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Few Chances Left: NA LCS Week 7 staff picks

by theScore esports staff Jul 15 2016
Thumbnail image courtesy of NA LCS 2016 / Riot Games

theScore esports' League of Legends experts have tapped into their inner oracle for the seventh week of the North American LCS Summer Split and offer up predictions for each of the games.

2016 NA LCS Summer Season Records: Kelsey Moser (44-16), Emily Rand (45-15), Tim Sevenhuysen (43-17).

FRIDAY RAND MOSER SEVENHUYSEN
IMT vs. CLG IMT IMT IMT
P1 vs. NRG NRG NRG NRG
SATURDAY RAND MOSER SEVENHUYSEN
EF vs. TSM TSM TSM TSM
NRG vs. NV NV NV NV
C9 vs. APX C9 C9 C9 
P1 vs. TL TL TL TL
SUNDAY RAND MOSER SEVENHUYSEN
C9 vs. CLG C9 C9 C9
IMT vs. EF IMT IMT IMT
TL vs. TSM TSM TSM TSM
NV vs. APX NV NV APX

Cloud9 vs. Counter Logic Gaming

Rand: Both C9 and CLG have had their ups and downs as of late. CLG looks more cohesive than they once were, where C9 still has trouble picking and choosing their fights. That being said, I think C9 is stronger individually, which should push them over the edge — unless CLG regains their Spring Playoff form. With mid-lane control being so important in the current meta, it's difficult to put CLG over C9, especially with Jensen performing so well.

Moser: One might say that CLG are looking stronger, while Cloud9 have exposed a few more flaws, particularly regarding how they play with their top laner. Even so, CLG are making too many individual mistakes to be considered a team that can take advantage of C9's missteps.

Sevenhuysen: Cloud9 are finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel as they emerge from a run of tough matches against teams high in the standings. CLG are slowly starting to find themselves, but they still have a lot of issues to work on, and I’m skeptical about whether they’ll be able to effectively shut down Jensen, who has been the pivot point for Cloud9 all season.

Team Liquid vs. Team SoloMid

Rand: Can TL overcome TSM? It's certainly possible, but not probable. TL's strength stems from Dardoch, who applies map pressure along with being a carry force for TL in fights. This works for the most part, but TSM is too well-coordinated right now to be overwhelmed by an individual carry performance. More members of TL will have to step up in order to knock off NA's top team, and I don't see that happening.

Moser: Anyone beating TSM in North America would be an upset. Liquid have demonstrated a new facet of team play, but it feels almost as if they suffer when Dardoch doesn't have a good game. TSM have been playing much better around Sven this split, so I think they can take this match relatively easily.

Sevenhuysen: Is Team Liquid good enough to take games off of North America’s best teams? Yes. Are they likely to break TSM’s win streak? Nope. There’s definitely a world where Dardoch out-jungles Svenskeren hard enough to earn his team some leads, but for Team Liquid to win, they also need to Fenix to somehow match Bjergsen’s influence around the map, and both side lanes to out-perform their opponents. That’s a lot to ask of Team Liquid’s laners, and I have to see them as underdogs — though the odds of them winning aren’t as slim as many may think.

Team EnVyUs vs. Apex Gaming

Rand: nV have slumped as of late, and their synergy has not been enough to go toe-to-toe with NA's best or even middle-of-the-pack teams. nV beat Apex back in Week 2, before both teams really started showing their weaknesses — nV's lack of map control and Apex's over-reliance on Ray. nV has lived or died by Procxin as of late, whose performance in the jungle has been suspect, while Apex can now look to the much-improved Keane as a legitimate carry threat. I think this series will be very close, although I'm still calling it for nV.

Moser: Both these teams looked impressive at the start of the season, but have since revealed themselves as one-dimensional. Apex appear a bit more exploitable with Ray tunneling on his old standby picks. This has never been a good sign for him.

Sevenhuysen: EnVyUs seem to have lost touch with the methodical control that was earning them so much success earlier, and the drafts we’ve seen from them lately have featured a few too many oddities for my taste. The shine is definitely off the apple, and we may be ripe for an upset, unless Seraph and Procxin can find some magic to overcome Ray and his increasingly offensive item builds.

theScore esports compiles staff picks for different leagues weekly. Let us know what you think by tagging our Twitter or Liking us on Facebook.

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