The Mid-Season Invitational rages on! Six teams remain after the group stage. In the so-called “Rumble stage” they will play a double round robin to determine which four teams will proceed to the playoffs. Will the favorites RNG and DWG KIA remain dominant or would we see another upset?
After seven days of non-stop games, the group stage answered several questions - and raised several more. China’s RNG remains undefeated, but it had to deal with only two opponents, both from minor regions. Many of the other teams - including reigning world champions DWG KIA and LEC's best team MAD Lions- had some games where they looked unconvincing. Pentanet.GG is coming as an outsider - but also a relative unknown.
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From Friday, May 14th, the six teams will clash once again, with the top four teams continuing on to the playoff semifinals.
You can follow the MSI streams on YouTube and Twitch in English, as well as on the following localized broadcasts:
- German - YouTube and Twitch
DWG KIA and RNG had a very competitive game at the start of the day. The LPL champions amassed an early lead and while Damwon was able to mostly equalize the gold, RNG's early dragon lead forced the LCK team to fight. The Chinese team won a clutch teamfight near the dragon and ended the game. In the next match, PSG Talon had a flying start against Pentanet.GG, getting a big advantage in the opening 10 minutes. With it, they dictated the pace and made it a very one-sided game.
MAD Lions took the stage for game 3, taking on Royal Never Give Up. A great start from jungler Javier "Elyoya" Prades Batalla gave MAD an early lead and they kept pushing forward. An ace near the Baron gave MAD the objective and they soon secured the win. Cloud9, now with no hope to advance, put up a valiant effort against PSG Talon and had an advantage early on. However, the PCS team had better teamfights and won a second victory.
DWG KIA guaranteed their top spot in the rumble with a very one-sided win in their last game against Pentanet.GG. The final game of the Rumble was between MAD Lions and Cloud9. The Lions had an early lead, but as the game progressed, Ibrahim "Fudge" Allami's Irelia became unstoppable and he led his team to victory.
The rematch between PSG Talon and RNG did not disappoint. The PCS champions earned a small gold lead early on with great skirmishing. However, the LPL titans stayed close with good macro play and eventually triumphed. In their game with MAD Lions, DWG KIA got several early kills and maintained their advantage. An ace 21 minutes in and a Baron allowed them to take over and parry any attempts for a MAD comeback.
RNG had to once more fight their way back in their second game after Cloud9. Robert "Blaber" Huanga great start and racked up several early kills and objectives for his team. Cloud9 had the better objective control, securing a mountain soul and Baron that eventually gave them the much-needed win . MAD Lions, meanwhile, had an easy time against Pentanet.GG, getting ahead early and snowballing hard against the Australians.
Damwon had another convincing win against PSG Talon, once more dominating the map after a strong start. With an ocean soul and a Baron, they pushed PSG in their base and took their Nexus. In the last game of the day, Pentanet.GG had a very strong game in their rematch againstt Cloud9. They found C9 split in several fights and deservedly triumphed, scoring a prestigious win and making NA's playoff chances that much worse.
Cloud9 finally broke their losing streak with a victory against Pentanet.GG. Despite the Australians taking first blood, C9 controlled the map throughout the game and steadily grew their lead. PSG Talon, meanwhile, made a statement against RNG, taking an early lead with several very successful early skirmishes and keeping the tempo up. The LPL champion never managed to equalize the game and had to watch their Nexus explode.
DWG KIA faced off against fellow 3-1 team MAD Lions in the next game. The LCK champions picked an early game-focused comp and stayed just a bit ahead until a pick on Matyáš "Carzzy" Orság let them secure a Baron. They then capitalized on a poor MAD engage to take the win. RNG, meanwhile, stomped Pentanet.GG, getting several very early kills and smashing their opponents with the advantage, ending in just 18 minutes.
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Damwon had a close game with Cloud9, but once more early advantage proved instrumental. In the mid-game, the LCK team secured an infernal soul and it made a big difference in clutch fights that won them their fifth win. MAD, meanwhile, faceplanted in their rematch against PSG Talon - the PCS team shut them down from the start and never slowed down to get their second win of the day.
RNG were the more proactive team early on against Pentanet.GG. The Australian team showed a lot of resistance in the mid-game and won several teamfights, but ultimately RNG picked them off close to their base to win the game. Cloud9, meanwhile, had a great start against DWG KIA, getting several kills in the opening minutes and three early dragons. However, the LCK champion slowed the game down with a series of picks. A Baron 31 minutes in let them siege the enemy base, where they won the decisive fight.
The LPL champions continued their undefeated run with a victory against MAD Lions. The European team had flashes of brilliance in fights, but RNG's maintained a lead throughout the game and an early Baron let them take over the map, never giving MAD a way to fight back. The next game saw PSG Talon take on Cloud9. Despite a shaky start, PSG dominated the mid-game after an ace and Baron 20 minutes in. The NA team was on the ropes and a rout near the drake cost them the game.
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DWG KIA came out swinging against Pentanet.GG, leaving no chance to the Australians. The LCK champion took several early fights and snowballed out of control, ending the game in under 20 minutes. MAD Lions and PSG Talon once again had a good fight. This time, MAD had a small lead from the start, but PSG had the early dragons. In the clutch fight, however, Matyáš "Carzzy" Orság's Tristana ran amok, giving MAD an ace and a Baron that gave them the crucial edge to win the game.
In the opening game of the Rumble, DWG KIA started strong against RNG, taking several early kills and a gold lead. However, the LPL champions equalized the game and a kill 24 minutes in allowed them to secure the Baron. Now with a big lead and the strong buff, RNG's push was unstoppable and they started the day with a win. MAD Lions had little trouble with Pentanet.GG in their first game: despite bleeding a few kills early on, they dominated the objective game from the start and used a Baron to dismantle the enemy base.
DAMWON found themselves pressured early against PSG Talon. However, the LCK team came back in the mid-game and with the help of their fed AD Carry Jang "Ghost" Yong-jun, who was peerless in the mid-game and helped his team win the game. Cloud9, meanwhile, had a rough game against RNG. While the NA team fell behind early, they made a comeback after a phenomenal mid-game teamfight ace. However, when they went for the Baron, RNG executed a masterful backdoor while the rest of the team interrupted the recalls and won their second victory.
PSG Talon, meanwhile, bounced back after their loss to demolish Pentanet in the most one-sided game of the day. The PCS champions won an early lead and snowballed hard, taking an early Baron to come out some 15K gold ahead at 22 minutes and ending shortly after. MAD Lions, meanwhile, found a clutch early fight against Cloud9 and snowballed their lead, shutting down C9 from many fights to secure a decisive win.
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That's all for the MSI Rumble! The tournament continues on Friday, May 21st. For more League of Legends news and analysis, follow our coverage at earlygame.com and our Facebookpage. Or even better, sign up to https://www.earlygame.com/register/ and choose what news you want to receive!