Top Picks for the 2018 EU LCS Playoffs
Published on March 13, 2018
The EU LCS (the European League of Legends Championship Series) is a completely different spectrum from the NA LCS (the North America League of Legends Championship Series) and the LCK (the League of Legends Champions Korea). They have different types of players, different gaming preferences, and different strategies which are used to implement victories. However, there’s no doubt that the EU LCS has made themselves into one of the best regions in the world.
They hold talents that have defied LCK mechanics and are threats to Chinese players. Names like Rekkles are talked of around the world, and it was only last year that both Fnatic and G2 Esports were international threats during the World Championship.
Now, this year, things have changed. Some of the top players have moved either to the North American region or to play for the LCK or LPL (the League of Legends Pro League). Now, the EU LCS is completely different, which means that new players, new talents, and new results will be coming in from abroad.
The playoffs for the EU LCS are coming soon, and that not only means that we’re one step closer to the Mid-Season Invitational, but we’re also one step closer to watching the money come in from our betting experience, provided we bet right. That being said, let’s talk about the top picks for the EU LCS playoffs.
(Note: The Odds Will Be Formatted as [Money Earned/Money Put In])
Fnatic has crafted themselves from the start of League of Legends. They’re relentless, smart, technical, and overall a prodigy team that should never be messed with. They’ve seen many talents come through their door, and they’re still coming.
Currently, they hold the first-place spot and haven’t lost it since. With a 9-4 record, it’s almost impossible for Fnatic to throw away their lead as of now. They’ve been a top contender for bettors and fans alike. Let’s take a look at the players which make Fnatic’s lead possible.
This one is a doozy. Rekkles has been at the top of the EU LCS since his appearance with Fnatic. He has been ruthless on every champion he owns and knows no boundaries to his play. If he wants something, he’ll get it. It’s as simple as that.
He never complains. He just works harder. As of now, he is first place in terms of KDA (Kills/Deaths/Assists) and Creep Score with an astounding 12.1 CS per minute, beating the likes of Faker and Bang. Not even the famed PraY can match Rekkles’ last-hitting prowess.
Last year, Rekkles was a one-man army for the team with new rookies coming in. He single-handedly brought the team to the World Championship and proceeded to help them get out of the Groups Stage. Now, this year, he’s looking to do more with a matured team by his side.
Currently, he holds an 11.9 KDA, while the person in second place holds a 6.7 KDA, a big difference to say the least. He’s been going strong since the start of the Spring Split, and if this is the Rekkles we know, we had better get used to his dominating type of playstyle.
Broxah is a new face in the crowd, but he has become a welcome one, largely thanks to his ability to play the playstyle that the fans want: aggressive yet controlled. He plays at a tempo most players are too scared to even think about, making him a jungler that excels at all parts of the game.
Currently, he is undefeated on Skarner and has lost only one game on Jarvan IV, two of his signature champions he uses. He plays for the team, not for himself, and it shows in his matches against G2 Esports and H2k-Gaming, where he got eighteen assists in total combined from both games.
We can expect more things to come from this jungler. He is a smart, concise player who plays with precision and accuracy rather than his gut and ambition. That being said, his future seems to hold a lot of potential for his career as an esport professional.
It’s actually quite a surprise that G2 Esports is still in the run. Considering that they lost their superstar duo team last year, plus the loss of their jungler and top lane, it seemed to mark the end of their dramatic dynasty of dominance.
However, it’s been quite the opposite. Currently at the top of the ladder, G2 Esports is fighting against Fnatic to secure the one seed for their tournament. While they may not have four of their original teammates, they still have PerkZ, the heart and soul of G2.
Not only that, but they have the superstar duo of Hjarnan and Wadid, who have been crucial to G2 staying alive this Split. The synergy that exists between them has been crucial in making sure that they stay afloat in an environment where one small mistake could cost their ranking.
However, what many consider to be the most surprising of additions to the team is their top laner, Wunder, who has been responsible for many of the team’s victories. He is currently in third place in terms of KDA and has been an existential threat on champions like Ornn and Camille. If need be, he can also perform well on Gangplank.
Overall, the team is strong in almost every aspect, something that not many thought would happen. They’re strong in team fights and communication, and even though their laning may not be stellar, they are still a threat, which must be considered in the EU LCS.
It’s no surprise that I say PerkZ is on this list. He may not have one of the best KDAs in the Split, but he certainly does know what he is doing in the game. He has some of the best team-fighting potential in the game and has a diverse number of champions which he can choose from.
