By Michael Mooridian
There may be only four teams scheduled to make an appearance in the League of Legends 5v5 Event at MLG Raleigh, but you can rest assured that Major League Gaming has invited four of the best teams in the game. The short but exciting history between these teams has created an atmosphere sure to produce intense grudge matches, explosive comebacks, and all-out gambles in an attempt to win not only the very first MLG League of Legends Event, but also a portion of the $20,000 prize pool.
Team SoloMid are one of the most recognizable names in LoL, featuring star players such as Reginald and TheOddOne, who is considered to be one of the best junglers on the planet. The team took home a 3rd Place finish in the Season One Championships at Dreamhack—the highest placing North American team at the Event—and secured a 2nd Place finish more recently at Gamescom. With such consistent showings, TSM will definitely be a team to watch out for. But TSM also fell short at both Events and let their chances at 1st Place slip away. Will this group be able to turn their luck around in Raleigh? Or will they be forced once again to watch another team walk away with the prize?
Epik Gaming exited Dreamhack earlier than they would have liked after losing a disappointing 2-0 series to TSM. But for one member of TSM, it was a bittersweet victory; In order for Reginald’s team to advance in the competition, he had to send his brother, Dan Dinh (a member of Epik), home early. It should prove interesting to see what role the personal relationships and inside knowledge shared by these teams will play at MLG Raleigh. And while a 4th Place finish at Dreamhack isn’t too shabby, Epik Gaming have no desire to repeat their placing in Raleigh—it would mean finishing dead last, something they don’t intend to do.
Counter Logic Gaming will be coming into the League of Legends Event with a huge confidence boost after a recent 1st Place finish at Gamescom. Last weekend, CLG defeated TSM in an intense 2-1 series and walked away as the Champions. Now, they’re looking to carry their momentum into Raleigh and take home consecutive 1st Place finishes. But momentum alone won’t be enough against teams of this caliber. Will CLG be able to repeat their recent success and prove they aren’t just one-hit wonders?
Curse Gaming recently landed a sponsorship with Curse, Inc., and they’ll be eager to show off the skills that earned them that sweet deal. Still, many would consider Crs the underdogs coming into Raleigh, as they have yet to find the same kind of success as the other teams when it comes to high stakes events. But don’t count Crs out just yet. Throughout MLG’s history, we have seen numerous matches in which stars underperform and teams that have been all but written off suddenly catch fire and blaze a path of destruction through their Bracket (sometimes going on to win the entire Event). Crs has already proven they have the skills to hang with the top teams. But will they have what it takes when everything is on the line?
At this point, the only thing that can be said for sure is that there has never been a better reason to stay glued to a monitor for an entire weekend! Good luck to all the teams at MLG Raleigh, and we can’t wait to get this Event underway.
Tune in to MLG Raleigh and watch the League of Legends 5v5 Event live on Saturday and Sunday! Check out the full Broadcast Schedule for all the details, and then get yourself a League Membership so you can watch the Event, and all the action from Raleigh, in ad-free HQ.