Friday, May 31, 2019

Handicapping Totals - First Half 2019 (January-May)

(January through May 31st, includes Spring, MSI, etc)

By Region:

North America (NA LCS): 
17 wins - 25 losses (40.476%)
Average Wager: 2.566 units
Units Wagered: 110.35
Units Won: 93.3975
Net Units: -16.9525 units
Average Yield Per Wager: ~ -16.5%

Europe (LEC):
19 wins - 13 losses (59.375%)
Average Wager: 3.859 units
Units Wagered: 123.5
Units Won: 165.758
Net Units: +42.258 units
Average Yield Per Wager:~ +20.125%

Korea (LCK):
56 wins - 64 losses (46.66%)
Average Wager: 1.56 units
Units Wagered: 174.75
Units Won: 146.2225
Net Units: -28.5275 units
Average Yield Per Wager:~ -7.875%

China (LPL):
42 wins - 60 losses (41.176%)
Average Wager: 2.863 units
Units Wagered: 306.347
Units Won: 285.6305
Net Units: -20.7165 units
Average Yield Per Wager:-14.96%

Taiwan (LMS):
9 wins - 10 losses (47.368%)
Average Wager: 2.863 units
Units Wagered: 33.75
Units Won: 31.71
Net Units: -2.04 units
Average Yield Per Wager: +35.05%

Turkey (TCL):
2 wins - 0 losses (100%)
Average Wager:  1 units
Units Wagered: 2
Units Won: 3.7
Net Units:  +1.7 units
Average Yield Per Wager: +%85

Vietnam (VCS):
0 wins - 2 losses (0%)
Average Wager: 1.25 units
Units Wagered: 2.5
Units Won: 0
Net Units:  -2.5 units
Average Yield Per Wager: -100%

Commonwealth of Independent States (LCL):
1 wins -  0 losses (100%)
Average Wager: 2 units
Units Wagered: 2
Units Won: 5.88
Net Units:  +3.88 units
Average Yield Per Wager: +194%

Japan (LJL):
1 wins - 0 losses (100%)
Average Wager:  0.5 units
Units Wagered: 0.5
Units Won: 1.085
Net Units:  +0.585units
Average Yield Per Wager: +117%

Mid-Season Invitational 2019:
48 wins - 50 losses (48.98%)
Average Wager:  1.792 units
Units Wagered: 175.663
Units Won: 214.011
Net Units:  +38.348 units
Average Yield Per Wager: +14.56%


By Wager Type:

Props: 10 wins - 26 losses
Live Wagers (all types): 11 wins - 10 losses
Handicap/Spread: 62 wins - 65 losses
Moneyline: 58 wins - 76 losses
Over/Under (kills or game time): 49 wins - 39 losses


By Wager Weight:
(rest pending)

5+ Units: 27 wins - 24 losses
6+ Units: 13 wins - 8 losses



Units Wagered: 140.5365 units
Units Won: 240.701 units
Net Units: +100.1645 units



195 wins - 224 losses (46.539%)
Net Units (non-parlay wagers): +16.0345 units
Parlays: +100.1645 units
Total Winnings: +116.199 units
Average Yield per Wager (non-parlays): +0.3%

(updates pending)

Betting: June 1st (LPL, NA LCS)

LPL Summer 2019 Week 1 Day 1:

For those that don't know Dominus is SinoDragon from last season after a rebranding. They actually took down BiliBili in the finals of NEST, an offseason tournament in China. Most teams atart a combination of challenger league players, subs, and starters. Some teams care about it, others like most playoff teams, take the time to rest their starters. SinoDragon did look good in this tournament but I put very little stock into NEST as, historically, it has meant next to nothing because it's hard to judge what the results mean when not everyone is as invested in winning it. With that said.....

This line moved a ton. It opened at EDG -161 where I proceeded to slam it like a young Shaq over Chris Dudley for six units.

Was it aggressive? Absolutely. EDG have a new top laner in Jinoo and many teams don't immediately have chemistry especially with that player being added less than a week before tomorrow's opening day. SinoDragon looked really good in NEST and while that tournament might not mean much, you could argue the continuity factory alone is a reason to think Dominus should be favored here. Sure. All of that is great but I'm looking at this in a much simpler fashion. EDG have better players at every position and I think by a wide margain. I have EDG as the best team outside of the elite tier of IG, FPX, and RNG and I could definitely see them joining that tier if Jinoo blends in with this roster quickly. 

A theme since MSI and for most of this season has been that good players trump teamwork in the current iteration of League of Legends. It's not that we have long lane phases or split pushes every game but, simply put, you just want bonafied studs to make plays. It's why G2 won MSI. They just have straight up ballers at all five positions regardless of any of their perceived weaknesses. I know it sounds like overgeneralized commentator speech but watch some high level games from this season and tell me that it isn't the case? You can't. I'll take five better players all day long. I'm so confident in EDG that I actually think even if they choose to run Sleepy (their alternate top laner) that they'd win this series.

Another angle to this is that EDG finished last season really poorly relative to the expectations that organization has built up over the years and they'll be hell bent to remind everyone why they're good again. Yet another angle is the basic betting principle of betting week one and preseason futures are the time where you will get the best value because it's before the books/data can exercise it's edge over you. I'm often very heavy in week one in every region not just because of my confidence but because I feel it's the best time to attack lines. It's how I do it in football as well. 

I'm aggressively heavy on EDG here so I'd say tail at your own caution but I couldn't resist adding on to this selection when the line went haywire enough to make Dominus/SDG favorites. I have a lot of exposure on this game so I'd suggest setting your own limit of halving what I have here but I'm willing to take this loss on the chin if it happens and not feel bad about it.

(UPDATE: JieJie and Jinoo announced as starters with Scout, iBoy, and Meiko. JieJie starting lowers my confidence in this a bit but I still think EDG have a good chance at winning this so we're going to hold off on a hedge for now and see how the opening game goes.)

