After successfully passing the Rumble stage of the 2021 Mid-Season Invitational, MAD Lions are about to face world champions DWG KIA in a best-of-5 series for a spot in the finals. The team gave a press conference Thursday, answering questions about their preparation and their chances at a top 2 finish at MSI.
Asked about what would be the biggest obstacles in defeating the reigning world champs, MAD support Norman "Kaiser" Kaiser narrowed it down to a couple:
"I think two things are going to be important. First of all, early game and drafting because we saw in MSI that in the Rumble stage a lot of teams are good at snowballing. So, if we can get ahead of DAMWON we will be able to do so as well, and the other way around. I think early game and draft will be really important and for us especially to not be intimidated by the title 'world champion'. DWG is a world champion so we cannot stop playing aggressive or anything like this," Kaiser said.
While DK's bot lane is considered their weak point, MAD Lions' duo has been improving throughout the tournament, and a potential upset could come by playing around bot side. The LEC representatives are seen by pundits as underdogs going into the series, facing a team that has asserted dominance both domestically and internationally, but coach James "Mac" MacCormack disagrees.
"I think while other people consider us to be heavy underdogs, I don't think we see ourselves that way' I don't think you can really afford to approach a match, thinking that you are going to lose in any case, so I wouldn't say it particularly affects the manner in which we prepare. Our preparation is always going to be the same, no matter for whom we are preparing. [...] We look to see what do they think of us and we scout them heavily to see what their strengths and weaknesses are and we try to adapt around those while doing what I mentioned earlier that we try to make sure that we are able to play our strengths’.’
MAD Lions will face off against DWG KIA Saturday, at 3 p.m. CEST, with the aim to keep the MSI trophy in Europe.