Picks and Bans – This was a weird draft. CLG start with Nidalee and Dignitas go Bard/Sivir. I’ve not been very impressed with KiWiKiD’s Bard, but that may be a derivative of his being on a losing team. CLG then get Soraka/Lucian (ok…) and then Azir/Gnar. Hmm. I mean those are okay champions with good teamfight utility, but are they sure they want to teamfight into Sivir? DIG are smart to get Gragas/Poppy then GP last for a very scary (albeit AD-focused) late-game comp. But GP will struggle to lane against Azir and CLG can pressure early around Huhi and Stixxay.
Early Game – DIG go for a late 4-person invade that is spotted. Still a good idea to work on that mechanic and see if you can’t catch someone. After the turret trades, BillyBoss tried to stick around to soak experience but aphromoo smells him out and burns his flash. That means Nidalee will be back and Huhi has a ridiculous CS lead in the midlane. That nets them the mid turret in under 11 minutes game time and the map has become very dangerous with Nidalee running around. The fan vote (including some trolling C9 fans) is heavily in favor of DIG, but I don’t see them coming back against this.
22:00 – Both teams have tempted Dragon in the last few minutes and CLG finally go for it. Everyone is called in but hesitantly and Huhi zones them with his ult. Kirei misses the explosive cask at point blank range on Stixxay. On the backside, Darshan and Xmithie take down Apollo and DIG need to retreat. All of DIG’s flashes are down for only 2 from CLG. Honestly, this already feels a bit over. CLG are too good to let this lead go to waste. Darshan is a split push threat and GP will take a long time to scale.
CLG transition into a 4-person push in the top lane with Rift Herald on Stixxay while Darshan pressures BillyBoss in the bot lane. I’m not sure that this was the right move. DIG have very good waveclear with Sivir and CLG don’t do anything to use their flash advantage. If anything, I would have liked for them to go 1-3-1 or even standard lanes and given the Rift Herald to Nidalee to make plays around the map. Extending the farm game is a bit dangerous against such a late-game scaling comp, but that risk is lessened by their having advantages in every lane. A few minutes later, they make a good rotation around Dragon to catch Shiphtur under turret and that means the midlane tier 2 for CLG. I question the earlier play in the top lane but I do like the decisiveness – they are dwelling on things that don’t work, always moving to the next objective. That’s the mark of a well-coordinated team.
32:50 – A merry chase on Xmithie who somehow survives all of the ultimates. And then Huhi just whiffs the Emperor’s Divide. #NALCS. Xmithie burning all those CDs mean CLG can get Baron while Darshan does an expert job stalling on the outside. CLG turn the fight and CLG get an Ace, losing only aphromoo. That’s the game.
There’s not much to say. CLG are straight better than DIG and made every play. Dignitas couldn’t stall the game long enough and need to focus on improving their play for the relegation tournament.
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