On track to claim their first Championship title in five years, Cloud9 defeated Counter Logic Gaming and is moving on to Detroit for their final series in the League Championship Series 2019 Summer Playoffs.
Summer Playoffs is a best-of-five style tournament including the top six teams from Summer Season in a single-elimination bracket.
Cloud9 took an early lead against CLG with strong solo laners. The team was ill-equipped to combat C9’s early aggression with a scaling teamfight composition.
It was easy for C9 to use sidelane pressure to pull apart their opponents until a skirmish in the jungle accelerated their lead exponentially.
C9 took two kills off of CLG, allowing them to claim Baron and eventually the Nexus.
CLG made some needed adjustments.
Expecting C9’s aggressive playstyle, their draft included Kim “Ruin” Hyeong-min on Akali — a strong solo laner. Cloud9’s draft responded, including some teamfight capability of their own.
It was this capability that led to C9’s second win with Yasin “Nisqy” Dinçer finding a game-ending flank on Sylas and Eric “Licorice” Ritchie’s Gangplank providing the massive damage needed.
Cloud9 was then able to clean CLG’s leftovers, and take the series to match point.
Trying to keep their Playoff run alive, CLG decided to match C9’s drafting aggression, as both teams made early game compositions, but it was Cloud9 that dominated.
At 15 minutes, C9 claimed a higher gold lead than they had in any previous game. After they won a fight around Baron, C9 started marching down the midlane to claim their spot in the Finals.
But it was Vincent “Biofrost” Wang that held CLG together. Biofrost’s Rakan led the charge with Trevor “Stixxay” Hayes as they fended C9 off of their crumbling Nexus.
Despite the setback, C9 gathered to push once more, but CLG once again found a couple kills that prevented the finishing blow.
CLG managed to continue their defense until they secured one last fight with Tristan “PowerOfEvil” Schrage’s Qiyana. PowerOfEvil’s patience for a flank found him a massive stun on C9, and led his team to Game Four.
With CLG reclaiming momentum, tensions were high.
On his classic Orianna, PowerOfEvil boasted a 4-0 KD at 22 minutes. It was at this moment CLG had won their first early game all series, putting themselves ahead of C9 by 3000 gold.
Using this lead, CLG took the baron, and looked to end the game.
Refusing to let the game end, Licorice and Nisqy found multiple flanks in successive teamfights. CLG was pushed back and the game came down to a final fight around the Elder Drake.
In the end, it was C9 that was able to secure the drake, and with the buff, eliminate CLG and destroy one last Nexus.
— lolesports (@lolesports) August 18, 2019
Cloud9 is known for their competence on the international stage, but despite that pedigree, it’s been five years since winning their last regional Championship.
Cloud9 has boasted about being the strongest in NA. Now, they have the chance to prove it in the Finals.
Credit: Devon Huge