The fourth week of the 2021 LEC Spring Split is right around the corner, which means that a couple of predictions are in order — this time we’ll focus on Rogue vs. MAD Lions! This is, without a doubt, one of the most anticipated matches of the week and there’s a very good reason why. Simply put, this is a clash between the League of Legends superstars of tomorrow. How’s that for a tagline?
Throughout history, there were always two kinds of LEC rookies:
- Those who broke onto the scene in dramatic fashion (in no small part because of their innate talent.)
- Those who entered the highest levels of play with a whimper before eventually fading into obscurity.
Of course, there are exceptions to both ends of this spectrum, but the point stands nonetheless. The most interesting thing about Rogue and MAD Lions is that both teams have players who are here to stay — they’re not going anywhere any time soon and have already proven their worth throughout the last couple of splits.
And now we’ll get to see them clash in a game that holds an incredible amount of importance to both. There’s a lot on the line, and one could argue that both Rogue and MAD Lions have never been this stacked talent-wise. They’re still not on the same page, but they’re darn impressive nonetheless and are more than worthy of your undivided attention.
They’re also stacked with some of the best players the LEC has to offer, which makes this match an absolute must-watch!
Rogue vs. MAD Lions Predictions
It’s worth noting that Rogue and MAD Lions had noticeably different trajectories up to this point, and yet they’re pretty much equal in terms of hype and overall momentum. Rogue, for one, steamrolled throughout all opposition with relative ease. Well, there was that one loss Schalke 04, but we’ll let that one slide for the time being.
They’re in sole possession of first place and have been the most consistent team in the LEC — and that’s quite a compliment given whom they’ve had to play against. They’re far from perfect, but they might lack in polish and synergy they more than make up for in sheer grit and determination. In other words, they’re one of the most capable (not to mention flexible) teams in the region.
MAD Lions, on the other hand, didn’t start off all that well. It was as if they had regressed to a lesser developed state without any apparent reason. And sure, they made two roster changes, but so did Rogue, along with nearly every other team in the LEC. MAD’s fantastic three-man core (mid and bottom lane) was supposed to do the grunt of the work, with İrfan “Armut” Berk Tükek and Javier “Elyoya” Prades slowly easing into their roles.
The aforementioned three-man core wasn’t nearly as consistent as they needed to be. That, frankly, is a fairly cordial way of saying that they underperformed and failed in a myriad of ways. They were by no means dreadful, but they still paled in comparison to most of their peers — and that was a problem given just how competitive and even things had gotten in what felt like a blink of an eye.
Fortunately, they didn’t need a lot of time to shore up some of their biggest weaknesses and make the region take notice. They’re still heavily flawed (and easily exploitable) but they’ve been playing ten times better than just a couple of weeks ago, so at least they’re growing in the right direction. Still, not all is well for the boys in white and gold.
Teams like SK Gaming, Schalke 04, and even EXCEL Esports have improved leaps and bounds in a staggeringly short amount of time which means MAD Lions will face an uphill battle going forward. They’re still not consistent or dangerous enough to be deemed as a top-tier challenger. What they are, currently, is a pretty capable mid-tier contender — no more and no less.
Now, there’s nothing wrong with momentarily occupying such a spot, but if they don’t step up and start stringing wins there’s a very good chance they might not be able to reach Top 6 and, by proxy, the playoffs.
Rogue, on the other hand, are pretty much on auto-pilot at this point. They’re noticeably better than most of their peers and they know it, too. They’re favored against MAD Lions for a reason, and even though they’re not the epitome of consistency either, they’re no doubt more dangerous at this point in time.
A Competitive Affair
Predicting the outcome of this one game is nigh impossible, despite what the odds might tell you. Both teams will compete on a brand-new patch and most of the OP jungle picks (other than Udyr) were nerfed considerably. Furthermore, no one’s quite sure which shade of MAD Lions will come out and play. It really depends on the day and their preparation which, to be fair, makes betting on/against them an absolute nightmare.
What’s certain, however, is that they’re better than their record would suggest, and that Elyoya, in particular, has been performing way above expectations. We knew he was a talented prospect, but he wasted little time in letting everyone know he means business.
It won’t come easy, but once the dust settles they should, by all means, be able to emerge victorious. Their one loss to Schalke 04 didn’t hurt their stock all that much (especially not given how they were winning for the majority of the game), so they’ve definitely earned our benefit of the doubt.
In any case, expect an absolute barnburner!