The NA LCS playoff race is tighter than ever, and so is our power rankings for week eight. Only two playoff spots have been locked in, but the rest of the pack is showing a lot of potential in the dying weeks of the season. Don’t be surprised if a three to six seed takes down a top seed in the playoffs this year.
The NA LCS Summer Split has been chockful of surprises, and nothing could possibly fool us now. There are several exciting storylines to follow leading up to the final week of the split, such as TSM’s hopes for a postseason appearance, Cloud9’s rise from the ashes, and Echo Fox faltering in their quest for the top.
Let us look at the NA LCS power rankings for week eight.
Biggest rise: Cloud9 [⬆ 3]
Biggest drop: Echo Fox [⬇ 3]
Cloud9 looks so strong right now, and it’s only right that they take first place in our power rankings in week eight. They ran with two lineups this past week: one with Blaber and Jensen and another with Svenskeren and Goldenglue. Although fans and analysts alike were not sure about the substitutions, Cloud9 was able to show their roster flexibility.
Blaber is playing with a lot of confidence lately, and Cloud9 is finding a lot of success because of it. Even Svenskeren was playing at a very proactive rate against Team Liquid, which was a huge reason why they were able to run them over in their matchup.
Cloud9 appears to have all the momentum in the world to push for a playoff spot, and they are actually looking like one of the hottest teams in the region. Their last games of the split are against 100 Thieves and FlyQuest, which should be a good test for them going forward into the postseason.
There was a bit of a setback for Team Liquid with their loss to Cloud9. Even though they beat OpTic Gaming pretty convincingly, the crown I placed on their head in last week’s power rankings may be in jeopardy. However, I do think that this is a temporary setback for TL, who has been playing pretty well the past few weeks.
The only problem is that Cloud9 seems to be a kryptonite of theirs; C9 and FlyQuest are the only teams they’ve lost to in the past four weeks. Additionally, Cloud9 is the only team they haven’t been able to take a game off in the league. I think that says something about Cloud9 finding their groove lately, but if Liquid expects to be a top tier team not only in the region but internationally, they’ll have to find a way to get the monkey off their back.
100 Thieves dropped a rollercoaster of a game to Team Solo Mid in week eight. There are still some kinks for the Thieves to work out before their run to the championship. They are already locked in for the postseason, so maybe they are trying some new compositions beforehand? Nevertheless, 100 Thieves is still a very strong team. They were able to claw their way back from a pretty significant deficit in their TSM game, and when they play to their strengths, there aren’t many teams who can take them down.
Also, Ssumday is looking like the best player in the league, being one of the sole reasons why 100 Thieves was able to keep the game close against TSM. I think if he stays on form, 100 Thieves will be a force to be reckoned with when the playoff matchups come rolling by.
OpTic is in a really interesting spot in the power rankings right now. They’re on a pretty impressive run as of late, but like many teams in the NA LCS, they have a few problems they have to solve if they want to make the playoffs.
Their aggressive style of play is usually one of their strong points; it has been a huge reason for most of their wins. However, it has also been a pitfall that has caused many losses for them as well. They commit a lot of resources to plays, and if they aren’t able to come out on top, they get rolled on. There were multiple instances of this in week eight, especially in their game against Team Liquid. For example, they committed everyone to kill Pobelter around the mid-game, and it would cause them to lose a huge team fight.
I do think that OpTic is very reliant on early game success and momentum, but they also need to be able to work from behind.
Echo Fox is looking all over the place these past few weeks. Losing two games against 100 Thieves and OpTic Gaming in week eight isn’t a great confidence booster either. 100 Thieves and OpTic are among the three teams that Echo Fox hasn’t taken a win from this split. They are also facing off against Team Liquid in the final week of the split, who they also haven’t beaten.
Echo Fox seems to want to fight 100% of the time, but like OpTic Gaming, their aggression can get the better of them. They have to find more consistency against the top teams of the league. The only top-five team they have managed to defeat in the last few weeks has been FlyQuest. They need to find some way to rein in the team and slow down a bit when they pump the gas in the mid to late game.
FlyQuest needed a couple clean wins in week eight to bounce back from their disappointing 0-2 last week. Luckily for them, they were able to take down Clutch Gaming and Counter Logic Gaming in pretty convincing fashion. It seems like the team was pretty in-sync, with good engages and good decision making from start to finish.
Hopefully, they can perform at the same level against better teams if they can make the playoffs. They have a huge test next week when they face off against the NA LCS’ hottest team, Cloud9. These are must-win matches, and C9 will provide them with much resistance towards the ultimate goal.
Could TSM make the miracle run happen? After having the worst start of the team’s history in the NA LCS, Team Solo Mid has shown some signs of life. Their fall to the bottom of the power rankings lay in their inability to work as a team for most of the split. However, in week eight, they had some great calls macro-wise to help push them to victory.
Not everything is sunshine and rainbows though, as TSM did make some key mistakes in their game against 100 Thieves. Team fights still feel a bit sloppy and their decision making needs to be clearer in order for them to close games quicker and cleaner. However, this week was a step in the right direction for TSM. Next week, they have two very important matches against Team Liquid and OpTic Gaming, which may decide TSM’s postseason fate.
Unfortunately, the next three teams have been put out of title contention this year. Clutch Gaming just wasn’t able to find consistency early enough and often enough to become a real threat this NA LCS season. This weekend was a good example of this.
There are still a bunch of problems on this roster, and I think it stems from the coaches to the players. For example, LirA is still a liability in the jungle, and Clutch should make it a priority to find a better jungler in the offseason. I think once the roster is decided, they can then build on their teamwork as a squad. We will need to see if any changes do occur for Clutch in the coming months.
I’m not sure what to think when I look at the Golden Guardians’ season. The team has also been pushed out of title contention, like Clutch. A few weeks ago, many people were calling them the dark horse of the NA LCS playoffs. It just looks like the Guardians lost all their momentum from early in the split, and they have come to a sputtering stop.
Earlier in the season, I think that Golden Guardians was one of the few teams who were able to adapt to the new meta, and so they found success. They would hover around the top of the power rankings due to teams struggling with the meta. However, now that everyone has had time to adjust, they are being picked apart and having their weaknesses exposed.
We will have to watch for the changes that GGS will bring next season. I expect them to replace Mickey, as he has been underwhelming almost all Summer. Even their bottom lane hasn’t been playing great recently, so I expect some changes there as well.
It’s hard for me to think that this season might be the last time we see this iteration of CLG on an NA LCS stage together. Counter Logic Gaming was not able to get anything going in the second half of the split. Team synergy seems to be lacking, and confidence looks to be at an all-time low, as they have been rocked in almost every game they’ve played. I expect many changes to the lineup this offseason. Darshan even gave a heartwrenching speech to his teammates before one of their games. It pains me to say it was reminiscent of a captain on a sinking ship.
I’d think that CLG would try to build around the bottom lane of Stixxay and Biofrost. They have shown great promise, even with a horrible split to show for it. I would also consider keeping Huhi, who is a North American mid laner now. The faith is no more, but hopefully, CLG can come back swinging next season.
What do you think of our week eight power rankings? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below! If you missed last week’s NA LCS power rankings, check them out here!
Born and raised in Toronto. Sometimes a writer. Sometimes a creative director. Sometimes bored. Catch me with hundreds of unplayed games in my Steam library.