Note: This was written before any roster changes, either rumored or confirmed, went public. Regardless, it wouldn’t change much.
With worlds having just wrapped up, it’s hard to avoid thinking “how will the next season shake up?” And thus, with some inspiration, these NA LCS Way Too Early Power Rankings were born. Since the League of Legends off-season is often extremely tumultuous, these rankings are likely inaccurate of how Spring Split will end, and for interest’s sake I’d love to see that happen. The name of the game for this off-season for me is working resources, or how much an organization has to use to improve, which can be measured in dollars, coach experience, roster stability. Without further ado, let’s get into it!
1. Counter Logic Gaming
Okay, I know — CLG at Worlds was less than stellar. But it’s a bit hard to blame them to be honest. When you’re in a group with the tournament favorite and an unprecedented Cinderella team for whom you had no preparation, what can you do? But with consistently strong macro play, and no roster changes to speak of yet, it’s reasonable to think they can only get stronger. Placing TSM below them is due only to the uncertainty they face in the wake of Doublelift’s recent hiatus announcement, as roster changes tend to be extremely hit or miss for the organization, and whether his replacement, regardless of skill level, will synergize well with the team (particularly the sophomore Biofrost). I expect these two powerhouses to spend a lot of time near the top spot next season.
Cloud9 showed at Worlds that they can still play when it matters and hang with other regions, and that coupled with what again appears to be a stable lineup bolsters them here in our rankings. Immortals, for similar end-of-season reasons, sit just outside of that upper echelon. With important work to do to find more than one way to win games, and the players exploring their options (which don’t get me wrong, that’s a good thing), it’s hard to know what their immediate future looks like, and how long it will take to iron out these issues.
Good news: since Immortals’ joining last season, Team Liquid is no longer perpetually in fourth place. Jokes aside, TL has its own issues to resolve, such as figuring out who’s jungling. But don’t give up on them early. Team Liquid has always had good management, and easily has the resources to improve, so consider their placement on this list likely on the low end.
6. Cloud9 Challenger
So the problem here is that while we know a lot of Team EnVyUs (not that there’s much to know), we don’t have the privilege of knowing the owner or roster of Cloud9 Challenger’s spot, or how having Dignitas’ resources will help the team formerly known as Apex. But it is my assumption that both will have positive effects that will propel them at least above NV (I especially assume some of the C9C players will remain on the roster). These three are, of course, wildcards in the end. But then again, when the power rankings are “Way Too Early”, isn’t everyone?
10. Echo Fox
Welcome to the promotion zone! These teams are back at the bottom after regaining their spots in the LCS, and neither has a ton to work with in regards to bringing in improvements, so change will likely have to come from within. With the squads that are in the LCS this year, which looks slightly stronger on the whole, it’s hard to imagine either of these teams moving much, even with people’s champ Rick Fox at the helm. But I can’t say I wouldn’t love to see them prove me wrong.
There’s a lot of question marks around the league at the moment, but that’s what makes doing these rankings so much fun. There’s much speculation to be done, so maybe you’ll come up with your own. Regardless, there are many reasons to be excited for the 2017 season.
Photos from Riot Games and The Daily Dot.