Another day, another round of esports best bets coming courtesy of our gaming expert Michael Lee. This Tuesday, the 23rd of February, he focuses in on the League of Legends Pro League for his best two bets of the night before heading to the Dota Pro Circuit China Upper Division to round out the night.
League of Legends Pro League
Bilibili Gaming and EDward Gaming will play out their first game after the new year break on Tuesday when they will meet on the Summoner's Rift for the first time this season. EDward enter the match as the only undefeated team in the league with a 7-0 record and 88% map win rate (14-2), which sits them far above the 2019 LoL world champions FunPlus Phoenix who are 7-2 with a 79% map win rate.
Bilibili Gaming were far less convincing this season and have managed a mediocre 4-4 record after eight rounds of play. In the week leading to the mid-season break, Bilibili edged past Royal Never Give Up (2-1) and suffered a devastating 1-2 loss against Oh My God, so it doesn't surprise me that they're heading into this match as massive underdogs.
Since this is the first match after the break, there is a chance we could see an upset win and it's hard to ignore the high odds offered on Bilibili Gaming. They might not be the cleanest team in the league, but I expect them to put in work to prepare for this match, which should help them keep it relatively close.
League of Legends Pro League
LNG Esports are holding on surprisingly well this season, but I still wouldn't rank them anywhere near top-five, whereas I would have a hard time making up reasons why Top Esports aren't one of the top-three teams in the league. The quality gap between these two teams is rather huge and there is no need to go into much detail why that's the case.
Looking at the current league standings, what was said above might seem a bit biased, since LNG Esports are 4-3 with a 50% win rate, whereas Top Esports are 3-3 with a 54% win rate. Top Esports' poor record, however, has a perfectly good explanation.
Top lost their opening match of the season against Suning (0-2) and later suffered an upset 1-2 defeat against Rogue Warriors. Although huge losses on paper, there early-season matches rarely hold any value in the long run.
Their only remaining defeat since then has happened against FunPlus at the start of February, which is not a terrible result, since I would rank FunPlus as (by far) the strongest team in the league. If we draw a conclusion form that, Top only really suffered two upset losses and simply got outclassed by the strongest team in the league.
LNG, on the other side, won only against the inconsistent Invictus Gaming, and three mid-table teams in ThunderTalk Gaming, BIlibili Gaming and eStar. If we consider the quality of teams LNG have beaten, their record suddenly becomes far less impressive.
LNG lack the quality to defeat Top Esports, so the only way they can come away with something is if Top don't show up. Bet on Top Esports to win 2-0.
Dota Pro Circuit China Upper Division
Team MagMa have managed only one win in four outings this tournament, which does not look too promising. However, they had to face some of the strongest teams in the region, including EHOME (0-2), ViCi Gaming (0-2) and PSG.LGD (0-2), so we should give them some slack for their poor win rare.
Invictus Gaming enter this match as the only undefeated team at the tournament (3-0) with wins against Elephant (1-2), EHOME (1-2) and ViCi Gaming (2-0). Even though two of their games were fairly close, IG have proven their worth against ViCi, who they crushed with one of the best performances I have seen from them this year.
IG and MagMa last met at the start of January, when MagMa secured an upset (2-0) win. That, however, was nothing more than a huge upset that likely won't repeat itself this time out.
Invictus Gaming are priced at only 1.22 which is a fair, but I'm far more attracted by the -1.5 map handicap bet, which pays out at 1.88 on PickleBet. Even though map handicap bets are fairly risky in online matches, I don't see how MagMa can compete with a team that demolished ViCi just two weeks ago.
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