Top Esports (-350)
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Very little separates both sides as far as points go. OMG have won three in six, Top Esports have won two in four and are currently two spots lower at tenth. But they can so easily vault into the top half should they win their next two matches. That is, of course, easier said than done. OMG have however hit a rough patch, having lost three consecutive games on the bounce. And it is upon them to arrest this side for they wouldn’t want to roll down a slippery slope just yet.
On the basis of how they have fared so far, Top Esports should comfortably beat a side that hasn’t found any kind of fluency. As such, the odds for OMG to win is not very high, but that is also reflective of the level of risk you will be putting on them. As a result, it might be better off to back Top Esports win either in two or three maps. The odds are better, as will be the relationship between risk and reward.
Able occupies a key position in the bottom lane and is pivotal in OMG’s quest for offensive proficiency. He has averaged 4.29 kills per map along with 2.64 deaths and 5.21 assists per game. That has pushed his KDA to 3.59 along with a creep score of 262.64.
OMG will need more than just one key performer to stand up. Someone like Aki can play ably as a supporting cast, his high assist rate of 7.01 seems to suggest so. But he will need a little more defensive effectiveness to be an efficient player across lanes. Right now, his deaths on average per map is nearly equal to the kills. Should he be able to better this, the higher will be his proficiency.
Creme is another key player in the bottom lane, where most of the kills happens. And his overall stats make him a player opponent will do well to mark out. For OMG to have any chance of winning, they will need a fine cocktail of offensive proficiency and a solid defence from these three to keep alive their chances.
Here is how they have stacked up in the lanes. JackeyLove in the bottom lane has produced returns of 4.73 kills, 2.55 deaths, 5.36 assists at a KDA of 3.96 and a creep score of 309.64. In the middle lane, Knight has been just as effective with returns of 3.09 kills, 2 deaths and 5.73 assists per map with KDA of 4.41 and a creep score of 304.82. Not many other pairs in recent times for the franchise have come close to having this effectiveness of these two middle and bottom lane.
Royal Never Give Up (-118)
As expected, RNG have made a pulsating start to the new season. They have won four out of their first five matches to start the new split, which has now given them a head start to make a dash to go all the way. Bilibili Gaming have been equally fast off the blocks, having won three out of their first four matches. So there is little to choose between the sides, and you will have to be mighty brave to take a punt on either side. It’s that close.
RNG have displayed a kind of ruthlessness of the kind you expect from top teams in their wins over SinoDragon and Invictus Gaming. They were challenged by Rogue Warriors but they eventually prevailed in the third map to take the game 2-1.
Having begun with a loss, Bilibili are slowly starting to rev up, overcoming challenges posed by Weibo, OMG and Rare Atom. In terms of luck of the draw, they’ve had a good mix of games that has allowed them to ease into the competition before they take on the top sides. This has somewhat given them time to also figure out plans in a match scenario.
Gala has been on fire. The bot laner has averaged 4.54 kills, 1.23 deaths and5.69 assists per map with an astounding KDA of 8.31 and a creep score of 342. That is outstanding offensive proficiency for a bot laner.
Ming has struggled offensively in putting up kills, but has kept his defence impregnable. So far, he has averaged just 0.85 kills – well below average – but has made up with his excellent assist rate of 9.08. His death rate of 3.15 isn’t the worst in the field. His KDA of 3.15 can also be a tad higher, but if he can be the kind of formidable force in the defence, RNG won’t mind that. It can’t be forgotten that he has been among their most consistent mid laners, which also makes him a very reliable force there. Overall though, RNG have been a tad off the pace with the overall production value there and will want to make some improvements.
Who better than Doggo to help fire with fire, driven wheel to wheel and go all guns blazing. The team will want this to have a knock-on effect on the others. Who is best placed to build on Doggo’s formidable record of 5.63 kills, 2 deaths and 5.75 assists? Both Breathe and WeiWei have started the split well.
They are also experienced enough in the LPL to keep up to pace. But they will need to go up a couple of notches to keep Bilibili relevant by picking up their offensive production. Breathe, in particular, has been reliable over time. He has averaged 3.63 kills, 1.88 deaths and 4.88 assists at a KDA of 4.53 – numbers that are at par with his usual production from the previous splits. These make him one of their go-top options.
KT Rolster (-350)
Both these teams have started the new spring split the way they wouldn’t have envisaged. But then, the ground reality is both of them are middling teams, who while being good can challenge the best but can fall flat at other times. It is more than likely none will make the playoffs from here, given there are stronger teams in the field, but it is possible they can still make some upward movement should they put together a string of victories.
