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Dean's List #1 (BOL Gold Recap & Predictions)

Week 1 of BOL Gold has come and gone. Surely nothing crazy happened this week, right? What do you mean every match was a 2-0?

Before we look ahead at the next set of matches and key players, let’s look back at opening day to set some expectations and see what info we can gather.

Hyperion Esports vs Flannel Ethereal

Result: Hyperion 2-0

Boasting the fastest game time of opening Thursday, Hyperion came out swinging with what looked to be a dominant 2-0 victory over the Flannel squad. After going back and watching their POV, some very good things immediately stood out.

First is how clean comms were. Hyperion seems to be all business, and their efficient lines of communication gave everybody the exact information they needed to make correct plays and trades. Second is their mechanics. Despite some small misplays and miscalls, the hands are very apparent with this roster, especially for mid laner Dione Atlas and jungler Ziggie. Last is how good these players are at deciding when and where to fight. If they get to the fight on their own terms, then Hyperion is a scary team.

This isn’t to say that Flannel Ethereal is without any positives to speak of. Jungler Prisma Sire put in work to make a lot of their early plays in game one, and their bot lane were definitely able to keep up with arguably the top ADC in the league. By the time they had the tempo to fight, however, they were just too far behind to get anything done.

Hyperion currently holds the record for the fastest single game (25:03), which is a record that might just stand all season long. Banning against this team might also prove to be very difficult due to the multitude of carry threats on the team. If Ethereal is able to figure out how to get to fights with a more even game state, they could definitely prove to be better than this outing would have you believe.

Player of the Series: Indigo - Phenomenal laning phase on both Shen and Mordekaiser, resulting in multiple solo kills in the series while also having insane pressure on the rest of the map. Definitely enabled a lot of success for the rest of their team.

REV Regalia vs BDE Corruption

Result: Regalia 2-0

The first of two REV teams and the first of two BDE teams, Regalia vs Corruption seems to have gone against several pre-split expectations. The adopted TD team was listed as a strong favorite by several community figures, but it looks like they might have some things to work on.

Regalia as a team lives and dies by how well Ball Slap plays, but this isn’t to say that the rest of the team isn’t also very strong. Ball Slap does a fantastic job of getting a lead early and then spreading that lead across the map, and it looks like it worked very well against Corruption. With an 11/3/6 scoreline on Naafiri and 5/1/17 on Ahri, he had a very strong showing on opening day.

Corruption does have some strong players in their own right. Jungler XIL comes into the league with a reputation as an incredibly good carry jungler, and his stats showed it. Doing the second most damage in g1 while his team was consistently down gold shows that he’s always able to put in work.

From personal experience, Regalia are a team that is very aware of their shortcomings as a squad and is actively working on fixing those issues. Cook and Scrambles are two players worth playing around, and the team gets better at doing that with each scrim. If they can continue to grow as a unit, then they could make some serious noise in future matches.

For Corruption, I want to see advantages pushed harder. XIL and Pandorum are the names most people will recognize, but I want to see more emphasis on VampiricNarwhal as a strong carry for the team going forward.

Player of the Series: Ball Slap - Strong carry performance from the lifeblood of the team. His style works so well for his squad, and he had a very good night.

BDE Typhoon vs Nameless Rising

Result: Typhoon 2-0

There’s unfortunately not too much to say about this match. Typhoon was pretty consistently ranked as a top team in the league and Nameless was pretty consistently ranked as a bottom team.

What’s surprising to me is how long g1 lasted despite having only 14 total kills. 30:36 is a fairly long game time, and the gold lead was never really above a 1-2k advantage until around the 25 minute mark. Game 2 was much the opposite story, with Nameless actually being up in gold until one big fight around 22 minutes.

There are positives and negatives that both teams can take away from this result. Typhoon can look at this as a clutch victory where they tried multiple styles and were able to win in different ways. Nameless can look at this as staying close against one of the top teams in the league. In the same breath, BDE look to have some cleaning up to do in their early game, and Rising might want to look at some of their teamfight setup.

GiraffeRider and Ya boi Kevin are definitely the Typhoon players with the most hype going into this split, and it’s already clear to see why. Kevin looked great on both the Xin and Kayn, and Giraffe looked to be taking an off-supportive style to compliment him. If these games were anything to go off of, they could look to be a top tier mid/jungle duo in the league.

Nameless players took turns being standouts, with Akiramenai and Sea being the two to draw my eye. However this team decides they need to play, I am currently hoping for these two to grow more consistent as the season progresses.

Player of the Series: Ya boi Kevin - Deathless series with respectable damage output and objective control, particularly around drakes.

REV Eternal vs Conduit Prime

Result: Eternal 2-0

I have a very biased take on this series, having played in it, but the reality of things is that it was fairly in line with the rest of the matches from last Thursday.

In the early game, Prime’s jungler, NoName, did a great job of helping his team establish a lane lead, but they were unfortunately not able to translate the early prio into a mid game advantage. Even though NoName secured the first two drakes in both g1 and g2, TheDean0 cross-mapped for all six grubs in both games.

The Flannel team was just not able to find a super solid fight after 14 minutes in either game. Despite some solid ults from Razors4life and engages from NoName, they were unable to find any massive leads. Comparatively, REV was consistently trading for at least something on the map before finding their footing in the mid game.

The standouts for Eternal were definitely M4ddness top and their bot lane. M4dd had plenty of questions going into the start of the split (role swap ADC to top), and he answered those questions solidly. Billybadass and Booter Scooch as well made an impressive debut. Boasting a combined scoreline of 23/9/66 across both games, the new REV duo is already looking to stake a claim as the top bot lane in the league.

