Hello again, it’s Toxin! Unlike the week before, last week everything seemed to return back to normal in a sense. Almost every single team that should have won last week did end up winning, which meant that the predictions this week went extremely well for the BOL planelists and myself. Both Bully and Billy did extremely well, with each only getting a single prediction wrong. FB Jayke and I picked a few extra upsets than the other two, which led us to going 10/12 and 9/12 respectively. Finally, as a heads up, I’m planning on dipping my toes back into giving player rankings again next week to celebrate the halfway point of the season. Let’s get into the games!
Oasis NADS (W) vs Gob Squad (L) 2-0
After multiple roster swaps, Oasis NADS finally started to regain some of their former glory with a win over Gob Squad last week. Although they hadn’t played in two weeks, they seemed to build some synergy with their new lineup, which includes warhead852 in the jungle, and former VBU plutonium jungler Bliss in the support role. I’m still not quite sure how to feel about this roster. On one hand, having two junglers on your roster makes sense, as they now have two shot callers on the roster in what used to be an area of weakness. On the other hand, they are having Bliss autofilled, so their bot lane could struggle against tougher competition. Their player of the match last week was Classykru, who continues to be the rock that holds this team together. As for Gob Squad, I’m assuming they were overconfident coming off their victory against CB Rangers the week prior. I think Sushisuwa continues to be a strong performer on this roster, but they will need to play as well as they did against CB moving forward if they want to secure a playoff spot in this difficult group. They go up against Imperial Gaming this week, while Oasis NADS takes on Final Esports.
CB Rangers (W) vs Imperial Gaming (L) 2-0
After a slight hiccup, the Rangers took the rift by storm with a 2-0 statement win over Imperial Gaming last week. You can tell that the loss the week before really weighed on them, as they were not messing around with their drafts. They decided to return to the style of play where Anderson Cooper is on an engage tank, YRU Running is the main carry on the squad, and the rest of the team does their best to facilitate those two. Speaking of those two, the tandem really stood out in this series and was a large part of why they won. For Imperial, this is back to back weeks where they have struggled. I will say that their main carry did not play until game two, and he definitely made a difference. I still think that the complementary pieces on this team, such as SOM and Azurexfire, need to find some consistency in their game for this team to succeed. That being said, I’m pretty sure the former of the two left the team after this loss. We’ll see who ends up playing this week when they go against their former team members on Gob Squad this week. CB Rangers get their turn against KQC this week in what should be an easy victory.
Final Esports (W) vs KQC (L) 2-0
Finally, Final Esports were able to take down KQC with the fastest series time of the night in a 2-0 finish. This week, KQC had a new top laner sub in for them, a silver player by the name of Tomorrow. I think the biggest gripe I have with KQC this week is that they had him playing Aatrox and Gangplank, two champions that are too mechanically intensive for their new addition to play. This decision was fatal, as their opponents’ lead mainly came from the top side of the map. If they simplify their champ pools a bit, they may find some more success in the form of a game win. As long as they are able to learn from these losses the same way the Crimson Dolphins did last split, I think there is a bright future ahead for this team. They go up against CB Rangers this week, and Final Esports goes up against Oasis NADS.
Final Esports (=)
CB Rangers (=)
Oasis Nail and Day Spa (+2)
Imperial Gaming (=)
Gob Squad (-2)
NSG Infinity (W) vs !Rawr Eternal Return (L) 2-0
In a matchup that looked close on the outside looking in, we had NSG Infinity taking down Rawr with their new roster finally assembled. Unfortunately, the result of this new roster was no different than their old roster, as they still have not found their first game win this season, let alone their first match win. While they look strong on paper, Lone Wind seems to be the only one that stands out in these games. In order for this team to succeed, DueroxBasting really needs to establish some synergy with the top side of the map. There’s no reason why Yung Natz, a historically strong top laner, is not only struggling on one of his signature champs but also only going even in a counter matchup. If DueroxBasting is able to get Natz ahead, I’m sure that this team will find their first win, especially with competition as weak as it is in the South Division. Hopefully their luck turns around this week under their new team name when they look for revenge against the NSG org, this time against NSG Amethyst. I’m really impressed with this win for NSG Infinity. Not only did they have a new ADC filling in for them this week by the name of CrushU, but they lost all of their first round bans in game one as a result of the change. Despite the ban loss, this team drew up a game plan and stuck to it in both games. Major shoutout to their top laner Clarken, who seems to be a Sett god and did well in both games despite being counter picked. This roster seems to have recovered quite nicely after their week one loss to the Crimson Dolphins. I’m looking forward to seeing their rematch, but until then they have to take on Dead Orbit this week.
Crimson Dolphins (W) vs Dead Orbit (L) 2-0
Dolphin SZN baby! Yet another win for the Crimson Dolphins happened last week, where their newest victims were a Dead Orbit roster that finds itself with a different head coach every week. It’s really hard to evaluate Dead Orbit; on one hand they are firmly stuck in the middle of this division and on the other they are in a constant flux of roster moves, head coach changes, and mixed results. I truly think that they need to stick one roster and start building synergy ASAP. I will say that adding Drakana to the roster was a good change, but he should be the last one for a while. While they are currently in the race to claim the third playoff spot in the division, they need to beat the teams under them in order to stay afloat. This will become increasingly difficult in the second round robin, especially with CB Royal gaining momentum, Rawr finally having a stable roster, and NSG Amethyst raising their level of play. They will look to right the ship this week against NSG Infinity, while the Crimson Dolphins take on CB Royal.
