This is your guide to LoL MSI Betting. The Mid-Season Invitational is returning once again to Reykjavik, Iceland after a one-year hiatus and is ready to crown a champion anew. Following its absence in the past year, Korea’s DWG KIA have become the undisputed champions of the Rift in Worlds 2020. Now, with G2 Esports failing to qualify for the tournament, we shall see 12 teams go head-to-head for the trophy in an all-new format at MSI 2021.
Where to bet on MSI?
What is MSI?
The Mid-Season Invitational is an annual League of Legends tournament that sees the champions of the regional leagues clash on the Rift for glory. The Mid-Season Invitational is hosted by Riot Games at the start of May and is the tournament teams fight to qualify for in the Spring split. The tourney only comes behind the World Championship in its prestige and renown. LoL MSI began in 2015 and is now heading its sixth yearly run.
In the past year, the 2020 Mid-Season Invitational couldn’t push through because of the pandemic. In its place was the 2020 Mid-Season Streamathon that was remotely held to raise funds for relief efforts for COVID-19.
Tournament Format: What’s Changed
In its inaugural run, the tournament had a single round robin which led to a single-elimination Knockout Stage. By 2017, the Mid-Season Invitational included a Play-In stage for wildcard regions to qualify for the Group Stage.
Following its hiatus, Riot Games has decided to change the tourney’s format once again. In 2021, all the competitive regions will have a sole representative to be seeded straight into the MSI LoL Group Stage. There will be three (3) groups of four (4) teams in the Group Stage with the top two teams per group advancing to the all-new Rumble Stage. The Rumble Stage will feature a double round-robin which will have the top four teams advancing to the Knockout Stage. From there, all games will be best-of-five in a single-elimination format until a victor is crowned.
Who’s Competing – MSI Teams
The Mid-Season Invitational has competing teams from all the regional leagues: Korea, China, North America, Europe, Latin America, Turkey, Vietnam, Brazil, Oceania, Russia, Japan, and the Asia-Pacific. In the tourney’s all-new format, the delegation of major and minor region becomes irrelevant since all the teams are pooled together in the Group Stage. Thus, it is up to these representatives to show what their region is all about. Miracles can happen as we saw the then up-and-coming GAM Esports almost take out Team SoloMid in 2017.
Once again, the VCS will not be able to take part in LoL MSI 2021 due to travel restrictions, as announced by Riot Games. Group A will continue as is with three (3) teams instead of four (4).
You can check all the standings thus far in Liquipedia. Get to know the following MSI LoL teams that will be competing in the tourney:
|LPL||China||Royal Never Give Up|
|LCL||Russia||Unicorns of Love|
|TCL||Turkey||Istanbul Wild Cats|
|LLA||Latin America||Infinity Esports|
MSI 2021 is set to begin on May 6 in Reykjavik, Iceland and run until May 23, 2021. The tournament will be held in its entirety in Laugardalshöll, an indoor sporting arena. The competition will likely be held in isolation and follow rigorous protocols to protect the players and staff from COVID-19.
Thus far, Riot has announced no plans of opening the tournament to an audience in Reykjavik, Iceland due to the ever-present dangers of the pandemic. But, if ever they do, audiences will have to be limited to maintain social distancing and proper protocol. As such, MSI LoL tickets will be sure to be short in stock.
For the LoL MSI Schedule, Groups starts on May 6 and will continue till May 11. The Rumble Stage will continue from May 14 to May 18. The semifinals will start a few days after on May 21 to May 22. Lastly, the finals of LoL MSI will be on May 23, 2021. Games start at 6:00 A.M. PT or 1:00 P.M. GMT on scheduled game days.
What’s at Stake: MSI’s Prize Pool
Aside from the honor of being an internationally renowned champion, the champion and runners-up will receive a hefty slice from the tourney’s prizing. As per tradition, the MSI LoL prize pool will have a base of $250,000 and will increased based on a percentage of the yearly skins for MSI sold. For example, a percentage of the sales from Conqueror Nautilus was used to bolster the prize pool in 2020.
To add to that, the region of the champion of the Mid-Season Invitational will receive another team slot for Worlds 2021. Furthermore, the highest-ranking league after the tournament will receive another slot at Worlds. That slot would be passed down to the second highest in the rankings if that region won LoL MSI as well.
For viewers, you can get watch rewards from tuning into MSI LoL 2021. Watch game after game to earn rewards such as blue essence, hextech chests and keys, emotes, and exclusive in-game drops! Learn more on LoL Esports.