He isn’t known for being a master on one or two types of champions but rather being a jack of all trades. He can play how he wants or how the team needs him to play. This is what makes PerkZ so unique. Not only this, but he is also extremely unpredictable.
Players may find it easy to find their opponent’s next move coming based off how they play, but PerkZ always goes with the most unexpected of moves. He’ll take you down with a number of moves, or he may just let you have a kill but work towards a bigger picture. You never know what PerkZ is going to do, but let me be clear that PerkZ knows what he’s doing, and it’s helped G2 Esports so far.
Jankos is a beast on the Rift. Many consider him to be the best jungler in Europe. He plays a mean Zac, and though he’s had a rough patch on Sejuani, that hasn’t stopped him from producing a 10.0 KDA on his signature champions.
Did I mention that he’s undefeated on Zac so far? Currently 4-0 on the champion with a 13.00 KDA, Jankos’ Zac is something to be feared. It’s the pinnacle of his achievements, and it is what has been behind many of G2’s early-game wins and late-game team fights.
Jankos’ ability to almost always secure first blood has earned him the rightful name “First Blood King”, a name which spawned during his time on H2k-Gaming. Now, he’ll use this ability of his to help bring G2 Esports to playoffs.
Currently on a hot streak, Splyce has proven themselves to be formidable opponents. Like their 2016 year, Splyce looks like they’re going to be making their way to playoffs with the team playing smoothly most matches despite having a close 8-6 record.
They’ve beaten some of the teams ahead of them on the ladder, one of them including G2 Esports. Splyce’s ability to be extremely unpredictable has suited them well during the regular season, and it’s what has helped them face teams with much more stacked rosters.
However, they still have some pretty strong players who have proven their skill in the field of battle. We’ll be taking a look at these players and what they’ve done to help make Splyce such a strong team this Spring Split.
Like Jankos, Xerxe is unstoppable on Zac and is impressive on his Jax when need be. A new player to the Splyce scene, Xerxe has been responsible for a large majority of the plays that help Splyce snowball in the early game.
He was essential to Splyce’s win over G2 Esports while he was playing Ivern, and when they faced ROCCAT, his Zac helped snowball Splyce to their victory while pulling out a 7.00 KDA ratio on his undefeated champion.
He can also pull out a strong Skarner or Ivern whenever needed, both of which has helped Xerxe succeed as a jungler. While Xerxe may be new to Splyce, he isn’t new to the EU LCS. He has had time on different teams and has been essential to their victory. Xerxe’s jungle pressure will prove well for Splyce later on.
Kobbe is a master on his Xayah. He’s practically a Xayah one-trick if you ask me. However, while in most cases being a one trick pony is harmful to the team, Kobbe’s prowess on Xayah actually benefits them as a whole.
He knows how to dominate the game in fashion whenever he’s given the chance in team fights. One small misstep, and Kobbe will make sure you’ll feel the repercussions. Even if Kobbe doesn’t have his signature Xayah, he can still deal heavy damage from the back line on his Caitlyn or Tristana, both of which are trusted pocket picks for the new AD Carry.
We can expect more from this talented prodigy. He’s already proven his worth on Splyce’s team during this Split, and as time progresses, who knows? Maybe he’ll bring home a World Championship for the group.
Misfits Gaming is a name known around the world, and this is largely thanks to their match against South Korea Telecom in 2017 where they almost beat them to advance to the semifinals. Gaining international notoriety, Misfits Gaming is now a serious threat in the EU LCS.
Surprisingly enough, they’ve had a small tough patch this year. They haven’t made any progress towards reaching the one spot, but they still have shown their ferocity on the Rift. No matter how behind Misfits Gaming is, they still manage to find a way to come back into the game.
Despite being very closely tied, Misfits Gaming has made themselves a prominent figure in the EU LCS. They’ve taken down some of the top names in the EU LCS as of now, including Team Vitality and Fnatic. However, the problem with Misfits Gaming is the fact that they have lost to lower tier teams that they shouldn’t be losing to. If they can overcome this one fault in their game plan, then they’ll be unstoppable.
Hans Sama is the heart and soul of this team. His ability to play to his highest potential when needed is what has kept Misfits Gaming in the season run. He is deadly on champions like Xayah, Kog’Maw, and Ezreal, three of his signature pocket picks that he used in the 2017 year to make it to the Knockout Rounds.
So far, his Xayah, when given the right circumstances, has been what has taken them to a secure holding in the NA LCS regular season. His Ezreal can be a powerhouse in the team due to his precise aiming capabilities, and on Kog’maw, if even the slightest of mistakes is made, he’ll capitalize on it.
