By Isaac Chandler
February 14, 2020
Week 3 was a huge turn of fortunes for a couple of the teams in the CBLoL. We saw Vivo Keyd, who started the split 0-2, managed to put together their fourth straight win as they moved all the way up to a three-way tie for second place. Meanwhile, in complete opposite fashion of Keyd, Redemption Porto Alegre has gone from their fantastic 2-0 start into a now four-game slump that’s becoming more concerning by the day. Even KABUM made a splash with their first win of the split, meaning we finally have a win on the board for every single team!
It was a wild weekend, but who came out looking big and who is looking like they’ll be staring relegations down the barrel? Let’s look at each team’s performance and see what this week may have in store for them with our 2020 CBLoL Week 3 recap.
Recovering from their surprise loss to Furia last week, Flamengo eSports returned looking a little shaken as they took two rather close games against RDP and KBM to keep hold of first place at 5-1. While they did end up winning, the team gave up a surprising number of objectives and kills across the two games, even losing their gold lead near the end against KBM in what looked like it could be a quick turnaround, barely holding on with a last-minute teamfight to save the day.
The team seemed really insistent on giving Goku Mordekaiser mid every game, and it felt like the usual pressure and agency he gives just wasn’t quite the same with it as opposed to his Ekko or Sylas, though I don’t think those would have been great into the monster that was Ornn mid for KBM. Thankfully the rest of the team was able to step up to the plate, especially WooFe with his 12-5-15 scoreline for the weekend, but they’re still looking more mortal than one would expect from such a strong line-up, and they should really spend the time till their next game refocusing their draft and coordination if they want to maintain their place up there.
The team’s got plenty of time to work on it too, as the league is on break for the next couple of weeks as Riot BR works on fixing the flood damage in their Sao Paulo studio. When they return, they’ll have matches against the 1-5 INTZ and 3-3 PaiN Gaming to deal with, perfect games for the team to show off why they are at the top. I think they’ll take them both down for the 2-0, though there is always the slight chance they slip up against PaiN for a 1-1.
Fresh off a weekend where they jumped into a tie for first place, Furia looked poised to keep up that tie at the top with matches against Vivo Keyd and INTZ, two of the weaker looking teams coming off of week two. It wasn’t too be, however, as a surging Keyd flipped the tables on Furia and smashed them, only giving up three turrets and two drakes on their way to a victory. Alternative looked completely outclassed by Keyd’s Klaus, and the rest of the Furia squad struggled to get and stay on the highly mobile Keyd line, with the only reliable CC for the team coming from Aphelios and Braum, who stepping to far forward found themselves often back at the fountain.
They managed to pull out a win against INTZ the next day, but it was a rather close affair that saw the team actually come close to losing after INTZ took the early lead and held it for most of the game, and while Furia didn’t give up a ton of kills, they still gave up a ton of objectives with their lack of a frontline to contest with. The team only managed to turn it around when a botched late-game dive by INTZ resulted in a 3k for Furia and Baron, which they quickly turned into a win. The alternative did make up for his Saturday performance here, but the draft, in general, was a major problem for Furia.
As has been a running theme in these developing regions, teams are drafting based on comfort and what they want to play, not what’s best, and it’s causing them to take much closer wins than they should against lower teams. If Furia wants to be a contender in the playoffs, and even further on make noise internationally, they’ve got to prioritize getting stronger comps and set up a line if they’re running poke. GP is great, but an Ornn or a Maokai or something would’ve been a lot better to help separate the two teams and give Furia’s backline time to reset their CD’s and get shots off without fear.
Their next matches are up against PaiN and KABUM, so they’ll be looking to bring home a 2-0 to solidify themselves as a top-half team and solidify their playstyle with some weaker competition to practice against. Given the level of their competition, I think this should be easier done than said.
What a turnaround from the start of the season for Vivo Keyd. After starting out the split 0-2. The team has seemingly found themselves as they’ve gone on a four-game tear now to bring themselves to 4-2 and a tie in second place. ADC Klaus and mid laner NOsFerus have both looked stellar in their matchups this week, especially the former with his 8-3-12 scoreline across both games, while Grell and Professor have both stepped up to work as play setters for the squad. Robo still looks like the weakest member of the team, but even then he’s shown marked improvement transitioning over to tanks and bruisers, both of whom have started getting strong agency in the meta and could prove majorly beneficial in getting the team through the split near the top.
The team still has a few things to work on, such as their willingness to give up a few turrets each game, but they’re still green and have plenty of time to get that all fixed up before crunch time hits, especially with a few weeks off. Their next match upon returning is up against KABUM, a still floundering but dangerous team that will be a great warm-up for Keyd before their second game against fellow No. 2 Prodigy Esports. That match is looking like the one to watch in Week 4. Hopefully, it won’t be as stompy as the last match the teams played. I think Keyd still loses, though, and goes 1-1 on the week.