Moneyline: EDG -161 (6 units)(opening bet)

Spread: EDG -1.5 maps @ +169 (2.5 units)(opening bet)

Moneyline: EDG +103 (2 units)(add on)

Prop: Exact EDG 2-0 @ +201 (2 units)(add on)

As you all know by now I'm not buying JDG and while I was hoping the books would set this line with "hype" bettors in mind the algorithm spat out what appears to be a fair and accurate line. JDG had one of the flukey-est runs to the finals I've ever seen in any region or tournament defeating WE, RNG, and FPX before being whooped in a little over an hour by IG in three games. They caught good stylistic matchups for the one, single thing they're good at against WE and RNG and FunPlus seemingly forgot how to play League of Legends and still almost beat them.

I need to make one thing clear: JDG are not a great team. Are they a playoff team in the LPL? Probably but not definitely. FunPlus are one of the elite squads in the LPL and even if you cook a drop off into the equation are still a tier or two better than JDG if you ask me. You also know FunPlus has this day marked on their calendar since that loss and are going to be ready to go full Tom Brady FU Mode on JDG for ruining their finals bid in the fashion that they did. 

Unlike the EDG/Dom series we aren't getting a tremendous value on what should be a heavy favorite in FunPlus but I do feel strongly enough that they'll win this game that I did put a wager on the FunPlus spread on Wednesday. The line has since moved and while I'd still bet it it's getting close to out of range so fire if you like it.

Spread: FunPlus -1.5 maps @ +145 (2 units)


NA LCS Summer 2019 Week 1 Day 1:

Week one in best of one regions always make my mouth water for upsets. I also salivate at the possibility of mispricing based on playoffs or last seasons results. Best of ones are really high variance and it's honestly tricky to even draw generic conclusions about teams from 18 games  but one I was almost as sure about as the sun rising in the morning was that 100 Thieves were going to bounce back. I have a self imposed limit of three units on best of one games because of the volatility but I'm going to fire aggressively on a few of these because again, Week 1 is often the best value we're going to get on some of these teams so you need to plant your flag early unless you want to be more conservative and wait. That's not me.

I'm betting against Cloud 9 both today and tomorrow not because I don't think they'll win but because I think FlyQuest and Clutch are decent teams, this is best of one, and Cloud 9 tend to experiment with their roster, drafts, and strategies a lot before figuring things out toward the end of the season. They're also traditionally slow starters. The main reason is that I don't think Cloud 9 is -333 better than FlyQuest.

Moneyline: FlyQuest +237 (0.5 units)

I think there is a chance we see a very short hangover from Team Liquid but I also think this team isn't the type of team to do that and that they could likely beat TSM even if that were the case. I think this line is probably accurate when you take into consideration those factors and TSM being a good team as well but I like Liquid here for a few units. I think with their new found confidence they'll be in full smash mode and particularly against TSM who almost stole finals from them they're going to want to put TSM in their place. The counterargument is "MSI hangover" and the TSM was good against TL last season. I'm planting my flag on the Liquid side.

Moneyline: Team Liquid -132 (3 units)

As I mentioned earlier I'm super high on 100 Thieves coming off a tremendously disappointing Spring where just about everything went wrong for them. They're up against a lethargic CLG team that made a very small upgrade from Darshan to Ruin but ultimately didn't really change the fortunes of their team unless I'm dead wrong here. I think CLG are going to be one of the bottom two teams in NA this split and I think this price is based heavily on the results of last season for both squads. I'm just high on 100T to finish more where we expected them to last season but CLG I think ends up much the same. I'm so confident in fac that I'm making an exception to my three unit best of one limit and goin super heavy on 100T on both Saturday and Sunday.

Moneyline: 100 Thieves -127 (7 units, Pick of the Week!)

I love the Clutch rosters upside and the bounceback potential from a rough season last split. I don't think they're that much different a team than OpTic but I did place them half a tier apart and we are getting a ton of value with Clutch here. I'm expecting the Huni/Lira combination can't possibly be as bad as they were last season and will get back to their carrying ways here. A bit narrative driven but hey, just being honest. This is mostly a value selection as I have Clutch rated slightly higher than OpTic.

Moneyline: Clutch Gaming +127 (3 units)

I think Echo Fox end up as one of the bottom two teams in the league and I think Golden Guardians are a playoff team. I'm not ruling out an upset though and if Echo Fox are going to end up better than that bottom two rating I gave them then this is a good spot to prove me wrong. I think unfortunately for Fenix, Froggen was an absolute monster just like his old self last season and will be a handful for Echo Fox's best player to deal with.

Moneyline: Golden Guardians -164 (1 unit)



Parlay (2): 100T -114 vs CLG + 100T -125 vs OpTic @ +238 (0.5 units)

Parlay (2): EDG +103 + FPX -182 @ +215 (1 unit)

Parlay (3): TL -132 vs TSM + EDG 2:0 @ +201 + FPX -169 @ +724 (0.5 units) 

Parlay (3): CG +127 vs OPT + GG -164 vs EF + TL -132 vs TSM @ +543 (0.5 units)

Parlay (5): CG +127 vs OPT + GG -164 vs EF + TL -132 vs TSM + EDG 2:0 @ +201 + FPX -169 @ +2978 (0.5 units)

Parlay (5): FPX -169 + EDG -109 + GG -164 + CG +127 TL -132 @ +1864 (0.5 units)

"Saturday Exacta" Parlay (7): C9 -270 + TL -132 + 100T -127 + GG -164 + CG +127 + EDG 2:0 @ +201 + FPX -169 @ +7449 (0.25 units)

"Saturday Exacta 2" Parlay (7): C9 -270 + TL -132 + 100T -127 + GG -164 + CG +127 + EDG -109 + FPX -169 @ +4715 (0.25 units)

"Saturday + Sunday Exacta" Parlay (7): C9 -270 + TL -132 + 100T -127 + GG -164 + CG +127 + EDG 2:0 @ +201 + FPX -169 + 100T -114 + RNG -1.5 @ +107 @ +29279 (0.05 units)

NA LCS Summer 2019 Pre-Season Tier List

NA LCS Summer 2019 Pre-Season Tier List

After a finals appearance at MSI there is suddenly a lot of hope for NA internationally but should there be? I take a deep dive into my tiers for the NA LCS heading into summer. 

