Originally published at: https://esportsone.com/blog/worlds-group-stage-preview-2020/
The quality of games in the Worlds Play-Ins gives high hopes for an epic Group Stage battle! We take a look at the Worlds Group Stage and give you a full preview and Worlds groups power rankings breakdown. The Worlds 2020 Groups will be talked about in future competitions I can feel it!
We will list each team in order from strongest to weakest and provide some in-depth analysis about each team in each group.
Group Stage Preview + Power Rankings
1. G2 Esports
Where to start with the Kings of Europe? G2 found themselves on the precipice of missing LEC playoffs and Worlds in Week 6 with a record of 5-7. Despite this tumultuous start, their “Hakuna Matata” mentality helped them find their stride against Rogue, kickstarting their run from 6th place to ultimately securing the first place seed at Worlds for the LEC. It is tough to gauge where they finish at Worlds, but they are the strongest in the group for this Worlds Groups Preview. The weaknesses that “Perkz” and “Jankos” have shown are somewhat masked by the dominant performances that we have seen from Caps and Wunder, but this may not be the case at Worlds. Even with said weaknesses, Worlds’ current meta heavily favors a team like G2 who looks to fight around objectives and have a strong topside. There is no better team at turning a season around than G2 and not a more deserving player than Caps, looking for his third consecutive Worlds finals.
Worlds Fantasy Picks: Caps, Wunder
Despite Suning’s shaky and somewhat disjointed summer split, they turned it around with a strong performance in the LPL playoffs. They are not a team known for their creativity, but have a strong standard style of gameplay and excel in team fights due to their raw talent. The rookie AD carry “huanfeng” has been cited by some LPL personalities, such as HystericsCasts, as potentially the best AD carry in the LPL and a “player to watch” at Worlds 2020. He is paired up with support “SwordArt” who is one of the most veteran players at the event with 6 Worlds appearances and known for his tenure on the Flash Wolves. Expect them to find wins through the aggressive play of “SofM” and the strength of their rookie, “haunfeng”.
Worlds Fantasy Picks: haunfeng, SofM
3. Team Liquid
With all of the World Championship experience on this team, anything less than a trip to the Semifinals would be a failure. However, with their late collapse in the LCS playoffs that forced them into the Play-Ins, they aren’t set up well to achieve that goal. Hopefully, the extra games’ experience can help their case here in the Worlds Group Stage, but it will be an uphill battle to overcome G2 and Suning to get out of their group.
Worlds Fantasy Picks: Tactical, CoreJJ
4. Machi Esports
This team has the experience as all five of their members have been to a Worlds before; however, the odds are not in their favor. They were seen as the weakest string to clinch Groups coming into the tournament, and with some outstanding performance from Play-In teams, they may not even be favored to defeat them. As a team, they have an extremely balanced approach, with no player having any outlier stats in a positive or negative way. They will need to step up as a collective five to make any noise here.
Worlds Fantasy Picks: Gemini
1. JD Gaming
Leading up to Worlds 2020, many fans have overlooked the 2nd Seed of the LPL. JD Gaming, the Spring Split Champions, pushed TES to an intense five-game series in the summer finals but failed at the finish line. JDG is a personal favorite to win the entire tournament, due to their coordination, teamwork, and strong macro. Their top laner, “Zoom”, and jungler “Kanavi” are arguably the best within their respective positions and will be the catalyst for not only securing first seed in this group but making a deep run into Knockouts. Their AD carry “Loken” should perform well within this group as he has strong mechanics, and his support “LvMao” has an innovative pool of non-meta supports. This poses a unique problem for opponents, as JDG cannot only play the game through their top-side but also create an unfamiliar matchup in the bottom lane that could prove difficult to abuse for weaker teams.
Worlds Fantasy Picks: Zoom, Loken, Kanavi
2. DAMWON Gaming
DWG is a tournament favorite for many (as they should be) and very well might go on to clinch the Summoner’s Cup on October 31st. Their playstyle heavily revolves around the top-side of the map, with their jungler “Canyon” looking to get his mechanically gifted solo laners ahead. DWG’s playstyle is more akin to the LPL than to its brethren in the LCK, as they have an impressive average game time of 28 minutes and look to skirmish early quite often. Their AD carry “Ghost” is usually alone in lane, as their support “Beryl” looks to roam with “Canyon” to make plays and secure early towers and Rift Heralds. Their success comes at the hands of Nuguri and Showmaker, crushing their opponents in lane. It is important to note that Nuguri had surgery for a collapsed lung, causing him to miss some scrims and practice. He has reportedly recovered well and is looking ahead to their games, but the risk puts them at number 2 in the Worlds Groups Preview for Group B.
Worlds Fantasy Picks: Showmaker, Nuguri, Beryl
3. PSG Talon
By far, PSG Talon is coming into the Group Stage with more momentum than any other Play-Ins team. Even with a couple of substitute players having to fill in, they shocked everybody by outright winning Group B. Unfortunately, they are rewarded by being put in a group that nobody else wanted to land in with JD Gaming and DAMWON being two of the best teams in the entire tournament, expected to both emerge from this group. With their full starting roster available, PSG Talon will have to shock the world again, starting with the Worlds Group Stage.
