Week 6 of the League of Legends Pro League summer split consisted of a slate of some of the most anticipated matches all season. Royal Never Give Up vs. Edward Gaming, FunPlus Phoenix vs. Top Esports, and FPX vs. Rare Atom rounded out some of the best matches the LPL had to offer. But those three matches weren’t the only ones that had a huge affect on the LPL landscape. Here are the top three lessons learned from the wild Week 6 in the LPL.
RNG is back
Coming off their Mid-Season Invitational win Royal Never Give Up were expected to continue their dominance that they showed through the spring split. However, ever since they came back, RNG have been playing bad. Heading into week 5, RNG sat at an abysmal 1-5 record. Their lone win came against the bottom feeding Rogue Warriors. The team’s World Championship aspirations were starting to disappear. The LPL spring split champions were on the outside looking in when it came to the LPL summer playoff picture. In Week 5 something sparked as RNG pulled off their first 2-o week all summer. However, the true test lied in Week 6 against old time rivals and current top dogs, Edward Gaming.
In one of the most anticipated matchups for Week 6, RNG not only beat EDG in a rematch of the spring playoffs losers finals, they dismantled them. Both games in the 2-0 stomp barely went past the 30 minute mark, neither game was competitive. RNG dominated in every lane, but it was RNG Jungler Yan “Wei” Yang-Wei who picked up player of the game honors in both games for his performances on Lee Sin and Xin Zhao.
RNG are now on a four match win streak and are climbing out of the cellar fast. The now 5-5 squad still sit in 12 place and need to continue their winning ways to get into the top 10 to secure a playoff birth. But with a dominating win over the best team in the region, RNG are well on their way of reclaiming that title.
FPX continues hot run
FunPlus Phoenix have been steadily climbing the standings the LPL throughout the summer split. But they have never been able to crack into the top two. With a top two seed having critical playoff implications FPX had a good opportunity to take another step in Week 6, especially with a matchup against then-second place team, Rare Atom.
After a back and forth series, FPX were able to clutch out the 2-1 victory with stellar performances from Gao “Tian” Tian-Liang and MVP front runner Kim “Doinb” Tae-sang . But the series against Rare Atom wasn’t the only test for FPX in Week 9. Top Esports stood in their way from climbing into the top two.
The last time these two teams faced off was in Week 5 of the spring split back in February. In that series, FPX 2-0 swept TES with Jang “Nuguri” Ha-gwon taking player of the game honors in Game 1. Their rematch in Week 6 of the summer split followed the same outcome. Nuguri dominated on Gwen as he dealt nearly double the damage to champions than his top lane opponent, Yu “Qingtian” Zi-Han, did to lead FPX to a 32 minute Game 1 victory. In Game 2 it was DoinB extending his MVP lead as he went deathless on Galio in route to a sub-30 minute victory to give FPX the 2-0 sweep.
With the win and also thanks to LNG for having another off week, FPX catapulted from fifth to second in the standings. They are now also within striking distance of first heading into the final stretch of the summer split.
Rare Atom falters
After weeks of slowly climbing, Rare Atom finally got into the top two in the LPL standings heading into Week 6. The enigma of the LPL were finally starting to gain recognition as one of the top teams in the LPL thanks to their impressive record and breakout performances from mid laner Chu “FoFo” Chun-Lan . In Week 6 FoFo and the rest of the RA squad were humbled by former world champion Doinb and FPX. Ra suffered only their third loss all split.
Looking to bounce back against the bottom feeding Rogue Warriors, RA took another painful loss. Unlike the FPX defeat, the one to Rogue Warriors hurts a lot worse. Heading into Week 6, RW sat at a 2-7 record. With a 5-15 game record, RW sat at 15 place in the standings. But after a momentum-boosting win against Suning to start off Week 6, RW thought they could take on the world. RA were just the next team on their patch of destruction.
The enigma of the LPL stayed true to themselves again. The series did go the distance but it was RA who came up short in Game 3. But even in their lone win in Game 2, RA struggled. The top 10 global power ranked squad needed 43 minutes to put RW away. In the first two games, FoFo had little to no impact. In Game 3 FoFo had a lead, but thanks to a quadra kill by RW mid laner Deng “Forge” Jie RW were able to erase the lead and put away RA in 33 minutes to secure the 2-1 upset.
RA have had a very suspenseful summer split. Although they started off the week in the second spot, them and FPX switched places in the standings. RA now sit in fifth after the 0-2 week.