Now that the Worlds 2021 Play-In stage has concluded and the groups are set, I've simulated the outcomes of each group. In Group B, 100 Thieves, DetonatioN FocusMe, EDward Gaming, and T1 fight to get to the knockout stage.
Group stage rules
In the group stage, each group plays a double round robin, which means that each team will play each other team twice. Placement is determined by overall record, and the top two teams will move on to the knockout stage.
Tiebreakers have some fairly complicated potential situations, which we won't cover in their entirety (but if you're interested, you can read the full rules here). The overall gist is that:
- In a two-way tie, head-to-head record and then a tiebreaker game are used. If the tie is for third place, there is no tiebreaker, as the bottom two teams get eliminated anyway.
- In a three-way tie, if all three teams have the same record against each other, game length of wins is used to seed a two-round bracket. If they all have different records against each other, that determines placement. If two teams have the same record, they follow two-way tiebreaker rules while the third team gets placed accordingly.
- In a four-way tie, game length of wins is used to seed a single elimination bracket
The four teams in Group B are:
- 100 Thieves: 100T were the LCS champion, and took North America's #1 Worlds spot.
- DetonatioN FocusMe: DFM were the LJL champion, and took first place in their Play-In group after a tough tiebreaker against Cloud9 to represent Japan on the main stage.
- EDward Gaming: EDG were the LPL champion, and took China's #1 spot at Worlds.
- T1: T1 were the LCK Regional Finals champion, and Korea's #3 spot at Worlds.
The first step of generating group predictions was to get matchup probabilities between each pair of teams:
EDG are massively dominant. No team has above a 40% chance to beat them (even as blue side), and side selection can skew that even further. In fact, EDG are our No. 2 overall strongest team at Worlds. T1 and 100T look very similar here, and should be almost perfectly evenly matched (both against each other and against the other two teams). DFM is going to struggle quite a bit, with no favored matchups at all.
I simulated this group's double round robin 50000 times, and here are the average records of each team:
EDG will end up with a record of 4-2, on average. No other team is even expected to have an overall winning record. Between T1 and 100T, one of them likely will at least break even, but the expectation for either of them is below that.
Here is the distribution of each team's possible records:
EDG have an almost 10% chance to just 6-0 the group and not drop a single game. The distributions for T1 and 100T are very similar, given their almost identical matchup slates. DFM, as expected, skews towards a losing record, though they'll probably pick up an upset or two.
With only twelve total games played in each group, however, there's going to be some variance in these outcomes, and with matchups played one game at a time upsets are very possible.
In each simulated run of the group stage, records led to placements, with tiebreakers also accounted for as necessary. Placement is what determines whether a team moves on to the Knockout stage or goes home. First, here's each team's probability of taking first in the group, and their median placement:
|Team Name||% 1st Place||Median Place|
EDG are more likely than not to take first, and no other team has a strong shot at contending that. DFM would have to stage a series of back-to-back upsets. None of their matchups are unwinnable, but the odds of going on a consecutive hot streak aren't great.
First place has the benefit of a potentially easier matchup in the knockout stage, but the top two teams move on. What are each team's chances?
|Team Name||% Top 2|
Naturally, EDG are all but guaranteed to stay alive. T1 and 100T are going to fight neck and neck for that second spot, but they still have to watch out for DFM sneaking in and supplanting them, so no other team has even a 50/50 shot at continuing their Worlds run.
And finally, here is each team's distribution of possible placement:
As we mentioned earlier, EDG have a higher chance of taking first than any other place combined. T1 and 100T are less likely to take first than any other place, but are very uniformly spread out across second, third, or fourth. DFM, as expected, has diminishing chances for each consecutively higher place.
Group B has a very obvious frontrunner in EDward Gaming, who are almost certain to take first (or at the very least, second). T1 and 100 Thieves are almost perfectly matched, and are going to have to fight tooth and nail for that second spot. One of them is going to end up disappointed. DetonatioN FocusMe may be the weakest team here, but they aren't hopelessly outmatched. They're not likely to supplant EDG, but T1 and 100T will have to watch their backs.
As always, keep up with our suggested bets to see how our predictions stack up against the market, and where we would suggest staking your money.
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