The Mid-Season Invitational Patch
According to Riot Games, MSI 2021 will be played on Patch 11.9 with Viego and and Gwen still unavailable for play. Based on Gameplay Design Director Mark Yetter’s patch preview, Riot is aiming to reduce the power of movespeed items such as Turbo Chemtank and Deadman’s Plate that have been dominant in the jungle right now. It seems that they are trying to put utility back on the map with buffs to Moonstone Renewer and its apt users such as Taric and Lulu.
Thus, coming into LoL MSI, we could potentially see the jungle meta diversifying which will reward teams that can adapt on the fly. Champions like Kindred, Trundle, and Kayn can make a resurgence when the meta allows for it. On the other hand, we could see super carry comps such as Jinx or Kog’Maw come up once again with the prevalence of tanks in the jungle and the improvements to Moonstone.
LoL MSI 2021 Tickets
Thus far, Riot has announced no plans of opening the tournament to an audience in Reykjavik, Iceland due to the ever-present dangers of the pandemic. But, if ever they do, audiences will have to be limited to maintain social distancing and proper protocol.
No matter the case, viewers will be excited to see their favorite teams competing once again in the Mid-Season Invitational after it was cancelled last year.
MSI Betting Predictions 2021
With the Play-Ins gone and out, we’ll be seeing the teams from all the regional leagues going face-to-face in the Group Stage straight away. To keep the groupings fair, each group can only have a maximum of two (2) teams from the major regions with the LEC, LPL, and LCK separated from one another.
If you’re doubling down on LoL MSI betting, as a rule, it’s better to stick to the reliability of the major regions. However, although it is easy to write off the minor regions, it’s always in your best interests to judge teams fairly. Since groups run in a best-of-one format, upsets can easily happen on any given day if a team underperforms. So, we’ve ranked the teams in every group for our MSI odds based on how well we think they’d perform and who we think will be getting out.
Group A: Blood in the Water
First off, we have the top-heavy duo of Royal Never Give Up and GAM Esports. In the past, these teams have proven themselves as worthy contenders with RNG reaching the semis in Worlds and winning MSI 2018; meanwhile, GAM have gone toe-to-toe with teams such as World Elite and G2 Esports in MSI 2017. However, due to Vietnam’s travel ban, GAM Esports will not be able to compete in MSI 2021. So, we believe the one to fill in their slot will be the Unicorns of Love.
Although the Unicorns of Love won the Intel Extreme Masters XI in 2016, their form is a far cry from their past. In the past world championship, the team went 0-6 in the Group Stage. But we’d comfortably put them above the LCO’s Pentanet.GG for the Group Stage. On the other hand, you have Oceania who lost a few of their top players due to the change of import rules in North America. Thus, making the region way weaker than before.
1) Royal Never Give Up
The former champions have returned. Despite the loss of Uzi in the past year, the org has bounced back to put another championship to their name in Spring. Coming into MSI, RNG could do what only SK Telecom T1 have achieved in the past — to be a two-time MSI champion. But this time they only have Xiaohu and Shi “Ming” Sen-Ming as the only remaining members of that championship roster.
Despite all their roster changes, RNG dominated in a split that saw heavy-weight contenders in FunPlus Phoenix, EDward Gaming, Top Esports, and JD Gaming. Chen “GALA” Wei has filled in exceptionally well as a marksman that can carry on the level of Uzi. Ming and Gala have been a force to be reckoned with and if Yan “Wei” Yang-Wei can secure a lead for them, it will allow GALA to shine with his impressive 26.4% damage share.
Meanwhile, Xiaohu has filled in for the team as well as he could on champions such as Gnar and Gragas to play weak side for his bot-heavy team. If anything, it will be Yuan “Cryin” Cheng-Wei’s champion pool that will be tested in the coming tournament as the mid laner has always resorted to control mages such as Orianna and Viktor.
2) GAM Esports
Despite Vietnam’s travel ban disallowing GAM Esports from competing in MSI 2021, we’re slotting them in second place in honor of their qualification.
In the past year, GAM Esports qualified to Worlds 2020 but were unable to take part in the yearly tournament because of their country’s travel ban. This year, GAM once again cannot make it to MSI LoL 2021 Reykjavik due to their country’s travel restrictions.