As always, these are my tiers only and are meant to give a relative comparison of strength. It's not necessarily the order I believe the teams will finish but more as a set of approximately how strong I believe they end up by seasons end. Matchups, stylistic tendencies, and patches must be taken into consideration when looking at two teams heads up. Actual prediction of final rankings order at the end of the post.


D Tier

Counter Logic Gaming

Projected Starters: Ruin, Wiggily, PowerOfEvil, Stixxay, Biofrost
Subs: Allorim (top), FallenBandit (top), Moon (jungle), Auto (ADC)

A lot of the bottom tier NA teams suffer from the lack of ceiling problem except for OpTic. I think Ruin is a slight upgrade or maybe just a side grade from Darshan but this team didn't change it's identity and didn't make enough moves to really strike any kind of chord with me. CLG are going to do the same thing they've been doing and as of late that hasn't exactly been working. We'd have to see performances that exceed expectations from three or more players on this team for them to have a shot at playoffs.

Echo Fox

Projected Starters: Solo, Rush, Fenix, Apollo, Hakuho
Subs: Panda (jungle), Yusui (mid), Lost (ADC)

I think Echo Fox have a bit more upside than CLG but utlimately suffer from inconsistency and a tumultuous offseason that saw some ownership ousted. There is a chance this team rallies against all the offseason negativity that came about but outside of Fenix and Rush I think this team falls flat. Solo performed so well last year and has been a liability this season. Apollo and Hakuho are servicable at this point in their careers. If Solo can recapture some of last Spring's game I think this team could surprise us but I'm not going to bet on that happening, in fact I'll be going the opposite direction. Echo Fox's problem is that their best players are at positions where NA is rich with good players and Solo doesn't quite measure up to the regional competition like he did last year. We'll see but I think Echo Fox more than likely finish in the bottom three.

OpTic Gaming

Projected Starters: Dhokla, Dardoch, Crown, Arrow, Big
Subs: Allorim (top), Meteos (jungle), Asta (ADC), Gate (support/mid)

OpTic is intriguing because they have some stellar players in Dardoch, Crown, and, if he has anything left in the tank, Arrow. Big is also a solid player and their bench is, relative to most LCS teams, pretty deep. Dhokla has shown flashes as well. I should make it clear that I expect this to be a really fluid roster that swaps people in and out over the course of the season quite a bit as they figure things out. The real issue I have with OpTic is that they don't translate to game speed as well as they appear on paper for some reason and rely a lot on exceptional performances from Crown to carry them. Last season they won most of the games that Crown got ahead and into a side lane but that's a really predictable style which is a problem. OpTic have the highest upside of the bottom three teams but they're just too linear. Individual player quality matters a lot in the current state of the game and OpTic certainly have that so it wouldn't surpise me to see them finish in the playoffs but, once again, I'm not going to bet on that happening.


C Tier

Clutch Gaming

Projected Starters: Huni, Lira, Damonte, CodySun, Vulcan
Subs: Piglet (mid/ADC)

We did a bit of a deep dive on the podcast about Clutch Gaming and how we think this roster will be run and it just makes sense to run Damonte and or a platoon of Damonte and Piglet and leave the rest as it. Vulcan was impressive last split and looks like he could potentially be a rock solid starter for an LCS team and as we all know, finding domestic talent is such a huge deal. Huni simply can't be as bad as he was last split. He took the whole int'ing Huni meme to a new level because he wasn't "feeding to carry" as we typically saw from him he was simply dying. I like to think that a former World Class talent like Huni can recapture some of that and I'm stubbornly denying that he'll be as bad as he was last split again. Lira, similarly, also played the worst split of his career last split and even then this Clutch team was hanging around, taking games and staying competitive against better teams and mostly taking care of business against the other bad teams. I think Clutch are a tier better than the bottom three to me. Maybe it's delusional to think Huni and Lira can recapture some of their former glory but I'll settle for 80% of their former selves because if that's the case this roster should be definitively better than the true bottom tier in NA. I'm an optimist on Clutch.


B Tier


Projected Starters: V1per, Santorin, Pobelter, WildTurtle, JayJ
Subs: Maxi (jungle), Wadid (support)

The B Tier is a total wash to me. I have no idea where any of these teams finish but they all feel about the same level. Of the four teams here I think FlyQuest are the most steady. They don't exactly have a high ceiling but they're just solid. Maybe V1per and JayJ progress a bit more and this team breaks through it's ceiling but I don't think that's likely. FlyQuest are similar to Origen or Splyce in Europe to me. Their upside is a bit capped but they're well coached and good enough to be a consistent playoff team until the bottom teams step up.

Golden Guardians

Projected Starters: Hauntzer, Contractz, Froggen, Deftly, Olleh

Golden Guardians and FlyQuest are more or less even to me but I think FlyQuest are a tad more steady and Golden Guardians have a tad more upside AND downside cooked into their position in this tier. Ultimately the difference is barely distinguishable and I think they're both playoff teams that are clearly better than the bottom tier.

100 Thieves

Projected Starters: Ssumday, Amazing, Soligo, Bang, Aphromoo

This is perhaps my "hottest" take although if you ask my TGC Podcast comrades they'd agree that 100 Thieves are ripe for a resurgence. I was wrong about this team last year and admitted defeat and respected them with my preseason position in the Spring but this team just collapsed after a couple bad losses and never recovered. With so many veterans I was honestly surprised they weren't able to turn it around. I'm not making excuses but the truth is these kinds of weird seasons can happen in a best of one format and it's one of the reasons I can't stand it. I look at this lineup and see a bottom lane that has the ability to compete with Doublelift and CoreJJ, a former World Class superstar in Ssumday that has been really solid until last split in his time in NA, a great and stable veteran jungler in Amazing and Soligo who got some stage time and has nothing but room to grow. I also think 100 Thieves can't possibly be as bad as they were last season and that the break will act much like the pressing of a "reset" button for this team. They needed this. I have really high hopes for 100 Thieves to turn it around. I even said at the end of last season that it wouldn't surprise me at all to see 100 Thieves back in Summer smashing most of the teams in the league and I still think that. I'm really REALLY bullish on 100 Thieves.

