"At times they've looked like the best team in NA, at times they've resembled FlyQuest," said Hempstead. "However, going into playoffs I think everything is lining up for them to have a deep run."
Hempstead has been a believer in Cloud9 since the start of the split. Early conversations with him indicated that he was set on this C9 pick and wasn't ready to let go anytime soon. According to Hempstead, it all starts in the bot lane. "The AD Carry meta is perfect for Sneaky. He showed in week 9 what he can do on the Lucian pick. With the BotRK buffs, ADC is in a position where they can carry again instead of relying on long-range damage. This gives the already dominate bot lane of Sneaky and Smoothie an edge over just about every other playoff team."
Now, you can't be a true analyst without recognizing flaws from certain teams. Hempstead is mainly worried about Cloud9's prized rookie, Contractz. "Contractz is going to be heavily relied upon and for a rookie jungler, that might be too much pressure to bear. With that said he has the potential to carry games single-handedly and he showed that against Immortals in week 8."
The top lane has been a fiasco for Cloud9 throughout the split. They've given Ray time in the top lane but the bulk of the play has (deservingly) been with Meteos. "Ray has looked a lot better down the stretch and it'll be interesting to see how they utilize each top laner," said Hempstead "Don't be surprised if Ray starts game 1 and they flip flop from there. That's been C9's strategy during the latter weeks of LCS."
What's a playoff discussion without a prediction? For Hempstead, he's not backing off the Cloud9 train anytime soon. "A lot of people are sleeping on Cloud 9 in the playoffs due to recent performances but in my mind they're a contender to win the whole thing."
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