LCS Week 4 TSM vs. Team Liquid LoL Breakdown



Thu 28th Feb 2019 - 8:53pm

TSM vs Team Liquid, a battle of two powerhouses. A dynasty and a name synonymous with winning versus a new super team with a familiar face leading the charge. Yilliang “Doublelift” Peng is regarded as the best ADC is North American history. He recently joined Team Liquid after two years and two NALCS championships with TSM and has been destroying the LCS since. Team Liquid achieved super-team status after the acquisition of dominant C9 mid laner Jensen and world champion Korean support CoreJJ from Gen G.

TSM has since slipped up since the major roster moves that saw Zven and Mithy going to TSM, losing out of playoffs and the regional qualifiers guaranteed them their first time not making it to the Worlds stage. Since missing the Worlds stage, they have decided to get rid of their experienced, 3-time LCS winning top laner Hauntzer, in exchange for the young buck Broken Blade out of the TCL in Turkey. In another acquisition they exchanged Mithy in the support role for NA talent Smoothie. This is the first matchup of 2019 between these two powerhouses.

The Draft:

The first ban phase sees Team Liquid ban Ezreal, Cassiopeia, and Irelia. These bans are targeted at Bjergsen and Zven due to them being the carries for TSM in recent games. TSM targeted Doublelift’s pocket pick Lucian, Urgot who is very strong in recent meta and picked or banned almost every game, and Nocturne, one of Xmithie’s best jungle champs. Team Liquid drafts Yorick first as their top laner. Yorick is a good duelist and amazing split pusher. TSM drafts with their first two picks, two hard crowd control champions in support Thresh and jungle Sejuani. Team Liquid drafts support champion Alistar for CC and Sivir for a hard pushing, farm heavy ADC.

TSM responds to the earlier pick of Yorick with Jax, a late game carry and strong duelist. The second ban phase saw Team Liquid take Draven and Kalista off the table because TSM has yet to pick an ADC. TSM ban away Gragas and Olaf as Team Liquid hasn’t drafted a jungler. TSM then locks in Kai’Sa, a champion Zven has been pretty superb at playing. Team Liquid then drafts Syndra for Jensen and Lee Sin for Xmithie. TSM close the draft with a Zoe pick for Bjergsen to provide more CC and magic damage. TSM won the draft for this game.

The Early Game:

TSM doesn’t hit their power spike until the mid to late game. With Team Liquid’s draft favoring the early game, TSM has a larger spike than them as the game progresses. The early game starts out slow with minor trades and CSing. First blood is obtained for TSM at 6 minutes after CoreJJ takes a bad trade opportunity. CoreJJ notices a minion advantage and Thresh hook on cooldown and tried to capitalize on the opportunity. With Doublelift low on mana and slightly out of position, CoreJJ was burst down by Kai’Sa and flayed by Thresh to secure the kill.  

The bot lane lead TSM obtained is then lost at 7 minutes after Zven is caught out by CoreJJ’s Hexflash play. Without his support in lane with him, and a lack of vision, Zven plays too far ahead trying to CS and is caught out. This allow Doublelift to shove the wave freely and take 2 plates off the bot lane outer turret.

2 minutes later a Xmithie gank plus a CoreJJ engage leads to another kill for Doublelift, as he takes down Smoothie. Meanwhile in the top lane, Akaadian ganks Impact and, with the help of TSM top laner Broken Blade, they even the kills at 2 at 10 minutes. At the 11-minute mark, Akaadian is caught out in bottom river and with his death, Team Liquid takes the advantage and secures the first drake of the game, a mountain drake.

The action continues 2 minutes later as a team fight breaks out for the rift herald with TSM starting the objective. Xmithie is killed as he gets burst down by Broken Blade’s Jax and Akaadian’s Sejuani. Impact is then forced to run, showing off his ability to dodge skillshots, but ultimately dies to Bjergsen’s paddle star. TSM then kills the rift herald, while Broken Blade takes the first tower of the game, giving TSM first tower gold. With first tower falling, the early game phase and laning phase approaches an end.

The Mid Game:

Team Liquid knocks down their first tower in the bot lane as Jensen roams down and Xmithie looms over for a gank. With the jungle pressure and mid roaming, Zven and Smoothie have no choice but to give up the tower instead of dying and losing the tower. Merely minutes later, Team Liquid groups up 4 members mid lane in an attempt to take the tower. This attempt is foiled as TSM brings 4 members mid and Bjergsen lands a Sleepy Trouble Bubble on Xmithie. Xmithie is then hit by the Paddle Star making his health disappear as Akaadian collects the kill.

After trading towers and resetting, Xmithie is caught out in his bottom side jungle, this triggers a 4 versus 3 fight in the favor of TSM as they kill Xmithie and CoreJJ. With 4 players already bot, TSM take the second bot tower and extend their gold lead to 5k. With this lead, they can continue to snow ball and spike as they approach the late game.

Late Game: 

Broken Blade secures a kill at the enemy bot inhibitor tower on Team Liquid’s top laner Impact. Since Broken Blade secured the kill and had a minion wave crashing into tower with him, he is able to rotate to baron with his team and take it. Team Liquid must try to steal or give up the baron. TSM has 5 members to their 4 so they decide to reset, clear waves and give away the baron.

Using the baron buff TSM sends to Broken Blade mid lane to push and the other 4 members bot to take down the turret and shove their waves. This forces Team Liquid to send a member mid. TSM’s advantage over them allows them to push easily due to Team Liquid’s inability to win fights. Team Liquid is going to have to withstand the push, hope TSM makes a mistake and wait out baron buff. Team Liquid stalls out their baron buff and prepare to take the next baron. They are met by TSM and ultimately lose the fight. TSM then proceeds to take the base and hands the undefeated Team Liquid they first loss of the split.


The TSM wrath was swift and it was felt. After a slow start to the split TSM is becoming something scary. Broken Blade is starting to shine and Beardsen is in full effect. The newest additions of TSM are meshing together creating a challenger to Team Liquid’s reign. Team Liquid is a team that will bounce back and continue to win. Issues with the draft is what plagued them this game, but they are fully expected to regain form and continue to dominate.

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