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Featured match: TSM pulls off a victory over P1 to secure second place

LoL Joe “Helmight” Silva

The battle for second place was a heated affair. Phoenix1 has long been regarded as the kryptonite of TSM after stopping their undefeated season in its tracks last year, and have a much stronger roster now than they did before. However, Team SoloMid proved equal to the challenge, relying heavily on their superior teamfighting to take the victory in three games.

Hauntzer led the charge for TSM. Despite a disappointing performance on Jayce in game 1, he managed to come back strong with solid performances on Shen and Poppy in the last two games of the series. He was joined by Svenskeren, who - despite a wildly inconsistent Rengar performance - managed to carry TSM's early game on Kha'Zix during the final match.

Phoenix1's map rotations and macro plays were arguably better than Team SoloMid's, but they unfortunately couldn't outfight TSM when it counted - and couldn't stop from getting picked off. Inori began the series with a strong 7/0/6 showing on Kha'Zix, but his Ivern in game 3 was caught again and again, giving TSM the openings they needed to take objectives.

Both teams approached game 1 with a relatively measured approach. Early kills and objectives were swapped, but no one found a significant advantage until P1 picked off WildTurtle in the midlane. With TSM's ADC dead - and a second pick onto Hauntzer - P1 were able to race for Baron, securing the objective despite an attempted steal by Svenskeren. TSM then compounded their mistakes, trying to prevent P1 from fleeing with the buff but getting collapsed upon thanks to a smart flank by Inori. With TSM aced, P1 were able to down two inhibitors, resulting in an insurmountable objective and gold lead that led them to victory.

Game 2 was a grindy affair. Despite TSM securing a large gold lead for themselves at the 30-minute mark, they were seemingly unable to find a way to finish off P1. Brute-forcing objectives allowed TSM to pick up inhibitor towers but P1 took a tithe in blood each time, preventing TSM from closing out the match. A clutch Baron sneak by Inori and Ryu looked to be their ticket back into the game, but TSM outfought P1 only a few minutes later at the Elder Dragon, masterfully taking 4 kills without giving up anything in return. P1's respawns took too long to come through, allowing TSM to push in and finish off the game.

With the series tied 1-1, P1 looked to outfox TSM in the draft phase with Jayce and Miss Fortune flex picks and an Ivern for Inori. However, this strategy left Kha'Zix open for Svenskeren. TSM's jungler proceeded to run roughshod over the early game, killing off Inori during an attempted level 1 blue steal and picking up advantages for his team across the map. Despite holding a 5k gold lead for almost the entire match, TSM again couldn't find a way to finish off P1. It took an Elder Dragon- and Baron buff-wielding TSM to eventually finish off Phoenix1's Nexus, with blinking health bars on every member of the team.

 

Joe “Helmight” Silva
Joe's been playing - and writing - about videogames for about three years now. He mains Garen, hates Akali, and thinks LeBlanc should be deleted from the game. You can talk to him @grabthelantern on Twitter.

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