Glad to see you are still responding to this thread. I hope you will be able to reply to me as well.
I voted for "3) Skilled Ranked Players in Normal Modes".
Unfortunately I seem to be in the minority regarding this problem. But being in the "minority" does not make this problem "minor".
Just today I have experienced a very bad case of matchmaking.
Please see this picture (or the attached below, same image):
I have not censored names because I do not believe I am calling anyone out, and I have permission at least from my team that I queued with. You can look up the names quickly to verify the rankings of each player and see that this was in fact a lopsided match.
I have read a lot about the ELO system so I think I have some idea of how it works. In a nutshell, I can pretty much explain what happened myself in that (1) my normal ELO is considerably higher than my ranked ELO, and (2) my opponent's normal ELOs are considerably lower than their ranked ELOs.
This is not a rare occurrence for me, as even though I am only Silver rating, I find myself consistently being matched against Gold rated players.
If I was playing alone it would be something I would accept - that matchmaking considers me a decent player to pit me against tough opponents. The problem is that I am queued with other people, and I do not believe that they are being given a fair chance. Being the best player in my group, I can guess that the gap in our skill levels is probably very high.
You might have a sense of doubt and think, "if your hidden normal ELO is reflective of your true skill level, then shouldn't you be able to carry your friends if matchmaking gives you a fair match?". Well, the truth is that sometimes I do have blow out games where I do in fact carry them and ending up going like 15-0 or something. However, one issue not talked about and hard to measure is player role on the team. My favorite is the Support role, and their strength of impact on a game is widely debated. I am of the opinion that a traditional Support can not directly "carry" a game. So does that mean I should not play a Support role while queuing with my friends if I want to win? Or does that mean that I should not play with them at all if our skill gap is too great?
These are rough questions and this situation is rarely talked about. Because I know, on the flip side of the coin, it's not fair if I have 1500 level skill and my lane opponent has 1100 level skill. I'm sure this has happened to me a lot and I'm sure this happens to other people all the time. Role choice / lane choice is NOT something matchmaking takes into account.
I have not mailed matchmaking because this thread is a month old and I don't know if you are still collecting the data. If you tell me that it would help you to make changes I will happily do so and send all of the information I have.
If you could at least reply and acknowledge that this game was an extreme case I would be very appreciative to know that you are at least listening and plan to do something. I did hear about this thread when you first opened it a month ago, and I was very excited to see that you are aware of the problem. Unfortunately a month has passed and I am still getting unfair matches like so to this day. This is not the first time I have had a game like this.
Thanks for reading.