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This week saw many surprises, including the winless Rogue finally securing a win and the undefeated G2 taking an L. Many of the teams rose and fell in the standings, inlcuding Origen making a monumental rise to second. As always, we hope you enjoy the read, and if you have any comments or suggestions, please let us know!

1: G2 (9-1)

Change from Previous Week’s Standing: 0 (From 1st)

G2 completed a perfect first half but also were handed their first loss by Origen. They have been crushing the LEC and are the clear favorites to win with their champion ocean and dominant early games. They do this by winning almost every draft and simply being the stronger team.

This past week they put this on display in their first game against Misfits, however, in their second game, the exact opposite happened; they lost the draft, and were outplayed in almost every role, as well as in rotations.

Their game against Misfits was perhaps their best game yet, with Jankos and Perkz absolutely dominating the early game on Elise and Yasuo, creating one pick after the other, and somehow consistently winning unfavorable trades. With G2 ahead by nearly 6000 gold by 15 minutes in, the game’s outcome was clear, and G2 sped to the victory.

That being said, G2 drafted a strange composition against Origen, opting for scaling picks like Sivir, Cassiopeia, and Sylas rather than going for their traditional early-focused draft. This did not pay off, and if anything, G2, and especially their Bot lane, looked lost playing a composition like this one into a composition that resembled the ones they had played throughout the first half of the split. Kold ganked mid at like 7-8 minutes, forcing Caps’ flash and making him leave lane. This allowed Nukeduck to hit level 6 first, with his own Flash up. Caps didn’t respect this, and as a result got solo-killed. This then began the snowball of Zed in the hands of Nukeduck, with Nukeduck taking over the map and picking off one G2 member after the other.

As mentioned, the main problem was in G2’s bot, with Perkz getting caught out in the most random places during key moments and Miky having a very lackluster game, doing practically nothing on Pyke. Miky could often be seen missing hooks, while Perkz went 0/3/0 and had 166 DPM (A moment of silence for his ridiculous DPM until this point).

It’s important to note, though, that Wunder, G2’s eternal rock in the top, did not fall behind on Sylas, a pick that many criticized him for, and in fact held a sizeable lead throughout the game against Alphari’s Kennen, with him generally being up around 2000 gold. While it was clear that Wunder had practiced the scaling pick, it provided little use in a game that was never in G2’s control.

G2 is still an insanely good team, and one weak performance won’t convince us otherwise, but it is clear that Perkz is not yet comfortable on Crit marksmen. Moreover, their game against Origen showed that scaling comps are not something G2 is good at (Although the game sample size for this is limited, as they have only picked a scaling comp in one game). If anything, their loss against Origen was partially due to the massive bot lane changes in Patch 9.3, and next week, we should see the G2 we’ve grown used to.

2: Origen (6-4)

Change from Previous Week’s Standing: +3 (From 5th)

Although it may seem bold to place Origen at second, their run in the last few weeks was nothing short of phenomenal. Since week four of the LEC, they have taken down the number 1 and 2 teams in the league, including stopping G2’s undefeated streak. Their place in our rankings is not only a consequence of their wins, but also the quality of the games they’ve played. In week four, they steamrolled Schalke in a completely one-sided game, and this past week, they crushed G2 in a similar fashion. These games were clearly not cheesy upsets, but were rather Origen stepping up and outperforming in both games.

It’s wildly apparent that Origen has figured out what may have been missing in the earlier portion of the split, seeing individual improvement across the team.

In the first 3 weeks of the LEC, Kold was arguably the worst performing jungler in the entire league, sporting a 1.9 KDA across the 6 games played. In these games, there was not a single game that he played well in against a top 5 team, and instead had scores such as 1/5/1 on Gragas in a loss to G2, 0/4/6 on Xin Zhao in a loss to Misfits, 1/4/0 on Xin Zhao in a loss to Splyce, and 0/5/7 on Sejuani in a loss to Vitality.

On the flipside, Kold has been wreaking havoc in the last two weeks, rocking a 16.5 KDA in his last four games (on four different champions). As a player, he’s stepped up massively, successfully finding ganks in the early game and being able to create openings for his team throughout the game.

