MLG Summer Arena is upon us this weekend August 3-5! Four teams will be competing from all different parts of the world in a round robin seeding phase followed by a Grand Finals and 3rd place finals! The teams competing are Team Solomid and Team Curse from North America, Team Black from Europe, and finally Azubu Blaze from Korea. TSM was automatically qualified after winning MLG Anaheim in June; while both Curse and Black qualified via the NA and EU Qualifiers respectively. Azubu Blaze was invited after their impressive 1st place performance at the OGN Spring 2012 Championship and to make their MLG debut, as well as be the first Asian team to compete in a North American LAN event! Over the next 2 days we here at Reign of Gaming will be taking the time to do back stories on the teams, get everyone introduced, and make some bold predictions so you know exactly what to look forward to this coming weekend. Today we will be covering the NA teams Team Solomid and Team Curse.
Team SoloMid is one the oldest names in in the League of Legends scene. They have maintained a very stable roster with their only change being Dyrus replacing TheRainMan in the top lane after their disappointing 7th place finish at IEM Hannover. Since Dyrus joined the team though, TSM has won every single LAN event they have attended including the last MLG event at Providence! However, their recent online performances have been inconsistent with them losing in the last 3 TSM Invitationals. They also managed only a 4th place showing in the Elite of Europe tournament losing to their European rivals Moscow 5, who dismissed them effortlessly. Reginald's performance has been erratic lately, but it could be due to the fact he is trying to practice with more unfamiliar champions in high competition environments. Recent common champion picks for him have been Twisted Fate, Gragas, and the new mage Zyra (the tournament will be played on the Jayce patch however).
TSM is still clearly the NA favorite and they normally don't disappoint when it comes to LAN, but they also have no experience against either Azubu Blaze or BLACK. It will be exciting to see how their playstyles clashes with these unfamiliar teams, particularly the reigning Korean OGN champions Azubu Blaze who many (including CLG.EU's jungle Snoopeh and Joe Miller) think will take 1st at this weekend's event.
Curse has had one of the most inconsistent rosters in the League of Legends competitive scene, but they have finally formed a solid lineup with the additions of Saintvicious in the jungle and Westrice top lane. For this tournament, they will be playing with old top lane Pobelter because Westrice is unable to attend. The team has been practicing and living together in the Curse CEO's San Francisco penthouse as they prepare to move into their Beverly Hills Gaming House and really kick start their training for Season 2. After seeing the results of the MLG NA Qualifiers, and in their temporary living situation, Curse is ready to make a name for themselves again and really show that they are serious contenders for not only the MLG Summer Arena top spot, but first at the Season 2 Championships as well. Their success will be likely linked to how well Saintvicious is able to do in the jungle. He plays a more carry-oriented style than many other junglers using Shyvana or Mundo to get as much farm as possible.
Curse may be the only team prepared for the Asian team Azubu Blaze, as both Saintvicious and Elementz have experience playing Asian teams from their days on CLG. Saintvicious in particular will remember that Azubu Blaze is the team that knocked out CLG in the OGN semifinals earlier this year. With Saint and Elementz being the dominant personalities on Curse, they have the potential to lead Curse to victory against the aggressive and deceptive play style of Blaze.
For the majority of summoners unfortunate enough to not be in New York to watch the event live, MLG is running a special promotion to win a MLG LoL Arena HD Pass which allows you to watch the event stream in HD for free! For your chance to win watch last night's League of Legends Prize Fight (VoDs Here) and send them the best screenshot via twitter: https://twitter.com/MLG
Good Luck summoners and be sure to tune into the games this weekend!
Please note this schedule is pre-event and has a chance to change or fall behind / be ahead. Please treat it as a guide more than rigid tv guide.
|Friday||Curse vs Black||5pm||10pm||11pm||2pm||5am|
|Friday||TSM vs Azubu Blaze||8pm||1am||2am||5pm||8am|
|Saturday||Black vs Azubu Blaze||2pm||7pm||8pm||11am||2am|
|Saturday||TSM vs Curse||5pm||10pm||11pm||2pm||5am|
|Sunday||Azubu Blaze vs Curse||10am||3pm||4pm||7am||10pm|
|Sunday||Black vs TSM||1pm||6pm||7pm||11am||1am|
- EDT = Eastern(New York), BST = UK, CEST = Mainland Europe, PDT = Pacific(LA), KST = Korea