The League of Legends (LoL) World Championship is upon us. Once again, top squads from all over the globe will be competing over four grueling rounds for a shot at the US$1,000,000 grand prize. Ask any LoL player, and they will tell you that winning the Summoner’s Cup is the “Garen”-teed highlight of their career.
One of the biggest eSporting events on the planet, the World Championship is the culmination of every LoL season. Twenty-seven million people tuned in last year to watch the finals alone.
This year, the competition will be tougher than ever. Here is a breakdown of the field competing in the League of Legends World Championship by group, followed by the odds to win the tournament
Group A: Group of Life
- Counter Logic Gaming (North America)
- Flash Wolves (Taiwan/Hong Kong/Macau)
- KOO Tigers (Korea)
- paiN Gaming (Wildcard Qualifier)
With top Chinese teams missing, Korea’s KOO Tigers appear to be the heavy favorites in Group A. Counter Logic Gaming is sure to pose a threat as well with their excellent play of late, coming off of a great performance at the NA LCS playoffs. Don’t count out wildcard qualifiers paiN Gaming. They have an experienced squad this year with the potential to challenge the front runners.
Group B: Three-for-all
- Fnatic (Europe)
- Invictus Gaming (China)
- ahq e-Sports Club (Taiwan/Hong Kong/Macau)
- Cloud 9 (North America)
Fnatic hasn’t looked this good in years, and is arguably one of the most consistent teams in Group B. Invictus Gaming is another strong contender, and will likely move onto the semi-final round, just narrowly edging out ahq. Once the clock strikes twelve on the round robin stage, Cloud 9 will turn into the proverbial pumpkin.
Group C: Clash of the Titans
- SKTelecom T1 (Korea)
- H2K (Europe)
- Edward Gaming (China)
- Bangkok Titans (Wildcard Qualifier)
SKTelecom T1 and Edward Gaming will undoubtedly be battling for top spot in Group C. While both teams have the endurance to go all the way, Edward Gaming managed to outplay their Korean rivals in their previous meeting. Sang-hyeok “Faker” Lee’s play could mean all the difference for SKTelecom T1 in this clash of the titans.
Group D: Group of Death
- LGD Gaming (China)
- Team SoloMid (North America)
- KT Rolster (Korea)
- Origen (Europe)
China’s #1 team, LGD Gaming, will be tough to beat in Group D. The middle of the pack is much harder to predict. Origen has a shot at upsetting KT Rolster if they can match their aggressive play. LoL veterans Team SoloMid stand little chance at victory if Bjergsen’s teammates fail to pick up the slack.
League of Legends World Championship 2015 Odds:
- SKTelecom T1: 2/1
- LGD Gaming: 11/2
- Edward Gaming: 5/1
- Fnatic: 15/1
- KOO Tigers: 25/1
Biggest long shot:
- Bangkok Titans: 150/1
Tournament MVP favorite:
- Sang-hyeok “Faker” Lee (SKTelecom T1): 5/1
Tournament trash-talkers favorite:
- Counter Logic Gaming: 4/1
Team with player most likely to don a Draven ‘stache:
- paiN Gaming: 3/1
(Photo credit:By artubr (Flickr Link) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons. Photo has been cropped.)