Wednesday, March 9, 2016

LoL Analysis: 2016 NALCS, NRG vs REN (Week 7, Day 1)

Right after Altec was getting on his groove, he steps down from the team. Speculation is rife but I don’t want to get into that. For a team that is hanging around in the middle of the standings but has struggled at times with communication, LOD will have to learn how to play with KonKwon soon. Renegades on the other hand have recovered from the loss of Remi early in the split and have been playing better and better together. He was good early in the split for TIP, but going against Impact will really test him. I like NRG in this – honestly don’t think going from Altec to LOD will be a major loss.

Picks and Bans – 2 straight Kogmaw games! REN respond with Kalista/Braum, which I don’t love as much as Alistar, but Braum has been a priority in this patch as Phreak indicated. The draft is pretty standard with Elise/Janna for NRG followed by Viktor/Rek’Sai for REN. Impact blind picks Poppy and GBM takes Zilean – this could be a great siege comp for NRG that can keep Kogmaw alive for a long time. And Seraph goes with Fiora which I love – Poppy can block Fiora, but REN have good wave clear and should want to split push.

Early Game – Moon and Impact go for an aggressive invade on the REN Red but don’t leave in time and Moon is killed. They stayed around for the small monsters which is a huge mistake. Then KonKwon gets caught trying to pester Renegades off their red invade but Crumbz has finished the buff and they kill the Janna too! This is a disaster of a lane swap for NRG. They give KonKwon some of Impact’s turret gold and that puts the Poppy and a huge disadvantage for him into Seraph’s Fiora.

18:45 – An aggressive rotation from REN does not go well as Impact and Zilean pop Freeze. Not sure this was the right call for them at this point in the game. They should be pushing waves in a 1-3-1 and not letting Kogmaw get fed. This is not a disaster of a kill for them but should help them reset their mindset for this game. I also like their call at 23:45 to not contest the Dragon and instead let Seraph split push – you can’t do everything as a team, it’s important to do what your comp allows for well. Wave management allows them to fully knock down the NRG bot lane tier 2 a couple minutes later. I don’t love Seraph TP’ing back to the top lane for a wave though – NRG have double TP through 21 minutes.

27:00 – With REN taking Rift Herald, LOD and KonKwon shoved the bot lane in and the teams are in a turre trade. The problem is NRG are able to take down the bot lane tier 2 much faster and go all the way into the inhibitor turret. With their TP advantage, NRG take the inhibitor itself – the worst inhibitor to lose before Baron comes up. That rotation from Seraph earlier turned out to be a major mistake – REN need to understand that TP being up for Seraph makes his split push work and NRG have complete control of the map now – they can group as 5 and force Seraph’s TP when they choose.

33:45 – Kogmaw is not a big problem for Renegades since they can no longer split people out to control the map. NRG retake the inhibitor as Crumbz and Hakuho are chunked down very early in the siege. The Kalista/Braum duo has lost to Kogmaw/Janna pretty hard, with Hakuho having a particularly bad game. NRG have so many poke and zoning tools now, it’s going to be hard to stop them at any objective.

REN played their comp perfectly for 15 minutes and then one mistake snowballed. Seraph lost TP pressure, NRG took the bot lane inhib, and the map was lost. That call to TP Seraph from the bot lane to the top lane at 25:20 (14:30 in game time) lost them the game. NRG had a clearly superior teamfight comp and when they got the wards down to rotate between lanes as a group, the game was over. REN have to be frustrated, but like I’ve said in the past, the shot calling has to improve. The desk afterwards talked about how REN often have 20 minute gold leads but let it slip through their fingers when the items build and the game transitions to a more macro-level shot-calling game.

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