From their roster of old, only star jungler Đỗ Duy “Levi” Khánh remains. Fans would remember Levi for his off-meta jungle picks and dominating playstyle on the Rift. The carry jungler picked a total of eleven (11) unique champions in Spring and even has a 100% win rate on Karthus in the playoffs. Aside from Levi, look out for newcomer Nguyễn “Style” Hoàng Sơn who has been styling on the rest of the marksmen in the VCS. This is all possible because of how much their solo laners use their resources to help Levi run over the map. With champion picks such as Galio and Ryze in the mid lane, GAM Esports are free to play the game on Levi’s terms.
In the past, Levi alone couldn’t shore up on his team’s weaknesses in the side lanes since he can’t be everywhere at once. As sad as it may be, we won’t be able to see if GAM could have doubled down on their aggressive playstyle and make it past the Rumble Stage.
3) Unicorns of Love
After a rough showing at groups in Worlds 2020, the Unicorns of Love took in Antonio “Frappii” Botezatu and took their time to build synergy in Spring. Given their fourth-place finish in the regular season, it’s quite impressive then how the team went all the way to win the league without much of a contest even with the subbing in of Stanislav “Lodik” Kornelyuk.
Upon looking at the numbers, it’s obvious how they did it — it was Lev “Nomanz” Yakshin and his jaw-dropping 34.8% damage output on Viktor. Even in the regular season, Nomanz was already putting out 29% of his team’s damage and carrying them in their wins. Their draft seems to be oriented this way as well, with supportive picks in the bottom lane such as Seraphine. Senna, and Ashe and Sion up top. As impressive as it is, it looks like the Unicorns have a scaling-oriented playstyle that brings out Nomanz’ potential in the late game.
Thus, with how RNG and GAM play on the Rift, UoL will be easy pickings in the early game should they choose to skill check them. Since the Unicorns rely on their opponents’ inability to close out games, groups will be a test for the team to see if they can diversify their playstyle.
With the Oceanic exodus in the offseason, the LCO, formerly called the OPL, will be tested in MSI 2021 to see if they can still hold a candle to the rest of the competition. Pentanet.GG, which finished fourth in 2020, rose in Spring with a dominant regular season finish of 13-1.
The team saw the coming of Dire Wolves’ support Daniel “Decoy” Ealam and has been the glue for the team with a 79.4% kill participation in the playoffs. With Decoy, Mark “Praedyth” Lewis has been able to shine like never. As a result, that leaves their top-jungle duo in the dust when it comes to resources as they effectively play as frontliners for their bot lane.
In groups, we will see Praedyth and Decoy tested to their limits to see if they can carry Pentanet.GG out of groups. Jackson “Pabu” Pavone will have to show that he’s more than just a crutch for his team to stand on given his rather poor performance in the current meta.
Group B: Rumble in the Jungle
In our humble opinion, Group B is going to be anyone’s game. That’s why whoever adapts during the group stage will be the one to come out on top in this fight of the wild. Although it is true that MAD Lions have the tenacity of their namesake after taking down G2 Esports and Rogue, Europe seems to be on the downswing after the lack of competition at the top of the ladder. Nevertheless, we’d still give it to PSG Talon and MAD Lions to make it into the Rumble Stage when compared to the rest of the teams.
It is ironic, however, to see now that MAD Lions picked up TCL’s own İrfan Berk “Armut” Tükek SuperMassive after they got beat 3-2 in the qualifiers last year. This does show that the Istanbul Wildcats and their region has the potential to make it far given their mechanical prowess alone. Meanwhile, the iconic Felipe “brTT” Gonçalves continues to dominate Brazil. This time he qualified with paiN Gaming once more. However, the team hasn’t exactly made it too far in past international showings.
1) PSG Talon
PSG Talon putting in Huang “Maple” Yi-Tang in the mid lane made wonders for their already-strong roster in the PCS. The former Flash Wolves mid laner gave them a stable rock at the team’s core with his diverse champion pool and veteran experience. This season, PSG ended up with a dominant 17-1 record with their one loss against their rivals Beyond Gaming. PSG Talon are a team that plays it slow and steady in the early game and kicks it up a notch in the mid-to-late game with their clean rotations and decision-making — which can be attributed to the signing of their coach Kwon “Helper” Yeong-jae in the offseason.
