Following the acquisition of Vincent “Biofrost” Wang before the Summer Split began, the unorganized mess of a team that was TSM in the Spring Split was gone, giving way to a freight train so powerful that an 18-0 season looked almost guaranteed. Then, TSM lost to one of the worst team in the league, Phoenix1. Despite that, they still managed to finish the Regular Season 17-1 to keep their first place.
Waiting for their opponent in the Semi Finals, they had problems practicing properly when it was the most needed due to a poorly timed meta changing patch, dropped on the pro’s heads by Riot Games. When the Quarter Finals were done, TSM had their eternal rivals, CLG, standing in their way. Previously, their championship dreams were dashed by their rivals in the Spring Split. Now, they had to defeat them to have a chance of playing in the Finals. Thankfully, they managed to do it in a commanding manner.
Now, the only team standing in the way of TSM’s championship title was Cloud9, which managed to defeat Immortals in a 3-2 nailbiter. While TSM was thought to be favored to win the match, it was expected that it would be a close thing. After all, you don’t just roll over a team that can beat Immortals in a best of five.
The games started on a good note for Cloud9. They managed to beat Team SoloMid in the first game where Soren “Bjergsen” Bjerg’s Vladimir fell flat against Nicolaj “Jensen” Jensen’s Cassiopeia. In the next game, TSM came back in a big way, winning the match in 37 minutes, with Bjergsen and Yiliang “Doublelift” Peng showing up big on Cassiopeia and Jhin respectively. TSM kept on rolling in Match 3 with almost the same team comp with Bard instead of Braum, though the match took even less, ending at 29:44. This time, Bjergsen played even better and picked up Doublelift’s slack.
The final match of the series was probably the closest of the four. TSM had the lead for a big part of the game, though C9 managed to come back when it was nearing the late game. TSM gathered themselves and won some fights, with Doublelift showing us how a master of ADC plays the game, unloading maximum damage while also staying safe, keeping himself at the maximum range for his abilities and autoattacks to work. Needless to say, wiping at 43 minutes means that you’re gonna lose some inhibitors if not your Nexus. That’s precisely what happened. This defeat must have been crushing for C9 because they had a good chance of winning the game evening out the score. After the game, Jensen looked simply crushed. I am a TSM fan, but that looked crushing.
Having watched the Final, I feel satisfied that a season-long period of hard work paid off for TSM. Of course, their opponents also practised very hard, however, it appears as if that wasn’t enough. Oh, well, that’s how competitions work — somebody has to lose in order for others to win. I just hope that C9 comes back stronger next season. If they recover from the loss in time for the gauntlet, they might even have a chance to make it into Worlds, just like they did last season. After all, they defeated every team in the league except for TSM this split.