With the LEC Spring Split just weeks away, and roster now locked into place. We take a look at the sides we think will be making up the top five of the table and our ones-to-watch.
5 – Schalke 04
Schalke 04 had one of the weirder ends to 2020. From a side in last place and looking destined to end the season at the bottom, the side’s miracle run saw them just one series away from Worlds. While they would ultimately fail to make it, if Schalke can take the momentum into 2021 and the new additions to the side can settle fast, Schalke 04 could be deadly.
Changes in the top lane and support should see Schalke kick on in the Spring Split, with Broken Blade coming in from TSM likely to be the biggest improvement to the side. The best news for Schalke fans was the news that jungler Gilius and mid laner Abbedagge have stuck around for 2021. Lastly, Schalke has moved Academy ADC, Neon to the starting roster, as they look to freshen up the bot lane.
4 – MAD Lions
While most of the sides in the top 5 have improved or stayed the same. MAD Lions looks to have taken a step backward. While we think Armut is a great pickup in the top lane, the swap of Elyoya for Shad0w will be the biggest sticking point for this new roster. Crazy and Kaiser staying in the bot lane is huge for MAD, though the loss of coach Peter Dun might have more severe ramifications.
The good news for MAD is that it doesn’t look like they’ll face too much challenge for the remaining six sides behind them. While Schalke 04 and SK Gaming will be breathing down their neck, MAD Lions should be a safe bet for playoffs as their latest additions settle in.
3 – Fnatic
It just wasn’t to be for Fnatic in 2020. The side lost out twice to G2 Esports in regional finals before failing to advance past the first knock-out round at Worlds. While it was expected that Nemesis would leave the roster, it wasn’t expected that Rekkles would end up moving to G2 Esports with Upset joining in his place.
For Fnatic, it looks like a case of one step forward, one step back. While Nysqy is an upgrade over Nemesis, Upset won’t be seen as an improvement over veteran ADC Rekkles. The rest of the roster has remained, while Yamato has joined the roster as the coach. Spring Split will need to be a gelling period for Fnatic, with the target of Summer Split and Worlds 2021 the main goal.
2 – Rogue
Rogue gave a strong showing in 2020, at one point evening looking like a possible split winner. Despite ending up third, Rogue was given arguably the toughest possible Worlds group and ultimately went home in the Group Stage. With Odoamne and Trymbi joining the roster in the starter roles, Rogue is looking to improve on their largest weak points. Former top laner Finn was singled out for criticism during playoffs and Worlds, with his safe playstyle seen as an issue for a Rogue side that seemed to have the makings of a more aggressive style.
Finn has since parted ways with Rogue, and Odoamne is seen as an improvement in the role. With Vander joining Misfits, Rogue looked to Trymbi to strengthen their bot lane. This could be the year we see Rogue push for a second-place spot at least, with Fnatic doing another mini rebuild, Rogue could be perfectly placed to pounce.
1 – G2 Esports
Surprise, surprise. G2 Esports is, yet again, our top team going into the new season. After winning yet another LEC split back-to-back G2 went into Spring arguably strong. With the pickup of Rekkles for long-time member Perkz, G2 Esports will be the team to fear in 2021.
As with all new additions to a roster, the caveat that a new ADC will need time to bed in. As for the rest of the squad, they’ve kept it all the same for Spring, so it’s very likely that we’ll see G2 Esports in yet another LEC Grand Final. It’s just simply too difficult to see anyone else being able to take their spot.