Welcome back to SFU eSports “What to Watch” a weekly article about some of the matches coming this weekend that we are most excited about. Join me, Patrick Camastra, as I cover the LCS Semifinals and hopefully not get all 4 predictions incredibly wrong once again.

NA LCS

Spring Split Playoffs – Team Liquid vs. Echo Fox
Saturday, March 31st, 2:00 PM
https://www.twitch.tv/riotgames

Although Echo Fox has been a force to be reckoned with for the majority of the season, I just don’t see them taking this series. Echo Fox went 1-4 in their last five games with their only win coming over FlyQuest. Even that game was too close for a team that was in first place for most of the year and with an opponent like Team Liquid, they don’t have an easy task ahead of them.

Meanwhile, Team Liquid are fresh off of an impressive 3-0 sweep over C9. They showed their resilience in the Game 1 comeback, which was won by superior shotcalling to rush the nexus while the rest of the players fought around Elder Drake. In Game 2 they won off a baron fight and clean push into C9’s base and Game 3 was much off the same. TL took the initiative to rush down Baron in an otherwise even game, they took the buff and one kill while losing nothing, eventually using the buff to storm the base of C9 and take the series.

After TL’s last series, where they were able to win 3 close games that could’ve gone either way by superior team coordination, I’ve got to give this one to TL.  I know I said in the intro that I don’t want to get my predictions wrong this week, but I’ve just got a gut feeling about the upset with this one.

TL;DR Prediction: Liquid Win 3-1

Spring Split Playoffs – 100 Thieves vs. Clutch Gaming
Sunday, April 1st 12:00 PM
https://www.twitch.tv/riotgames

Clutch Gaming impressed everyone with last week’s performance against TSM. Their first playoff game as a team in the LCS was a pretty one sided loss and I think everyone, myself included, counted them out too early. Their grit however showed as they won a close Game 2 and used that momentum for another two consecutive, decisive, and relatively quick victories against TSM to take the series.

But 100 Thieves isn’t TSM. After an explosive entry onto the scene of the NA LCS winning 4 of their first 5 games and apart from their dreadful Week 4, this team has proven themselves as a top team each and every week. They picked up even more momentum towards the end of the season, going 5-0 in their last 5 games. Out of those 5 wins, two of them were against the other top team in the league Echo Fox, and another one of them was against their current opponent, Clutch Gaming.

To be safe, I’ll put my prediction at 3-1 just because Clutch Gaming has surprised me in the past, but if 100 Thieves were to sweep this weekend I would not be surprised.

TL;DR Prediction: 100 Thieves Win 3-1

EU LCS

Spring Split Playoffs – G2 Esports vs. Splyce
Friday, March 30th, 9:00 AM
https://www.twitch.tv/riotgames

This is hands down my pick for matchup of the weekend. Out of the four Bo5 series happening this weekend I think it’s safe to say that this will be the most competitive.

At the end of week 9 both of these teams were tied with 11-7 Records and were forced into a tiebreaker to see who would earn a 2nd place bye and who would finish in 3rd and have to play an extra series against the 6th place H2K. After a close game G2 was able to gain a lead around the 16 minute mark when they were able to come out on top of a skirmish in the river, killing four and keeping all their members alive. They then took that lead and used it to snowball the rest of the game.

When it comes to solo lanes, Perkz and Wunder are expected to win against Odoamne and Nisqy respectively. Although Splyce arguably has a stronger and more consistent bottom lane then G2, a lot of their wins revolve around their jungler Xerxe, who in their last bout with G2 was outperformed by his counterpart, Jankos. Overall, I think this series will be close but ultimately will go to G2.

TL;DR Prediction: G2 Win 3-2

Spring Split Playoffs – Team Vitality vs. Fnatic
Saturday, March 31st, 8:00 AM
https://www.twitch.tv/riotgames

Just a heads up, this may sound a bit familiar if you just read what I wrote about 100 Thieves. But Fnatic is just too powerful.

Although, I do want to give some credit to Vitality. They have some strengths in areas that Fnatic just aren’t as developed in. Gilius is a wildcard and Jiizuke is an absolute powerhouse, while Fnatic typically lacks that crucial jungle-mid synergy. With Gilius’ assistance, Jiizuke may be able to overpower Caps and force Fnatic to play a different style then what they are used to. But with veterans like sOAZ and Rekkles spearheading the Fnatic roster, I doubt Fnatic will be easily shook.

Fnatic dropped only 4 games all season and although one of them was to Team Vitality, that was Week 2. In fact, 3 of those 4 losses were in the first 3 weeks. The rest of the season they spent just asserting their dominance. Between Rekkles’ performances in the bottom lane and their overall synergy as a team, I think it’s safe to assume they will take the series, and likely the championship.

TL;DR Prediction: Fnatic Win 3-0

OWL

After New York Excelsior reverse swept Philadelphia Fusion to become Stage 2 Champions, The Overwatch League is on hiatus until April 4th. We’ll see you then for more OWL coverage and our picks on what to watch for Stage 3!

SFU eSports

We want to thank all of you who support our collegiate teams, we are incredibly proud of all three of them.

Our College League of Legends team was victorious against BC rivales UBC last week and in doing so advance to the West Conference Finals on April 7th against University of California, Irvine. The last time we matched up against UCI we handed them their first loss of the season with a decisive 2-0 victory after two quick games. All of us at SFU eSports hope for more of the same this weekend and wish our team the best of luck!

Also, our JV 1 team SFU Raccoons play against University of Texas at Dallas this Saturday in the JV1 Playoffs round of 32 after being victorious with a 2-0 victory in the round of 64. Keep it up and GLHF!

Finally, our JV2 team, SFU Academy was eliminated by U of Northern Iowa in the JV2 Playoffs round of 64. We are very proud of our team and want to congratulate them on amazing season! GGs to U of Northern Iowa.

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