Team Solo Mid

Projected Starters: BrokenBlade, Grig, Bjergsen, Zven, Smoothie
Subs: Akaadian (jungle)

It might seem obvious to start Akaadian after their finals performance but between Grig having a really long contract that goes into 2021 and the loyalty they showed to him during the split, I can't help but think he's been the more impressive player in scrims where they have a much larger sample size. However, whether or not this is Grig or Akaadian doesn't particularly matter to me. Bjergsen is still a monster, Zven/Smoothie are both just excellent players that had a bit of an offseason learning each other, and BrokenBlade has a high ceiling and a floor that was more or less last season. I'll take this roster any day to make playoffs. My beef with TSM is that I don't think they really have a great chance at taking out Liquid and honestly I think Cloud 9 are a full tier better than them. With a lot of these B Tier teams being solid I couldn't reasonably favor TSM heavily against any of them but I did like Cloud 9 quite a bit which is why I'm putting them a full tier lower.


A Tier

Cloud 9

Projected Starters: Licorice, Svenskeren, Nisqy, Sneaky, Zeyzal
Subs: Kumo (top), Blaber (jungle), Goldenglue (mid), Keith (ADC), Diamond (support)

Cloud 9 lost a stunner to TSM where Reapered went a little bit too wild in the draft and the players weren't executing anyway. It was mostly an off day if you ask me. I know that might sound weird after watching TSM Then go on to compete admirably against Team Liquid but TSM remind me a lot of JDG in the LPL last split. Maybe not quite as flukey as that outcome but pretty close. They got hot at the right time and beat a C9 team that was better than they were. I don't let playoffs alone shade my considerations. Cloud 9 are an incredible organization and they have depth out the wazoo. This depth breeds competition and Reapered is, for the most part, an excellent coach. Great players, great organization, and great coaching to go along with depth make Cloud 9 the best NA team not named Liquid. I also think this roster has a lot of room to grow still and they could end up in A+ or S tier with Liquid by season's end.


S Tier

Team Liquid

Projected Starters: Impact, Xmithie, Jensen, Doublelift, CoreJJ
Subs: TF Blade (top)

Don't overthink it. Team Liquid are the best team in NA and one of their big weaknesses was confidence which their finals appearance at MSI is going to give them truckloads of. I actually expect Team Liquid to have a near perfect season here. They're not a team that rests on their laurels and with confidence no longer an issue I can totally see Liquid tryharding their way through NA Summer as preparation for Worlds. 


NA Rankings Final Prediction

D tier
10) Counter Logic Gaming
9) Echo Fox
8) OpTic Gaming
C Tier
7) Clutch Gaming
B Tier
6) FlyQuest
5) Golden Guardians
4) 100 Thieves
3) Team Solo Mid
A Tier
2) Cloud 9
S Tier
1) Team Liquid

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

LCK Summer 2019 Pre-Season Tier List

LCK Summer 2019 Pre-Season Tier List

A few big moves, a few sudden ones, a few young teams, and a few older ones. Korea is looking to be really interesting this summer! Keep in mind these are only tiers and this isn't the exact order that I'd power rank these teams. I think it's more important to distinguish relative strength when comparing one another. There is also a lot of stylistic considerations when matching these teams up against one another. 

Actual ordered power rankings at the end.


C Tier

Jin Air Green Wings

Projected Starters: Lindarang, Seize, Grace, Route, Nova
Subs: TaNa (top), Malrang (Jungle), CheonGo (mid), Stitch (ADC), Kellin (support)

They should have never let Teddy go. This team has just about no redeeming characteristics to me other than a roster of 10+ players all fighting for a job for next season. To me this is one of those blow it all up and rebuild situations. I have absolutely no faith in the Jin Air coaching staff. They're a lot like Gen.G who are playing League of Legends in an outdated and vastly inferior way and they refuse to adapt but unlike Gen.G who have good enough players that specialize in that exact style to play themselves out of bad scenarios Jin Air does not. I want to see wholesale change here but I doubt we'll get it. It'd be pretty hard for Jin Air to be as bad as they were last split so I expect a little improvement but I also expect the rest of the league to improve leaving Jin Air with a ceiling of maybe 3-5 match wins. It's going to be a long summer for the boys in green.

Hanwha Life eSports

Projected Starters: SoHwan, bonO, Tempt, Sangyoon, Key
Subs: Thal (top), Moojin (jungle), Lava (mid)

Hanwha Life had a really bizarre split in the Spring. They had a shot at a playoff spot and seemingly gave up prematurely and went into a sort of "rebuild" mode where they started experimenting with different lineups. I don't know if this was actually that they didn't have any faith in their ability, them being real with themselves, or trying to do both at the same time because it felt like they were trying to do both. This team has a lot of holes and were reluctent to play who I consider to be their best player in Lava but they're the ones who see him in practice not us so maybe he's not what he was in 2018. Hanwha leave a lot of questions to be answered but I think ultimately this isn't going to be a strong team even if they perform at their ceiling. If that ends up being the case you're looking at a small chance of a 5-7th finish at best. They simply don't have the pound for pound talent the other teams in the LCK ahead of them do and I think that matters a lot in the current iteration of the game. In 2018 Hanwha's coaching staff worked wonders and were able to keep this team prepared and motivated against superior competition and we didn't see any of that in Spring 2019. I'm skeptical.


A Tier

Sandbox Gaming

Projected Starters: Summit, OnFleek, Dove, Ghost, Joker
Subs:  Crush (jungler), Hollow (ADC), Justice (mid), Wizer (top, on loan to Kabum!)