In complete opposite fashion of Vivo Keyd, Redemption Porto Alegre has fallen flat on their face since their initial 2-0 start, going 0-4 in the past two weeks despite putting up some good effort. The team’s bottom and mid sides are looking competitive in most of their matches, the real problem lays with their top and jungle, Nyu and BalKhan respectively, both of whom have had horrendous performances and look completely tilted. Nyu had a 1/10/5 KDA, while BalKhan put up a slightly more reasonable, but still terrible, 1/10/13 scoreline. While BalKhan is at least trying to make plays and take objectives with his deaths, Nyu is just straight up losing in the top lane every game, and while it’s only one week against top teams, it’s still a worrying trend to see and could prove even more problematic if he doesn’t fix his mental game.
The team’s got their work cut out for them with another top team match-up against Prodigy to start their next week of play, and while that’s certain to be a tough one to go up against coming back from a 0-4 run, the long break is most likely spent working on the team’s problems and mental should hopefully see them come back and fight as they did in Week 1. No matter the result, however, the team should at least be able to put up another win the next day against the current 1-5 INTZ line-up, who can’t even focus on a single line-up for themselves. I’m expecting a 1-1 weekend here, though a 2-0 isn’t out of the realm of possibility if things go well during the break.
KABUM finally got their first win and man did it look dominant. We noted after Week 2 that the team was looking better and better with each game, but disappointed in their inability to really find success long enough to garner a win, but against PaiN they finally seemed to have found what they needed to take their play to the CBLoL level fully. While their ADC DudsTheBoy looked weak in his first couple of games, he finally managed to put the pieces together to be the carry his team needs, putting up a 9-4-13 scoreline for the weekend.
That’s not to say he’s the only one showing growth these past two weeks, with everyone from Ceos to Parang finally getting on the same page and showing results. Even in their loss to Flamengo they came within inches of taking the game, and if they can keep building on this form they could be a dark horse heading into the playoffs, granted they string together enough wins to make that point.
Their next week will be a real test for them as they take on Vivo Keyd and Furia, and while I think it’s too early in their growth to say they’ll beat both these teams, I would fully expect the team to pick up one win for the weekend. The question now is, though, which of these two top teams is going to take the L.
On the one hand, PaiN gave KABUM their first win of the split in a rather one-sided stomp that saw the team fail to pick up a single objective and only three kills. On the other hand, they put a rather solid smack-down onto top team PRG the day prior, giving up a couple turrets and neutrals on their way to a 9,000-gold victory. It feels like the team’s success is entirely determined by whether their jungler SeongHwan pops off or not, though his teammates ability to seem to play to their opponents level is also problematic.
They’re still a middle of the pack team, but they’re more of a measuring stick for other teams to compare themselves against as opposed to a serious contender right now. The team’s got a match against No. 2 Furia coming up next, followed by their first rematch against Flamengo, so I’m expecting a 0-2 week for this team, though it’s almost a coinflip as to how they’ll show up on the day so it could easily go 2-0 if all comes up heads.
It wasn’t a great weekend for INTZ, again, as the team found itself floundering against two of the league’s top teams in Furia and Prodigy. The team got blown out of the water in both games, managing only 11 kills total across them, and while they did manage some stronger objective play in the early and mid-game against Furia, it’s hard to tell if their success came from strong play or just Furia not prepared for the INTZ line-up. That’s not a slam against Furia, it’s a serious issue with INTZ: they’re constantly swapping out players on the squad, and while that’s great for catching opponents unaware, it’s horrible for building synergy and strategy amongst the team.
It’s very rare for squads to be able to pull this off effectively, SKT and C9 being the few that come to mind, and even those that do swap players don’t swap so many at one time. INTZ has got matches against Flamengo and RDP coming up, and the latter is probably the closest they’re going to get to a win for a while, though I still don’t think they’ll take it, going 0-2 instead. If this team wants to be successful, they need to settle down on what roster they want to use during the break, because continuing to swap like this is going to see the facing auto-relegation almost guaranteed.
Prodigy had an up and down week after dropping the smackdown against INTZ before receiving their own beating at the hands of PaiN, and there was a lot to learn for the squad from these two games. The team’s strengths clearly lay in their early and mid-game, but their late game needs a bit of cleaning up, though they’re sitting in a comfortable spot right now to be able to focus on working that.
Beyond that, there really isn’t much to say for Prodigy this week: the loss to PaiN was rather disappointing, but young rosters are prone to taking hard losses even when doing well overall so it’s hard to really criticize what’s a great learning moment for them, and the win was what you’d expect for a top team against someone at the bottom like INTZ. They’ve got matches against RDP and Keyd coming up when we get back, and while RDP should be an easy win, Keyd could prove tougher than their first time around as the team has been improving. I still think they’ll take a 2-0 on the week, but it’s going to be close.
That’s all we have for the 2020 CBLoL Week 3 recap, thanks for tuning in. We’ll be back with a recap of Week 4 and some more predictions ahead of Week 5, so stay tuned!