Player of the Series: Booter Scooch - It was a toss up between Booter and M4dd, but I ultimately went with Booter as I felt they had a few more big, important roams during the series.

Mystic Cats Gold vs Flannel Zephyr

Result: Mystic Cats 2-0

Both the lone Mystic Cats team and the second Flannel roster had some questions going into the split, and it unfortunately doesn’t seem like either team really answered them.

Zephyr started g1 with a 12-0 kill advantage, mostly due to the efforts of jungler bagoot, before MCG slowly started finding their fights after the 17 minute mark. Physiology (I’m not doing the caps) and Klugscheißer were the big benefactors of the gold swing, as the dragon duo seems to be rather powerful.

Game 2 was simultaneously more and less back and forth, with MCG securing more early kills and objectives, but with Flannel making things interesting throughout.

It goes without saying, but both teams have work to do if they want to be a top threat in the league. Without being given full VODs to review, my gut feeling is that MCG play well when they have a lead, but they can struggle getting their advantages. Zephyr is much harder to put any specific pin on, but my best guess would be that there’s a struggle with choosing the most optimal fights. Both teams have solid coaching staffs to help them break down their issues, so I remain optimistic that they can clean up and become more optimal going forward.

Player of the Series: Physiology - 17 KDA in g1 on Smolder and 8 KDA in g2 on Kalista. I’m sure that other players worked their tail off to get them in a position to carry, but a combined average KDA of 12.5 is scarily impressive.

With last week’s recap done, it’s time to look ahead at next week’s matches!

Hyperion eSports (1-0) vs Conduit Prime (0-1)

I won’t make any secret of it, Hyperion is my current top team in the league. After one week of analysis, I am ready to call it. Pack it up, boys, we’re done here!

Jokes aside, Hyperion looked incredibly clean, and Conduit Prime really has some work cut out for them in the mid-late game. If they can shut down the powerhouse duo of Ziggie and Dione Atlas, then they might have a better chance, but from where I currently stand, Hyperion are just too cohesive and too explosive.

Prediction: Hyperion 2-0

Player to Watch: Ziggie

REV Eternal (1-0) vs REV Regalia (1-0)

The first of many Civil Wars, Eternal vs Regalia should be an exciting match. Both solo lanes are strong in their own ways for both teams, with Ball Slap playing to hard stomp lane and spread his lead to the team, while LeperKoopa plays to control lane and win the teamfight. Cook and M4ddness are roughly equal in skill in my eyes, so this match comes down to a few factors.

First, draft. Both teams know exactly how to draft against each other, which is a sign that some spicier picks might be on the way. Second, lane phase. Across multiple roles, if any one lane gets a strong advantage one way or another in this series, it can quickly spiral out of control. Third, and arguably the most important, is objective control. All else being roughly equal, it comes down to TheDean0 vs Scrambles to guide their team to securing those objectives and taking smart fights.

While it would be very easy for me to be biased and say that Eternal’s going to win, I want to credit both teams here. Regalia has been constantly leveling up, and their play style is very good into us in scrims, and Scrambles is a great setup jungler, and

Prediction: Eternal 2-0

Player to Watch: Ball Slap

Nameless Rising (0-1) vs BDE Corruption (0-1)

I’m gonna go solely off of my scrim knowledge of these two teams and say that Corruption is the better team here. Nameless definitely has their strengths, but this BDE roster has a more obvious route to improvement in my eyes.

Pandorum + XIL69 have the potential to be a strong mid/jg duo in the league, which is something I really haven’t experienced or heard about Nameless. Based on that and nothing else, I’m gonna go ahead and say BDE takes the series.

Prediction: Corruption 2-0

Player to Watch: XIL69

Flannel Zephyr (0-1) vs BDE Typhoon (1-0)

If Corruption has the potential to have a strong mid/jg duo, Typhoon has the potential to have the best mid/jg duo in the entire league. I mean no disrespect to the Flannel squad, but Typhoon really does look to be operating on a higher level. Kevin had such a standout first week that it’s hard to bet against him, especially when he’s paired up next to such a seasoned player like GiraffeRider.

I can see the avenue for bagoot to step up and make life difficult for the BDE jungler, but they’ll have to level up quite a bit to be considered the favorite.

Prediction: Typhoon 2-0

Player to Watch: Ya boi Kevin

Flannel Ethereal (0-1) vs Mystic Cats Gold (1-0)

We’re really making Mystic Cats run the Flannel gauntlet to start their season, huh?

This is one of the closest matches on paper for week 2. Both of the Flannel teams are surprisingly even (in my honest opinion, at least), and MCG could have just as easily been 2-0’d in their match last week.

Minæ and Klug are the two most consistent points on their rosters from both scrim data and community whisperings. While both teams also have other strong points (D3adpixel and Physiology for MCG, PrismaSire for Ethereal), it really comes down to who can get to their win con first.

Even though MCG won their series last week, I’m going to go with Ethereal in a close series. Hanging with Hyperion for as long as they did is a good sign to me that this roster has the potential to step up. While I think MCG are also a good team with room to grow, I think the immediate feedback of having some things to patch up has the potential to do wonders.

Prediction: Ethereal 2-1

Player to Watch: Minæ

This concludes my week 1 breakdown and week 2 predictions for BOL Gold. Please remember to be civil in the discussion and to not take anything here too seriously. With that said, good luck, have fun, and we’ll see you guys on the rift.

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