League of Legends World Championship: An Unexpected Quarters

The biggest League of Legends tournament of the year nears its final stage

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League of Legends World Championship: An Unexpected Quarters

Credit to LoL Esports Photos

Credit to LoL Esports Photos

Credit to LoL Esports Photos

Credit to LoL Esports Photos

Daniel Gomez, Online Editor-in-Chief

The League of Legends World Championship in South Korea has just concluded its quarter finals stage. A tournament that originally featured 32 teams has narrowed to 4. The quarter finals were historic with several upsets, creating one the most anticipated semifinals in years.

Titans Fall on Day 1

Chinese second seed Invictus Gaming was the first team to advance. The team faced Korean first seed KT Rolster. Korean teams have a history of being the best in League of Legends. Korea has produced the last five world champions, consequently the last four finals have featured two Korean teams. KT Rolster is the latest Korean super team, furthermore favorited to win the entire tournament. Invictus Gaming would not back down, winning the first two games handily. KT was able to bounce back after one of the most intense game 3 in World’s history. Despite KT threatening a reverse sweep, IG was able to shut them down in game five. IG cemented their semifinal position and eliminated a titan.

With an arena still reeling, the second game of the day looked like a much easier game to predict. Chinese first seed Royal Never Give Up has won every tournament this year, looking to complete that streak by winning the biggest tournament of the year. They faced European third seed G2 Esports, a team that could not even reach their own domestic finals. The match was expected to be quick, but G2 shocked the world by beating RNG in five games. In one day both tournament favorites were eliminated leaving the tournament open for anyone to win.

The Hope of North America

The next day started with the final North American team Cloud9 facing the final Korean team the Afreeca Freecs. Cloud9 defied all expectations once again, handily beating the Freecs three games to zero. A team with three rookies and from arguably the weakest region ended a dynasty. For the first time in five years a Korean team would not see the finals. For the first time in seven years a North American team has reached the semifinals. Cloud9 became the hope of an entire region with this victory.

The final match was the only quarter final to go as expected. Europe’s Fnatic was able to beat China’s Edward Gaming making them the de facto favorites to win tournaments. This win will pit them against Cloud9 guaranteeing a western team will make the finals. This historical quarter final has made the 2018 World Championship the greatest tournament to date. Only four teams remain, and the semifinals will begin on October 27th.

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