The new League of Legends season has arrived in Europe and everyone is speculating which teams will find themselves on the top of the pile come the end of the season. During week one, we saw strong statements of intent from a couple of teams while others were found severely lacking. Join us as we start our weekly rankings of the best, and worst, the LEC has to offer.
10 – Rogue (0-2)
Rogue failed to make a winning start and looked underprepared in their losses to Excel and Misfits. Ultimately, the squad lack the star power necessary to compete at this level. They do however have the highly rated youngster Emil “Larssen” Larsson on their academy team, could he step up for the new side once he’s finished his studies?
Player of the week: Kim “Wadid” Bae-In (Support)
9 – Excel Esports (1-1)
While Excel picked up an important first win against Rogue, their opponents didn’t put up much of a challenge. Their other game of the week, a drawn-out loss against Splyce, acts as a better barometer of their skill level. In this match, Marc “Caedrel” Robert Lamont found himself exposed and struggled to have the impact one would expect from a jungler of his calibre. Excel has the bones of a decent team, but they still have a lot of work left to do.
Player of the week: Raymond “kaSing” Tsang (Support)
8 – Splyce (1-1)
Splyce has a problem. When playing from behind against Excel, they were able to keep control of the map, farm up and grind out a comeback victory. However, when they took an early game lead against Vitality, Splyce had no idea what to do. They essentially gave control of the objectives to their opposition. This allowed Vitality to take control of the economy and squeeze out a victory. Splyce lacks shot-calling, someone must step up if the team hopes to climb the table this year.
Player of the week: Marek “Humanoid” Brázda (Mid)
7 – Fnatic (0-2)
While Fnatic failed to pick up a win this week, it’s not all doom and gloom for last years’ Worlds finalists. Their first game was a narrow loss against SK Gaming which needed to be remade due to lag. Their second game was walkover caused by a bad draft which saw new mid, Tim “Nemesis” Lipovšek, completely countered by Origen. Fnatic clearly still have quality and with better draft strategy, they should rise through the rankings.
Player of the week: Mads “Broxah” Brock-Pedersen (Jungle)
6 – Team Vitality (1-1)
Vitality picked up where they left off, as a gatekeeper of sorts for the top teams in Europe. Poor decision making and a fixation on Baron saw them lose a winnable game against Schalke. They recovered on day two and showed an uncharacteristic level of patience and strategy to overcome an early deficit. Vitality still lacks talent in some areas but have enough about themselves to stay safe in the middle of the pack this season.
Player of the week: Lucas “Cabochard” Simon-Meslet (Top)
5 – SK Gaming (1-1)
SK was a tale of two teams this weekend. They started strongly by beating Fnatic and then beating them again in the remade game. However, they found themselves on the wrong end of a thrashing by Misfits on Sunday. These inconsistent results, combined with a pretty makeshift roster, make it difficult to know where to place them. While they appear to have some talent on their side, only time will tell if they can perform consistently as a team.
Player of the week: Oskar “Selfmade” Boderek (Jungle)
4 – FC Schalke 04 Esports (1-1)
If one thing is clear from this team’s first two games in the LEC, it’s that Schalke has problems in the laning phase. Against a team of an equivalent skill level like Vitality, this didn’t prove to be a huge problem as Schalke showed patience and kept the pressure on their opponents. This allowed them to make a comeback and take the victory. Against the superior G2 however, the game was lost before they had a chance to attempt a comeback. At this stage, Schalke looks to be a solid team but will struggle to a cement place for themselves amongst the very best in Europe.
Player of the week: Jonas “Memento” Elmarghichi (Jungle)
3 – Origen (1-1)
Origen is pretty smart; they came into both their games with a clear strategy and tried to control the tempo of their matches. This worked well against Fnatic, Origen picked to their enemies’ weaknesses which allowed Erlend “Nukeduck” Holm to control the game from the middle lane. They favoured a late game, team fighting strategy against G2. This might have worked had G2 not completely dominated them in the early-to-mid game. Hopefully, Origen will hone their considered approach and continue to challenge the top teams.
Player of the week: Erlend “Nukeduck” Holm (Mid)
2 – Misfits Gaming (2-0)
Here’s a perfect example of why you shouldn’t judge teams based on practice performances. Misfits won their games against Rogue and SK in dominant fashion. Steven “Hans Sama” Liv is potentially the best AD carry that Europe has ever produced. The addition of star support Kang “GorillA” Beom-Hyeon from DragonX seemed to galvanise his performance and both players were key in Misfits’ bombastic performances. How can a team who won two games in 48 minutes only be second best? Well…
Player of the week: Kang “GorillA” Beom-Hyeon (Support)
1 – G2 Esports (2-0)
When the best team in a region signs the best player in the region, you expect to see something special. What many may not have anticipated is how quickly Luka “PerkZ” Perković would adapt to his new role in the bottom lane. The former mid laner led his team by example and dismantled Schalke and Origen. Fans are already excited for a clash between this week’s most dominant teams, Misfits and G2, and the question on most people’s lips is “which team has the best bottom lane duo?”
Player of the week: Luka “PerkZ” Perković (Bot)