Besides Kold, it seems that Mithy has found his form once against as a top player in the league. In lane, he and Patrik have often found themselves ahead or evenly matched, even if they draft a weaker lane. In the later stages, Mithy has been acting as one of the main engagers, finding kills and dictating teamfights, especially in the G2 game. If he continues to perform, he may be able to regain his title as the best in the west.

Origen may not be at the top of the table, but by the end of the split, we expect them to clearly distinguish themselves as a top team in Europe.

3: Vitality (7-3)

Change from Previous Week’s Standing: +1 (From 4th)

Much like G2, Vitality has found much of their success in playing hyper-aggressive early games and drafting compositions that accel at skirmishes, with champions such as Kai’Sa, LeBlanc, and Urgot.

They showed their mastery of this style in their game against Schalke, where they thwarted much of the repeated ganks that Schalke tried to setup onto Jizuke and ended up turning those into their favor, as a result accruing a hefty lead by 15. With their non-stop creativity and relentless aggression, Vitality choked out Schalke as the game went on, and did not allow any openings for Schalke to come back, winning the game in 27 minutes with a 14,000 gold lead.

That being said, this hyper-aggression does not always work out though, as we saw in this week’s game against SK. Attila and Jactroll would frequently overcommit for trades in the bottom lane and go too deep, often making what should have been a simple trade for pressure into a kill for SK. This created a small gold deficit for Vitality, and as a result, when they attempted to play their classic fast-paced style, SK outskirmished them, winning both trades and teamfights. In fact, it seems that even when all indicators point to a losing teamfight for Vitality, Vitality still attempt to do so, as they did when SK was backing off from sieging Vitality’s base. Mowgli dove the enemy ADC, but was picked off in a matter of seconds while his team idly stood back. Sometimes, these plays do pay off though, as when Vitality engaged on SK for the second time that minute, they managed to get a kill on Pirean after expending several of their own flashes. Vitality continued to attempt these plays, but multiple members were caught out, again and again, ultimately giving more advantages over to SK.

A key player in all of Vitality’s games has of course been Mowgli, who has acted as both the control and the catalyst of the team. With by far the highest vision score per minute (2.27) out of all Junglers in the LEC, as well as some of the highest KPA, it’s easy to see why. With his engage-heavy champion pool of Sejuani, Jarvan, Olaf, and Lee Sin, Mowgli plays the role of perhaps the main playmaker within Vitality, helping Vitality’s lanes secure advantages that allow them to play such an aggressive style.

We expect Vitality to continue to perform well throughout the latter half of the split, fighting teams like Origen and Schalke for that coveted second place.

4: Schalke 04 (7-3)

Change from Previous Week’s Standing: -2 (From 2nd)

Schalke’s macro-heavy playstyle has been falling off as of late, with the team going 2-2 in their last 4 matches, losing against Origen and Vitality, who, until recently, were thought of as rivals or slightly below Schalke’s level.

From their recent games, it definitely seems as though Schalke has become complacent in the early game, often relying on their rotations and objective control in the mid to late game to win rather than through teamfights and picks. In fact, in their game against Rogue this week, Schalke and Rogue were even on kills for the majority of the game, with both being stuck in a 3-3 scoreline throughout the latter half of the game. With that being said, Schalke held a sizeable lead throughout the game, almost all of which came from turrets and other objectives. Schalke ultimately closed out the game in the 33rd minute with an ace.

That being said, this kind of passive playstyle did not work against the likes of Vitality, whose hyper-aggression all but choked Schalke out of the game. Schalke attempted to create pressure in the mid lane through repeated ganks, but were thwarted by Vitality again and again, ultimately creating an early gold deficit that would later snowball out of their control.

If Schalke wants to continue to challenge Vitality and Origen for that 2nd place, they should first look to improve their proactivity in the early game rather than attempting to play a slower, methodical style in which they build leads on smart rotations rather than winning skirmishes.

