LOL LEC Spring Week 4 – Day 1 Betting Previews and Predictions
Schalke 04 vs Astralis
Friday, February 12 – 18:00 CET
The fourth week of the League of Legends European Championship (LEC) 2021 Spring kicks off with a clash between the high-flying Schalke 04 and Astralis. Schalke 04 have gone undefeated across the last two weeks when they took down Misfits, SK, Rogue and G2 Esports, which would make it seem like they’re one of the strongest teams in the league and while they’re definitely looking very solid, I would not be so quick to jump on the hype train.
That said, they’re still set to face Astralis, who are… well they’re not very good to put it lightly. This squad lacks everything that makes a good team – namely strong lanes. To make matters worse for Astralis, Nukeduck decided to take a personal leave which was likely ushered in by poor results, although he has not given any reasons.
Replacing him is Fnatic Rising player Magifelix, who is definitely a highly talented player, but it remains to be seen whether he can help Astralis escape the hole they’re in. There is a world where Astralis look better with Magifelix on the team, but we will have to wait and see how much of an impact he can have.
Pinnacle have Schalke 04 priced at 1.282, which is a bit too low for us to recommend this bet. Similarly, the kill line (7.5) is a tad too high for the current meta. I Expect Schalke 04 to win, but I’m not betting on this match.
Team Vitality vs Excel Esports
Friday, February 12 – 19:00 CET
Team Vitality made quite a big move this week by adding ex-SK Gaming ADC Crownshot to their team, who should help them improve after a poor 1-6 start of the season. That said, I would not overreact to this move, as it may seem much better on paper than how it really is.
Comp and Labrov might have not been putting up very flashy numbers, but they were arguably a very strong bottom lane duo, so it doesn’t make much sense to break them apart – unless if Vitality truly believe Crownshot can solo carry them to victory. That said, Crownshot is still an upgrade if we consider the individual quality – but like it’s the case with Astralis and Magifelix, it’s hard to tell how much of an impact the Slovenian ADC will have.
On a more positive note, Crownshot is a great leader who should help Vitality with their mid-late game decision making, so in that regard, there is definitely a world where Vitality improve – only time will tell. At this point, I must point out what I have before – Vitality are (were) much better than what their record would suggest so it’s not like it’s fair to view them as a team that can be compared to Astralis.
Their next opponents, Excel are – like Vitality – a very underrated team in my book and they have proven that with three back-to-back victories which secured them a 4-3 record. Excel are a strong team, there is no doubt about that, but they are still a diamond in the rough so it’s tough to say when and if they will ever achieve their full potential.
I am very tempted to back Vitality here (2.09 on PInnacle), but I am a bit concerned with how Crownshot will do in his debut for the team. They could prove to be a solid bet for their Saturday match against SK, but until I see them in action, I have to pass on this bet.
Misfits vs G2 Esports
Friday, February 12 – 20:00 CET
I have mentioned it before and I’ll do it again. Misfits are a very unpredictable team that is extremely difficult to figure out, as they can look good one day but then disappoint the next.
Much of that is due to their aggressive playstyle, which can potentially catch other teams off guard, but they still lack the fundamentals to make something happen. In some way, it would be fair to say Misfits are as aggressive as they are just because they know they lack the individual quality to compete with the top dogs so it may be the case where they’re aggressive because they lack confidence.
Normally I like these types of teams as a punch-up underdog and I often bet on them to cause an upset. Even at the offered odds, I’m not ready to risk my money on Misfits, largely because they have proven before just how inefficient they are when it comes to closing down games.
With a money line bet out of the question, there might be a case to make for Misfits to secure at least nine kills (1.763 on Pinnacle), which is fair to expect given their playstyle. That said, G2 are objectively a much better team so it’s not entirely unlikely they will stomp Misfits and not allow them to get even close to that kill count.
This should be a fun game to watch, but it’s not one I feel comfortable betting on. Pass.
MAD Lions vs Rogue
Friday, February 12 – 21:00 CET
Many people started doubting in MAD Lions after their loss against SK Gaming, however, as far as I’m concerned that was a classic fluke, largely due to Carzzy’s disastrous performance in the bot lane which spiralled the game out of control. Besides that loss, I still believe MAD have the talent to finish the season fairly high – granted I am not yet convinced they can reach the same heights as the 2020 MAD Lions, at least no in the first split together.
Rogue lost their game against Schalke 04 but I wouldn’t overreact to that game, since I still believe they’re easily the strongest team in Europe – besides G2. In fact, they’re statistically the best team in the league so note that down.
At higher odds, I would gladly take Rogue, but 1.473 makes me a bit hesitant to do so. The market has overreacted to MAD Lions’ loss to SK (ML odds on MAD Lions went from 2.57 to 2.71), as I believe they are stronger than what their recent showings would lead us to believe.
There is a world where MAD Lions win, but then again, it’s hard to bet against Rogue who are generally a very stable team that shouldn’t lose – unless if MAD Lions show up. There is, however, a good chance this game will turn out to be very one-sided, so if I had to pick a bet it would be under 33:00 minutes.
Prediction: Under 33:00 (game duration) – 1.847 Pinnacle
Fnatic vs SK Gaming
Friday, February 12 – 22:00 CET
I’m not trying to be biased, but Fnatic are one of the most exciting teams in the world to watch right now. What exactly is happening at Fnatic’s headquarters is anyone’s guess and we can’t know for sure what’s going through the player’s heads, but it seems Fnatic’s sponsorship with Monster Energy is paying off.
Fnatic’s games remind me of late-night solo queue games where fighting is the no.1 priority and it seems like that’s exactly how Fnatic like to play, seeing how they’re averaging more than a kill/minute in the first 15 minutes of the game. What’s even more impressive is the fact that Fnatic’s aggression is fairly calculated, which in some ways reminds me of the old G2 Esports – you know the one which made it to the finals of the World Championship?
As for SK Gaming, they are playing better than expected, however, they’re not good. They might produce some flashes of greatness this season, but in the long run, I don’t expect this team to impress anyone.
Even though I have praised Fnatic for their aggression, it will sooner or later prove to be a double-edged sword that will likely see them lose games they otherwise shouldn’t. Volatile teams are not my cup of tea when it comes to betting on them, however, there is no denying Fnatic are objectively much stronger than SK both on the individual level and when it comes to playing as a team. I don’t see Fnatic losing here, even if they get caught off-guard early on.
Prediction: Fnatic to win 1.398 Pinnacle
Prediction: Fnatic -6.5 kills – 1.819 Pinnacle