For the first time in their history, Team SoloMid seems to have finally caught a break in the World Championship group draw.
When Misfits and Flash Wolves joined Group D, TSM fans rejoiced, confident in their team’s ability to break their international spell. However, the stigma surrounding the supposedly ‘easy’ group may have been premature.
Depending on how the play-in stage goes, Group D may actually be the group of death once again.
When the initial draw included no Korean or Chinese squads, fans of each of these teams reacted with exuberance. At last, it seemed, Team SoloMid’s group was free of the strongest regional competition.
Our MSI performance paid off
— Kevin (@lolHauntzer) September 12, 2017
The Group of Dife
— Yiliang Peng (@TSMDoublelift) September 13, 2017
However, the favorable draw may actually work against the North American hopefuls in the long run. If all four play-in teams from major regions make it into primary group play, Team WE will secure a spot in the final group.
For the three teams already drafted in, this last-minute inclusion could turn a perfect group draw into a nightmarish death group.
Team WE might be a play-in team, but they could be the dark horse of this tournament. The Chinese team went toe-to-toe with even the best of their region, and might be the strongest roster in all of China.
When they heat up, they light the world on fire, burning through their opponents with an unstoppable blaze. If China’s inferno joins the group, the results could be disastrous.
Team WE, Flash Wolves, and Team SoloMid are all arguably top-ten teams at the forthcoming World Championship. All three could be the best in their region, and all three could take the group by storm, blasting into the quarterfinals.
Even beyond the three frontrunners for the knockout stage, the pool still goes much deeper. In all discussions around the final group, Misfits has been pushed out of the limelight.
Many fans and analysts still consider Misfits to be outmatched in the highly competitive League of Legends World Championships. After all, throughout the entire regular season, Misfits acted as little more than gatekeepers, unable to ever tear down the gods who lived above them.
However, the Summer playoffs injected a new passion into the Misfits. They seem to have found a new level of coordination and counterplay to enable their bracket run. If they can pull off the same style at Worlds, they could make some surprising upsets.
Group D is far from the ‘Group of Life’ as many have described it. In fact, it could be the only pool in the entire event to feature four teams from the top ten participants.
Team SoloMid, Flash Wolves, Misfits, and potentially Team WE will battle it out in one of the most stacked groups in the entire event. Don’t believe the trope that this is a free group, anything could happen in Group D.