8:48 pm ET — The risky Baron play pays off as TSM uses it to push through the Team WE base and win the game to end the day 1-1.
8:41 pm ET — TSM take another Baron, barely, but give away 2 kill bringing the teams even at 5-5 in kill score, though TSM is still up 7k gold.
8:34 pm ET — TSM takes their biggest advantage of the game so far by turning their small lead into a Baron!
8:23 pm ET — TSM has gained a slight lead of almost 1k gold at 17 minutes thanks to their 2-1 lead in towers.
8:13 pm ET — Condi has ganked bottom lane twice and gotten two kills out of it going up almost a 1k gold lead at about 6 minutes.
8:07 pm ET — Team SoloMid vs Team WE Pick and Ban
TSM is going to look for Bjerg roams into huge Wild Growth Kennen team fights. Meanwhile, WE is going for a poke/disengage composition.
TSM: Kennen, Lee Sin, Taliyah, Ezreal, Lulu
Bans: Leblanc, Fizz, Lucian, Kled, No Ban
WE: Jayce, Elise, Karma, Ashe, Nami
Bans: Ivern, Varus, Syndra, Ryze, Orianna
7:42 pm ET — After a game of near constant fighting and a massive SKT lead they finally win the game ending the day 2-0. Meanwhile, Marines end the day a fairly successful 1-1.
7:37 pm ET — Things haven’t slowed down at all as the 22 minute kill score is 18-11 in favor of SK Telecom. However, the 9k gold lead for SKT tells a more accurate story as SKT leads in towers 6-0 and drakes 2-0.
7:30 pm ET — This game is off to a crazy start. Marines are sticking to their hyper aggression and SKT are trying to match it pound for pound, in all, it’s working — mostly. They have a 2k gold lead and are leading 8-6 in kills, however, 5 of them are on Peanut’s jungle Lee Sin making the gold lead a little less meaningful.
7:19 pm ET — SKT once again lose first blood as this time Huni gives it away after over-extending in a fight top lane that leads to a Levi gank for the kill.
7:12 pm ET — SK Telecom T1 vs GIGABYTE Marines Pick and Ban
Both teams are going to come into the game with a huge amount of damage and no tank what so ever. SKT will have to edge in tankiness thanks to having a Lulu, however, GAM will go into the game with better engage with the Ashe Arrow.
SKT: Rumble, Lee Sin, Ekko, Varus, Lulu
Bans: Leblanc, Gragas, Ziggs, Shen, Fizz
GAM: Jayce, Graves, Syndra, Ashe, Karma
Bans: Galio, Kennen, Ezreal, Twitch, Kog’Maw
6:48 p.m. ET -- Sure enough, the “pick Ivern and Caitlyn and wait” strategy that worked so well in the Play-In stage worked at MSI’s main event, too. G2 comes back from a massive deficit to win 8-10 in 46 minutes, still trailing in both gold and kills at the end of the victory.
6:45 p.m. ET — Zven’s Caitlyn is full build, and G2’s chances of winning this game have risen accordingly. G2 is able to take down MMD and push into Flash Wolves’ base for an inhibitor — FW is really going to have to kill Zven before fights start to close this out.
6:42 p.m. ET — Flash Wolves have expanded on its lead in the mid-game, building a 9-2 kill lead and a 4k gold lead by 37 minutes. FW picks up an uncontested Baron to follow, and will look to close out the game before Ryze and Caitlyn can scale for G2. G2 attempts to speed that process up with a quick Elder Dragon, but Karsa jumps in and steals it away.
6:21 p.m. ET — After nearly 20 minutes of slow, even play, the Flash Wolves pick up a pair of kills on opposite sides of the map. The trades eventually end up 3-1 in Flash Wolves’ favor, with the first tower also going to the Taiwanese squad.
6:01 p.m. ET — Flash Wolves vs. G2 Esports Pick and Ban
In a matchup between 0-1 teams, Trick brings out our first Ivern of the tournament, going with the Ivern+Caitlyn combo that dominated much of the Play-In stage. But Flash Wolves have a strong response in Rengar + Lulu as we head to the Rift for our fourth game of the day.
FW: Gragas, Rengar, LeBlanc, Varus, Lulu
Bans: Jayce, Kennen, Fiora, Renekton, Shen
G2: Nautilus, Ivern, Ryze, Caitlyn, Karma
Bans: Lee Sin, Graves, Ashe, Rumble, Kled
5:35 pm ET — TSM lose a team fight 4-0 as GAM push into the base and take the game!
5:30 pm ET — 30 minutes in and GAM has broken the base of TSM before losing a couple kills evening the score at 10-10 however, GAM still has a 7k lead.
5:20 pm ET — Things could be going better for TSM. Marines have a 3k gold lead and are up 4-2 in towers.
