The Demacia Cup 2019 is currently underway.
Despite starting with 20 teams, only eight remain in the competition with two of the favorites missing out on the Knockout Stage. Invictus Gaming and FunPlus Phoenix were eliminated from the group stage after a disappointing performance.
The two world championship-winning organizations were both booted from the event after amassing a 2-2 record, which failed to qualify them for the next stage of the competition.
While disappointing, the result was somewhat expected. Both squads decided to send their Academy teams to the event and allowed their main rosters to take a vacation. That said, Invictus Gaming is also yet to officially confirm a replacement for AD carry Yu “JackeyLove” Wen-Bo for the 2020 LPL Spring Split.
IG and FunPlus sent their Academy rosters, but other teams went all in for the Demacia Cup 2019. EDward Gaming is among that lot.
One of the biggest stories surrounding EDward Gaming at the Demacia Cup is the coaching debut of Ming “Clearlove” Kai. So far, the former jungler is doing a great job at keeping his players grounded in the face of adversity.
EDG finished the group stage with only one defeat and moved to the knockout stage as the first seed. On Thursday, EDG completed a reverse sweep against Team WE. The star of the series was jungler Zhao “Jiejie” Li-Jie who took Clearlove’s spot on the starting roster.
The young EDG lineup is having a great tournament so far, a massive improvement from the LPL regular season.
Earlier this month, it was reported that AD carry Jian “Uzi” Zi-Hao would not be playing at the Demacia Cup 2019. Uzi is recovering from an old injury and it remains unclear if he will play in the spring.
That saw Royal Never Give Up get off to a rocky start at the Demacia Cup 2019, but the team now looks like the favorite to take the title. It took a couple of games, but the players have started to gel.
Rookie jungler Li “XLB” Xiao-Long is proving to be a good choice for RNG. His style is fast and aggressive and while he prefers to attack the solo lanes, he’s ready to protect the bottom lane if necessary. That approach alongside Uzi’s absence has seen RNG start distributing the resources equally among its players, instead of funneling everything into just one carry.
If RNG keeps this level of performance through the spring season, the team might claim another LPL title.
The winner of the Demacia Cup 2019 will be decided on December 29.