Week of the 2017 LPL Spring Split is in the books. And to no one and everyone’s surprise EDG is still at the top of the league. But how did everyone else perform? Which teams were able to live up to the expectations and which ones didn’t? Find out below in our weekly LPL round-up.
Even after losing their star players, EDG are still at the top
Let’s start off with the obvious one. Edward Gaming are still the team to beat in the LPL. They lost Deft and PawN in the off-season. Clearlove7 decided to take a break and was replaced for now by Fireloli. They have a former mid laner in the AD Carry role. Even with all of these changes, EDG remains a good team. Fireloli looks much better than he did when he previously tried playing for EDG. Zet looks comfortable on the AD Carry role and his mechanics are quite good. Meiko and Scout continue to perform at a high level. And in the top lane Koro1 and Mouse are reliable. EDG managed to defeat Vici Gaming and Team WE in their opening week. Considering how these teams are expected to be their main opposition in Group B, it’s hard to imagine EDG not winning the group if they play like this in their debut with their new roster. They will only improve and when Clearlove7 is ready to return they will become even more flexible if Fireloli retains his current level and EDG decided to rotate both junglers.
IMay is the second best team
Although just like EDG they were expected to not do too well, IMay have started off hot with 2 wins. They look fantastic so far and even without their intended starting roster they are showing great co-ordination and shotcalling. Their current jungler Ben4 has looked great and it’ll make IMay question if they even want to bring in Flawless. Either way, if IMay continues to play like this, looking at the teams in their group it’s very possible that they could finish the group in 1st.
Mata’s departure from RNG has made them directionless
Now we know for sure that Mata really was the mastermind behind RNG. Without him on the roster, both the players and the team itself look like they don’t know what they are doing. This can be fixed over time but it’s going to take a while for them to groom someone as the primary shotcaller of the team. The way it’s looking now, RNG may have to use this split only as a means to improve and build up a shotcalling system and more synergy. Obviously it’s still too early to tell but from a strategic standpoint they really didn’t look good in Week 1.
The all-Chinese squads are lackluster so far
Both RNG and OMG have had a poor start to their Spring Split. With RNG you could make the case that losing their main shotcaller will without a doubt make them weaker. But with OMG the team remained the same and it’s a full Chinese squad. There’s no excuse to why they shouldn’t be doing well. That being said I do expect OMG to finally do well this year. Perhaps not in Spring Split but once Summer rolls around I think that will be the moment OMG awakens and becomes a good team in the LPL. Still though, it’s a shame both of these squads are doing poorly so far because it doesn’t showcase all-Chinese line-ups very well and teams are less likely to build them in the future if they don’t produce good results.
Team WE may have hit their ceiling
One of the teams that were expected to do well in their group was Team WE. But they haven’t had a great start so far, beating Newbee 2-1 and losing decisively to a new EDG roster. It’s a mystery at this point why this team is unable to play at a high level on a more consistent basis. Perhaps they have hit their ceiling and it’s incredibly hard for them to continue improving. It could also be a stylistic change that needs to be made as the team continues to use their method of stalling until mid to late game and just out-teamfighting teams at objectives. Because it’s early on in the season, Team WE shouldn’t do anything too drastic. But something needs to be done about their inability to play at a consistently good level.
The league as a whole doesn’t look too strong
Sadly for all of us LPL fans, the quality of matches we saw in the LPL’s opening week wasn’t too great. It really brings up the question of whether or not the LPL is declining or stagnating in terms of performance. From a personal perspective I don’t think that’s the case because teams or players aren’t good or can’t be good. But I do think that might be the case because teams just don’t prepare well enough and don’t take matches as seriously as they should.
Despite the low quality of matches so far, the LPL still has good storylines that we can follow. From EDG trying to retain their throne with a new roster, to Team WE’s attempt at breaking through their glass ceiling and many more. Week 2 will show us which teams will start stepping up and which ones will continue to fall.