4:57 pm ET — GIGABYTE MARINES vs Team SoloMid Pick and Ban
TSM are going a full protect the AD Carry comp! This is honestly pretty shocking since we have never really seen Turtle put in a position where the game was on his shoulders. GAM are using comp pretty similar to what helped them win the first two games against TSM during the play-in so it isn’t looking too bad for them.
GAM: Gragas, Kha’Zix, Ahri, Varus, Karma
Bans: Ivern, Galileo, Ashe, Caitlyn, Ezreal
TSM: Nautilus, Graves, Lulu, Twitch, Nami
Bans: Ziggs, Kennen, Syndra, Lee Sin, Leblanc
4:25 pm ET — Flash Wolves thoroughly out-played as Team WE take a win in the second game of the day.
4:21 pm ET — Flash Wolves have spent the last 12 minutes, but they can’t seem to pick up any gold or towers for their trouble.
4:07 pm ET — 12 minutes in and Team WE are up 3-0 in kills and almost 3k gold after taking the first tower.
3: 55 pm ET — Team WE vs Flash Wolves Pick and Ban
Team WE is going to have a good surprise fight composition, but it’s hard to see what they really kept FW from in this draft. The team won with almost these exact same champions in the play-in just last week. As such, expect the heavy roams from Maple followed up by some huge equalizers on MMD to be the game plan from Flash Wolves here.
WE: Kled, Elise, Taliyah, Ashe, Bard
Bans: Syndra, Leblanc, Zyra, Shen, Gragas
FW: Rumble, Lee Sin, Ryze, Varus, Malzahar
Bans: Lulu, Karma, Graves, Tahm Kench, Nami
3:25 pm ET — SK Telecom take the win over G2 who put up a fairly strong fight in the early game, but didn’t quite have the map movement to match SKT in the late.
3:23 pm ET — SKT continue their dominance after the pause and pick up a 42 minute Baron which could help them close the game.
3:18 pm ET — SKT have a pretty commanding lead, but the game has once again been paused.
3:15 pm ET — Bad keeps getting worse for G2 as they lost an inhibitor to the relentless SK Telecom push.
3:06 pm ET — What started out well for G2 has slowly turned into SKT’s favor as they still trailer 5-4 in kills but have a lead in towers (4-3), dragons (3-0) and gold (3k).
2:52 pm ET — G2 send the team bottom lane and grab 2 — bringing their lead to 4-0 — and first tower giving them a 2k gold lead.
2:39 pm ET — Faker has the first death of group stage as G2 walks into a bush only to find his Syndra killing him and burning his flash.
2:39 pm ET — MSI Group Stages are finally underway after a 5 minute pre-game pause! Let’s hope everything is right now and we can actually see these two teams play.
2:34 pm ET — This just in: Gorilla makes it known that he approves of the Miss Fortune support pick from SKT that he used to beat them twice back in the 2016 World Championships.
2:34 pm ET — G2 vs SKT Pick and Ban
These are both pretty classic “group stage” team comps. Well rounded high on damage more than capable of team fighting or grabbing picks. The only real issue I see is that Galio may end up being tankier and doing more damage than Renekton, but that is only true if Huni is feeling comfortable on the gargoyle.
G2: Renekton, Lee Sin, Oriana, Ashe, Zyra
Bans: Kennen, Rumble, Karma, Fizz, Shen
SKT: Galio, Graves, Syndra, Varus, Miss Fortune
Bans: Leblanc, Jayce, Lulu, Fiora, Gangplank
2:15 pm ET — MSI’s main event has officially begun with the opening ceremonies:
The first day of the Mid-Season Invitational Group Stage kicks off Wednesday. Alongside the first-place winners from the major regions will be the teams from the play-in qualifiers: Team Solomid from the NA LCS, Flash Wolves from the LMS, and GIGABYTE Marines from the GPL.
The day will start out with a match between the European LCS winners G2 facing off against the LCK Champion, SK Telecom T1. This will be the first match of the tournament for both teams and should provide the perfect place to get an idea of how good G2 could be at this tournament after disappointing in their two previous international appearances.
Meanwhile, the day’s last match will be between NA LCS first place, Team SoloMid and the LPL winners, Team WE. While the North American favorites struggled in their play-in series against GIGABYTE Marines, Team WE come into the series fresh off a solid run through the LPL playoffs.
Each match up during the Group Stage will be a best-of-one with the top four teams advancing to the Semi-Final round.
All times Eastern
G2 vs SK Telecom T1 - 2:30 p.m.
Team WE vs Flash Wolves - 3:30 p.m.
GIGABYTE Marines vs Team SoloMid - 4:30 p.m.
Flash Wolves vs G2 - 5:30 p.m.
SK Telecom T1 vs GIGABYTE Marines - 6:30 p.m.
Team SoloMid vs Team WE - 7:30 p.m.