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Every game counts - Standings scenarios before Week 9

With only one week left to play in the Regular Season, we wanted to catch you up on the most important aspects of the race to Playoffs.

Let’s get the boring stuff out of the way first: G2 will head into Playoffs as the #1 seed, XL and RGE will end 9th/10th. 

The interesting stuff? Everything else. But first, here is our new Playoff format for reference:

Here is what that means for stakes:

Getting 2nd: 

  • Multiple paths to the Finals
  • Guaranteed top 3 and therefore a spot in Rotterdam guaranteed

Getting 3rd:

  • Get to choose between playing #5 or #6 in Round 1 (There is a decent chance that this will translate to: “Do you want to meet FNC (6-1 in 2nd half of Spring) or S04 (1-6)?”)

Getting 6th or higher:

  • Welcome to the Playoffs

Tiebreaker rules and head-to-heads

If teams are tied in wins at the end of the split, ties will be broken in the following order:

  • Head-to-head record between tied teams
  • More total nexus turrets destroyed in losses
  • Tiebreaker game(s)

For a more detailed overview, please check out the official ruleset

Don’t worry about the nexus turrets for now. G2 is the only one that currently benefits from that and they will definitely not be part of any ties. The important one here will be head-to-heads and since those will be referenced quite a bit in the following sections, here are the current ones:

Head-to-heads

Head-to-heads

Now that we have all the info we need, let’s jump into it.

Fight for last Playoff spots:

With G2, VIT, SPY & OG locked in, two spots remain. FNC is sitting comfortably at 9-7 and will end up in the top 6 in 93.8% of the remaining scenarios. Even if they lose both games, chances are high that they will make it. The scenario they want to avoid is being tied with SK for 6th, since their head-to-head is 0-2. 

The main fight for the last spot will most likely be between S04, MSF and SK. Below is their upcoming schedule:

Remaining Games (S04, MSF, SK)

Having earned one more win as well as holding the head-to-head tiebreaker vs MSF, S04 are the clear favorites here. For MSF to catch them, they will need to go 2-0 (that includes a win vs G2) with S04 going 0-2 (which includes a loss to RGE). SK - who went 1-1 vs S04 - only needs to tie Schalke in wins to force a tiebreaker game. So they are a bit better off.

Both MSF and SK could still overtake FNC, but as highlighted above, that is less likely. In case of a three-way tie between FNC, SK and MSF, MSF would come out ahead due to their head-to-head scores (2-0 vs SK, 1-1 vs FNC). If S04 joins them for a four-way tie, it would be S04 (5th) and MSF (6th) that would advance*.

To summarise: FNC in great spot, S04 in good spot, SK with realistic hope, MSF needs a miracle.

Fight for 2nd and 3rd

While Schalke still has a theoretical chance of making 2nd or 3rd, it is very unlikely, so let’s focus on VIT, SPY, OG & FNC. FNC has the toughest schedule while the other ones all play teams that are in the lower half of the standings. 

Remaining Games (VIT, SPY, OG, FNC)

In terms of head-to-heads, the important ones are: VIT 2-0 over SPY and FNC currently 1-0 over SPY (the other ones are 1-1). That means that VIT can secure at least a tiebreaker for 2nd by winning both games and that FNC can control their own destiny with regards to 4th place. The head-to-head between VIT and SPY could also spell trouble for OG though. If those three teams win all their games (a real possibility given their opponents), we look at the combined head-to-heads among the three teams: VIT 3-1 (2nd), OG 2-2 (3rd), SPY 1-3 (4th). 

How many tiebreaker games to expect?

After looking at the standings scenarios, some might wonder how many tiebreaker games we can look forward to this week. Out of the remaining 1024 scenarios, we can get at most six extra games (a 3-way tie with 5 games + a 2-way tie) and most scenarios involve one or none. Here is the full distribution.

Tiebreaker game distribution

I hope you are ready for the upcoming week now, if you want to get updated on how things are looking during the weekend, make sure to follow @LoLEsportsStats.


* This scenario is a bit more complicated. Taking the combined head-to-heads for those teams leaves us with S04: 4-2, MSF: 3-3, SK: 3-3 and FNC: 2-4. In this case, S04 gets awarded 5th and FNC 8th, then we reduce the scenario to only MSF and SK. Since MSF are 2-0 vs SK, they would end up on 6th and SK in 7th.