On the third day of the World Championship, League of Legends gave to me: three blowouts, two undefeated teams, and some unforeseen technical difficulties.
In addition to the jolly and joy of the World Championship event in Wuhan, China, fans were treated to a multitude of technical pauses that dragged out the day in the midst of some hotly contested action. When it was all said and done, we were set up for what should be an interesting final day of the Play-In stage.
Coming into the Play-Ins, Fnatic certainly had high expectations given the prestige of its region compared to the others at this stage of the competition. After the first day of Group C, Fnatic did what it was supposed to do with a convincing 2-0 to start off. Opening up against Kaos Latin Gamers, Fnatic set out to prove that it was the top dog of the group. After picking up a quick first blood, it was off to the races in what ended up being a dominating performance. The European representatives managed to pick up a whopping eight kills by the time 10 minutes had passed. It was a complete team effort, as every member was playing on top of their game in the win.
Despite mid laner Rasmus "Caps" Winther tallying a 6/0/6 KDA (kills/deaths/assists) on Ryze in the initial game, he was almost the scapegoat in the team's next outing against Young Generation. His LeBlanc was picked on by YG mid laner Vo "Naul" Thanh Luan's Syndra, but in the end, Fnatic outlasted Young Generation through multiple game pauses to come away with a 52-minute win that took about 80 minutes in real-time. Despite the struggles, Fnatic still walked away with a 2-0 record and will move onto the knockout round.
While Fnatic soared, some of the other teams didn't fare as well. Hong Kong Attitude was perhaps the team that looked like it would be closest to achieving an easy 2-0 after the EU representatives. It opened the day with a blistering stomp of Rampage. From the beginning, it wasn't even close, as HKA found an early first blood that eventually turned into a whopping 12-1 kill advantage by the game's end. The team's lone kill came from a cocky fountain dive in the final moments of the 25-minute win.
HKA's second game against 1907 Fenerbahçe didn't go as swimmingly, however. While HKA managed to control the objective throughout the game, FB was on top of the kills, with AD Carry Ege "Padden" Acar Koparal leading the way with his 10/1/6 KDA on Tristana. Despite the loss, HKA looks like a contender to make it out of the group.
One thing stopping HKA could be the very team it lost to on Monday, however. 1907 Fenerbahçe may not have the prestige associated with being from one of the major regions, but there was no doubt that this team came to China to play. After taking down HKA, FB came out firing against Rampage in the final game of the day, once again led by Padden. This time he got fancy with his Kog'Maw, finding a pentakill that shut down Rampage once and for all on the way to FB's 26-minute win.
With just one day left in the Play-In group stage, there is still plenty of action left. While there are two clear favorites in Fnatic and 1907 Fenerbahçe, HK Attitude and Kaos Latin Gamers are following up those two with 1-1 records, with Young Generation and Rampage limping to matching 0-2 records.
The final day of this group stage will kick off Tuesday at 1 a.m. ET with HK Attitude taking on Rampage.