Round 2 of the League of Legends Pro League 2022 spring playoffs just ended with Weibo Gaming taking down Edward Gaming. But the action never stops as Round 3 is already here. Here is a preview of the LPL 2022 spring playoffs third round with predictions on who will come out on top.
LNG Esports vs. Top Esports
The battle of two of the preseason favorites is set for Round 3 of the LPL 2022 spring playoffs. LNG Esports, coming off their first League of Legends World Championship appearance in history, decided to go hard in the offseason and revamped their already stacked team. The biggest addition was perhaps the greatest mid laner in LPL history, Kim “Doinb” Tae-sang, coming over from FunPlus Phoenix. The team also brought in veteran support player Zuo “LvMao” Ming-Hao to platoon the position with their old support Liao “Iwandy” Ding-Yang the result was mixed in the regular season. At times, LNG looked good but never really lived up to their hype.
In the end, LNG placed well enough to grab the fourth seed, but doinb has struggled throughout the split while Lee “Tarzan” Seung-yong and Hu “Ale” Jia-Le have looked lost at times. LvMao has been bad, which speaks volumes about their bot laner Wang “Light” Guang-Yu who has played out of his mind. He might of not have made it onto the All-LPL first team, but he sure deserved to. With Iwandy in the support role, LNG have looked a lot better but there are still many question marks.
As for Top Esports, the team came off of a 2021 Demacia Cup victory in the offseason, which should have set the tone for their regular season. Instead, they struggled in the first half, but like other teams in the playoffs, they got hot at the right time. From 2-4 to 11-5, TES rattled off nine wins in 10 games to clinch the fifth seed. In the playoffs, TES looked good in their series against Bilibili Gaming too with a decisive 3-1 win. The team spread around player of the game honors to three different members in their three victories which has been the theme for TES all split.
The matchup to look for in this series will be in the mid lane. The doinb vs. Zhuo “knight” Ding matchup is a modern classic in the LPL and is always a joy to watch. Both are having down splits, but both can also take over a series at will. With TES looking way better than LNG, TES should win this matchup handily. But with a roster like LNG’s, if they can figure it out, this team is still a threat to win the entire split.
Prediction: TES 3 – 1 LNG
Weibo Gaming vs. JD Gaming
Weibo Gaming just came off an incredible performance against the reigning Worlds 2021 champions in the second round of the LPL 2022 spring playoffs. The result was surprising given WBG’s recent track record. After starting the split 10-2 and in first place, WBG ended the split as the sixth seed after going 1-3 in their last four series. Looking shaky, no one knew what version of WBG would show up in playoffs.
That question is now answered.
Against Edward Gaming, WBG came out firing on all cylinders. Two players, in particular, were the standouts of the series. Jungler Lê “SofM” Quang Duy snapped out of his 2022 slump and looked like the monster he was at Worlds 2020. But by far the best performer of the team was their legendary top laner Kang “TheShy” Seung-lok. In fact, TheShy picked up player of the game in all three of WBG’s victories in their 3-1 series win. WBG looks like they are back in mid-season form.
But their opponent in Round 3 is a team that has been red hot. With an opposite end to their season, JD Gaming shot up the standings late in the season. The team won six straight series to end the spring split and ended with the same record as WBG but a higher seed. JDG are led by their All-LPL jungler Seo “Kanavi” Jin-hyeok. He is also having a 2020-style season in which he won MVP. In the last six series, JDG have played against four playoff opponents and 2-0’ed them all. Included in that list is the first seeded Victory Five. Oh and they 2-0’ed WBG in the last series of the regular season.
The matchup to look for is in the jungle. Kanavi looks like one the of best junglers in the world right now but SofM just came off a hot series. The matchup between these teams will be about containment. If JDG can contain TheShy from popping off they can easily win the series. But if SofM can mitigate Kanavi’s impact then the series can tip in WBG’s favor. It’s a shame this matchup is happening this soon as this could of been worthy of five-game final. Regardless, this series is likely to go five games anyway. JDG have looked unbeatable, so the edge goes to them.
Prediction: JDG 3 – 2 WBG