Photo by: LCK Flickr
LCK powerhouse KT Rolster has achieved their worst regular season finish yet. After getting only map wins (and just a single best-of-3 series) in the double round-robin, KT will face relegation, together with single-win Jin Air Green Wings.
KT have thus gone from prime contenders for the Worlds 2018 title to the second worst team in South Korea. Most of it was a result of a tough off-season for the franchise: KT not only lost long-time bot lane duo of Kim “Deft” Hyuk-kyu and Cho “Mata” Se-hyeong, but also mid laner Heo “PawN” Won-seok — the third player of that 2017 “super team” that was assembled to win championships upon championships.
If they want to stay in the LCK, KT and JAG now have to survive the Summer Promotion bout. They will face the top 2 teams of Challengers Korea, which will likely be APK Prince and ES Sharks. The two have been dominating CK Spring, are each at 11-2 score and play each other today to determine the #1 seed. KT and JAG still have the edge of having more talented line-ups but KT Roster have been notorious for screwing up when it counts and JAG haven’t shown anything to prove they deserve their LCK spot.
Meanwhile, the LCK playoffs are also set. After Griffin secured the #1 seed early in the season, they were succeeded by SKT as #2, Kingzone DragonX as #3 and SANDBOX and DAMWON as #4 and #5, respectively. As a result, the bubble race bracket looks like this:
Griffin are, of course, still the favorites to win the league and punch their ticket to the MSI 2019 main event, but they have shown they have their own flaws during the regular season. Their passive gameplay has been quoted by pundits as one way Griffin can be toppled and teams like Kingzone, Gen.G and Afreeca Freecs have proven this. At the same time, SKT were the first team to give Griffin any hard time and played arguably the best series of the season as the two teams met the second time.
The first match of the playoffs between SB and DWG will be this Wednesday, Apr. 3.
LCK Spring Playoffs schedule
Round 1: SB vs. DWG — Apr. 3, 10:00 CET | 01:00 PST
Round 2: KZ vs. R1 winner — Apr. 5, 10:00 CET | 01:00 PST
Round 3: SKT vs. R2 winner — Apr. 7, 10:00 CET | 01:00 PST
Round 4: GRF vs. R3 winner — Apr. 13, 10:00 CET | 01:00 PST