Some background on LPL's promotions teams. Games will start in 2:30 hours.
Considering most of my followers aren't much fond or knowledgeable about LSPL and even top table LPL teams, i wrote some words to help you guys understand what's happening in LPL promotions tournaments. My intention is not to present a super indeed analysis on how the teams play.
E-sportpedia page about it: http://lol.esportspedia.com/wiki/2015_LPL_Spring/Promotion
Very known team, mostly for frustrating the community and fans. After signing Smlz, the team seemed complete and ready to reach stats of a top team in China. During the last weeks of LSPL spring split, fights started to happen between the members, mostly Ahri (ex-support) vs Smlz (adc) and Soist (jungler). Besides the fights and departure of Ahri (later replaced by Yuzhe), their shot-caller, corn stone and captain, the team didn't practice for several weeks, its known that Xiye (mid) was trolling in solo-queue playing 100% Annie and all these internal factors made them lost all the hype, the motivation and former high-level performances
WE.a started the LPL split totally scattered and showing bad performances. Some weeks later Mickeygod and Khan (Korean mid and top laner) joined the team, in order to bring more seriousness and better practice mentality from KR scene. Util the end of LPL summer split, they developed a little but still deserved to be relegated.
It's very uncertain how they will perform in LPL promotions. With Smlz-Soist (2 best players) leaving the team, they can re-qualify stomping other teams or simply fail.
Another experienced team. YG played 2013 LPL summer split and did ok for a newcomer team, being relegated only in the last game, when LMQ secured a tie but advantage in previous clashes against YG. That team was different than all other LPL teams, the top laner Otto (now Diangun) and jungler Syz (now Captain57) carried the team into many wins and good games, even if the other players were 'average or lower'. Different than other CN teams, their adc wasn't impressive (he's still not, until today) but jungler and top had huge potential.
After relegated, the team rebuilt into the current roster Number1-Yinfu-Diangun-Zhenlong-Yansir, and even not being as flashy or scary as WE.a in LSPL, YG showed signs of intelligence and long-term potential. During most recent LPL, YG had many bad games but still showed some sudden amazing performances, winning against EDG, OMG and others. Carried by Diangun and some good performances by Yinfu, YG let a small taste of victory even staying at the bottom of the table, YG showed that practicing more and maybe improving their botlane, they can become a top team. Top notch picks and bans and smart players in-game.
YG is in the harder side of the brackets. Considering only 2 teams between VG.s - EP - YG will qualify, they are in a risky situation where they have to show up. But they will probably qualify and do better in next LPL, some Koreans will be added to the roster in the next weeks.
This is a very very unpredictable but interesting team.
VG.s (now know only as Vici Gaming) was a team created by the merging of SPG (team which Tabe was coaching before) and VG, after both teams showing some strengths and talent in LSPL but not able to qualify over WEa-YG.
The most interesting thing is that VG.s was created with an air of Challenger Super-Team around them. Both SPG and VG were unbalanced enough to not reach LPL level, mostly for having 1-2 players holding them down. But mixing the 2 line-ups together resulted in a very good team in theory, with good and promising players in all roles, CarryMyTeam-Eimi-Cherish522-Sin (Avenger)-300. Besides the good names, they had a sister team created to practice together and also play in LSPL, VG.p. Tabe was still coaching the 2 teams.
The results were much different than expected, since after 2 1-1 ties in the early series in LSPL, the organization replaced the 2 best players in the team (Cherish522 and Sin) with ex-KX.LM guys, and this is when VG.s became just a mediocre mid-table team, with Eimi-300 usually performing well but some clear weaknesses, like in the mid lane. VG.s secured their spot in LPL promotions after bringing back Sin later but still frustrated all the hype and talent around their names.
Recently, SPG and VG organizations break up and VG.s is just VG. VG is now working with Ling.FY organization, which helped VG covering their mid-lane issues with the young and promising fellow Apollo. The star and carry support, 300, was rumored to leave this line-up, to be confirmed if he's going to play the promotions.
As i said before, this is a very hard side of the brackets, when they have to face YG-EP-EP.c and only 2 of them will qualify. We haven't seen much from VG.s since LSPL, so its very hard to call how they will show up and how much they developed. If they play with CarryMyTeam-Eimi-Apollo-Sin-300 and show improvements as a whole, they can even win against either EP-YG, but still is a very risky situation. Qualifying or not, most of these players should be in LPL teams, i can't talk about them separately, but all them are good in their own way.
Also known and somewhat experienced team, famous for only winning 2 maps in 2013 LPL summer split. After re-qualifying for 2014 spring split, EP showed some improvements (mostly in top lane, with new acquisition AmazingJ) but not enough to escape the 2nd relegation.
Relegated to LSPL, EP decided to make big moves and create a strong line-up to both re-qualify for LPL and try to compete with the strong teams. EP's LoL line-up merged with KX.happy (4th place in previous LSPL) and got a experienced and good team (and also a secondary team with good names, let's talk about it later).
EP kept AmazingJ, Kane and Yansir in the top-adc-support roles, and added Captain57 (previously known as Syz, Limitless or Xing) plus Xiaoluoluo, both from KX. This team had some good results since the start, mostly with the good performances by their jungler Cpt57 and his super flashy Lee Sin. EP was a overall balanced team between the other 4 roles, maybe they are not as good to compete with top LPL players but as a team they worked pretty well, getting 3rd place in LSPL (only 2 points behind Snake) and some good results in 3rd-party tournaments against LPL teams.