Sandbox really surprised me. I'll eat my hat on this one because I had them finishing dead last and they ended up making playoffs and starting the season off extremely strong. Sandbox are a coaching and teamwork team that have some particularly strong individual players in OnFleek and Summit to give them a bit more punch than a traditional "greater than the sum of their parts" type lineup. They are extremely well coached, possess a willingness and ability to utilize unique picks, and play a very old school Chinese style of aggressive, never say never team fighting League of Legends that's refreshing and fun to watch. It's also very good for the LCK to have this type of team challenging them. They've clearly learned a lot from how Griffin plays but lack some of the tact and nuance that Griffin do. With all those good things said I'm expecting a bit of a regression from Sandbox in the summer. By seasons end they felt a little "figured out" which sounds weird with all the strange picks they showed but, at the end of the day, Sandbox are a really linear team and that gets punished as a season goes on. I wanted to put Sandbox in their own tier above the bottom teams but slightly below the mid tier teams but I'm going to remain optimistic about this coaching staff and their star players and say Sandbox will remain in the hunt for a playoff spot. Sandbox will still be good but I'm expecting them to fall a bit this summer.


Projected Starters: Nuguri, Canyon, ShowMaker, Nuclear, Hoit
Subs: Flame (top), Punch (jungle), Aries (ADC), BeryL (support)

DAMWON appeared to have figured out a way to successfully swap between two lineups but it, along with a few other issues caught up with them in playoffs. DAMWON are a lot like Sandbox to me but they trade aggression for a bit more tact and have better players overall which makes their ceiling a lot higher. DAMWON playing at their peak are as good as any team in the LCK but we only saw that team a few times. This isn't to say they are inconsistent or anything, they're a really solid team but unless they can have those ceiling performances more often, the fact that some of the bottom teams like Afreeca, Gen.G, and KT should be better this split make it hard to me to put DAMWON as high as they were last season. They can hang with anyone on the right day it's just a matter of how many of those we get. Ultimately I think DAMWON will be a playoff team with tremendous upside and perhaps they can pull off something like we saw Kingzone do in the Spring split but I think with the rest of the table also improving for the most part they'll have a much harder time and aren't a total lock for playoffs like they appeared to be (and were) by seasons end in Spring.

Gen.G eSports
Projected Starters: CuVee, Peanut, Kuzan, Ruler, Life
Subs: Roach (top), SeongHwan (jungle), Fly (mid)
Coaches: Lee Ji-hoon, Edgar, oDin, TrAce

I'm not entirely sure whether or not Fly or Kuzan will be the starting mid laner but I have a lot of respect for Kuzan and Fly both. Gen.G played the way they play last year. At times they looked good and showed a willingness to scrap with people but for the most part they were exactly the same. Gen.G is the team I'm most likely to be wrong about I think. This team has the players to compete with the rest of this tier but I also feel that they're pretty clearly the worst of the group unless they're playing at their ceiling the whole split. It's just hard to tell what you're going to get from them on a week to week basis. Gen.G will be firmly better than the worst teams but likely lose to them sometimes while also having the occasional spike performance against one of the mid or top level teams. I'd call this team two-faced. Gen.G are, however, full of a great players and Ruler is one of the best to play the position over the past couple years. You could argue he's the best ADC in any region right now. That's not to be forgotten about but Gen.G will need more than just heroics from Ruler to consistently win in the LCK.

KT Rolster
Projected Starters: Smeb, Score, BDD, Pray, SnowFlower
Subs: Kingen (top), UmTi (jungle), Zenit (ADC), Gango (ADC)

KT Rolster have maybe the highest ceiling besides SK Telecom in the LCK with the off season acquisition of Hall of Fame ADC Pray. It's really easy to get overhyped on a team adding a free agent of his caliber at a position of need. After all, we see it all the time in traditional sports. This is a case where I feel the hype is warranted. Pray is, for my money, one of the four best to ever play the position along with Deft, Uzi, and Bang. Not only that but he is filling a position that was one of the worst in any major region. The collective KT Rolster bottom lane of Gango and Zenit was absolutely dreadful last season. Poor lane phases, limited pools, lots of deaths both in and out of lane, and perhaps most importantly a lot of untimely deaths that ended up losing them games on the spot. They took a position that was maybe a 1 or 2 out of 10 and made it into a 9+ out of 10. I don't think rust will be an issue. Pray has been absolutely demolishing solo queue and perhaps the time off and needed for the old veteran to refresh his mind and body. While I think Kingen outperformed Smeb I can't help but think that every single time we've thought Smeb was bad in his career, and he was quite literally awful when he first started, he's found a way to prove everyone wrong. If that's not the case, Kingen did look quite good at times during the season. It wouldn't surprise me to see either start or a commitee approach. With the bottom lane sured up, the "sky is the limit" potential of BDD, and a top half in Smeb/Kingen and Score that simply can't be as bad as they were during Spring I have very high hopes for KT Rolster and think they'll be competing for the Worlds #3 spot by seasons end and perhaps right away.

Afreeca Freecs
Projected Starters: Kiin, Dread, UCal, Aiming, Jelly
Subs: Summit (top), Spirit (jungle), SSUN (mid/inactive), SSol (ADC/inactive), Proud (support)

There is absolutely no way this team stays as poor as they were in Spring. We saw glimpses of what this squad could be at times but they just never found the consistency. I don't know if it was just the constant roster shuffle, the coaching staff, or just the chemistry amongst the players but something didn't feel right. I can't help but think this team gets it together. In a solo lane centric game like League of Legends has been I just can't see a team with Kiin and UCal ever being as poor as Afreeca was in the Spring. Now hte real question is what the rest of the roster will look like. Personally I thought Dread outperformed Spirit which pains me to say and that all of the bot lane iterations were inconsistent. I'm going to say the same starting five that I did in Spring and have Afreeca improving significantly this split. Sometimes when you see a potentially great team struggle early it all gets derailed. Think of Suning in the LPL last split. Sometimes it's frustration, sometimes it's a weak player that you don't want to give your all for, etc. Whatever the cause I have faith that Afreeca can shake it off and I expect them to be competeing at a much higher level this split.

