for the first time since franchising began. CLG completely destroyed OpTic Gaming in the quarterfinals and played Cloud9 in the next round.
In the semifinals, CLG started to crumble. Cloud9 read CLG like a book and shut down the strengths of the team. The squad finished in third place after a victory over Clutch, and round two is expected to be the rematch between these two teams.
NA Regional Finals
TSM vs Round 2 Winner, September 8
Spring’s results put TSM at the top of the hill in the regional finals.
Conversely, TSM’s performance in the summer was a rollercoaster. The team started strong and slowly slid down in the standings. In the playoffs, TSM made the unexpected decision of bringing a rookie jungler as its starter. The team didn’t add another jungler to the roster from there, so they were confident that Mingyi "Spica” Lu was the answer to their struggles.
The match against Clutch Gaming left fans worrying about the team's state. TSM is not the team it used to be. The squad keeps struggling to find a jungler that works for them for more than a single split. In the bottom lane, things are not going any better for TSM. Only the solo laners of the team continue to dominate opponents despite the team’s inconsistency.
If TSM fails in the regional finals, this would the second year in a row that the organization misses the World Championship.