To be entirely realistic, DAMWON KIA is the heavy favorite for the finals. They were dominant throughout the whole tournament, only struggling against a massively improved T1 in the semifinals. EDward Gaming had a somewhat messier route, dropping to the second seed in their group before winning back-to-back five-game series to reach the finals. However, the last time EDG were the underdogs coming into finals, they upset FPX to win their most recent domestic title. So this matchup may not be the stomp people are expecting. Lets take a look at the upcoming historic 2021 World Finals, DK vs. EDG.
Khan vs Flandre
Khan looked shaky in the semifinals relative to his performance throughout the tournament. However, Flandre also did not have the cleanest of semifinals against GEN. Both top laners can redeem themselves in the finals. Throughout Worlds, both players shared similar champion picks, such as Graves and Jayce, but their teams played around the same picks differently. Although DK often funnels Khan resources, Flandre received relatively less attention for the sake of midlane. So this matchup will come down to whether or not Khan can dominate Flandre with the assistance his team provides or if Flandre can weather the storm long enough for reinforcements to arrive.
I give Khan the advantage in this matchup because he has looked better throughout the entirety of the tournament compared to Flandre.
Canyon vs Jiejie
Canyon is looking to make his case as the GOAT jungler with a second World Championship. The only jungler left in his way is an upstart Jiejie. Jiejie flourished throughout Worlds. Once considered the weak point of the team, EDG now relies on Jiejie. Both junglers have shown their ability to generate early game leads, snowballing their team to victory. Both have also shown the ability to come out clutch in smite fights. However, we have yet to see the same level of decision-making and play-making from Jiejie that we have seen from Canyon. This is not to rain down on Jiejie, but rather a highlight of the godlike play we currently witness from Canyon.
Do I really have to explain myself? Canyon has the advantage here. Jiejie is playing amazingly, but Canyon is simply untouchable.
ShowMaker vs Scout
Like his jungler, ShowMaker is playing on another level, and he is doing so consistently. On the other side, Scout has also looked good throughout the tournament, singlehandedly carrying games. However, unlike ShowMaker, we have seen Scout put on some interesting performances as well.
ShowMaker has played chiefly for Khan throughout the tournament, even running Predator on Syndra to facilitate roams. However, ShowMaker reminds us he can still take over games when the ball is in his hands, as Game 4 against T1 demonstrated. Scout seeks to aid his sidelanes with roams and dives after receiving relatively more attention from his team than ShowMaker does. However, we have seen Scout’s early game get neutered by pressure from the enemy jungler.
ShowMaker has the edge in this matchup, thanks to his consistency. However, this does not mean Scout can not ever win the midlane. If Scout shows up in peak form, this matchup could easily go the other way.
Ghost vs Viper
People expected Gumayusi and Keria to destroy the DK bot lane, but this was surprisingly not the case. Ghost weathered the storm of the T1 bot lane, even taking down Gumayusi’s Aphelios. Although DK has tried picking different styles of champions for him, Ghost and the team look most comfortable with him on supportive ADC picks that can efficiently play weakside, AKA the Jhin and Ziggs.
Viper’s play has been the opposite of Ghost so far. With picks like Lucian and MF as his most played, Viper seeks advantages in the lane and carries games himself. As a result, Viper has been putting up insane damage numbers. However, this playstyle comes at the cost of putting Meiko on enchanter supports, which EDG looks much worse on than when Meiko is on an engage support.
In terms of overall individual skill, I give a meaningful edge to Viper in this matchup. However, when considering both players’ performances on current meta picks like Jhin, the two bot laners are even in terms of performance.
BeryL vs Meiko
The champion pools of these two players differ due to the nature of how their teams function. BeryL has played very few enchanter support games due to DK’s style of focusing their top side. Meiko has over ten games on such picks because of EDG’s focus on their superstar ADC, Viper. However, while DK looks the same level regardless of what pick BeryL is on, EDG has much better when Meiko is on an engage tank support.
We saw the T1 vs. DK series feature unique support picks that defined the series. While I do not expect the same level of ingenuity because of the differing priority on support picks, EDG’s decision to put Meiko on enchanters or engagers changes whether the series is competitive or a stomp.
Neither support has a meaningful advantage over the other. The difference will come from the draft priorities of their teams in the finals.
Damwon KIA vs EDward Gaming
In terms of champion picks and dominant play style, the meta of Worlds 2021 certainly favors DK over EDG. DK can mask up the weaknesses of their bot lane while getting the most out of their stars on the top side of the map. On the other hand, EDG can not as quickly take over games through bot lane as they may have in spring. Although they have found success through their mid lane focus, it has not looked as clean and confident as the DK top-lane focus gameplay.