The fifth week of the 2021 LCS Spring Split brings with it a unique delight: the North American el clasico — Cloud9 vs. Team SoloMid! And, as far as predictions go, this is a pretty hard one to make. Cloud9, of course, are favored to win, but things are a lot more complicated than it might seem at first glance.
First of all, it’s worth noting that whenever these two venerable organizations clash, things tend to spiral out of control in the best possible sense. Caution gets thrown out the window, and multi-year-long narratives take center stage. The same goes for Counter Logic Gaming as well. They’ve been a bottom-tier dweller for years, but whenever they face off against C9 or TSM, they tend to overperform and punch way above their weight class.
This particular match should be no different in that regard. There’s a lot of ground to cover, so let’s get down to business!
Cloud9 vs. Team SoloMid Predictions
One thing needs to be said: both Cloud9 and Team SoloMid have more than enough talent and potential within their ranks to challenge for the LCS throne. But even though that’s the case, there’s still a noticeable gap between them. Cloud9 are much more stable and their highs are also more prominent. They’re still going through some growing pains, but they’re nowhere near as inconsistent or volatile as most of their peers.
It really depends on the day and whether or not they can set things up the way they want to. They’ve had a slew of exceptional games, but also more than just a couple of bad ones.
— TSM Report (@tsmreport) March 5, 2021
They’re great individually, but they often fumble when it comes to execution. And at the highest levels of play, against teams as good and dangerous as Cloud9, that’s quite a big problem.
You give them an inch and they’ll take a mile. Robert “Blaber” Huang, in particular, can take over games in a blink of an eye. He’s not just the best and most impactful jungler in North America, but he’s light years ahead of the next dude in line as well. He’s so good it doesn’t even make sense! Everyone’s singing his praises and it’s easy to understand why.
— LCS (@LCSOfficial) February 28, 2021
The rest of Cloud9 have also been performing incredibly well, but it’s Blaber and his insanely potent early game prowess that takes the cake. He’s their biggest catalyst, and even when C9 fails to start things off on the right foot, Blaber’s always there to help out and even the score.
Right now, at the time of this writing, Cloud9 are in sole possession of first place and, by the looks of it, they won’t relinquish such a prestigious position any time soon.
The 2021 #LCS Spring Split Standings heading into the penultimate week of the regular season:
— LCS (@LCSOfficial) March 5, 2021
They’re the frontrunners to win the whole split, and even though they’re not the most consistent team in the world, they’re still atop of the LCS and will remain there for the time being.
A Competitive Affair
Well, not exactly. They’re not better than Cloud9 on an individual level, and the same goes for the synergy as well. Still, this peculiar five-man line-up — with all its many faults and quirks — has a knack for finding success in the most unexpected of ways. We mustn’t forget that they went from 0 to a 100 in what felt like a blink of an eye.
They were the laughing stock of the region and then, just a few weeks later, they were the only ones laughing. So, based on empirical evidence, we know they can improve in a staggeringly short amount of time. They have the right players for the job, but they still need a bit of time before they can get on the same page and start thinking (and playing) as a cohesive, five-man unit.
They’re often pretty darn good early on, but once the mid and later stages of the game come around, that’s when they start to fumble. They threw many leads away because they decided to engage at an inopportune moment. Or, conversely, they picked the right moment but failed to execute. That’s when things go awry for Team SoloMid, and it’s painful to watch. Still, these are all invaluable learning experiences, and they’re par for the course.
Cloud9 are spectacular in more ways than one, and they know it, too. Are they perfect? Far from it, but they don’t need to be to take Team SoloMid down. They just have to capitalize when there’s an opening and seize the moment, if you will.
So, in the end, we’ll side with Cloud9 on this one, but it’ll be a much closer affair than most people expect. TSM won’t go down without a fight, and if Tristan “PowerOfEvil” Schrage shows up with his A game, they’ll definitely give Cloud9 a run for their money.