With the end of the Spring Split across all regions, the champions of the LCK, LPL, LMS, NA LCS, EU LCS and the IWC gather to decide once and for all, which is the strongest region there is. Despite the fact that it has been quite some time since the last international event, and that some of these teams have never faced eachother, we will try to rank them anyway. This is mere speculation, so it is definitely possible that the end results will differ. Even if they will, we can always edit the article out and hope that you won’t notice.
First, let’s take a look at the contenders, their road to MSI, their playstyle, strengths and weaknesses:
Two time world champions, god-like players, the clear favorites coming into this tournament. At the beginning of Spring Split, SKT seemed to have lost their clear number one spot in the LCK, falling to 7th place at one point. The team struggled to replicate the success they had with the new roster, but after a while, Duke and Blank finally found their place. After a miraculous playoff run, they stomped over everyone, including the ROX Tigers, who were considered the best team in the whole world before the finals. If anyone will be able to beat this team, that will be considered a huge upset.
Coming in from Taiwan is he team who stopped the reign of AHQ in the LMS (finally). The Flash Wolves have a really strong mid/jungle combo in Maple and Karsa, and also a solid botlane. LMS always steps up big time in international events, and this time it is more important for them to do so than ever, considering the fact that the top four teams will secure a spot in Pool 1 for their respective regions in the World Championship. Can the Flash Wolves secure their region a long deserved spot in the first pool? We will find out soon, but one thing is sure: they have the potential to do it.
Coming from the LPL is the Chinese team with the two ex Samsung White players and world champions, Looper and Mata. Although it seems like their glory days are over, they can still surprise us, so we should not count RNG out. Since Worlds, LPL teams have lost their magic and their spot as the second best region in the world, mainly due to the fact that they focus on brawling, rather than laneswaps and taking objectives. Last time we have seen the team on an international stage was at IEM vs. Fnatic. They got defetead 3-1 by the 5th place European team, which shocked the community. Can they prove their worth this time?
After defeating their rival team, TSM in the finals, CLG secured a spot in the MSI. The team has received a lot of criticism from the community, mostly the two rookies, Huhi and Stixxay. While they were mostly mediocre during the split, they stepped up big time during the playoffs, proving their worth. While CLG is not a bad team, compared to the rest of the lineup here, they are likely to struggle ( except IWC). Let’s hope they will make it into the top 4, else NA will lose their Pool 1 spot at Worlds.
Follow CLG on their journey to MSI:
From Challenger to MSI, G2 seems to be on a miracle run. G2 surprisingly dominated the LCS with their strong early game, skirmishes and teamfights. They are also doing really well at laneswaps, and the current meta fits them perfectly: Kikis on top prefers tank champions, Perkz is an assassin player, and Trick tends to prefer carry junglers like Graves and Nidalee. While the team has three rookies and no international experience, they don’t lack talent and synergy. Hopefully they can take the pressure of playing against better teams. If they will play like they did at home, expect them to be in the top 3.
Dumbledoge and his friends are back to hunt down Faker. They will likely end up in last place, but we hope they will at least be able to make one upset.
Basically, the first and the last place is pretty obvious, but anything can happen in the middle of the pack. A lot depends on wheter RNG can step up or not and on whether G2 can handle the stress of an international tournament. Expect a lot of close fights, and don’t forget to root for your region, even if you don’t like the team representing it, because a lot depends on the result of this tournament.