Our gaming expert Michael Lee is back this Monday, the 1st of February to take a look at some of the key matchups across the world of esports. Today he previews games from the Snow Sweet Snow 1 as well as the LPL 2021 Spring below.
Snow Sweet Snow 1
ENCE have lost almost all of their players in the span of the last few months and are now left with Aleksi "allu" Jalli as the only remaining player of the old core which appeared in the Major finals. Replacing the departed players in ENCE are Marco "Snappi" Pfeiffer, Lotan "Spinx" Giladi from c0ntact Gaming and Paweł "dycha" Dycha from Sprout.
Adding to the roster changes, ENCE also parted ways with their coach Slaava "Twista" Räsänen, which makes it hard to be overly optimistic about this team. As it stands now, their best player is Spinx, which is hardly praise, but more of a clue of where this team stands now.
Izako Boars enter this match on the heels of a first-second place finish at the Snow Sweet Snow 1 Regionals, where they won all five of their matches against the likes of AGO, HONORIS, Trident, Sinners and Winstrike. This was also their first tournament after the player break, which not only served as a great warm-up for this match, but also a morale booster.
I don't understand the betting odds on this match. If this was the old ENCE, I would have no problem siding with them, but what we are seeing now is not even remotely close to ENCE we were used to watching only a couple of months ago.
Izako Boars might not be one of the top teams in the scene, but they're on a winstreak and are now set to face a team that has not only undergone massive roster changes but has also not played a single match since the player break. Although ENCE field a lot more firepower, that rarely guarantees you to win games. Value is on the underdog.
LPL 2021 Spring
Suning have not impressed me with what they have shown so far this season and even though they swept Top Esports (2-0) in the opening fixture of the split, I just can't say anything positive about a team that went on to lose against Royal Never Give Up (1-2), Rare Atom (0-2) and FunPlus Phoenix (0-2).
Suning have won their most recent series against Oh My God thanks to a phenomenal performance from Xiang "Angel" Tao, but most of all thanks to a disastrous showing from OMG. A win is a win, but had Suning faced any other team that day, they would definitely not won 2-0.
LGD Gaming is a team that I don't see succeeding this split and their 0-4 record is a clear indication of how this team has been holding on so far. To make matters worse, LGD won only one map out of nine played and even that came against V5 who have not been looking too sharp of late.
LGD had some flashes of greatness, but they tend to disappoint more times than not, which makes it very hard to believe they can go far this split. Having said that, this will be a clash between two struggling teams so there is some value in siding with the underdogs to steal at least one map.
If LGD don't make something happen here, they will have a difficult time finishing the split inside top-10 and I believe the urgency will inspire efficiency. Bet on LGD Gaming to win one map!
LPL 2021 Spring
Royal Never Give Up are the only team besides EDward Gaming that has yet to lose a match this split, but that record does not show the full picture of how they got here. Last time out, RNG humiliated Team WE with a 2-0 sweep, but it's important to consider that WE played very poorly, so it's fair to assume RNG wouldn't have such an easy time if the game was played on any other day.
Bilibili Gaming are the type of team you would be very sceptical about trusting your money with, mainly because they tend to lose games they should win. Much of their struggles are a by-product of their poor decision-making, which is quite frustrating to see from a team that fields more than a few veteran players.
Royal Never Give Up are priced at around 1.26 to win this match, which is fair since they have bested significantly stronger teams that Biliblii. I would consider betting on the underdogs to win at least one map, but I am very concerned with which version of BIlibili will we see on Monday.
Even though I am not too convinced with the longevity of RNG's unbeaten run, they are currently the better team and are a much safer bet than BIlibili. RNG to win 2-0!
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