Kingzone DragonX

Projected Starters: Rascal, Cuzz, Naehyun, Deft, Tusin
Subs: PawN (mid, rest for injury)

Originally I had Kingzone in a half tier between S and A at A+ but with the news of Pawn resting for injury reasons I'm now slightly skeptical because he played such a huge roll in Kingzone's Spring success. I still think this team should be good and Naehyun has seen some playing time and will not be a stranger to the stage with time to develop but I expect they'll be a slower start than I originally though.

I was higher on Kingzone than some people last season putting them at 5th in my pre-season power rankings but Kingzone blew those expectations out of the water. This team was RED HOT almost the entire season and if it weren't for the fact that Griffin and SK Telecom are just unbelievably good then this would have been a respectable representative at MSI. Perhaps my only concern with Kingzone is whether or not the level they played at last season is their ceiling or just their normal level. If we saw their ceiling last season I'd actually expect the level of competition between them and the other mid tier teams to be rather close but if they have room to grow or just remain as steady as they were they deserve to be in a tier all their own above the rest of that pack but just behind SKT and Griffin. I think what we saw is closer to what we can expect from this team rather than them overachieving. Are they going to win a bunch of matches in a row like they did this Spring? Not necessarily. Their record might not look as good but they deserve their own spot if they can return to even 90% of their level last season. I'll add that it's a real joy to see the blend of veterans like Pawn, Deft, and Tusin and the younger, but not green, talents of Rascal and Cuzz. It's a great combination and I have high hopes for this team once more.


S Tier

SK Telecom T1

Projected Starters: Khan, Clid, Faker, Teddy, Mata
Subs: Crazy (top), Haru (jungle), Gori (mid), Leo (ADC), Effort (support)

SK Telecom might have disappointed some people at MSI with their loss to G2 but I think it'd be unfair to G2 if we didn't point out just how good a team they are. It's not like SKT lost to a bad team. G2 looked like the best team in the world at that tournament. Anyway SKT will be back at it again in Summer and I expect them to finish in the top two along with Griffin in a tier above the rest. I wouldn't be surprised to see this team taking a game off or starting subs here or there just to rest the starters but I expect them to come out of the gates firing to build a comfortable lead in the standings for themselves.


Projected Starters: Sword, Tarzan, Chovy, Viper, Lehends
Subs: Kabbie (support)

There is a non-zero chance that Griffin are becoming tired of always being the bridesmade and never the bride but I tend to think, much like KT Rolster teams of yore, that it will just provide motivation to a team that doesn't even need it. Griffin looked incredible for most of the season and unfortunately ran into an absolute buzzsaw in SK Telecom come time for finals. Could we have seen this coming from Griffin's "struggles" during the regular season or was it just taking games off to rest and prevent burnout. Hard to tell which but I think Griffin have the coaching, individual talent, and teamwork to finish atop the LCK once more. Sometimes Hall of Famer's just play on an otherworldly level and there's nothing anybody can do about it on that day. I tend to think that's what happened with Griffin in the final against SKT. I didn't particularly like their gameplan but on that day I'm not sure anybody was going to beat SKT. I won't hold that against Griffin. This team has continuity, hunger, and the talent to win the Summer split and I fully expect this team to represent Korea at Worlds this year.


As I mentioned earlier the order of these teams isn't necessarily where I believe they'll finish. The tiers are what is important but if I had to actually guess finishing power rankings it'd be as follows:

10) Jin Air
9) Hanwha Life
8) Sandbox
7) Gen.G
6) Afreeca
5) Kingzone
4) KT Rolster
2) Griffin
1) SKT

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Betting: May 17th and 18th (MSI Main Event Knockout Stage)

Before I dive into the selection I'm going to give the same warning I did for playoffs in most regions. I'm more or less doubling my exposure in these games partially because I feel strongly about them and partially because I like to put a little more on the line for my own entertainment! I'd suggest cutting these wagers in half to get a sense of how confident I am relatively speaking. Mixed light and moderate wagers with some heavy handed parlays here. If you're tailing I'd suggest cutting back but as always I offer full transparency with what I'm doing.

During the summer I'll likely increase my unit size 25-50% but for now the numbers will look a little goofy and heavy handed. Unlike last year I'm not running by a percentage of roll per wager and just opted for a flat unit size to simplify things and keep it easier from a bookkeeping standpoint on my end.  Just bear with me as we'll be upping and it will look much simpler/less heavy handed again once I reset for summer!


MSI Main Event - Knockout Stage

So I'm going to sound a little crazy to a lot of people here when I say I'm fairly confident that Liquid are going to take a game in this series. They got utterly smashed in lanes and had a disastrous lack of priority in the first group stage game against IG and still managed to bring it back on them even with a huge deficit. Not that one game means a lot or anything but I think it shows a few things. First, that Team Liquid made a few easily correctable mistakes that they should be able to game plan for now with a few games against IG. Second, that Invictus tend to either screw around or have massive lapses in judgement during games and can throw a game, particularly in the early and mid game. Team Liquid have also shown a willingness to adapt and try new things but have also shown the ability to play "their style" on this level with success.

From a betting perspective there is only really a few ways to play this series. If you're absolutely confident that IG will sweep this series the best odds that I found are -204 on BetOnline for the exact 3-0. That's a bettable number but going that heavy on an exact 3-0 is a big risk as it is and even more so against a team that I'd say is a legit international contender in Team Liquid. Are TL going to win Worlds? Probably not but +179 for the over 3.5 maps (or similarly the +2.5 maps at +175) implies just short of a 36% chance of that happening. I think Team Liquid have a greater than 50% chance even if you're skeptical of them or think they're severely outclassed. I for one think this is actually closer to 80%. I think Team Liquid will either surprise IG with something in game one or that IG will stomp the first game or two and then Team Liquid will find a victory in the disrespect/"styling on you" game from Invictus. I even think Liquid have a better chance at winning this outright than the odds give so we'll put a fun quarter unit on that wager as well if for nothing else than to say "told ya so!" I think this will be a suprisingly competitive series. Team Liquid are better than people are giving them credit for and while Invictus look like a total menace they are certainly not immortal.

