At long last, the field for the League of Legends World Championship has been set. There will be 24 teams from 13 different regions competing for the right to hoist the Summoner’s Cup in early November, and the tournament will get underway on October 2. The draw for this competition will take place on September 23, but there is some value to be had in League of Legends futures bets before the draw plays out. Let’s take a look at some potential plays for the five-week long event.
2019 League of Legends World Championship Betting Odds
G2 Esports +335
SK Telecom T1 +345
FunPlus Phoenix +395
Royal Never Give Up +495
Invictus Gaming +520
DAMWON Gaming +830
Team Liquid +2800
Clutch Gaming +8000
Ahq e-Sports Club +12000
GAM Esports +12000
Hong Kong Attitude +13000
Flamengo eSports +13000
Royal Youth +13000
Detonation FocusMe +17000
Isurus Gaming +17000
Unicorns of Love +17000
Lowkey Esports +21000
Of the 24 teams involved in Worlds, half have already qualified for the Group Stage. The remaining four spots will be determined in the Play-In Stage with 12 teams split into four groups of three. The winners of those groups will face the runner-ups from the other groups in a best-of-five series to make it into the Group Stage. DAMWON Gaming, Clutch Gaming, Splyce, and the teams with odds of 130-1 or more are involved in the Play-In Stage, and DAMWON are by far the best team involved in this stage.
DAMWON are the first Korean team to ever have to qualify through the Play-In Stage due to the LCK’s disappointing performance at the 2018 LoL World Championships. No LCK team advanced further than the quarterfinals at last year’s Worlds, and that meant the LCK lost their three automatic berths in the Group Stage to the LPL.
There is no question that DAMWON are the most talented team in the Play-In Stage, and they are the only team in the first part of the tournament with a chance to win the whole thing. DAMWON have arguably the best top laner in the world in Nuguri, and ShowMaker is a very talented mid laner. Canyon won the LCK Summer Split MVP for his impressive performances, and this team could use some extra seasoning since this is their first major international tournament. DAMWON showed us what they could do at Rift Rivals, knocking off EVOS Esports, TOP Esports, and JD Gaming to help lead the LCK to the title. There is good value in DAMWON at this price.
It’s hard to see much value in tournament favorites G2 Esports. While G2 are a great team that have dominated Europe this year, the lack of any other great teams in their region really hurts them. They have been incredibly creative, and they did knock off SK Telecom T1 and Team Liquid to win the Mid-Season Invitational, but they also underwhelmed prior to the knockout rounds and went 5-5 in Group Stage. G2 lost each of their games against both Invictus Gaming and Phong Vu Buffalo, and I think someone will take them out before the final.
SK Telecom T1 are tempting at this price because of their history. SKT have won Worlds three times, and they won both LCK split titles this year. However, the earlier loss to G2 is a concern, and this team was also smashed in under 16 minutes by Invictus Gaming at MSI. Top laner Khan can be tilted, and if he loses his composure, SKT are in a lot of trouble.
Speaking of the defending champions, it’s hard to bet on Invictus Gaming at this price. Their play has been erratic throughout the year, and Invictus survived a roller coaster of a series with JD Gaming to make it back to Worlds. There is value betting on IG as an underdog against some of the other contenders, but there is no value in betting on them to repeat as Worlds champions.
The only LPL representative worth your money is FunPlus Phoenix. FPX are making their long-awaited international debut, and Doinb is out to stake a claim as the best mid laner in the world. FPX finally won a split title earlier in the month, beating Royal Never Give Up 3-1, and they have the best regular season record of any team in a major region this year.
If you’ve been reading my Esports picks for a while, you know that I love this Griffin team. Thus, it’s no surprise I think there’s value in them at the current price. Griffin were the best regular season team in Korea, and their creativity and innovation will be well-suited for a tournament like this. If they can have decent top lane play, Griffin are a strong contender to win Worlds.
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