Recently the news that STYZ's ban was lifted news came up, and was a plus of excitement for EP's potential, but in the next days EP announced that Styz will be playing with new EP's secondary team (EP.A, which besides STYZ has some Koreans). So even having a top tier chinese adc, the organization choose to keep the Kane-Yansir synergy to get better performances.
Some times, we can think that EP is the best team in promotions tournaments, and other times i'm not even sure they can take one of the 4 spots. As i said, its a very risky situation for them considering the brackets seeds, but EP has strength and probably will take a spot.
EP.carries is EP's secondary team. We cant use the 'sister-team' concept in their case, considering that the organization's focus was much more in the stronger team, EP. Still, as i said above, the second team has some quality and known players in their roster, enough to get top8 in LSPL.
EP was formed with the best players from KX.h, EP and EP.O (disbanded team) without counting those already in EP's main team, V from KX.h, Buping-Supercat from EP and Loveletter-RainesYoga from EP.O.
V really did shine in his 2 LSPL splits, considering he played only in tier 2 teams, he still put performances that make me wonder if AmazingJ is really the guy to be in the main team. He's the best player in the team right now, even if EP.c's wins are more reliant on how Loveletter (adc) and Yoga (mid) perform. Buping played LPL with EP, we could clearly see that he was a skilled player, mostly with high-skill capped champions like Lee Sin, but couldn't keep the high level considering jungle pathing, gank efficiency and other mental aspects a top jungler should be good at. SuperCat, played LPL as a mid-laner and swapped to support when the team was formed, he had some good performances and mechanics from his old mid-laner career.
Recently, EP.c was sold to 么么哒, team that Kakao-Rookie will be play in s5, but no OGN player is able to compete in this tournament, so EP.c will probably use some challenger Korean players in order to surprise the enemy teams and try a qualification.
EP.c's situation is very hard, clearly their chances are pretty low, but if underestimated and having a good day, they might take down anyone. Its still not confirmed if EP.c will use the non-OGN koreans they recently acquired.
WOA was formed with Titan Catiplay's players, a team that had 10 ties in 15 bo2 series in LSPL spring split. They are a experienced team, with a couple players with LPL experience from season 3, and the most famous between them being Mortred, the mid-laner.
While not being a front-runner team, WOA had some good results during the past months, including 2-1'ing IG in XCS's qualifiers and 2-0'ing King during LSPL regular season, being the only team sweeping team King until now.
WOA is a team heavily focused in the midlane. As much as we can argue that Mortred isn't as good as other LSPL midlaners or even some amateur players, the guy really had impact to put a 'alright' team in the 4th spot of LSPL summer, and then winning MVP award for LSPL summer split. Different than EP.c, though, WOA is a more balanced team where the adc (Dreams) also managed to carry several games, mostly in the Kog'Maw meta. Liva, the jungler, also had strong performances around Mortred and can carry games if get the necessary tools.
Being in the lower part of the brackets (alongside DK, Gamtee and WE.a) makes it more possible to a qualification happen. Maybe besides WE.a, the teams are in a pretty close level and anyone can take the 2 spots. WOA can do it, even if we haven't see much they play in the past months, they can still show their best face.
Gamtee (aka GTF, Gamtee Fenghui):
When still playing for ZOO's organization, this line-up qualified to LSPL via TGA tournament (losing to Snake in the finals), surprising some fans that were expecting other teams to be stronger.
Gamtee is a really weird and different team compared to other LSPL line-ups. They are much more a team pursuing consistence and methodical play-style than improving players skill and flashy-dominant performances. Some might say that Gamtee is a boring team to watch for LSPL standards of craziness, but we can't deny that they had result.
After a slow start, the team started climbing in the standings leaded by Tale (the adc) and sometimes by Leo (mid laner). Leo is a curious player, who can have some jaw-dropping plays with assassins but still have some terrible performances. But overall, Gamtee will always focus more on the teamplay to win games than actually flashy plays or 1 single carry.
Recently, they played XCS's group phase and didn't do that well (besides taking a map from OMG), but how they will grow and use this experience is more relavant than the standings numbers. Even if no team takes side-tournaments seriously, playing against better teams is always the best way to develop, so we can expect the possibility of Gamtee showing up with surprising performances and maybe taking one of the spots.
GTF's side of the brackets is probably not as sharp as the opposite site, but the matches will be closer and its uncertain who's going to show up better.
DK is not the best team in the tournament but still a very underrated group of players.
The big name here is Yeluo, the midlaner. A guy with LPL experience (s3 spring split with Wayi Spider) that shouldn't be taken lightly, otherwise he can win against any mid laner in the tournament. In his 2 LSPL splits, he was probably never a top3 in his role, like Weiless-Cherish522-Diangun-JS-Xiyang, but still is the guy that usually surprised the enemies in DK's wins.
During LSPL, they had some roster changes, including losing Being (adc, to LegendDragon team) and replacing their top-laner, Yujian, player that i was fond of, but still the team deserved to be in the top8. They are not a much hyped team, but that's what makes them more scary, no one knows what DK gonna bring next. They are a rich organization that never invested that big in LoL, but at any time can surprise the community, mostly because they will take the shaky WE.a at first.
My personal prediction, considering the already determined brackets, is to YG-EP-WE.a-GTF qualify for next LPL. But more than ever, anything can happen, VG.s might take a spot, WE.a can tilt, and etc. We haven't seem them in a tournament for some time.
Happily, the tournament will be played in 'loser's bracket' system, much better than TGA we just watched, so we can only hope to see the actual best teams to qualify and make LPL a better league in s5.
Ps* No OGN or LPL players are able to play for these teams, but still the teams can change 1-2 players in their line-ups. Considering not many teams like to announce roster-changes to the fans, new players might show up and rising-lowering teams changes.