In fact, his Kog’Maw is so strong that it’s been banned several times to keep him from playing it. During their match against Fnatic, Vitality, and H2k-Gaming, he was essentially unstoppable once he got his first kill.
If Misfits Gaming wants to keep producing the results they’re getting, then Misfits’ AD Carry, Hans Sama, will be a key component to what they want done. He’s already proven himself, and he’s shown that he has more to give in these upcoming weeks.
It’s very rare to ever see a top laner become a carry in the late game. We’ve seen rare occasions of this with Team SoloMid’s Hauntzer and Echo Fox’s Huni, but one of the new contenders is Misfits Gaming’s Alphari.
He is fast, versatile, and can play a variety of champions. However, what separates him from the crowd is his ability to switch between carries and tanks. During his match against Team Vitality, he dominated the Rift with a steady Camille, making power moves that left the entire team shaken.
When he played Shen against Fnatic, it quickly became evident that the shots were being called by him, forcing Fnatic to play by his rules on a champion that is usually used as a secondary tank. While he may not be the strongest Sion player, he has still proved his carry potential on champions like Gnar and Gangplank, both of which he excels on.
We can expect more from this powerhouse player since he’s already shown up these past few weeks. What else can we expect from this top laner that’s been helping Misfits Gaming in the EU LCS scene? We’ll just have to wait and find out.
Sencux is a hot fuse, differing between top-tier performances to times when he doesn’t even know what he’s doing. However, there’s a reason why he helped bring Splyce to the World Championship. His ability to snowball can make the difference between a victory and a loss.
He plays a strong Anivia and Azir, using these two champions to constantly dominate the Rift. When they faced off against Fnatic, he pulled off a 15.00 KDA on Anivia, using his champion to constantly create pressure that, over time, caused Fnatic to lose in the long run.
Sencux may sometimes be unpredictable, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t a good mid laner. He is extremely strong in his own areas and sometimes lacks in the areas that he can improve upon. We can expect more from him. Over time, Sencux has been known to stabilize into a powerhouse of his own, and this could help Misfits Gaming become an international sensation yet again.
Team Vitality is a team which is fairly new to the top leaderboard for the EU LCS regular season. They’ve been a decent team in the past few years, but this season, they’ve really shown up to dominate the Rift with a stacked roster.
They’ve been looking solid so far and haven’t given up any leads. That being said, there’s a pretty strong shot that the team will be looking at a Spring Season playoff spot. They’ve beaten all the lower teams and have only had troubles against top performers like G2 Esports and Fnatic. If there’s one new team you’ll want to bet on, it will have to definitely be Team Vitality.
Team Vitality’s AD Carry, Minitroupax, has been causing quite a disturbance on the Rift lately. Despite losing some matches here and there, the AD Carry has proven that he can still be a carry presence on the team.
Team Vitality lost to Fnatic, but Minitroupax was still able to show up with a strong 7.00 KDA on his signature Caitlyn. He’s also a favorable contender on champions like Ezreal, boasting an average 18.00 KDA, and Caitlyn with a 7.5 KDA.
While he may not be as explosive and entertaining as the rest of the AD Carries like Hans Sama and Rekkles, he certainly does show up to play and is consistent at doing so. This is the newcomer that you want to watch for in the events to come.
Jiizuke’s statistics may not show it, but he’s a star player for Vitality. He doesn’t have strong numbers on champions like Azir and Zoe, but when you give him his signature Ryze, then you’re in for a show. On Ryze, Jiizuke can perform wonders, taking out several members of the team single-handedly.
Currently, he has an astounding 31.00 KDA ratio on Ryze, and though I may have said that he isn’t as strong on other champions, that doesn’t mean he can’t perform on them. During his match against Fnatic, despite their loss, he pulled off an impressive ten kills, though he had five deaths to compensate.
Jiizuke is an explosive player, but sometimes it pays off. It’s one of the key components that has brought Team Vitality to their position on the leaderboards. Keep your eye out for Jiizuke. He’s just getting started.
The EU LCS is turning a new page in its book. With new players coming in and new teams taking to the leaderboard, the EU LCS will be full of fresh new talents, and right now, the Spring Split is showing this with full evidence.
The playoffs are coming soon, and this means that only six teams will continue on to fight for the gauntlet. Some teams will fall inevitably, but some spots are still worth fighting for, and if that means grinding out one last match, then so be it. No matter what I say, one thing is truly evident: we are in for one heck of a Spring Split.