TOP Esports swept Bilibili Gaming in the 3rd/4th place match of the LPL Summer Playoffs to take the first podium finish for the organization. TOP proved to be a level above BLG, who couldn’t recover from the 3-1 loss to FunPlus Phoenix in the semifinals.
While the third place changes little for TOP — they still have to go through the Regional Qualifiers to qualify for Worlds — it’s good news for another team entirely: JD Gaming. The Spring Split Cinderella story, JDG reached last split’s finals against all odds and banked enough championship points to contest a berth into the Gauntlet. BLG’s loss today means they will be missing the Regional Qualifier, giving their spot to JDG.
LPL Regional Qualifier bracket:
Any other day, Invictus Gaming would be favorites to take it all and qualify for Worlds 2019, but the reigning world champions had a disastrous Summer Split where none of their superstar carries played up to expectations. Round 1 brings a rematch from the Spring Split grand finals, in which iG might still be favorited, but the finals against TOP is anyone’s game. Despite placing third in the playoffs today and a fantastic showing by Zhao “Knight9” Ding, TOP showed many flaws in their macro play, which could be their downfall come the Gauntlet matches.
Whoever qualifies for Worlds from the Regional Qualifier won’t be a good look for the LPL. While FPX and RNG showed world-class League of Legends, neither of iG, JDG or TOP seem on that level. TOP is the only team of the three that had a Summer Split to show for and even then their form has not been convincing.
The LPL Regional Qualifiers will take place Sep. 7-8. The LPL Summer Playoffs grand final between FPX and RNG is just the day before, Sep. 6.