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LoL Mid-Season Invitational 2021 Day 1 Betting Preview
The 2021 Mid-Season Invitational kicks off on Thursday, May 6, with the opening fixtures of the tournament. The games will feature two clashes from each group, totaling six games. For some teams, this will be their first international tournament, while others will get to face opponents that they never met before.
What that should result in is a chaotic day of competition, with a high probability of unlikely outcomes. Does that mean that we can expect the underdogs to take down the favorites, or will the skill gap prove to be too much to overcome?
DAMWON KIA vs Cloud9
Thursday, May 6 – 13:00 GMT
The 2021 MSI will kick off with a banger, featuring the reigning World Champions DWG KIA and the new and improved Cloud9. For this match, all eyes will be on Luka “Perkz” Perković who leads Cloud9 to their first MSI as the reigning champion – after his former team G2 bombed out of the LEC playoffs.
Many people are high on this Cloud9 roster, seeing them as the next best thing that happened to North America since the deep-dish pizza. And while C9 certainly look solid, you can’t make a strong case for them against DWG KIA.
Of course, it’s all about the offered odds, but 4.27, seems a fair price given that they’re facing what is likely the best team in the world. Best-of-one (Bo1) have the trait of producing upsets, and while it may happen, this isn’t the price to pull the trigger with on Cloud9.
Infinity Esports vs DetonatioN FocusMe
Thursday, May 6 – 14:00 GMT
Two fairly unfamiliar sides will clash in the second match of the tournament. Although you can do your own research and try to pick the “stronger” team, you will likely come to the conclusion that this is a complete coin-flip match.
DetonatioN FocusMe have their strengths, but I’m not too excited with them swapping out their shotcalling support just to bring in mid laner Lee “Aria” Ga-eu. Don’t get me wrong Aira brings a lot to the team, but at what cost?
Infinity Esports, on the other side, seem fairly equally matched talent-wise and while you might argue DFM are slightly stronger, the LATAM representatives definitely have the experience on their side.
A 50/50 match. Take the plus money on Infinity.
Prediction: Infinity Esports to win – 2.29 Pinnacle
Pentanet.GG vs Royal Never Give Up
Thursday, May 6 – 15:00 GMT
The quality gap between the leagues these two sides hail from is massive, so it’s easy to speculate Royal Never Give Up will win. They most likely win, but they’re very expensive.
At 1.058, the bookies are implying RNG should win this match 94.5% of the time, which is extremely high even when faced with Pentanet.gg. They might have won the LoL Pro League (LPL), but it wasn’t like they were undeniably the best team in the league.
What’s more, the Oceanic teams have done well before internationally and have a lot of talent – relative to the regions’ size – so you can’t simply write them off as the weakest of the bunch. Unlike RNG, Pentanet.gg completely smashed everyone in their league and are definitely the strongest LoL Circuit Oceania (OCL) team.
I don’t believe Pentanet.gg will make it far, but they are good enough to punish teams who underestimate. You could make a small bet on them to upset RNG simply because this is a Bo1 and the generous (11.06) odds, but for me, this is a kill handicap bet on the outsiders.
Prediction: Pentanet.gg +10.5 kills – 1.884 Pinnacle
Pentanet.gg vs Unicorns of Love
Thursday, May 6 – 16:00 GMT
As mentioned in our 2021 MSI preview, Unicorns of Love are not as strong as they were last year, and they hardly impressed at 2020 Worlds, where they got individually outmatched by basically everyone.
Regardless, the LoL Continental League (LCL) is still a very strong league and you have to show some respect to a team that has been the dominant force in it for a while. Another thing that is different with UoL this season is that they’ve become far less aggressive, or better said they’re not as wild as they once were.
If you had to pick a side, you take Pentanet.gg at 3.05 since they aren’t that much weaker than UoL – outside of the narrative of how much stronger LCL is. And like it’s the case with the RNG vs Pentanet.gg, this bet makes sense only because of the generous price and the fact that this is the opening day of the tournament.
Prediction: Pentanet.gg to win – 3.05 Pinnacle
Prediction: Pentanet.gg +7.5 – 1.917 Pinnacle
paiN Gaming vs Istanbul Wildcats
Thursday, May 6 – 17:00 GMT
Many people are high on paiN Gaming, but as noted before, their stats are inflated due to the playstyle in their league. They’re your typical Brazillian team that will be very aggressive and chaotic, while that approach can prove beneficial in some scenarios, paiN seem to play way too loose for me to place money on them and hope the “aggressive” style will win them games.
And let’s not forget that the Brazilian league is not nearly as strong as the Turkish league. PaiN might surprise a few teams in this tournament, but I need to see how they do on an international stage first.
Prediction: Istanbul Wildcats to win – 1.699 Pinnacle
PSG Talon vs MAD Lions
Thursday, May 6 – 17:00 GMT
I’ve already mentioned that I rank PSG Talon – despite missing their ADC – higher than MAD Lions and mainly because MAD Lions seem way too 50/50 for me to put money on them.
If both teams play at their peak, there are definitely arguments to be made in favor of MAD Lions, but if you compare these sides’ average games, PSG Talon are better.
If you believe MAD Lions can keep playing at their peak – as they did in the LEC playoffs – they’re a good bet. For me, this is PSG Talon or nothing type of match.
Prediction: PSG Talon to win – 2.22 Pinnacle