LEC Summer 2020 Power Rankings
Once again before the start of the League of Legends tournaments we have compiled a Power Ranking based on the opinions of our two League of Legends experts Cameron and Miika. Miika of course handles the Finnish website for Esports Vikings and is our Foremost expert on the LEC Which is what this Power Ranking is for!
1. G2 Esports
A majority of G2’s shortcomings in the Spring Split came from either complacency or showboating. Even with those arguable shortcomings they proved they are the top team in the LEC and there are some challengers, but none that are able to clinch that number one spot away from them. They made the decision to put Caps back in the Mid Lane with Perkz in the Bot Lane and I feel this is the best iteration of the squad, everyone will be taking Summer more seriously and for G2 that means complete and utter domination.
For three seasons, the G2 has ruled the LEC and almost the entire world. During the spring season, its game was at times lost, but it can mainly be blamed on Rasmus “Caps” Winther moving to bot Lane during the winter break. Now Luka “Perkz” Perković takes his place on bot Lane and Caps returns to control mid lane, so fireworks like last year are expected. With this line-up to which we now return, the G2 won both LEC seasons last year, as well as the Mid-Season Invitational, and placed second in the Worlds 2019 tournament. For this reason, G2 is an absolute favorite for the summer season and unfortunately it is possible that G2 will reach a similar alliance as Cloud9 in the spring season in LCS.
It’s always a toss up between Origen and Fnatic for second since G2’s rise to dominance but with Fnatics pound for pound talent overshadowing Origen and MAD Lions miraculously strong showing in Spring, Origen don’t ring as nice of a bell coming into Summer. Fnatic should have a better Summer and while they will still probably fall to G2, their games will show some much improved strategies and they too will eclipse the competition.
Looking at the spring season then Fnatic seems to be the only threat to G2 (and yes, I looked at the playoffs). Fnatic developed a whole new kind of team during the spring, as it started to react really strongly to the weaknesses and strengths of its opponents under its new coach Alfonso “Mithy” Aguirre Rodríguez, and brought really great choices to the pick & ban phase. In the past, only the G2 has shown surprising and innovative picks, but during the spring, Fnatic specialized in this area. Unfortunately, the weakest match series of the spring made it to the finals, but it certainly left a hunger for the summer season. Now the team’s Champion pool has expanded even further and Mithy is a bit more seasoned. Fnatic is a clear favorite to challenge the G2 in the summer finals and thereby advance to the Worlds 2020 tournament.
If I say MAD will take 3rd from Origen then they have to go fourth because from the outside looking in, this is where the competition ends for Europe. You could make the argument for Misfits but they really failed to make an impression in Spring and there’s hardly a reason to believe they’d ever get one over on Origen, again anyway. They may very well clinch 3rd as is their right but they may also very well drop if certain conditions are met, they did fall in some very ill timed matches in Spring.
In the case of Fnatic, I spoke praiseworthy about finding my own new identity. Origen also found a new identity for the spring season, but I myself would not greatly praise it. Origen played a clinically pure game designed to destroy an opponent as the game progressed to its late stages. It makes Origen very boring, very effective against weaker teams and leaves very few winning keys when playing against the top two in the series. Origen has not been able to properly challenge either of the above and towards the end of the season even other playoff teams began to find weapons against Origen’s style of play. It will be interesting to see how the experienced Origen adapt their playing style as they start the summer season, as it is clear that it will risk its Worlds seat if it continues with the same style of play. Origen is ahead of the next challengers only because of his experience, as Erlend “Nukeduck” Våtevik Holm, Elias “Upset” Lipp and Andrei “Xerxe'' Dragomir are the nobility of their venues in Europe.
4. MAD Lions
I’m going to take a bit of a risk and say that the Cinderella story will continue for this squad. They overachieved by all marks and I wouldn’t be surprised if they made it all the way to Worlds in their first year as an LEC team. They have made waves thus far and assuming they can ride the tsunami they’ve created, one upset is all they need to misplace Origen or Rogue. Humanoid and Carzzy are top 3 players in their role, assuming Perkz and Caps aren’t both playing mid, and the rest of the squad is very capable of holding their own.
The MAD Lions were the biggest surprise of the spring. A lineup of four newcomers was built around Marek “Humanoid” Brázda. However, the star of the team was not Humanoid, but Zhiqiang “Shad0w” Zhao and Matyáš “Carzzy” Orság made their arrival visible to everyone at once by registering among the best players in their playgrounds. Now the young Lions need to show that the spring was not just a one-season miracle, but that the MAD Lions have come to stay in the top spot. It will be interesting to see how the MAD Lions are able to respond to Misfits ’player reinforcements and Origen’s new look. It is pretty certain that there will be no threats to MAD Lions from behind. If nothing else, at least the MAD Lions will provide entertainment from one match to the next!
5. Misfits Gaming
Misfits have sat on the outside for the longest time. They had a good year once and ever since fell just on the outside of a World birth. Some may think their time has come but without any real roster upgrades and the overall lackluster competition in the bottom half of the LEC, they can’t have made too many improvements in the offseason.