5: SK Gaming (5-5)

Change from Previous Week’s Standing: +4 (From 9th)

In the past, SK Gaming has had rosters of veterans and star talent, fielding players like Forgiven, and Svenskeren. With their return into the European league, they took a more bold approach, picking up young European talent mixed with two Korean veterans. SK came into this split with middling expectations, as most viewers hadn’t even heard of any of the team’s players. In their earlier weeks, it was clear that this team harbored a gem—their jungler Selfmade. It seemed that every game, Selfmade would be creating leads or making big plays, but the team wasn’t able to push their advantage, and would often roll over and lose.

As they came into week 5, SK was sitting at 3-5, and were due to face the titans, Vitality, as well as the improving Fnatic. Our expectations were that this team would end the week 0-2 and would remain in the bottom of the standings for the foreseeable future. Instead, SK Gaming looked like a top team in last weeks games. They played a fast and punishing game against Vitality, featuring a Selfmade highlight reel and well-played skirmishes. Into Fnatic, SK played a much slower game, where picking off Bwipo lead to most of their gained objectives.

It’s now obvious that this team is looking to be a make waves come playoff time, and if they follow their current trend, they may end up being a strong contender for the title. Who knew bringing in Brokenshard would be the key to this team finding success?

6: Splyce (6-4)

Change from Previous Week’s Standing: -3 (From 3rd)

Splyce hasn’t gotten much worse than the past week, but their ranking mainly changes as we accept that we wildly overrated them in last week’s ranking. We had expected that the patch would help this team excel as they tend to already play and succeed in long-lasting games.

In week 5 of the LEC, Splyce played two bottom place teams, and were expected to 2-0. Instead, Splyce showed an underwhelming performance. On day 1, they were dominated in all 3 of their lanes against Fnatic, losing just under 35 minutes with only 2 objectives taken as a team. Day 2, they played a subpar looking team in Excel. In this game, Excel lost the game more than Splyce had won it. Splyce were only going even in fights, and only took the advantage as they were given most objectives in the game for free.

In terms of results, Splyce have had good weeks and bad weeks in the first half of the LEC, but their performance seems to have stagnated. If Splyce find an early lead, they generally do not punish their opponents enough to snowball, resulting in an extended game which is often decided by a late game teamfight or individual misplay. If they fall behind, they make enough plays to drag the game on longer to the point in which the exact same thing occurs.

Splyce find themselves with a solid record at 6-4, but as the weeks go by, we expect that most of their success comes from defeating the bottom tier teams. If they continue with their current level of performance, Splyce will most likely end the split between 7th to 5th, but if this team works on their proactivity around mid game, they may find themselves much higher in the standings.

7: Misfits (4-6)

Change from Previous Week’s Standing: -1 (From 6th)

If you had told me that Misfits, a lineup that promised to be one of Europe’s strongest in years, would look to be out of playoffs contention halfway through the split, I would’ve called you mad. Nevertheless, the team has been nose-diving through the ranks since week 3, only winning one out of their last seven games, going as far as giving Rogue their very first win.

Much of their downfall can be attributed to the team seemingly only being able to play through their bot lane. In much of their recent games, Hans Sama and Gorilla have not been able to create leads, sometimes even getting crushed in the laning phase. In fact, when Hans Sama isn’t on the likes of a lane dominant AD such as Draven or Lucian, he generally doesn’t do much throughout the game, and as a result, Misfits does not accomplish much.

Building on that, the team also lacks cohesion. In several games now, we’ve seen Soaz and Gorilla attempt to engage by themselves, one after the other, only to give kills over to the enemy, as well as create a man advantage. It’s unclear as to why they seem hellbent on going in and dying alone, one after the other.

As of right now, we just don’t see good results coming from this lineup anytime soon. Their plays seem horribly uncoordinated, and it almost looks as though the team is playing without communicating. It seems that unless Misfits rapidly improve their cohesion, Papasmithy will continue to have to post sad gorillas after each of their games.

8: Fnatic (3-7)

Change from Previous Week’s Standing: -1 (From 7th)

The Fnatic that we have seen in the LEC is far from the team we saw at last year’s world championship. Each individual player has underperformed, and the team has looked closer to 5 solo queue players than 5 professionals. In the last few weeks, we’ve been hoping that with more practice, Fnatic would return to their former selves, but they have looked decent at best. The good news is that their last week was arguably their strongest, cleanly taking down Splyce and despite losing, having a solid game into SK Gaming.

