The 2021 League of Legends Mid-Season Invitational has concluded with Royal Never Give Up defeating the South Korean powerhouse team of DAMWON KIA, 3-2, in the grand finals. The tournament highlighted some of the most intense and utter bloodbaths of matches that international tournaments have missed for some time.
Although, many teams have showed up to represent their region, what have we as spectators and fanatics of the competition learned during the tournament?
1. China is Back for International Conquest
China's Royal Never Give Up had the match of their lives on Sunday against DAMWON KIA. After close games between the two teams, RNG had finally beat the Koreans yet again since winning MSI in 2018. Performances from Wei "GALA" Chen and Shi "Ming" Sen-ming were vital to the success of RNG in the finals. And it doesn't look like the young duo will stop anytime soon either.
2. DAMWON KIA Is Human
DK, looking poised to win their first back-to-back international championship fell to RNG, 3-2, in the finals. After a shaky Rumble stage against RNG and an even shakier semifinal match again MAD Lions, teams have found a way to expose DK's weaknesses which can prove that they are indeed humans.
3. MAD Lions Are a Force to be Reckoned With
MAD Lions were fierce competitors to the bitter end against DK in the semifinals, where they narrowly lost the match, 3-2. The LEC powerhouse were able to take games off every team except for DK in the Rumble stage, and tried to carry the momentum into the semifinals. MAD Lions looked to upset the Koreans as they were at match point in game four against the favorites of the tournament. However, it was ill-fated for a Western team to yet again reach the finals where they lost handily in the early game, which carried to the heartbreaking end for MAD Lions. İrfan "Armut" Berk Tükek is the star of this team, and his success should continue as a reliable top laner in the West.
5 Things We've Learned During MSI 2021
4. North America Has Another Gap to Face
The community's love-hate relationship with the LCS teams in international tournaments is always relevant. Cloud 9 were looking strong in the tournament to prove that NA does have a chance against the stronger regions, but fell flat yet again when it mattered most. The Pacific Championship Series team of Paris Saint-Germain Talons have finally crossed over its dark-horse region notoriety and proven to be even better than the major region of NA. NA teams will have to look for quick solutions in improving in its teams if any of them out of this region plan to make a stand against the vastly superior Asian teams.
5. Imports to Your Favorite Team?
Could there be contract buy outs or players moving to North America or any other region? The success of the international teams so far, especially from minor regions, can not go unnoticed as nearly all the players in the tournament are creating some stunning upsets and its best moments. It wouldn't be hard to see that major organizations, especially ones that can offer players a lot of money, will take this tournament and see it as a scouting ground to upgrade their roster. Those that are willing to cough up the cash will likely see a jackpot of emerging talent with the newer players that have a lot to prove at MSI.