With just a week before the LCS, the scene certainly didn't decide to take any time off. It's clear that we are in for a wild ride starting this weekend as Riot's Season 3 officially kicks off in both Europe and North America, but that doesn't stop the rest of the world from making news.
Curse's new team got a big win in the CPS, Najin Sword finally earned a huge tournament win, and Korea's two most successful teams found a new sponsor over the weekend. Let's take a closer look at just a few of the biggest news stories that broke over the weekend.
Curse Academy Books Ticket to IPL 6
The CLG Pro Series was a showcase of teams looking to make noise outside the LCS in North America this year. 16 teams competed for $5,000 in prize money, but more importantly, a spot at IPL 6 at the end of March. Curse Academy, the newly formed second Curse team, took home first place after fighting back from the loser's bracket. They steamrolled through Azure Cats in the finals 4-0 and showed off what their talent is capable of when they come together.
Curse Academy is a dangerous team with the likes of Pobelter, Rhux, and IWillDominate on it. All 3 of those players have professional experience, and if they can stay together and continue to gel, will certainly be contenders for Season 4. Curse took a chance on Dominate who is currently banned from Riot sponsored events for a year because of repeated tribunal bans, but he has shown he is capable of changing his stripes. Combine that with Pobelter, a player who would certainly be on an LCS team if he were 17 years old, and this team should have a bright future ahead.
Najin Sword Crowned OGN Winter Champions
Azubu Frost found themselves back in the finals of OGN again, but ran into a team that is on fire lately. The reigning champions of OGN could not defend their crown from Maknoon and co as Najin Sword cruised to a 3-0 win in the finals. Game 2 was an intensely close affair, with Sword jumping out to a huge leading before a few misplays let Frost come back. However, Sword was able to do what they haven't in the past, collect themselves and outplay Frost in the late game en route to a finals sweep of their Korean rivals.
Najin Sword takes home around $75,000 in prize money from the win and shows they are a team to be feared around the world after felling Frost. Tournament MVP Maknoon will win around another $10,000 for those honors, but his team has become so much more than just the Maknoon show. Pray's Twitch play, Watch in the jungle, and especially Ssong in the mid lane have all vastly improved their games and this team is so much better for it. Korea has a lot of talented teams at the moment, but none are currently better than Najin Sword who went a truly ridiculous 12-1 in the bracket stage of the OGN against the likes of MVP White, KT Rolster B, and Azubu Frost.
The most successful teams in the Korean scene since its inception have been Frost and Blaze. Under the Azubu flag both teams enjoyed success and tournament victories, but that relationship has ended. Azubu will look to focus on its new streaming site launching soon(tm) and Blaze and Frost have already found a new home. Both teams will now be under the CJ Entus organization who score a major win with this pickup.
Both Blaze and Frost have tournament winning pedigrees and the talent and work ethic to compete at the highest level. If they can match the kind of success they had for Azubu and MiG before, CJ Entus will be handsomely rewarded for sponsoring these two teams. It appears that the former CJ Entus squad will remain with the organization for now, as substitutes for the new squads.
So RoG'ers what did you think of the happenings over the weekend? How was the CLG Pro Series and Curse Academy? How dominant is Najin Sword right now? Will Frost and Blaze have similar success with their new organization? Let us know your thoughts on these and any other stories from over the weekend in the comment section and stay tuned to Reign of Gaming for all your LoL-related needs! Also, be sure to check out our friends over at Leaguepedia who are hard at work on previews for the upcoming LCS!
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