In the past week of the LEC, it appears Rekkles has returned to last year’s form, being the best performing AD Carry in week 5 of the LEC. He was a monster in the early game, and played as well as he could have, even with dropping a game. For week 5, Rekkles holds the number one spot of all relevant AD Carry statistics (KDA, GPM, DMG%, DPM, CSD@15, GD@15), and would contend for this week’s MVP if not for Nukeducks’ insane performance of his own.

Overall, Fnatic has actually looked a lot better on this patch, and have been able to fall back on Rekkles carrying if the game goes awry. With this approach, bar any major mistakes, every game should be “winnable.” The only issue is if the team falls too far behind of if the players get mindlessly caught out, as Bwipo displayed in the SK game.

By the end of the split, Fnatic should easily be a top 6 team. The main issue is that they’ve fallen too far down in the standings, and it is unlikely that they make playoffs. If this occurs, not only would it be a huge disappointment for the organization, but it would be the first time in the history of Fnatic that they don’t play in the postseason. With this looking more likely, it seems this Fnatic may be the biggest downfall of a European team since Alliance.

9: Excel (2-8)

Change from Previous Week’s Standing: 0 (From 9th)

In the early weeks of the Spring Split, Excel showed some great early-games and were often able to match the pace of the top teams, but unfortunately, Excel look horrible in anything past the 20-minute mark.

Currently, Excel are on a 5-game losing streak and are yet to find a reliable carry player to help them through the mid and late game. Both Expect and their new mid laner, Special, have shown some promise, with the latter dealing 36.5% of Excel’s damage in their game against Splyce, but as a result of their lack of carry players, Excel is often only able to win some trades while not being able to secure objectives, consequently often falling behind in gold and watching their games snowball out of their control.

Excel’s weak bot lane does nothing to remedy this. Jeskla has time and time again been exploited by the enemy team, and is without a doubt one of the weakest AD Carries in the LEC right now. With abysmal stats, Jeskla has shown little signs of improvement throughout the split. Now, part of the reason why his stats are so bad is of course due to Excel losing most of their games, but his early stats at 15, where Excel tends to actually have leads, still place him as the 9th ADC at 15.

As of now, Excel shows no signs of improving, and could even fall to 10th if Rogue picks up a few more wins. Their weak jungler and bot lane often cost them games, and the games that they have won have often been the result of Expect playing exceptionally. Maybe next split, Excel.

10: Rogue (1-9)

Change from Previous Week’s Standing: 0 (From 10th)

After 5 weeks, it is clear that Rogue is going to be fighting to not be last place in the inaugural split of the LEC. The team has lacked both the talent and coordination of the teams above them in the standings and have just started to show signs of life as they approach the second half of the sprint split.

In week 5, Rogue came in with a couple of changes, hoping to find some success in their games. In the Schalke game, the team had fallen behind due to being out-laned and seemed to want to scale until their double carry composition came online. Unfortunately, Schalke, as the superior team, were able to finish them before Rogue were able to accomplish much of anything. In their second game, they drafted a similar composition, this time including Kikis’ pocket pick, Pantheon. With the early moves he was able to make. Rogue found themselves with a slight gold lead as they approached the 20-minute mark. From there, a decisive Baron call allowed them to charge into the Misfits base and secure their first win of the LEC.

We’d like to highlight the addition of Vander to this team’s roster. He seems to have added a level of decisiveness that had not previously existed on this team, and we’re looking forward to seeing how far he can bring this team.

At the current moment, there is no expectation for Rogue to surge up in the standings, but they should be able to grab a few more wins if they continue with their upward trajectory. Come summer, the addition of Larssen and (speculated) Forgiven should land this team in the upper half of the league.