With the team’s proven synergy, their stability can give them the upper hand against teams such as MAD Lions who thrive in and in creating chaos. Kim “River” Dong-woo and Maple’s performance will be crucial to keeping the team afloat in groups. Only time will tell if they can match up against the rest of the competition with their bot laner Wong “Unified” Chun Kit out of the picture after health complications. But, due to the nature of the role, Beyond Gaming’s Chiu “Doggo” Tzu-Chuan will hopefully be a suitable replacement for the duration of LoL MSI.
2) MAD Lions
MAD Lions finally went all the way to win the championship after falling short to G2 Esports in the past year. Now, they are hoping to continue their region’s streak as the Mid-Season Invitational champions. If you look at their games, it doesn’t add up how MAD have been able to hold on game after game despite being behind in the early game. But, somehow, someway, the MAD Lions make it work with their ability to find fights no matter the deficit. Whether it’s Armut on his Wukong or Norman “Kaiser” Kaiser on Alistar, the MAD Lions know how to pounce on their prey and pull off the killing blow.
In the regular season, Elyoya took the place of Zhiqiang “Shad0w” Zhao as the aggressive farm jungler with an impressive 21 KDA on Nidalee. Meanwhile, Marek “Humanoid” Brázda finally realized his potential and was a step ahead of mid laners like Rasmus “Caps” Borregaard Winther and Emil “Larssen” Larsson in the playoffs. Although their playstyle has its risks, the MAD Lions aren’t named that for no reason as they know that they can win the game if there’s still a way for them to do so. Let’s just hope they don’t bow out the same way in last year’s Play-In at Worlds 2020.
3) Istanbul Wildcats
Coming all the way from Istanbul, these wildcats took down SuperMassive Esports to qualify for MSI 2021. Out of their five-man, Anıl “HolyPhoenix” Işık with his ability to play Senna proficiently while being able to play carries such as Samira and Kai’sa. Despite being a marksman, HolyPhoenix averages around an 80% kill participation which is the highest among his teammates. Meanwhile, attention must be paid to Soner “StarScreen” Kaya in the top lane with his dominating performances on bruisers like Renekton. With their combination, the Istanbul Wildcats have a two-pronged attack that can be hard to put down once they get going.
However, their strength can easily be their downfall. With their reliance on StarScreen doing well in lane, things may start going south if they can’t win crucial mid-game skirmishes. Their mid laner Tolga “Serin” Ölmez, who is great at playing long-range mages such as Azir, Seraphine, and Viktor, can be prone to being targeted in the draft as well. With their strategy found out, we’ll see how well the wildcats can perform against the rest of the competition without the element of surprise in their favor.
4) paiN Gaming
Despite ending Spring tied for fourth with an 11-7 record, brTT and paiN Gaming pulled a championship trophy out of nowhere after upsetting the rest of the league in the playoffs. With Korean import Han “Luci” Chang-hoon supporting brTT in the bottom lane, brTT was able to show off his bravado with picks like Jinx and Draven. But this wouldn’t have been possible without their flexible mid laner Thiago “tinowns” Sartori filling in whatever role his team needed him to play. Nevertheless, brTT’s performances against Vorax in the Finals putting out 723 DPM, a 10.8 CS per minute, and a 7/0/6 KDA was crucial for their wins.
But we should always be careful to judge a league as rash as the CBLOL. Despite their wins, you can see that the team has an average KDA of 1.6 which means that there is a lot of fighting in every single game. Despite their 9W-5L record, it can be therefore said that their games have been messy to an extent which, what seems like, is what paIiN Gaming thrive on. In a high-pressure calculated environment, the same playstyle that pulls them through might just be what takes them down in Groups.
Group C: All DAMWON
Now, Damwon KIA needs no introduction as the champions of Worlds 2020 and the holder of the Summoner’s Cup. Despite their roster changes, the team has stayed as dominant as ever and is looking to be one of the favorites for LoL Mid-Season Invitational betting. However, behind them is a team that many will overlook just because of their region, Cloud9. The North American team picked up Perkz in the offseason and has looked stronger than ever with the former trio of Perkz, Jesper “Zven” Svenningsen, and Alfonso “Mithy” Aguirre Rodríguez as coach. As such, this group will have these two behemoths going head-to-head and see if Perkz can match up against the formidable Damwon superteam with his new buddies.
Although LLA and the LJL have been steadily improving over the years, the level that the two headliners will be performing will be a step above Infinity Esports and DetonatioN FocusMe. Therefore, for those interested in LoL MSI betting, Group C will likely be a safe choice to bet on!
