Rogue started their playoff run with a 3-1 series against Misfits Gaming, looking unstoppable in their victories. Misfits showed moments of brilliance and gave their fans hope in game 3, but it was not enough.
After a three-week break, the LEC is back and it's time for playoffs! The first match was probably the spiciest, as the regular season number 1 Rogue went against the big overachievers of the split - Misfits Gaming! Would Rogue finally have the dream playoff run for their first LEC title, or would Misfits' talent for dramatic upset carry over to Best of 5 series as well?
Rogue's Great Start
The favorites quickly showed us why they were expected to win, taking several early kills and a gold lead in the opening game and winning several sweet teamfights once the mid-game started. However, Misfits did not give up and managed to slow down the game, even taking several dragons. It looked like they were to make one of their patented comebacks when Rogue first landed a great teamfight to get the second baron, then caught Lucjan "Shlatan" Ahmad in the jungler and then pushed 5v4 to win the game.
Game 2 did not start any better for Misfits. Once more, Rogue's jungler Kim "Malrang" Geun-seong delivered a standout performance and helped his team get ahead. The teamfights were completely in Rogue's favor and they took over the map. Misfits had a moment of hope 28 minutes in when they mounted a brave defense at their inhibitor, but Rogue retreated to get the ocean soul. Shortly afterwards, they killed Misfits top laner Shin "HiRit" Tae-min and used this advantage to press on and get match point.
Misfits weren't ready to throw in the towel, however, and despite losing the first skirmish in the third game came back with a vengeance, taking several kills around the map. Rogue's Kai'sa mid and their general poke composition was not ready to deal with the early game aggression Misfits unleashed. The favorites were reeling and an early Baron let the Rabbits storm the base, get three inhibitors and end, scoring their first win of the match.
The Comp de Grace
Now it was time for Rogue to show if they have resilience and to their credit, they came back swinging. They punished Misfits for overextending, getting several early kills. After getting several early kills, Markos "Comp" Stamkopoulos on Zeri took over the map, playing a key role in turning several fights in Rogue's favor. The favorites were over 10K gold at the 20 minute mark and soon stated pushing towards the enemy base. Misfits tried a teleport flank, but they could not kill the Zeri and were soon aced. It was an easy win and an impressive 3-1 series for Rogue - but still, that third game raised some questions. Would the team manage to fix their mistakes by the semifinal, or would once more fall short of taking the cup?
The LEC playofffs continue! Saturday will bring us El Classico, Fnatic versus G2 Esports. Will Fnatic's pre-season moves bear fruit or will G2's new team show they can succeed where its predecessor failed?