Misfits rose during the spring season to challenge the top three and MAD Lions. Between seasons, it has strengthened considerably with the acquisition of Kasper “Kobbe” Kobberup, who received initial passports from TSM. When Fabian “FEBIVEN” Diepstrate, which has already found its top tune after years after the break, all the pieces start to be in place. Alongside the two veterans is a young trio who is now more experienced of the season and has shown that he can play at the top of Europe. The only question mark is Danny “Dan Dan” Le Comte, which resembles young Bwipo. Dan Dan on a good day challenges the tip of the European rock-hard top Lane, but too often the Misfits give leveling to opponents on the top Lane. Europe’s top Lane table setting is rampant as Alphari, Wunder, Bwipo, Odoamne and Cabochard create a staggering metric for new young promises.
I was really hype on Rogue before Spring Split and they ultimately failed, if only by a little, to meet my expectations. I don’t really see a world where they make the top cut but it is still likely even if I put Excel above them. Vander and Hans sama are a Bot Lane duo I want to see succeed but with their uninspiring top half of the map there isn’t much to really get excited about here.
I considered Rogue as the biggest threat to the top three in the spring season, but in reality Rogue’s brilliant 2019 summer season created too high expectations for a young occupation. Even Steven “Hans Sama” Liv’s acquisition in the winter didn’t elevate Rogue to a medal battle. Now Rogue is in a strange place, as the level shown in the spring doesn’t elevate a team to the real challenger of the five mentioned above, but on the other hand when you think about these four lower anticipated teams, it’s hard to elevate anyone from there to the same line as Rogue. If this advance is true then the battle for the playoffs will prove to be really boring.
7. Excel Esports
Excel Fell short of a finish they should have with YoungBuck at the helm. His coaching prowess hasn’t gone unnoticed and assuming the team has shored up their weaknesses, they could make a serious attempt at a title. They of course will fall short but it is very possible they end this split with some dignity, knocking down the likes of Rogue or Misfits in some clutch matches or even a playoff series.
Excel was completely at its own level in the spring season. Too bad that level was between the playoff teams and the lousy jumbo trio. Like Vitality, Excel has responded to the playoffs. Joey “YoungBuck” Steltenpool has finally managed to hit his nails properly to build the lineup and two veterans (Expect and Mickey) have been replaced by newcomer Felix “Kryze” Hellström and Jora “Special” Scheffer, who has been touring the teams for years without much success. Personally, I can’t believe this duo would suddenly elevate Excel to the playoffs, but Kryze’s acquisition is certainly great in the long run. Vitality’s changes have raised it alongside Excel and even over.
8. Schalke 04
The rest of my Power Rankings are kinda cheating but much like CLG and Golden Guardians, they seem pretty set in stone. Schalke really showed life towards the later half of the split and picked up some more games after dropping Forg1ven. Still though, Forg1ven was supposed to bring balance to the League and instead ruined Schalke’s hopes of ever being taken seriously again. They are the Golden Guardians of the LEC and while we all want to see them do well, they just won't.
Schalke’s spring season was really hard to watch. The drama duo (FORG1VEN and Gilius) raised in advance as question marks were allowed to leave at an early stage and that was the only right choice. His replacement was Lukas “Lurox” Thoma and Nihat “Innaxe” Aliev and the team’s game improved towards the end of the season. Somewhat surprisingly, no changes were seen before the summer season and the benched duo is still in the line-up, although it’s really hard to see either of them playing in LEC matches anymore. Schalke is in better shape than at the start of the spring season, but when you look at the level of the LEC, it's not enough instead of the ninth.
9. Team Vitality
Man oh man. Yammato got canned and they lost their player core and can’t seem to recover, burying themselves under more dirt split after split, surely they’ll find a light at the end of this tunnel. Probably not though and for good reason. I couldn't remember a single player on this roster when I started this Power Ranking and that more or less forced the team into the 10th place spot. 2176 Poor Cabochard, remember Gambit? Ah, I guess their best player wasn’t ever all that good.
Vitality suffered visa problems throughout the spring with Aljoša “Milica” Kovandžić and had to play with lower-ranking temporary substitutes. The team’s experiments with Support also overshadowed the spring and now a new name has been acquired there again, Labros “Labrov” Papoutsakis. Cantoursna “Nji” An, who played at the Academy, has also been raised in the jungle, so Vitality has really reacted to the miserable spring season. As a result, I have raised Vitality closest to the playoff places him head of the quartet teams. However, do I believe in the Vitality playoffs? Not necessarily.
10. SK Gaming
A team destined to fail lead by Trick and Crownshot, two players that just aren’t what any League needs anymore. Trick is long past his prime and Crownshot doesn’t have much potential when you consider the Mid Laner’s to come out of Europe. They’ll be looking to get out of the Franchised LEC or find some new partners in order to overhaul a once great roster.
Perhaps through time the most tasteless and odorless LEC team. In all silence, SK has given way to the top laner of the spring season (Sacre) and Janik “Jenax” Bartels, seen in the spring at mid Lane, has moved to the top Lane. As a new player in SK, newcomer Janik “ZaZee Bartels. The coaching team has also undergone changes, as former long-distance racing player Jesse “Jesiz” Le has been acquired as the new head coach. Unfortunately, I don’t see any of these changes as factors that would significantly take SK’s game forward and thus it’s doomed to the tail end of the league, probably the very last.
The LEC starts up again on June 12th so make sure to tune in for the next segment in the league before the Worlds tournament and make sure to come back for updates on the event so as to not fall behind with where everything stands week to week!