Semifinals action in the North America League of Legends Championship Series kicked off on Saturday with Immortals finally breaking through the old guard with a sweep of Counter Logic Gaming.
During the regular season of Summer Split, Immortals owned a 4-1 match record against CLG, and the semifinals weren't any different. While CLG managed to set up favorable teamfights throughout the series, it failed to build off these small victories as Immortals earned a spot in the Finals.
In Game 1, it was CLG dominating mid-game teamfights and even finishing with more kills than Immortals. Kills alone don't win games, however; securing objectives is often more important, and CLG struggled to pick up many throughout the series.
CLG took plenty of teamfight victories throughout the mid-game but was never in a position to take turrets, dragons or Baron afterward. Slowly, Immortals split-pushed objectives and closed a Game 1 victory. CLG wouldn't get as many chances to come back throughout the rest of the series.
When Immortals was successful in teamfights and skirmishes, it was thanks in large part to support Kim "Olleh" Joo-Sung, whose dominant performance earned him Player of the Series honors. Olleh was often roaming around the map in tandem with jungler Jake "Xmithie" Puchero and setting up kills for the damage carries.
The current meta favors playing around the mid laner and AD carry, and that's just where Olleh focused his attention. In Game 1, it was Immortals mid laner Eugene "Pobelter" Park who benefitted from the early roams, as he put up a solid 11/3/7 KDA (kills/deaths/assists) performance on Cassiopeia. Immortals AD carry Li "Cody Sun" Yu Sun was also a beast on Kog'Maw, blasting his way through CLG in teamfights while putting up a 10/1/8 KDA in a superb Game 2 showing.
Immortals is a young organization but has a reputation for struggling in the postseason after superb splits. With the victory over CLG, Immortals looks ready to put its past failures behind it and create a new dynasty in North America.
The last hurdle it faces will be decided in Sunday's series between Team SoloMid and Team Dignits, who will play for the other grand finals spot. Although CLG lost its chance of winning the Summer Split, it still has a chance at making it to Worlds after the third-place matchup next Saturday in the Regional Qualifying Gauntlet.