The most recent iterations of the Counter Logic Gaming vs Team SoloMid rivalry have orientated almost entirely around Yiliang “Doublelift” Peng. As the two heavyweight organisation squared off for a decisive bout, the AD carry took centre stage once more, producing moments of brilliance and hilarity.
Dubbed as ‘The Rivalry of Inches’, the final weekend’s featured fixture would provide fans with a heavy dose of deja vu.
Chaotic teamfighting, questionable shotcalling, Doublelift and Zaqueri “Aphromoo” Black reuniting; TSM and CLG fans would have been forgiven for thinking they had fallen asleep and woken up in 2015.
Even Doublelift appeared to have been wrapped up by the eerie familiarity of the series. Locking in the infamous Jinx pick that proved so dominant during the Summer Split playoff final of 2015, the veteran AD carry would bizarrely lose his bearings during Game 2.
Sieging CLG’s top turret, his former lane partner, Aphromoo, would soon approach Doublelift in an attempt to defend the objective.
Forgetting that he and Aphro no longer represented the same organisation, DL allowed CLG’s support to slowly approach him unscathed.
It was only at the moment that Aphromoo mercilessly knocked Doublelift into range of the turret that the Team SoloMid AD carry was brought to his senses.
As reinforcements arrived for CLG, Doublelift would pay for the hilarious error with his life:
no joke I thought @aphromoo was my teammate when he slowly walked up to me and pulved
— Yiliang Peng (@TLDoublelift) August 6, 2017
The mistake threatened to allow CLG back into the tie, as Doublelift’s former organisation regained a foothold in the game and capitalised on a number of TSM mistakes.
Typically, Doublelift would redeem himself as the series reached an exciting climax, once again channeling memories of the 2015 NA LCS playoff finals as he single-handedly turned the tide of a decisive skirmish in the bottom lane.
Confident that they had gained an edge on their opponents, Counter Logic Gaming looked to press home their advantage and rout Team SoloMid.
Just as their rivals had underestimated Jinx’s late game damage in 2015, CLG committed the very same error, allowing Doublelift to go untouched in the backline; The deja vu was vivid:
After aceing his former squad, Doublelift destroyed the nexus to secure the series for Team SoloMid, cementing the reigning champion’s first place seed for playoffs.
Counter Logic Gaming will head into the knockout round as the third seed, after holding top spot for the majority of the Summer Split.
The form book points towards another showdown between North America’s two oldest organisations, by which point, Doublelift will hopefully have a clearer understanding of which team it is he’s playing for.