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How The Western LoL Leagues Are Shaping: LEC & LCS Summer Part 2




After Week 1 we talked about how LEC Summer and LCS Summer had changed with the offseason and MSI. Now we are past the midway point, and it is time to take a second look at the best of the West, and some of the rest. 

European Class, American Chaos

LEC

Right now three teams sit head and shoulders above the rest of Europe: Splyce, Fnatic, and G2. They dominate against the bottom tier and have the best players in the league.

G2 are currently still riding high off winning MSI and basically trolling Rift Rivals because it was beneath them. They have only lost in a one-sided blowout by Fnatic, and have not really been challenged otherwise. G2 lead the league in average game time, with just over 27 minutes per game. This was actually dragged up by a 33.5 minute slugfest with Splyce. G2 Currently are the favorites to win LEC Summer, and it is clear to see why.

Fnatic looked unbeatable before Rift Rivals. They have since lost two games, one to Rogue and the other to Splyce. Even with this, they are the only team to beat G2 this split, a game in which they dominated the reigning champions. However, their negatives cannot be ignored. Rekkles has been KDA playing all split, and in the two losses, Bwipo, Broxah, and Hylissang all performed terribly. On a good day this can be the best team in Europe, but on bad ones they get destroyed. 

Splyce have overtaken Origen among the elite in LEC Summer. They took down an undefeated Fnatic, and have only lost to G2 and Schalke. Splyce as a whole have been on a whole new level when compared to their Spring form, and the results show it. They are third in the league at the moment, and the gap between them and the pack is bigger than it would seem.

LCS

Where the LEC has a structured top tier, their friends across the pond have been all over the place in LCS Summer. At one point six different teams were tied for first, but now the pack has been cropped to three: Team Liquid, Cloud9, and CLG. 

Team Liquid, with a few hiccups, have emerged as the top team in the League. They have a single loss since Week 3, a game against Cloud9 in which TL played like hot garbage the entire game. They have shown they can beat pretty much any team in NA, and should be the LoL betting favorites every time. LCS Summer is shaping up much like the previous three splits. 

Cloud9 would have topped this list prior to Rift Rivals, but since then the boys in blue have slumped. In the past few weeks they have dropped games to Echo Fox and CLG. They came back in a game against TSM they never should have been in to begin with. With only two weeks left in the season C9 are under the microscope.

Counter Logic Gaming have been the biggest surprise of LCS Summer. With the removal of Darshan and addition of Ruin, this team has completely turned around. They have beaten the likes of TL, C9, and TSM. They currently sit tied for second, and can make a run for Worlds if they keep up the pace. 

Crowded In The Middle

LEC

The current LEC Summer Split has a very crowded middle tier, with Schalke, Rogue, Vitality, and Origen occupying it currently.

Schalke are currently in fourth, but it feels like they are definitely a step below Splyce. They haven’t been able to hold a candle to G2 or Fnatic, and even dropped a game to Origen and SK each. Upset is still one of the best ADs in the league, and the team is playing much better with Trick than they did with Memento. They are set to make playoffs, but aren’t quite elite. 

Origen is in a similar spot to how JDG are in the LPL. They managed to make finals in Spring, but in LEC Summer they haven’t been able to get anything going. The team over relies on Patrik to a fault, and Mithy has been much sloppier than in years past. If Origen want any chance of making Worlds, they need to turn it around fast.

Rogue are in the process of a development cycle. Larssen and Inspired are players that a franchise can be built around, but the supporting cast isn’t there yet. Woolite, HeaQ, and Profit are not players you can expect to contend in playoffs. This split is a massive improvement because this version of the team has a future beyond LEC Summer. They might make it as the sixth seed, but that is the peak. 

Vitality hit a hard slump early in the LEC Summer Split, and are slowly turning it around. Notable underperformers were Jizuke and Attila, but now the team is slowly picking up wins. They have to over-rely on Cabochard to win, but at the same time, it is better than the alternative. I don’t see them contending for any playoff spots other than sixth with Rogue.

LCS

LCS Summer has a really odd middle of the pack. OpTic, TSM, Golden Guardians, and 100 Thieves all occupy this tier.

OpTic are a team that struggle to find consistency. They will convincingly beat TSM, and then lose to Echo Fox the next day. Some days players like Big and Dhokla look like gods, other days it is Crown 1v9ing for them. If this team can stop flip-flopping they can contend. Our tip? Bet with caution. 

TSM have found themselves being the middle of the pack personified. They will win convincingly against all of the lower teams, but drop games to the top consistently. Zven and Akaadian have not retained their Spring form, and the team is in a slump. Given they were a favorite to go to Worlds, they are running out of time.

Golden Guardians cannot break away from the .500 range. Barring a fluke win against CLG, the same goes for them as TSM. They even traded Deftly to Cloud9 in exchange for Keith. They are now starting FBI and Huhi. This team has definitely moved up from 2018, but from Spring this is a downward trend.

100 Thieves are not a team I thought I would put here a few weeks ago. They have been on a surge lately, putting in Ryu and FakeGod to bolster team synergy. Damned if it didn’t work like a charm. What many called the worst team in the world is now just on the outside of playoffs. They are strangely clicking but still need a bit of help to reach the promised land. 

Rebrands, Overhype, Decline, and…..

I’m going to keep this one shorter. In the LEC Summer Split, Excel has shown they are the worst team since H2k. If not for Jin Air they would be labeled the worst Power 4 team in the world. Misfits are an absolute mess, as shown by starting their Academy team and demoting Hans Sama. SK have dropped off a cliff, with Selfmade, in particular, going from a hyped rookie to another one split wonder. These three teams are set for total rebuilds in the off season and have zero hope for playoffs.

In LCS Summer, FlyQuest degraded to the point of atrophy. They hung at the bottom of the table for the longest time, and their Academy team is the worst as well. They shouldn’t be this bad, but it is getting ridiculous. Clutch is on the brink with the Dignitas rebrand and likely rebuild approaching fast. This roster that is supposedly filled with talent just isn’t exhibiting it. Echo Fox is the worst team in NA, so avoid betting on them at all costs. Honestly, none of the teams listed above should be bet on, but the big story with Echo Fox isn’t even about the poor play on the Rift.

….and Stan freaking Kroenke.

You read that correctly. Why does the much-maligned and despised owner of Arsenal FC, the Denver Nuggets, and the Los Angeles Rams have to do with League of Legends. Well, he just bought Echo Fox’s spot. We just lost a pillar of the community, Rick Fox, who defended esports in the eyes of major media and brought fans to the scene….in favor of one of the most hated owners in all of sports. The entire Echo Fox situation is a damn shame, and honestly better covered in another article. For now, this is probably the worst takeaway of the Summer Split.