CB Royal (W) vs NSG Amethyst (L) 2-1
CB Royal, despite not having first round bans, were able to recover from their roster implosion with a win last week over NSG Amethyst. I will say that NSG did a great job of keeping the series close, at least early on. Game one they came out strong with a win despite leaving up a power pick like Hecarim up for Boss Troll. Game two was also extremely close, with the game going an excruciating 37 minutes long with a surprisingly low amount of kills. Unfortunately, they seemed to run out of steam after that loss, with game three ending swiftly. Honestly, this result was impressive for both sides. NSG Amethyst finally look like they are so close to picking up their first match win, while CB Royal was able to battle through adversity and cement themselves in third place. With their closest competition stuck without a game win, I think CB Royal has a good chance of holding onto this playoff spot as long as they don’t go through any major roster turmoil moving forward. They go up against the Crimson Dolphins this week, and NSG Amethyst go up against the new look Mad Rawrs.
Crimson Dolphins (=)
NSG Infinity (=)
CB Royal (+3)
Dead Orbit (-1)
NSG Amethyst (-1)
!Rawr Eternal Return (-1)
Mythos Purple (W) vs Classic Esports (L) 2-0
Despite swapping up their roster quite a bit, Classic Esports were unable to find themselves a win last week when they went up against Mythos Purple. In fact, it looked like they downgraded their roster with the addition of Dilly in the support role, where he went a combined 1/16/12 in the series on champions that I don’t think played to his strengths as a player. While I think Flayedon played well in his return to the ADC role, there was not enough synergy with the rest of the roster in order to clutch out a win. With a new roster addition coming in for the support role next week, I don’t expect much to change for this team until they get comfortable playing with each other and in their new roles. This was a good bounceback for Mythos Purple after a disappointing streamed game. I think that this roster may have experienced some stage fright with their first time on a BOL stream, which may have caused them to underperform. That was not the case this time, as both Best Plunger and A clogged Toilet were able to step up and carry. I also liked seeing n0rthwert on more stable champions such as Gragas and Sion rather than the Gangplank that he tried to pull out the week prior. I think this underrated change definitely was a good reason leading to the win as well. Mythos Purple takes on Twin Spirits this week in what should be a close matchup, while Classic Esports takes on the Literal Monkeys.
Twin Spirits (W) vs NSG Gold (L) 2-0
After a disappointing performance against VBU Argon, Twin Spirits went through some changes both mentally and with their roster that led to a dominant win over NSG Gold last week. New to the top lane role is the return of Kappa Krusader to BOL, with Oberon being moved to the bench and Mr. Lean taking a leave of absence from the league. On top of that, Riv60 also went through some changes that caused him to play with more confidence, which definitely showed with his standout performances on both Tristana and Jinx (check out his triple kill in highlights if you haven’t seen it yet). The team definitely looks to be re-energized and should look to continue its hold on the second playoff spot in the East this week when they go up against Mythos Purple. NSG Gold had a bit of a slip up after their victory of Classic Esports. BarbaricChampion continues to be this team’s star player, however he ended up being outmatched in this contest. Hopefully he and his team can rebound when they take on VBU Argon this week.
VBU Argon (W) vs Literal Monkeys (L) 2-1
In one of the closer matchups of the week, we had the Literal Monkeys falling 2-1 to VBU Argon in a grudge match between PacaPaul and I, winner taking the bragging rights for the week. You could tell Paul and his monkeys were out for blood from the get go, and I definitely enjoyed how much time he spent in my lane throughout the series! Jokes aside, this was definitely a close matchup that ultimately came down to the Monkeys not finding an answer to Kaiten’s Seraphine, which was a large reason why Argon was able to win. The good news is that Monkeys have gotten through some of their early roster troubles that they experienced in the first few weeks of the season. I fully expect this team to bounce back in the second half of the split, as they definitely felt like the second best team in this division. Until their rematch against Twin Spirits however, they will remain in third in the rankings. They go up against Classic Esports, while VBU Argon takes on NSG Gold this week.
VBU Argon (=)
Twin Spirits (=)
Literal Monkeys (=)
Mythos Purple (=)
NSG Gold (=)
Classic Esports (=)
CB Obsidian (W) vs Collective Cosmic (L) 2-1
In probably the biggest shock last week, Collective Cosmic was able to return to form and take a game off of the powerhouse that is CB Obsidian. After losing to SIlverline the week prior, I never would have expected them to be the first team to take a game off of Obsidian. It seems to be that this roster seems to play at whatever level their opponent is at, rather than sticking to the same strong play level throughout all of their matches. If they are able to use this series as a starting point and build on it moving forward, this team can very easily make it into the top four teams in the league. Habloufough and ADISHAWN had a fantastic series and should be the pieces they look to play towards moving forward. As for CB Obsidian, teams across the league can look to game one of this series as a hint on how to beat this juggernaut of a team. That being said, this is still one of the best teams in the league and should continue their onslaught of the West Division this week versus Limitless Chaos in the streamed match of the week. Collective Cosmic get their crack at VBU Plutonium this week, where they hopefully don't have a repeat of what happened the last time they played a weaker team.