However, these regions have it in them to upset a game or two against Damwon or Cloud9. After all, League has become more of a team game through and through as the seasons have come and gone.
1) DWG KIA
Where do we even begin with this team? Despite trading in Kim “Khan” Dong-ha for Jang “Nuguri” Ha-gwon in the offseason, the team still looks to be the team to beat in MSI 2021. Riding off their wave of success in Season 10, Damwon had an impressive 16-2 season which was followed by an undefeated run in the playoffs. With an impressive average gold advantage of 1200 at 15 minutes, the team knows how to win early and to drive it home.
Damwon are masters of the Rift and can play a breadth of styles from Heimerdinger bottom to a standard Jinx hypercarry. At the center of it all is playmaker Heo “ShowMaker” Su who shows this flexibility in his own champion pool from Viktor to Serapahine to Renekton. Through and through, it looks as if this team knows how to play the game to win — no matter what it takes or how to do it. All their players from top to bottom can play roles that the team needs them to play whenever needed. Whether Kim “Canyon” Geon-bu needs to go flash-bear-slap on Udyr or to land Nidalee spears, the all-star jungler can do it all. As such, battling a team as talented as Damwon can be a daunting task especially when they are on form.
It’s all on Damwon to decide if they keep their dynasty up and running coming into the 2021 season and that starts with the Mid-Season Invitational.
Before the naysayers shut them down, it’s important to remember that Cloud9 is the only North American organization to get far internationally. On top of that, they now have one member who has reached the World Finals and even won MSI 2019. So, if the LCS ever has a chance, it’s going to be this year. Here’s why: Cloud9 has one of the most aggressive junglers the region has ever seen in Robert “Blaber” Huang. On form, Cloud9 can be one of the top-ranking teams in the world. They have a formidable bot lane duo in Zven and Philippe “Vulcan” Laflamme that can undoubtedly go toe-to-toe with world-class bot lanes. With a mid-jungle duo as potent as Perkz and Blaber, Cloud9 can lay waste to the map even before the 15-minute mark hits.
So where can they fall short then? In the past, Blaber’s aggression has been his dYuta “Yutapon” Sugiura ouble-edged blade when he’s out of sync with his team. So, on the off chance that Blaber underperforms, his team can struggle. Furthermore, the rookie Ibrahim “Fudge” Allami can be a point of attack for teams to focus on in Groups. With his inexperience, perhaps that’s just the window that teams like Damwon can use to take them down.
We must take note as well that they qualified to MSI 2021 against a Team Liquid that didn’t have their main jungler subbed in. Nevertheless, Cloud9 showed that they have the workings of a team that can invariably go far if they show up on the day.
3) DetonatioN FocusMe
If the LJL will have a team to first turn heads internationally, it’ll be DetonatioN FocusMe which is, coincidentally, Japan’s first full-time professional LoL team. Their roster in the 2021 season has been upgraded better than ever with the coming of one of the league’s best mid laners in Lee “Aria” Ga-eul. Now, they have a team that synergises well with each other having a carry jungler in Mun “Steal” Geon-yeong, a proficient marksman in Yuta “Yutapon” Sugiura, and a weak side top laner in Shunsuke “Evi” Murase to balance the team out.
DFM ended the split first in the standings with a 12-2 record and pulled through in the playoffs with a 3-1 win against V3 Esports in the Grand Finals, who was the region’s representative in last year’s Worlds. In the regular season, they had an impressive +1386 average gold lead at 15 minutes thanks to Steal’s impressive showings on Olaf and Taliyah. Against formidable foes such as Damwon and Cloud9, we will see if they can keep up the same dominating performance that got them the trophy in the LJL.
4) Infinity Esports
Infinity Esports find their way back to the international stage after their last appearance in Worlds 2018. This time, they brought Matías “Whitelotus” Musso who was a part of Lyon Gaming in 2017 when they qualified for MSI and Worlds alike. For Infinity, Whitelotus is a role player that plays carries from Jinx to Kalista to Varus. Meanwhile, Mateo Alejandro “Buggax” Aroztegui Zamora is the star of their five-man with his carry-oriented champion pool including Jayce, Camille, and Gangplank. In the playoffs, he had an impressive 27.6% damage share of his team, higher than his mid and bot laners.