MVP of the Week: Nukeduck

The year of the Duck has stormed into the LEC, with some of the best performances that we’ve seen from Nukeduck in a while. Playing two high-caliber games on Corki and Zed, Nukeduck ended the week with a 15.0 KDA (1st), 1.1 CS per minute (2nd), 455 gold per minute (1st), an 874 gold difference at 15 (1st by over 400 gold), a 14 CS differential at 15 (1st), and a 1024 XP differential at 15 (1st by over 600 XP). Moreover, Nukeduck had 3 solo kills, something that we haven’t seen in quite a while. He was, without a doubt, the main reason for Origen taking the win over the undefeated G2, schooling Caps in lane and catching out Perkz on multiple occasions. We look forward to seeing how he performs in Week 6.

Predictions for Week

Prediction Tracker: 27 of 40 Correct

Friday, February 22nd

Match 1: Schalke 04 vs. G2

Predicted Winner: G2

This game is when we’ll find out whether or not G2 dropping a game last week was a fluke or if the patch has knocked them down a peg. If Schalke’s bot lane gets rolling and G2 fail to find an advantage through mid, this game can easily go to the side of Schalke, but I expect that by this time, G2 will have figured out how they want to play on this patch, and the game should be theirs.

Match 2: Excel vs. Rogue

Predicted Winner: Rogue

With Rogue on an upswing and Excel remaining stagnant, I expect this game to go in favor of Excel until the mid game where their lack of decision has, and will probably continue to lose them games.

Match 3: Vitality vs. Splyce

Predicted Winner: Vitality

Without any noticeable improvements from Splyce, Vitality should handily win this game. Their laners have been outperforming Splyce’s, and their ability to play proactively outmatches their opponent’s as well. If Splyce do find their footing, this game may be more even, but it is highly unlikely.

Match 4: SK Gaming vs. Misfits

Predicted Winner: SK Gaming

SK Gaming is looking better and better each week and Misfits is looking worse and worse. With this said, it is hard to imagine the team that lost to Rogue taking down any competent team anytime soon, but at any time, Misfits have the potential to be the super team everyone thought they would be.

Match 5: Fnatic vs. Origen

Predicted Winner: Origen

Last Saturday, Origen looked like the best team in Europe, winning from the draft phase through every stage in the game against G2. If they play anything close to how they did, this game should be easy for them. Fnatic can win this game if Rekkles carries hard enough, but with the weakness of his surrounding roster, it may prove too difficult of a task.

Saturday, February 23rd

Match 1: Vitality vs. Fnatic

Predicted Winner: Vitality

Fnatic’s early games have perhaps been some of the weakest in the LEC, and against a team as aggressive in the early game as Vitality is, Fnatic have little to no chance of winning it. While Rekkles has once again solidified himself as the primary carry of the Fnatic lineup, we simply don’t see him reaching a point in this game from which he will be able to carry. Meanwhile, Vitality has looked great in all their lines, and with continued creativity from their side, this game should go in their favor.

Match 2: Splyce vs. Rogue

Predicted Winner: Splyce

While Rogue did finally secure their first win, Splyce has a controlling playstyle and will likely choke Rogue out of the game before Rogue can do much.

Match 3: G2 vs. Excel

Predicted Winner: G2

The difference between G2 and Excel is monumental, and unless G2 pick another scaling composition and Excel create an early lead and somehow do not falter in the mid game, we just don’t see G2 losing this one.

Match 4: SK Gaming vs. Schalke 04

Predicted Winner: Schalke 04

While SK has been on the upswing, Schalke still seems like the better team, and with how decisively they often play out their mid games, they have an edge over SK in this one. That being said, SK did surprise everyone with their 2-0 last week, so it is within the realm of possibilities that we see SK take this one home.

Match 5: Origen vs. Misfits

Predicted Winner: Origen

Origen has been on a huge upswing while Misfits have been tumbling. With how well Patrik and Mithy have performed in recent weeks, it’s highly likely that they will beat the Misfits bot lane in the 2v2 and as a result, win Origen the game. Moreover, with how Nukeduck has been performing, it’s difficult to see him losing against a weak-looking Febiven.

We hope you enjoyed this fifth installment of LEC power-rankings. If you have any comments, questions, or complaints, please feel free to ask them in the Comments section below.

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