Worlds Fantasy Picks: Kaiwing
Looking past the rough series versus Fnatic in the LEC playoffs, Rogue fixed one of the most significant issues that teams kept citing as their weakness, their standard drafts. In the series with MAD and G2, Rogue showed they could adapt to new metas and even their drafts within a series. Inspired showed us a deeper champ pool and aggressive playstyle that allows him to carry alongside the Larssen, which is crucial when looking at the caliber of junglers and mid-laners they will face in Group B. If Rogue can sneak a win off the powerhouses of JDG or DWG, you can expect it to be off the backs of these two players. Nonetheless, Rogue will have to play at their absolute best and then some, if they hope to clinch even the 2nd seed in this group.
Worlds Fantasy Picks: Larssen, Inspired
Don’t just watch Worlds matches – play them!
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Just because they are the lowest seed coming from LCK (#3) does not mean they are any less dangerous. Gen.G has two of the best players in the entire tournament with Bdd and Ruler and has a great set up to win their group. Ruler ranks 2nd of all players in Kills per game (5.2) and has a partner in crime in Bdd who averaged 4.0 Kills per game in the Mid Lane. Hopefully, they don’t end NA’s hope on their way out of the group, but they don’t discriminate when it comes to beating opponents.
Worlds Fantasy Picks: Bdd, Ruler, Clid
Nobody would have guessed it when TSM was a game away from getting swept for the 2nd time in the LCS Playoffs, but TSM is now NA’s main hope at Worlds! It is no secret that their success revolves around Bjergsen, but it was an emergence from Spica and Broken Blade that earned them the NA #1 Seed. They are in a group that should be extremely competitive and offers the ability to move on to the Bracket Stage, but we all know NA fans are very careful with getting their hopes up…
Worlds Fantasy Picks: Bjergsen, Spica, Brokenblade
We all know the name. We all know the history of this team. However, this has been a Fnatic year like no other. After an extremely underwhelming Regular Season, they got their act together just in time to clinch a spot at Worlds. But all those struggles add extra risk to thinking they can escape from Groups. This team has become too dependant on Selfmade, so it will be on his shoulders to prove he is a league above the other Junglers in the group that are not named Clid. The rocky finish in the LEC Summer Split placed them number 3 for Group C in the Worlds Groups Preview + Power Rankings.
Worlds Fantasy Picks: Rekkles, Selfmade
4. LGD Gaming
The perception of LGD has changed drastically since the start of the tournament. Initially, they were an easy Play-Ins winner and a threat to join the other LPL teams in the Bracket Stage. After a very underwhelming performance in Play-Ins, all that confidence has disappeared. They are still strong, and this group is so competitive that they can make it out, but they cannot expect to do so while playing as they did in Play-In.
Worlds Fantasy Picks: Peanut, Xiye
1. Top Esports
Top Esports is the #1 Seed from the Region and widely respected as the best in the LPL. However, their most significant downside is the pressure to meet the expectation of winning Worlds. Pick any position, and you will find one of the best players in the tournament. Getting out of Group Stage is just a formality for the juggernaut as they are destined for a very deep run.
Worlds Fantasy Picks: 369, Knight, Jackeylove
On paper, this team is composed of superstars and should clutch the group’s 2nd spot, with the likes of Chovy, Deft, and Keria. The success of DRX will be through these three players as they are some of the best in their respective positions. If you have not seen it for yourself, watching Chovy dismantle his opposing mid-laners was a thing of beauty in the LCK. Although Chovy has been cited for much of their success, you cannot go without acknowledging the impressive rookie year of Keria, their support. Learning alongside the veteran in Deft, Keria ended the regular season with the highest KDA (5.5) and KP (72.3%) on his team and out of all supports in the LCK. However, despite this roster’s strength, in the playoffs, they did not live up to their regular-season selves with shaky performances across the board. They will face a Flyquest team with nothing to lose and a motivated UOL roster, which could be their downfall in the Worlds Group Stage.
Worlds Fantasy Picks: Chovy, Keria, Deft
The #2 NA at Worlds has the toughest road to success of the three teams. You can make a good argument for Flyquest’s roster to have the right amount of experience and talent to make a run, as 4 of their 5 players have had success on the Worlds stage before. The downside of that argument is that they have to beat Top Esports and DragonX in order to get out of the group. This is a team that is used to being doubted and disrespected, so they are coming in with a big chip on their shoulder and something to prove.
4. Unicorns of Love
We expected to see fireworks with this team in Play-Ins and they definitely delivered. They are by far the fastest playing team and lead all teams in Combined Kills per Minute, so whether they win or lose, fireworks will be going off. Of any team, UOL dominated their respective region the most as they only lost 1 game all year, but they will be going up against much more difficult competition in Group D.
Worlds Fantasy Picks: SaNTaS, Nomanz, BOSS
Thanks for checking out our Worlds Group Stage Preview and Power Rankings! Hope this gives you some insight into what to expect from this epic contest!