But that’s where it all falls apart. It seems that Infinity Esports relies too heavily on picks which can be unreliable against top-tier teams in the international stage. Thus far, the team looks like they will have to rely on Buggax to dig them out of their grave in groups and hope that he can carry the team to victory alongside Whitelotus.
Top 4 Teams We Expect to See in the Playoffs
Following groups, the top six (6) teams will go head-to-head in another double round robin to see who makes it to the final Knockout Stage. Of the teams who we expect to make it out of Groups, we’ve rounded out who will be making it to the playoffs and get a chance to prove themselves in best-of-fives on the Rift.
Since Vietnam’s GAM Esports won’t be making it to MSI, they are automatically out of contention for our ranking.
Royal Never Give Up
With their 3-1 win over FunPlus Phoenix in the playoffs, we believe that Royal Never Give Up has what it takes to adapt and overcome the competition in MSI 2021. Given their dominant split, everyone expected RNG to put up a fight against their first loss against FPX earlier in the bracket. But in the end, it didn’t matter as RNG put their wits together series after series to claw their way back to the Grand Finals. Then in the finals, they outshone FPX who were on a streak coming all the way from the bottom of the bracket. GALA’s 12/0/2 and 7/0/6 performance on Kai’sa and Tristana stood out as he proved himself to be the superior marksman on the day.
With veteran leadership in Xiaohu and Ming and the roster’s collective talent, it’ll be hard for RNG to miss the playoffs with their stacked lineup.
Although all we’ve done is sing praises, it is praise that the team well deserves. After an impressive run in Worlds 2020, the team has stood strong amidst a change in coaching that leaves the impression that these players know how to win. Despite the criticisms towards Jang “Ghost” Yong-jun, he has grown formidably as a laner to match Cho “BeryL” Geon-hee in the bottom lane.
In his post-finals interview, Khan stated that he has learned to be willing to play whatever role his team gives him if it gives them a better chance to win. Given the fear that Khan would disrupt the synergy Damwon had built when he first entered the team, it’s reassuring to see that the team works as a five-man unit that can work together. With their form right now, it’s nigh impossible to imagine a reality where they don’t make playoffs.
Despite the fanfare surrounding this team, Cloud9 does seem to have all the right tools to qualify for playoffs. The in-built synergy that Perkz and Zven have alongside the firepower that all-star jungler Blaber can bring is a deadly duo that teams should be wary of on the Rift. Combine that with Vulcan’s eye for playmaking, it does look convincing that this team can make Top 4 before they get stopped in their tracks by either DWG or RNG.
Perkz brings to Cloud9 an intangible that G2 Esports couldn’t make up for, and that’s the innovation he brings to a team to always find a way to win. In Game 5 of their series against Team Liquid, Perkz bet everything on his Sylas pick which netted them a stomp with a 15k gold lead. Not many teams are willing to pull that off in the clutch to win a series and we believe that’s what will set Cloud9 apart when it matters.
Now, there will be controversy surrounding our decision to put MAD Lions down behind PSG Talon and that’s understandable. MAD comes from Europe where they had just beat Rogue who took down G2 Esports! But remember, MAD were behind in all their games behind Rogue in the Finals and were only able to make it out due to Rogue being unable to close out their games. Against competent international teams with way more experience, the rookie squad will be less likely to pull those upsets off.
Thus, PSG Talon with a Maple on his top form is a scary prospect to run into in the Rumble Stage. Furthermore, the sheer stability that PSG Talon has as a five-man is likely to win them a few more games that will be the edge they need to qualify for playoffs. As talented as MAD are, they still have a way to go when it comes to experience and will likely be their weakness coming into the Rumble.
Our Betting Advice for MSI 2021
For a tournament that has all the competitive regions joining in, it can feel like navigating through uncharted waters when betting on and against teams you’re unfamiliar with. So, we’ve prepared a three-part reminder for bettors who want to take part in the coming LoL Mid-Season Invitational betting.
Watch All You Can
Study the teams. That’s right — if you want to win your bets, you must know who you’re playing with. A good place to start would be the playoffs since that’s an indicator of their form coming into MSI. Learn who carries in the team, who do they play around, what are their habits, are they good in the early game or do they prefer to scale with Dragons, and so on and so forth. Since the group draw has already been released, you can compare the teams amongst themselves and see which teams would do well against one another. As an example, Korea’s calculated playstyle is a mismatch against North America since they have been criticized for their lack of understanding of the game. On the contrary, Vietnam’s skirmish-heavy playstyle goes in sync with China and will be sure to make up rough and bloody early games.
