Double down: Upcomer's League of Legends betting picks for Aug. 29
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Team WE vs. Edward Gaming

Metric Edward Gaming Team WE
Market odds 1.59 (-169) 2.35 (+135)
Implied win probability 62.89% 42.55%
Implied win (normalized) 59.64% 40.36%
Calculated win probability 59.35% 40.65%
Expected value -0.1358 -.0.1623
Bet size Bet @ odds > -119 Bed @ odds > +181

After a resounding 0-3 loss to FunPlus Phoenix, Team WE find themselves face-to-face with Edward Gaming, whom they had pushed into the lower bracket a week ago. While a repeat victory is certainly possible, our model still finds Team WE to be the weaker team.

This is a very high-stakes match for Team WE since they can’t actually earn enough Championship Points for a direct Worlds qualification. Even the 110 points that accompany a second place finish would put them at a total of 120, which would be below Edward Gaming’s 130 total points for taking third. WE are guaranteed enough points (even with a third place finish, if they’re knocked out here) to compete in the Regional Finals, though, so they’ll have a chance to redeem themselves.

EDG’s players stand a head above those of WE, individually. Their win rates range from 58% to 64%, compared to 54% to 58% from their opponents. It will be up to WE’s strongest player, Cui “Shanks” Xiao-Jun to pull them across the finish line.

Both rosters are comfortable playing together, enjoying elevated win rates compared to their individual players. EDG have truly come together in this regard, with most of their players seeing bumps of 5% or more to their efficacy. Both teams have had fairly stable rosters, allowing plenty of time for their squads to synergize. In fact, more than 95% of Shanks’ professional career games have been with this exact roster.

These two teams have also had a fairly evenly matched past. EDG won their matchup in the spring season, WE won in the summer season and, most recently, WE took a 3-2 victory over EDG a week ago in the playoffs. While Edward Gaming may seem the stronger team in isolation, they slightly underperform expectations against Team WE.

However, when EDG are on, they’re on fire. They average a greater tower and gold lead over their opponents than WE do, which translates to more dominant victories with fewer opportunities for opponent comebacks.

All of this combines to give Edward Gaming a 60% chance to win this match, their recent 2-3 loss notwithstanding. The market is in perfect alignment with this prediction, so we would not suggest placing a bet here.

Fnatic vs. MAD Lions

Metric MAD Lions Fnatic
Market odds 1.73 (-137) 2.1 (+110)
Implied win probability 57.80% 47.62%
Implied win (normalized) 54.83% 45.17%
Calculated win probability 54.61% 45.39%
Expected value -0.1417 -.0.1518
Bet size Bet @ odds > +102 Bed @ odds > +148

The odds market had put Rogue v Fnatic at almost exactly even, but hey, sometimes you win three coin flips in a row. Coming off of a 3-0 victory, Fnatic now meet MAD Lions in the LEC Summer Playoffs final. Once again, our prediction is just fractions of a percent off of the odds market: MAD Lions should have a 55/45 advantage over Fnatic tomorrow. We advise against betting for value on this match, as our prediction falls entirely inside of the vig.

At this point, both of these teams have qualified to the Worlds main event, so this match is about seed only. Still, a good start on the international stage can make or break a championship run, so neither team is going to pull their punches here.

Fnatic are fielding both the strongest (Adam “Adam” Maanane, 64.7% win rate) and weakest (Elias “Upset” Lipp, 55.0% win rate) individual players, with generally creates more variability across their squad. MAD Lions should have a minor leg up here, but Fnatic at the top of their game are a force to be reckoned with. Upset and Yasin “Nisqy” Dinçer came out looking quite intimidating in all three games against Rogue.

Team synergy leans towards MAD as well, pushing individual win rates up by anywhere from 3-5%. This is at least partially driven by their more consistent roster. Adam only joined FNC about three months ago, so it’ll take some time for them to fully find their stride.

Historically, FNC have performed below expectations against MAD. They went 0-2 in this matchup during both the summer and spring seasons in spite of having actually been considered the favorite in the spring matches.

MAD tend to squeeze out closer victories than FNC does, so a gold or objective lead for FNC at any point could spell trouble. Conversely, Fnatic should be more capable of making up for early deficits as well, so it’s hard to count them out at any point of the series.

Champions to look out for are Rakan and Twisted Fate. Norman “Kaiser” Kaiser and Zdravets “Hylissang” Iliev Galabov both play the former well while Marek “Humanoid” Brázda and Nisqy can dominate if they get their hands on TF. These games could very well be decided by pick/ban strategy and which team can put the right tools in the hands of their players.

In sum, while MAD Lions are the favorites by a slim but not negligible margin overall, Fnatic have plenty of strengths of their own. If they can find the right way to exercise those strengths, they have a good chance at taking the crown.

100 Thieves vs. Team Liquid

Metric Team Liquid 100 Thieves
Market odds 1.44 (-227) 2.81 (+181)
Implied win probability 69.44% 35.59%
Implied win (normalized) 66.12% 33.88%
Calculated win probability 57.30% 42.70%
Expected value -0.2469 0.0594
Bet size Bet @ odds > -110 Bed 11.05%

Coming in hot after a 3-1 win against Cloud9, 100 Thieves get a second chance to bring down Team Liquid. They’d been bumped down into the lower bracket semifinal by TL last week after a narrow 2-3 loss, but our model thinks they have a very realistic chance at redemption. They’re still slightly outclassed, but 43/57 is a much closer possibility than the 34/66 that the odds market believes. Given that 100 Thieves is an underdog, we would suggest a fairly modest 11% unit bet size stake.

These teams are both guaranteed spots in the Worlds main event, but a stronger starting seed can make all the difference. Wanting to prove themselves in a rematch will also add some fire to 100 Thieves’ effort.

TL’s squad have proven themselves to be stronger, historically. Their 57-61% win rates stand ahead of 100 Thieves’ very consistent 55-56%. This is not actually an enormous difference given that both teams are decidedly good, but in the final, every small edge can help.

TL and 100 Thieves have both found ways to mesh effectively, raising their teammates’ win rates by anywhere from 2-4% relative to initial expectations. Both teams have seen some turmoil in their rosters, with Felix “Abbedagge” Braun in particular having less experience playing with this team, having joined in April.

In prior matchups, TL have marginally underperformed expectations, losing more matches when facing any of 100 Thieves’ players than expected. During the past two seasons, 100 Thieves have an overall record of 5-2 against Team Liquid (not counting their clash last week). The big standout is Lucas “Santorin” Larsen, who mostly ignores this differential. After coming back from a health-related break, he could very well be the glue that keeps TL together.

TL have a stronger objective-based game, which translates to more consistent victories. It will be up to 100 Thieves to disrupt their focus and make plays happen. Barney “Alphari” Morris on Camille could be a particularly effective play-maker for TL.

Make no mistake: Team Liquid are a very talented team and have the overall edge in this matchup, in spite of their recent performance against 100 Thieves. Their 3-2 win in this duel a week ago proves they’re more than capable of winning. However, our model still believes the market is overvaluing them and is willing to take a rider on a 100 Thieves upset.

Vanya is the founder of, where he leverages seven years of quantitative finance experience to build esports prediction models. He'll happily debate you on anything from math to video games to the impending subjugation of the human race by artificial intelligence.