Limitless Chaos (W) vs Shrimp Fried Rice (L) 2-1
In another close match in the West, Limitless Chaos narrowly took down Shrimp Fried Rice in a close three game series. One thing that I was able to discern from this series was that LX Crona definitely looks better on enchanter supports rather than engage tank supports. While his Morgana and Seraphine tended to lead to his team winning, his performance on Rell was lackluster to say the least. This has been a trend that has been the case for quite a while now, so I’m hoping that he’s using his practice time to continue to work on these picks while sticking to the enchanters for the actual BOL matches. He and his team have a strong test ahead of them this week against CB Obsidian, where they will look to exploit cracks in their armor left by Collective Cosmic. For Shrimp Fried Rice, I think this is definitely a series they can look back on fondly. I think the bot lane duo of Round Shiba Inu and Instiably played extremely well in this series. I also think that Wise324 looked pretty good in his short stint in the top lane. Maybe he plays there long term, and the team looks to sort out its mid lane problems from there? Whatever they decide, I think they played well enough to warrant some positive momentum going into their match against Silverline this week.
VBU Plutonium (W) vs Silverline (L) 2-0
In the streamed match last week, VBU Plutonium took down a red hot Silverline team in a quick 2-0. After they took down Collective Cosmic the week before, I was extremely high on Silverline and their chances of improvement throughout the year. Despite these hopes, VBU Plutonium came in with a fury and dashed these hopes entirely. From start to finish they looked dominant with this starting lineup, which I will say is undefeated this season. It seems that when Glada and gh0stTP have all the pieces put together, their combined shotcalling and map presence is able to take over the game. Hopefully the pieces come together again when they go up against a streaky Collective Cosmic.
CB Obsidian (=)
Limitless Chaos (=)
Collective Cosmic (=)
VBU Plutonium (+1)
Shrimp Fried Rice (=)
Matches to Watch This Week:
I think there are a few notable matches coming up this week, starting off with our streamed match of CB Obsidian versus Limitless Chaos. I think that Limitless Chaos has the tools in order to properly handle the top team in their division, but we’ll see if they are able to put it all together. Another match I’m looking forward to seeing the outcome of is Oasis NADS versus Final Esports. While the latter is currently the top seed power ranking-wise in the North, I’m interested to see if they can defend their throne against a surging Oasis team that has found its first real series win last week. The final two matchups I want to mention are Mythos Purple vs Twin Spirits and VBU Plutonium vs Collective Cosmic. While the expectation is for the higher seeds to dismantle their opposition in a quick 2-0, I think these two matches are the best chances of having upsets.
Instead of writing out a paragraph highlighting a few of the changes I made, I think that this method of giving a small explanation on the side is better. This way, every team knows the reason why they moved up, down, or stayed the same. If there’s any questions, feel free to @ me in general chat for clarity or trash talk to argue what you would change about my list!
Crimson Dolphins (+2) - Only team without a game loss, Dolphin SZN baby!
CB Obsidian (-1) Dropped a game to a team that lost to Silverline a week ago
VBU Argon (-1) - Also dropped a game this week and move down accordingly
Final Esports (=) - No reason to drop them yet, good test this week though
CB Rangers (=) - Currently even with Final, could change this week
Twin Spirits (+2) - New roster addition looks like an upgrade on paper
NSG Infinity (+3) - Good win over the new look Rawr, other teams struggling
Limitless Chaos (-1) - Dropped a game to the last place team in their division
Collective Cosmos (=) - Taking a game off Obsidian keeps them here
Literal Monkeys (+1) - Taking a game off Argon moves them up
Oasis NADS (+2) - Start to climb with their first real win of the season
Imperial Gaming (=) - Stay the same with another loss in a tough division
Gob Squad (-7) - A bit of a market correction after an overreaction last week
CB Royal (NEW) - Emerges as the expected 3rd seed in the South
Mythos Purple (=) - A win over NSG Gold was expected. Strong test this week
VBU Plutonium (NEW) - Re-enter the list with a win over Silverline
Dropped out: Silverline, Dead Orbit
Predictions for this Week:
Imperial Gaming beat Gob Squad 2-1
CB Rangers beat KQC 2-0
Oasis NADS beat Final Esports 2-1
Crimson Dolphins beat CB Royal 2-0
Mad Rawrs beat NSG Amethyst 2-0
NSG Infinity beat Dead Orbit 2-0
Twin Spirits beat Mythos Purple (2-0)
Literal Monkeys beat Classic Esports (2-0)
VBU Argon beat NSG Gold (2-0)
CB Obsidian beat Limitless Chaos (2-1)
Shrimp Fried Rice beat Silverline (2-0)
Collective Cosmic beat VBU Plutonium (2-1)