However, battling teams from your own region and fighting against world champions Damwon KIA is a whole other ball game within itself. So, always remember that the strength of the league itself can influence how a team looks like to the outsider. Although do still try to objectively gauge a team’s strength despite wherever region they are coming from.
Major Regions are Major for a Reason
With that said, at the end of the day, the LCK, LPL, LEC, VCS, and LCS are at a tier of their own for a reason. It is because they do have the resources and investment to develop their region and talent compared to the minor leagues. Historically, it has been Korea and China that have been on top of the standings for the past decade and decidedly so. They have an immense pool of talent to build on and have a culture that is conducive for player development.
Although, Europe must be applauded for their increasing presence at the higher rungs of the competition as well. G2 Esports and Fnatic particularly have been at the forefront of their efforts internationally. Thus, MAD Lions representing the region will tell if Europe is indeed as strong as a region that they say they are.
Meanwhile, North America has been relatively underwhelming performance-wise in the past decade. So, a Cloud9 that has world finalist Perkz on form will be a test of the region’s strength once again. Last time, Team Liquid fell short 0-3 in the Finals against the G2 Esports that Perkz was a part of. If the LCS want to be recognized, it is their time to do so.
Anything Can Happen in Groups
As everyone loves to say, “the gap is closing”. In a tourney that has best-of-ones across the Group Stage and the Rumble Stage with teams who haven’t played one another, anything can definitely happen. In the past Worlds 2020, we saw teams like FlyQuest take a game off Top Esports who were considered the favorites for the entire tournament. Then, you have the PCS’ PSG Talon who were able to take games off JD Gaming and Rogue and placed even higher than them in the standings (2-4 to 1-5).
But, at the same time, you have Team SoloMId who went 0-6 in a group that everyone thought they had a chance of getting out of. Suning, who was a team no one was expecting to make it far, made it all the way to the Grand Finals and put up a valiant fight against Damwon. At the end of the day, the team who performs will take the cake. It’s just that a good team will be more likely to perform on any given day. As such, the tournament format with a Group Stage and a Rumble Stage will mean that the best of the best will take home the trophy. So, knowing a team’s ins and outs and how well they relatively are is crucial in deciding bets that could go either way.
What Can You Bet On
In League of Legends, there are a few ways for you to bet on in tournament games. There are moneyline wagers, handicap bets, totals, prop bets, and futures. You can explore how these bets work and our own in-depth betting tips in our LoL betting guide.
Before exploring betting on League of Legends, it would be optimal if you can learn about the basics of the game first. Aside from playing the game, there are resources that you can look up such as Mobalytics, ProGuides, and Skill Capped. You can follow the game’s esports scene on LoL Esports, Twitch, and YouTube.
For those who want to go deeper into the nitty gritty, you can check out player and team stats on Oracle’s Elixir and Games of Legends. By seeing the LPL stats for yourself, you can make informed decisions on who to bet on in the LPL.
Knowing how champions work, the individual champion roles, game mechanics, objectives, and everything goes together is critical for your success as a bettor.
Where to Place your Bets
For betting on MSI 2021 and onwards, you can place your League of Legends bets on bookmakers such as Unikrn, bet365, and dafabet. To read up on our recommendations, you can check our bookmaker reviews on esports-betting.
Since the Mid-Season Invitational is a tournament that has all the competing regions, you might feel overwhelmed on all the teams you have to catch up on. If you simply want to bet on individual regional leagues, you can check out our betting guides on the LCS betting, LEC betting, LCK betting and LPL betting.
1xbet is partnered with sports and esports organizations such as FC Barcelona and NAVI. They offer betting on the tournaments held every year from the major competitive regions. Read up on our comprehensive 1xbet esports review to get you all caught up with bookie.
Bet365 is based in the United Kingdom and serves bettors from American Football to esports. The bookmaker offers betting on maps, objectives, and kills scored. Look at our comprehensive bet365 esports review to get yourself started.
You can also check a list of esports betting sites in the UK here.
Unikrn is a bookmaker that’s primarily known for offering odds on esports. The Seattle-based company offers betting on titles from League of Legends to Fortnite to Call of Duty, you name it. Read up on our comprehensive Unikrn bookmaker review on the esports-focused bookie. We have a review up for their Unikrn Umode as well.
