This article was written by our amazing Community Member Max. Go give him a follow on Twitter!
Welcome back to Players to Watch! Many of the players picked last week had some very nice tallies, which is always a good sign that I know at least a bit of what I’m talking about. Last week’s scores are below:
TOP: Solo – 72.24 points
JUNGLE: Inspired – 30.44 points
MID: Milica – 21.64 points
ADC: Crownshot – 68.30 points
SUPPORT: CoreJJ – 30.30 points
TEAM: TSM – 25.00 points
FLEX: Stixxay – 62.20 points
While Milica may have underperformed this week, it’s a pretty good start, and fingers crossed we can make a full team of 35pts+ this time around! Let’s get stuck in!
TOP: Kumo (Evil Geniuses, versus TSM & DIG this week)
Cloud9 are my favourite NA team, and I was really excited when we got to see Kumo play in the main roster. His aggressive style in top lane was balanced out well by his mechanical know-how and outplay potential, as we saw in his second LCS game against Impact. While it was a shame that he left C9, Kumo would have struggled to beat Licorice to the Top lane spot, and it’s brilliant he’s found such great form with a starting spot at Evil Geniuses.
Last week Kumo posted an overall K/D/A of 4/5/4, netting his owners 22.78 points. While this may not seem all that impressive, it’s worth remembering EG came up against C9 last week, and were predictably stomped into dust. While the gap between EG and C9 is massive, EG are making the right movements to open up a similar gap between them and the rest of the league. While the majority of play is centered around ‘The Italian Stallion’ Jiizuke and 3-time World Champion Bang, Kumo’s proficiency on tanks is integral to letting EG’s main carries perform, and will notch him a good tally of points through assists and the odd kill. This week EG face off against TSM, who are looking pretty off-colour so far, and Dignitas, who should consider it a successful campaign if they don’t finish in the bottom two. Broken Blade and V1per both look to play lane very aggressively; Kumo could look to match them in aggression, or he could just sit back on Ornn and let them waste resources up top. I expect Kumo to rack up some good points against these teams, and he should definitely be worth considering if you’re seeking a
dependable Top laner for your team.
JUNGLE: Santorin (FlyQuest, versus CLG & GG this week)
Santorin is a player that has been around forever, and while he’ll rarely be the standout player, you can rely on him to be where you need him to be 90% of the time. From ‘probably never playing professional League again’ after leaving TSM, to meandering around Challenger for a couple of years, to finding a new lease of life on FlyQuest. Santorin has seen it all, and has a dependable head on his shoulders as a result.
Last week in game against TSM and Dignitas, Santorin posted a K/D/A of 9/3/27, getting his owners an eye-watering 86.80 points, and helping greatly to get rid of his old reputation of being a ‘living ward’. Santorin’s jungle opponents this week come in the form of CLG’s Wiggily, and GG’s Closer. Both are good junglers in their own right, but are still relatively new to NA pro play, and for that reason I expect Santorin will assert his dominance in these matchups. CLG could be a dicey match though, due to their 3-1 record so far showing they are not to be written off.
MID: Humanoid (MAD Lions, versus OG & RGE this week)
EU mids, man. Humanoid was a man possessed last week, finishing the week with a K/D/A of 15/7/13, netting Fantasy owners an exceptional 76.40 points. While these stats are impressive in their own right, MAD Lions faced off against none other than Fnatic last week, who entered the match undefeated, and left licking their wounds, with MAD taking revenge for the Spring Playoffs result. MAD Lions look like an incredibly strong team; the team finished 3 rd last split and look to be on track to get at least 3 rd this time around, and Humanoid will lead his pride of Lions to many more victories if they keep their aggressive playstyle up.
This week Humanoid and the rest of the MAD Lions face off against Origen and Rogue. Both are strong teams in their own right; Nukeduck is incredibly dependable, and Larssen’s Rogue are tied for first with MAD Lions. However, Humanoid and the MAD Lions will be riding on cloud nine after last week’s results. It’s unlikely that their momentum will cause them to make sloppy mistakes; Mac will have them drilled and ready to go, but whether Rogue and Origen are more ready? Well, we’ll have to wait and see. However, I am predicting another good week for MAD, and Humanoid will more than likely be front and centre of it.
ADC: Tactical (Team Liquid, vs C9 & DIG this week)
Who needs Doublelift, anyway? Legendary ADC Doublelift had his most dialed-in split during Spring, and the whole team suffered as
a result. With his move to TSM, rising ADC Tactical was given a full-time starting spot in Liquid’s main roster, and so far, he’s shown he deserves the chance TL gave him. A storming first week was followed up last week with an overall K/D/A of 8/1/5, netting Tactical’s owners 47.50 points. While Tactical was outclassed by Bang and the rest of EG, he more than made up for it against 100T.
