MAD Lions and G2 Esports met three times across the last two LoL European Championship (LEC) playoffs, with MAD picking up a shock 3-2 win against G2 in the 2020 LEC Spring, only to lose the semi-finals 1-3, and again in the first round of the 2020 LEC Summer (1-3). However, with big roster changes on both sides, and polar opposite form these two teams have been showing of late, you can’t help but wonder whether MAD can cause another upset and show G2 that they’re not nearly as strong as they believe they are.
MAD Lions vs G2 Esports
Sunday, April 3 at 17:00 CET
LEC Studio, Berlin, Germany (LAN)
MAD Lions are actually good
There were plenty of matches this split where you could say the team that won did not necessarily deserve it, and that a nice portion of the results were complete flukes. Some may argue that MAD Lions’ result against Rogue falls into that category, but I would beg to differ.
MAD Lions might have seemed like the weaker side in that match, but they have proven just how strong they can be. As noted in our previous betting preview, MAD Lions’ numbers are much better than how it may seem for a naked eye, and they have proven that with a near-flawless game that earned them a big 3-1 victory against a team that was expected to make it into the playoffs without any real issues.
What I was the most impressed within MAD’s opening LEC playoffs match was the strong performances from their bottom lane, who played the main role in MAD’s victory. I’ve talked about how MAD Lions can become a very strong team if Matyáš “Carzzy” Orság and Norman “Kaiser” Kaiser start showing some stability, and that was exactly what we got.
The question, however, is whether that was just a one-off game or have Carzzy and Kaiser finally decided to stop feeding their lane and play with more calculated aggression rather than flipping every game they play in.
Flexibility and high ceiling
MAD Lions might not field the best players in the league, but the flexibility and the high ceiling these players bring is remarkable, to say the least. Let’s remember what happened last year, when MAD Lions – then a stack of rookies – shocked the league with their strong performances, and while they ended up disappointing at the 2020 LoL World Championship, they’re still the same talented lineup with a bit more experience.
The only two players who are “rookies” are jungler Javier “Elyoya” Prades Batalla and İrfan Berk “Armut” Tükek, who are not really playing like rookies, but are instead viewed as two of the best players in their roles. Does that mean they’re better than G2’s counterparts? Not necessarily, but with the way they’ve been playing of late, I wouldn’t dare to say MAD Lions are much weaker.
G2’s “Hakuna Matata”
There is no hiding the fact that G2 are not playing clean LoL currently, and while you will find narratives that talk about how G2 don’t really put in 100% and are “just having fun”, I’m not buying that. I would go even so far as to say G2 are playing very poorly and would have easily dropped out of the playoffs had they not fielded so much individual talent.
While you might give G2 some slack for shaky showings since they have made quite a drastic roster change, the fact of the matter is that G2 are not looking as clean as they did in 2019 and 2020, and are definitely not living up to the name as the best team LEC has ever had.
G2 need to wake up ASAP
If all of G2’s players suddenly start playing to the best of their abilities, I would confidently say they can make it at least to LoL Worlds semi-finals, but they’re still far from that currently. And it’s not so much their players underperforming rather than poor decision making, poor drafts, and seemingly bad read on the meta that is holding this team back.
As noted by their coach Fabian “GrabbZ” Lohmann, G2 don’t have as strong of a reason on the meta as Schalke 04 and MAD Lions and are unable to find a way to use the “triple-threat compositions” i.e. putting Martin “Wunder” Nordahl Hansen on a carry champion. In simple terms, G2 are not as flexible as other teams as far as drafts are concerned, and while that’s something that can get improved on, I wouldn’t expect any sudden changes ahead of this match.
Betting Tips for MAD Lions vs Rogue
The LEC has proven to be fairly unpredictable, seeing how underdog teams are surprising with their performances left and right, and while that’s not necessarily the narrative we’re following for this prediction, it does make you wonder whether these “weaker” sides have become stronger or are the usual top-dogs underperforming.
For this match, it’s a little bit of both, since it’s fair to say MAD Lions are playing much better than how they did throughout most of the season, whereas G2 are just not playing that well. For some time I believed G2’s struggles would go away once they get used to playing with Martin “Rekkles” Larsson, and later I believed the narrative about how G2 are just not trying as much since they know they’re the best.
But after a while, those poor and unconvincing performances become way too normal for me to continue trusting G2 will get better. If you’re playing poorly for extended periods, it’s hard to say that you’re just not trying, but are instead just not that good.
G2 might need to get punched in the mouth to wake up and perhaps their close series with Schalke 04 was just what they needed to pull themselves together. That said, I won’t believe G2 can look as good as they did in 2019 and to some degree in 2020, until I see it with my own eyes.
This is another prediction where we are not necessarily betting on a team that is stronger, but instead on a team that has been playing better LoL of late and seem a bit overpriced by the bookmakers. MAD Lions can definitely win here, and if G2 don’t improve upon their performance against Schalke, they might even go 0-3 or 1-3.
Prediction: MAD Lions to win – 3.66 Pinnacle
Prediction: MAD Lions -1.5 maps – 6.490 Pinnacle
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