Note: I'm taking the map bets because it's a net profit if TL take just one. Think of it like a split up +1373 and if it ends up being more than that we're up big and as I've stated I'm confident they'll win one of these.

Prop: OVER 3.5 maps played @ +179 (5 units)

Prop: Exact Invictus 3-1 @ +326 (1 unit)

Prop: Map 1 Team Liquid ML @ +419 (0.5 units)

Prop: Map 2 Team Liquid ML @ +474 (0.5 units)

Prop: Map 3 Team Liquid ML @ +480 (0.5 units)

Moneyline: Team Liquid +978 (0.25 units) :-)


Another series and another juxtaposition of fire and ice. Calculation and discipline vs creativity and wildness. I think this is going to be a five game series and you could make arguments either way. G2 are exactly the kind of team SK Telecom struggles with but SK Telecom are also so good historically in best of fives. They seemingly ALWAYS figure you out! I think the catch here is that unlike a lot of teams that are similar to G2's bizarre and diverse drafts and creative in game decisions and playmaking, G2 can actually play you straight up as well. If we were to theoretically get these teams into a more controlled, SKT-style for lack of better words, game then I think G2 can actually win there too. In that scenario I'd have SKT as the favorites but G2 can hang unlike a lot of "cheese" teams. G2 aren't a cheese team, they're just really damn good.

I think the combination SKT's ability to adjust in best of five play and the overall quality of players, particularly Clid who is playing out of his mind right now, give SKT the edge but not by much and certianly not by -303 odds (implied: 75%+). This series is closer to 50/50 for me. I think SKT should be 55-45 AT MOST in this series and if I had to just pick the straight up winner here I'd say it's SKT but the odds we're getting with G2 are outstanding and unlike a lot of teams in the position they are on the betting board they actually have a really good chance to win not just some games but the series outright. I absolutely love betting G2 here and we're getting plus odds on the +1.5 maps as well in what I assume will be an excellent and competitive series between to very different but similarly skilled teams.

I don't want to spend too much time on it but a lot of you know that I tend to follow my "gut" more than a lot of cappers. I think there is at least a small element of art to this and for better or worse I tend to follow that. The point I'm getting to is doesn't this just feel like the right spot for G2? Because I certainly do and when these odds popped up I felt they were pretty severely disrespected. 

Moneyline: G2 eSports +217 (3 units)

Handicapped: G2 eSports +1.5 maps @ +108 (5 units) 

Prop: Map 1 First Blood G2 @ +108 (1 unit)


Prop: Map 1 G2 +140 (1 unit)

Prop: Maps 1, 2, 3 each OVER 25.5 kills @ -122 (1.5 units each)

Prop: Maps 1, 2, 3 each OVER 32:00 @ -114 (1.5 units each)



Parlay (2): G2 +217 + TL +978 @ total +3317 (0.5 units)

Parlay (2): G2 +217 + IG/TL OVER 3.5 maps @ total +784 (2.5 units)

Parlay (2): G2 +1.5 maps + IG/TL OVER 3.5 maps @ total +480 (5 units)

Parlay (2): G2 +1.5 maps + Exact IG 3-1 @ total +785 (1 unit)

Parlay (2): G2 + 217 + Exact IG 3-1 @ total +1250 (1 unit)

Parlay (2): G2 +217 + Exact IG 3-0 @ total +372 (1 unit) (put in earlier in week before I thought about TL taking a game)

Monday, May 13, 2019

Betting: May 14th (MSI Main Event Day 5)

MSI Main Event - Day 5

(from Leaguepedia)

As we head into the final day of the main event group stage we're left with the above standings and really only a couple matches that matter. I haven't been able to definitively find the tiebreaker rules but assuming it goes next to head to head record and if that is tied there is a tiebreaker game we're left with the following:

  • Flash Wolves must win AT LEAST one game to force a tiebreaker with Team Liquid and that's only if TL lose both games. 
  • Team Liquid can clinch a knockout stage berth with a single win against either SKT or G2. 
  • Phong Vu would need to win both games AND have Team Liquid lose both of their matches.
Invictus have already secured the #1 seed meaning they get to choose the #3 or #4 as their opponent in knockouts which means that G2 and SKT are effectively fighting to avoid Invictus. Because of the unpredictability of best of ones where there is limited impact on the standings or playoff seeding it's really quite difficult to determine who will be motivated to continue playing or to conceal information so we won't be playing a lot on this slate.


SK Telecom vs Team Liquid

I'd expect SKT to win this match but you could make the argument for betting Team Liquid in this spot. They're in "must win" mode while SKT don't necessarily have to if you assume Invictus would choose Liquid over SKT (like I do). That said, I don't think SKT will want to tempt fate, as especially against a team with Invictus' bravado. It actually wouldn't surprise me at all to see IG choose SKT for the challenge that's how ballsy they are. It's really tough to get a read on this match. I'd expect a slower paced, disciplined, low-kill endeavor between these two stylistically similar teams but I also think SKT are a better enough team that it wouldn't surprise me to see them roll here. I'm abstaining from this game but have strong leans on both the UNDER 32:00 and UNDER 25.5 kills.

No wager


G2 eSports vs Phong Vu Buffalo

A team with nothing to lose (Phong Vu) can be a dangerous thing but I think in "must win to avoid IG" mode, G2 will take care of business and avenge their first loss here. We once again get an absurdly high total that eclipses all the other numbers we've seen. 33.5 is a ridiculous number and while I've been burned all tournament assuming that number is too high I expect a much more controlled game by G2 with a lot on the line in their first game of the day tomorrow. PVB will do their thing but I expect G2 not to tempt fate this time around and just play a clean 1-3-1 here. PVB have shown no ability to deal with that strategy whatsoever and G2 excel at it.

