LCS Season 4 Megapreview: EU Part 2
Continuing our ongoing preview of the LCS has proven a little difficult with the Lemondogs situation. So, while the three relegation teams fight for their spot, we're going to go ahead and preview the three remaining teams in the EU LCS that we've yet to cover. Let's dig right in!
Today we're covering three teams that all have very aggressive playstyles, and any one of them could come out with the top slot at the end of the LCS season - that's not to say the previous 4 teams aren't contenders, however.
And in case you missed it, here's part one of our preview.
|Top||Mike "Wickd" Petersen|
|Mid||Henrik "Froggen" Hansen|
|Marksman (ADC)||Eric "Tabzz" van Helvert|
|Support||Patrick "Nyph" Funke|
|Jungle||Ilyas "Shook" Hartsema|
Recent Competitive Record: 2-0 vs Dignitas in Battle of the Atlantic
Alliance is the "EU Superteam" that was rumored for months following the end of Season 3, and they did not disappoint heading into the Battle of the Atlantic shutting down Dignitas in a quick 2-0 set. Then, they were playing with a substitute in the form of support Kazmitch. