Cloud9 conquered the LCS Mid-Season Showdown. The organization has obtained its fourth title since its original inception in the summer of 2013. The coaches and players are flying high after their tight series victory against Team Liquid. The series came down to the wire, but in the end, it was Cloud9 that was ultimately triumphant.
The 2021 North American League of Legends Championship Series was the birth of a new era. The old guard had vanished, and the new guard took the mantle. The original big-name players such as Doublelift, Bjergsen, and Xmithie had finally retired. The organizations began to mold their teams around upcoming talents like Cloud9 Blaber and Team Liquid Tactical. But at the end of the split — only one team could be victorious.
The Road to MSI
The road to MSI was not an easy one. Cloud9 won the 2020 LCS Spring Playoffs, but the team was unable to participate at MSI due to the COVID-19 pandemic that swept the globe. The international tournament was canceled in 2020 due to rising health concerns. The organization was ready to prove itself on the international stage but it was unable to contend for the MSI international title.
Cloud9 would lose the 2020 LCS Summer Split despite a dominant showing during the Spring. The organization would miss out on contending for the League of Legends 2020 World Championship. It was the first time that Cloud9 had ever missed out on a World Championship since the organization bulldozed its way onto the LCS scene.
This year Cloud9 will be traveling to the capital of Iceland to compete for its first-ever MSI title. The North American organization will be facing off against eleven other first-place teams from various regions. The twelve teams will be divided into three groups of four and will play in a Double Round-Robin format. The top two teams in each group will advance to the Rumble Stage. The six remaining teams will then play through another Double Round-Robin format but this time the top four teams will advance to the Knockout Stage. It will be a single-elimination bracket and each match will be a best-of-five.
Cloud9 is going to pull out all the stops if they want to compete against the likes of MAD Lions, DAMWON Gaming (the current World Championship team), and either Royal Never Give Up or FunPlus Phoenix from the LPL.
The 11 Million Dollar Payoff
Luka “Perkz” Perković has become the largest League of Legends figure in the Western hemisphere. His rise to prominence came during his time on G2. He found an incredible amount of success in the organization both as its mid-laner and bottom-lane carry. Perkz made his way across the pond and found his way to the Cloud9 gaming house. Jack Etienne, the founder, and CEO of Cloud9 could not resist getting his hands on Perkz. Etienne was all over the deal the moment the mid-laner fell into free agency.
Perkz played an integral role in C9’s victory against Team Liquid. Perkz and Robert “Blaber” Huang were a force to be reckoned with — outclassing TL Jensen and the substitute Jungler, TL Armao. The C9 mid-laner put his newly obtained money where his mouth is and silenced all the critics — the man put on a show.
Cloud9 may have lost the first game, but the team bounced back during the second game of the series with Perkz at the helm. The C9 mid-laner finished the second game with a solid scoreline of 9/2/8 on Orianna. It was a tense back and forth with Team Liquid securing the third game of the series. Perkz was not going to allow a minor setback to bring him down. Cloud9 was able to bounce back in game four with his stellar Zoe gameplay — leaving the series at match point for both teams.
Together, Perkz and Cloud9 conquered the LCS Mid-Season Showdown. The game four victory sounded off the Silver Scrapes — it was a full five-game series. Perkz pulled out the signature Sylas pick in his mid-lane matchup and boy, did it pay dividends. The Cloud9 mid-laner finished the final game with a scoreline of 10/2/6 — propelling the Cloud9 organization to MSI.
Can Cloud9 Conquer the International Stage?
Sure, Cloud9 Conquered the LCS Mid-Season Showdown, but can they conquer MSI? The Mid-Season Invitational is the second-largest League of Legends event — only behind the World championship. Every year, except 2020, teams from every region show up to MSI and try to prove that they have what it takes to be the next World Champion. This year will be no different.
The Cloud9 organization is up against some pretty stiff competition. Korea’s DAMWON Gaming, the 2020 World Champion, looks to be quite formidable. It will be a tough order for Cloud9 to successfully take the whole tournament with such tough opponents standing in its way. The team will have to look for Perkz and Blaber to set the team up for success.