Where to Watch MSI 2021
Starting May 6, you can follow all the action live on Twitch, YouTube, or LoL Esports. For live updates on the tournament games, follow LoL Esports on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. The time slots for the games have yet to be announced on their channels. You can find more notable LoL channels in our Where to watch LoL guide.
MSI Key Stats
As a premier tournament hosted by Riot Games, the Mid-Season Invitational is looked forward to by League’s wide audience. In the previous tournament (which was MSI 2019), they had a $1,000,000 prize pool up for teams to fight over. MSI 2019 was held across a few cities (Ho Chi Minh, Hanoi, and Taipei) from Play-Ins to the Knockout Stage. The tournament had an average of 537, 619 viewers and a peak of 1,704,326 viewers in the historic semifinals between G2 Esports and SK Telecom T1.
Meanwhile, viewership for Worlds 2020 reached a peak of 3,882,252 in the Grand Finals between Suning and Damwon Gaming. Seeing that MSI was last held in 2019, we can only expect that the coming MSI will be sure to turn in millions of viewers all around the world once again.
With this reach of an audience, you can be sure that there will be thousands of bettors who want to double down on LoL MSI betting come May 2021.
History of the MSI
Until 2019 and the rise of the West, the Eastern regional leagues have been primarily dominant in the short list of MSI winners. In 2015, China’s EDward Gaming took home the trophy and upset SK Telecom T1 in a year where they almost won everything — Spring split, Summer split, and Worlds. After falling that year, SK Telecom T1 returned with a vengeance winning back-to-back MSIs in 2016 and 2017. In those years, we saw them take down North America’s Counter Logic Gaming and Europe’s G2 Esports in uncontested 3-0s.
Then, in 2018, the famed Jian “Uzi” Zi-Hao finally won his first-ever international trophy at MSI 2018. Uzi and Royal Never Give Up reclaimed the trophy from Korea’s Kingzone DragonX in a swift 3-1. But in MSI 2019, in their own homeland, the West overthrew the East as G2 Esports and Team Liquid took out SK Telecom T1 and Invictus Gaming to reach the Grand Finals. In the end, it was G2 Esports that wrote history as the first-ever Western champions of the Mid-Season Invitational.
Coming into 2021, the G2 Esports of old have fallen and failed to qualify for the mid-year tourney. Of its roster, only Luka “Perkz” Perković remains to qualify but in an all-new team and region in Cloud9. With Royal Never Give Up returning to LoL MSI Iceland, we will see if the past can overtake the future in Reykjavik.
Upcoming LoL Tournaments
Following May, the regional leagues will be heading into their respective Summer splits to see who qualifies for the year’s center of attention — the League of Legends World Championship. This year, China will still be hosting the international tournament because of how limited they were able to entertain audiences in the past year. The Grand Finals of Worlds 2021 will be held in Shenzhen, China. Expect to see further announcements once Summer champions are decided all over the world. Although it may vary, Worlds is typically held between late September to early November.
After Worlds, pros can get to relax in the offseason with the All-Stars. All-Star is a yearly year-end tournament held in December where League of Legends pros can have fun with fellow pros and play “for fun”. The tourney is held to raise funds for charities at the same time as well. Look to our guide on All-Star if you want to find more about the fun event.
No matter what tournament you choose to follow, you can always find LoL fantasy league being held at any time of the year. For a list of all the events happening in the year, feel free to check our esports tournaments list.
LoL MSI Betting – FAQ section
When does MSI 2021 start?
The Mid-Season Invitational starts on May 6, 2021 and will run until May 23, 2021.
What does MSI stand for?
The acronym stands for the Mid-Season Invitational, a mid-year international tournament held by Riot Games for all their competitive regional leagues.
What format does the MSI have this year?
The Mid-Season Invitational features a Group Stage which is followed by a Rumble Stage with six teams competing in a double round robin. After that, the Knockout Stage follows with the top four teams playing single-elimination best-of-fives.
Where will LoL MSI 2021 be held?
MSI 2021 will be held in Reykjavik, Iceland. The tournament will be held in isolation in Laugardalshöll, an indoor sporting arena.
What does a team get from winning in MSI?
The champion gets to take home a hefty chunk of the prize pool and another slot at Worlds 2021 for their home region.
How do I bet on MSI 2021?
For betting on MSI 2021 and onwards, you can place your League of Legends bets on bookmakers such as Unikrn, bet365, and dafabet. To read up on our recommendations, you can check our bookmaker reviews on esports-betting.