With one win in four, Liiv SANDBOX are scraping the bottom of the standings. KT Rolster are jostling for space in the middle, having won two and lost two. All said, this could be a close match that ends up being decided in the third map, something neutrals would dearly love to watch. On current form, though, you’d think KT Rolster are the favourites to win, thereby making them a reliable bet.
If Liiv SANDBOX are to cause a mighty stir in this match, they will have to stall Aiming’s effectiveness in the lanes. He was pivotal to their two map win against Hanwha Esports, and then stood in the way of NS RedForce and victory in their subsequent contest last Friday. Eventually, KT Rolster lost in the third map, but went down fighting with Aiming finishing with a total of 10 kills, 6 deaths and 9 assists across the match. He also averaged a mighty fine creep score of 308.33.
Aiming’s overall numbers too are prolific. He averages 4 kills per map, with a death rate of 1.44 and assists of 3.78. All combined his overall creep score of 263.22 points to his effectiveness across the lanes. Aiming has a fine ally in Aria, who has been prolific in the mid-lane but hasn’t had the same offensive proficiency elsewhere. His kill rate of 2.78 is joint-second best for the team, but in conceding a death rate of 1.67, which is more than half his kill rate, he somewhat concedes ground in the middle. If he can manage to minimise the kill rate, the potential these two bring to the table will be infinite.
Rascal is underrated but has equally fine numbers in the top lane. He averages 2.78 kills, 2.44 deaths and 3.78 assists at a KDA of 2.68 and a creep score of 298.89. These three will obviously be the key to how Liiv SANDBOX approach their maps.
What works against Liiv SANDBOX is the fact that each of their players have an inferior kill to death ratio, which effectively negates their competent assist rate and therefore their KDA. This also effectively makes their creep score immaterial, because there is little or no offensive proficiency that can carry them across the lanes. This puts them at a massive disadvantage and points to problems of plenty with their strategy. They need to perhaps relook at their own plans and come up with something better to stop KT Rolster. This is perhaps why the odds are so heavily against them too.
In what promises to be an intriguing battle in the top half, two aggressive sides pushing themselves to the limits will go up against one another. T1 are the leaders of the pack and are unbeaten in four matches thus far; Nongshim RedForce are currently fourth having lost just one out of their four games. It tells you how closely stacked together teams are at the top half of the points table. Nongshim are on an upward swing – having begun the spring split with a loss, they have now bounced back to record three wins in a row. This has only somewhat evened the scales that still favour T1.
Canna has Nongshim’s best kill rate of 3.64 but as a package, it is hard to look beyond what Dread brings to the table. He lands kills at an average of 3.18, deaths at 1.81 and assists at 5.55. This combines for a KDA of 4.57, the team’s highest. Sometimes creep score alone can’t be a reflection of a player’s overall proficiency, and Nongshim’s relatively low value of 185.91 underlines this aspect. His CSPM of 5.5 make him a formidable force. As far as a jungler goes, these are dream numbers. If Nongshim can develop a semblance of consistency around Canna and Dread in the mid lane, they will be a far bigger threat.
There are few partnerships that have an aura of intimation surrounding them. Faker-Gumayusi is one such union. Both players are versatile, have strengths others often look to replicate and play with a precision that makes T1 overwhelming favourites. Faker is among the top mid-liners in the field, and he has delivered consistently over time. This season, he has solid returns of 4.11 kills, 1.78 deaths and 5.89 assists per nap at a KDA of 5.63 and a creep score of 282.22.
Gumayusi’s numbers perfectly compliment Faker’s. He has a kill rate of 4.56, deaths of 1.67 and assists of 4.78 along with a KDA of 5.6 and a creep score of 336.44. These two will be pillars for Nongshim in the rest of the split as they will be desperate for another solid showing to strengthen their foothold in the top half of the points standings.
|LPL And LCK 2022 Spring Split Information|
|Teams||LPL: Top Esports v OMG, Royal Never Give Up v Bilibili Gaming
LCK: T1 vs NS Redforce, Liiv Sandbox vs KT Rolster
|Location||Offline event, conducted in China (LPL) and Korea (LCK)|
|Time||Thursday, January 27 at 2.00 AM EST onwards|
|How to watch||LPL official Twitch channel
LCK official Twitch channel
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With an interest in strategy and mathematics, applying that to sports writing was the natural progression. A writer at night and the founder of a gaming company, Nikhil’s previous experience includes working with ESPN for five years. His specialization includes soccer, basketball, tennis, and esports betting. Email: [email protected]More info on Nikhil Kalro
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