It all came down to this. G2 Esports versus Origen for the first ever LEC Spring Split title.
The fans were hyped, the players were ready, and the brand new trophy was unveiled. All that remained was for the two best teams in Europe to go head to head once again to see who would win it all.
Origen had just come off the back of a big win against Fnatic, while G2 had had a week to prepare. It turned out that the extra time paid dividends.
G2 were the team to take control of the series, seemingly taking the week to reinvent professional League of Legends and leave Rotterdam miles ahead of their opponents. Next up is MSI, and their international opponents may be getting nervous.
Here’s how it happened, game by game.
G2: Martin “Wunder” Hansen, Marcin “Jankos” Jankowski, Rasmuth “Caps” Winther, Luka “Perkz” Perkovic, Mihael “Mikyx” Mehle
OG: Barney “Alphari” Morris, Jonas “Kold” Andersen, Erlend “Nukeduck” Vatevik Holm, Patrik “Patrik” Jiru, Alfonso “Mithy” Aguirre Rodriguez
G2: Irelia, Olaf, Lissandra, Sona, Taric
OG: Hecarim, Nocturne, Ryze, Varus, Galio
The early game was all about skirmishes, with the junglers putting most of their attention into the top lane. It was Jankos’ Olaf who got the First Blood, managing to come out of the top lane 2v2 ahead. However, Origen quickly got a kill of their own thanks to a rare misstep from Caps. He was caught out of position in the river, and from there Origen went top side again to get another kill and a slight advantage.
G2 capitalised on good ward placement to contest the first dragon and get a kill, keeping things very even in the match after ten minutes. The teams continued to trade kills as they gave the Rotterdam crowd exactly what they wanted: Close games and plenty of action. That action erupted around the dragon pit with the first big team fight. The extended engagement was evenly matched once again, but it was Origen who came out on top thanks to a well-placed Ryze ult to mop up.
Not content to simply trade kills, the teams then traded objectives. Origen grabbed the drake and bot tower, while G2 went for the Rift Herald and top. They then used that Rift Herald to make some good headway down the mid lane. Origen were ahead slightly, but it was G2 who were on the front foot, often forcing Origen to blow cooldowns defensively.
With gold totals remaining even 25 minutes into the game, it eventually got to the point where a single fight could decide the game, and that’s exactly what happened.
G2 forced Origen away from the Baron and picked it up themselves, getting a couple of kills in the process as Origen dove in in desperation. With this buff they pushed the first meaningful advantage of the game to take the mid lane inhibitor. G2 then destroyed Origen as they tried to defend their bot lane, and they were simply able to walk into the base and destroy the Nexus to go 1-0 up in the final.
OG: Kennen, Rek’Sai, Yasuo, Sona, Taric
G2: Ryze, Morgana, Pyke, Xayah, Rakan
The funnel comp made a surprise return in one of the biggest games of the season, and it was G2 who raised eyebrows, with Caps picking Pyke in the mid lane, Jankos taking Morgana, and Perkz taking Smite on Xayah.
Xayah and Rakan went mid against a confused Nukeduck, while Morgana went bottom with Pyke, making for a very interesting 2v2 against Patrik and Mithy.
First Blood came early, as Kold tried to bail out his midlaner but fell to the power of Xayah and Rakan. G2 then pulled off a textbook dive in the top lane as Alphari died without many options for escape. After some early game confusion, Origen were able to equalise briefly, but were caught out again as G2 picked up a few more kills, including one very nice play from Caps’ Pyke in the bot lane.
From there, G2 started to snowball the game, finding another good fight in the top lane, and then in the middle. They already had a heavy lead just 15 minutes into the game after picking up Rift Herald and getting Perkz to a scary 5/0/5. You wouldn’t have thought having star man Caps on a support champion with no farm would be a good idea, but G2 have gone against the grain for the majority of the season to great effect.
Baron fell soon after spawning (the quickest of the Spring Split), and although Origen seemed to get a good engagement, the item difference came back to bite them, as G2 cleaned up with plenty of kills. They then did a good job of baiting out a couple of ultimates as they sieged the base before rushing back in for the Ace, and a quick win in under 25 minutes.
Desperation time for Origen, with the series on the line, they did manage to get First Blood 2v2 in the bot lane, but the advantage was immediately thrown away after a mistake from Mithy gave a kill back to G2. Meanwhile, Jankos’ Jarvan was blowing flashes all over the map, and a counter-gank in the top lane combined with a teleport from Perkz on Neeko gave G2 another lead.
G2 managed to maintain their lead despite some aggression from Origen, and it seemed like they had control over most of the map. A fight in the bottom lane ended in disaster for Origen, losing four players without getting anything in return. Caps soon went up to the top lane to solo kill Alphari, who was a main target for G2 in this series. By 15 minutes, G2 already had 15 kills.
Unbelievably, the game was already beyond hope. Origen looked to pick up a couple of kills on a retreating G2, but their opponents simply walked or teleported into their base. No team has ever won a game quicker in professional European League of Legends history. 18 minutes and 31 seconds was all it took for the dominant G2 to win the final game in the series.
Can G2 take this form to MSI and prove themselves on the world stage?