This week Team Liquid face off against Cloud9 and Dignitas; you could hardly ask for a more varied week. While it’s expected that Cloud9 will stomp any opposition that comes to face them, the team has been heavily playing around Blaber this split. As we saw last week, if teams can isolate him in team fights and keep him CC’d, Cloud9 look shakier; Tactical could pick up some respectable points here if TL can keep Blaber out of the game. As mentioned earlier, Dignitas should count it as a successful split if they finish 8 th place. Team Liquid will likely pad their stats here.
SUPPORT: Tore (Excel, versus S04 & MSF this week)
This one is risky, but hear me out. Excel don’t look great this split: they still lack a real carry, and while there’s a great player in Kryze, it will take him a year or so to emerge. He would have benefited more by staying in the regional leagues for Summer and getting a move next Spring, but we can’t blame him for that. However, for Fantasy players, Excel’s Support Tore, previously known as Norskeren, could be a points goldmine on certain weeks.
Tore is a player that when Excel win, he is heavily involved in the kills. In every Excel win since Tore joined at the beginning of Spring 2020, there have been 127 kills for Excel in total. Tore has been involved in 105 of these kills, giving him an impressive 82.77% Kill Participation when Excel win. This puts him firmly among the top Supports for KP/Win, like Vander, Mikyx and Vulcan. This week Tore and the rest of Excel will face off against Schalke 04 and Vitality. While Vitality look much stronger than before, they have been shown to have some inconsistencies and are liable to giving up sloppy kills. This is where Tore and the rest of Excel will thrive- they might have found a team that can throw the mid game as hard as they can, if not harder. They will need some fortitude and preparation to take a win here, but it’s possible. And as for Schalke 04, well, what more needs to be said? They’re in a real state, and none of their problems are fixable in a week. Excel could be in for a big points game here. Like I said, this is a risky pick-up, and it could fall flat on its face. However, Excel have a nice set of fixtures this week, and Tore’s KP/Win should get you excited. If you are in desperate need of a Support this week, why not take a chance on Tore?
TEAM: Evil Geniuses (versus TSM & DIG this week)
Taking up the Team slot for this week is Evil Geniuses. While many were expecting EG to be a good team in Summer after a strong Spring showing, Jiizuke and Co have truly burst into the LCS this split. The gap between C9 and the rest of the pack may be huge, EG are fixing to open up a similar gap with 2 nd and the rest of the pack.
EG have players that play their lanes very aggressively and with an active focus on taking down towers as soon as possible. However, a lot of the points will come thanks to former LCS MVP Svenskeren. EG’s Jungler has a heavy focus on getting Dragons and other neutral objectives as soon as is possible, which will rack up some good points for owners of EG. This week EG face off against TSM and Dignitas. While TSM could throw a spanner in the works for EG, it’s unlikely; Evil Geniuses look a lot better, and much more drilled than TSM do- they’re still struggling with the classic early split slump. And as for Dignitas… well, I’ve said what needs to be said about them. They have a lot of problems, none of which can be fixed mid-split. I expect EG to finish the week 2-0, with some nice points to boot.
UTILITY: Larssen (Rogue, versus MAD & FNC this week)
Larssen looks to have really found his groove so far this split. While Rogue may have lost their undefeated record last week to G2, Larssen managed to look decent in the match, and absolutely dominant against Vitality. In a 1-1 week for Rogue, Larssen managed a K/D/A of 8/3/9, netting his owners a tidy 51.48 points. Not as impressive as his Week 1 stats, but still nothing to sniff at when facing one of the best teams in the world that week.
This week Larssen and the rest of Rogue come up against MAD Lions and Fnatic. These are some tough fixtures to be sure; Larssen’s MAD counterpart Humanoid is looking red-hot, and they are tied for first with Rogue. This will be a tightly contested match, but both teams like to play aggressively and look for kills in lane. This could be a high-points match for both Humanoid and Larssen. Fnatic is another unknown factor. They’re coming off the back of a frankly embarrassing 0-2 week against MAD and OG, and Larssen’s lane opponent Nemesis looked less than impressive in these losses.
However, this is Fnatic we’re talking about. They might have dropped a terrible performance last week, but they’re a team that will look to come back from last week with an absolute domination of their next opponents. Larssen could be a risky pick considering his opponents this week, but even in their losses, Larssen posts some decent points. Give it a shot if you’re feeling brave.
Well, that about wraps up this week’s Players to Watch! Let me know what you think of my picks; am I 200 IQing it, or completely inting? Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you next week with the next edition of Players to Watch.