Over/Under: UNDER 33.5 kills @ -105 (2 units)


Invictus Gaming vs Flash Wolves

Flash Wolves must win this and IG have shown a willingness to more or less clown around and have fun. With nothing on the line for them other than information I'd expect IG to try to show us some weird picks to maybe bait bans in the knockout stage from other teams OR to just relax and have fun. Even with these factors taken into consideration I do think it's still very likely that IG win even if they're goofing around but not enough so to not take a flier on the Flash Wolves at this number. I've been wrong all tournament about almost every bet on IG but in this game I'll take the over 33.5 kills.... yea I know I'm nuts but this team just breaks all logic and reason. Half a unit there in what I'm assuming will be an absolute clown fiesta that MAYBE Flash Wolves miraculously pull off.

Moneyline: Flash Wolves +596 (1 unit)

Over/Under: OVER 33.5 kills (0.5 units)


Team Liquid vs G2 eSports

G2 will need to still play this game ESPECIALLY if SK Telecom defeat Team Liquid in game two of the day if they want to truly avoid IG until finals but this should be a slugfest of a game. Team Liquid have really impressed me and I was higher on them than most people going into this tournament. Even if TL beat SKT and G2 wins their first match this could ice #2 for them so I expect this match to be full effort by both sides.

No wager


Flash Wolves vs Phong Vu Buffalo

Not really sure how this ends up. My gut says exactly like the last one since PVB have appeared to struggle with teams that play like the Flash Wolves want to. The key word, however, is WANT to. Flash Wolves have had a lot of problems with execution and while they've had some nice ceiling performances in this tournament I'm not sure what we can expect from a game to game perspective especially when both of these teams are potentially done for the tournament by the time this match rolls around. I'm just avoiding this one.

No wager


SK Telecom vs Invictus Gaming

Part of me thinks Invictus absolutely stomp this just as a statement even with nothing on the line, the other part thinks SKT get their revenge. I'll say this. Even with the 16 minute route of SKT the first time around I don't think we should just assume IG are unbeatable and that SKT are bad. I actually love SKT in this spot. I also love fading victories like that no matter how impressive IG have looked this tournament. How often are we ever going to get SKT +197 against anybody?

Moneyline: SK Telecom +197 (2 units)

Sunday, May 12, 2019

Betting: May 13th (MSI Main Event Day 4)


MSI Main Event - Day 4

G2 eSports vs Flash Wolves

In the first match where these two met it was a very slow paced game with only five kills by the mid game and G2 enacting their 1-3-1 with Caps and Wunder. I don't think itll be quite that quite this time around because I don't think Flash Wolves are going to give up the Sylas or the Ezreal but G2 will also have first pick and the option to take Ryze. It's pretty hard to take G2 off their game plan and who knows when they'll break out something like a funnel. I expect G2 to take this one down in a lower kill game. 

Over/Under: UNDER 27.5 kills @ -114 (1.5 units)


Phong Vu vs Team Liquid

Team Liquid and SKT with their slower, more deliberate style have been the only two teams to be able to bore Phong Vu to death in this tournament. They were the only games that satisfied the under besides this mornings Invictus matchup which was barely under an obscenely high 31.5. Something about that style of play and TL and SKT not playing Phong Vu's game just stops this team in their tracks. It turns out when you don't stoop to Phong Vu's style they look bad... who know? I love the under here but because it's only at 25.5 I'm going to keep this to a one unit wager. I was hoping we'd get 27 or 28. 

Over/Under: UNDER 25.5 kills @ -114 (1 unit)


G2 eSports vs Invictus Gaming

Just when you thought you couldn't get higher kill totals we see 32.5 in this matchup. Don't get me wrong, I get it, there were 44 kills in their first meeting but I think both of these squads were feeling each other out and think this match will likely be a lot more tame. 32.5 is a ridiculously high number and I'm going to be hard pressed not to bet this.  I think with two teams that potentially want to split and G2 preferring that style I'd expect a lower kill game than the fiesta we got in game one between these two. 

Over/Under: UNDER 32.5 kills @ -114 (1.5 units)


Flash Wolves vs SK Telecom

I was hoping we'd get some overreaction to Flash Wolves win but I think this line is about where it should be. Game time of 29 and kill total of 23.5 I kinda like the over on both but it honestly wouldn't surprise me to see SKT stomp this one and show a willingness to play more aggressive and uptempo.

No wager


Invictus Gaming vs Team Liquid

Liquid put up a surprisingly good fight against Invictus on Day 2. I was honestly impressed but again I think these top four teams are all excellent so maybe I shouldn't be. Invictus stomped SKT and while I don't want to overreact to that single game I just want to point out that Liquid and SKT are the two most stylistically similar teams in this tournament. Invictus prey on teams like this which is another reason I was so surprised by the great performance on Day 2. I don't know if Liquid put up another one like that and I'm going to take the double under here in what I'm predicting will be and Invictus stomp.

Over/Under: UNDER 29.5 kills @ -114 (1 unit)

Over/Under: UNDER 30:00 @ -114 (1 unit)


Phong Vu Buffalo vs SK Telecom

I discussed it with Liquid vs Phong Vu but the Buffalo really seem to struggle with the more conservative teams that don't play into their style and I like the under in situations like this. There were 19 kills in 28:12 in the first meeting between these two and I'd expect something similar but I'm a bit more skeptical this time around because SKT might take this opportunity to exercise their early game muscles in preparation for teams like IG and G2. The numbers are also rather low so I'm going to cut the wager in half.

Over/Under: UNDER 24.5 kills @ -114 (0.5 units)

Over/Under: UNDER 29:00 @ -114 (0.5 units)



Parlay (2): TL -278 vs PVB + IG -286 vs G2 @ total -119 (1.5 units)

Parlay (2): TL -278 vs PVB + SKT -435 vs FW @ total -149 (1.5 units)

Parlay (3): TL -278 vs PVB + IG -286 vs G2 + SKT -435 vs FW @ total +126 (1 unit)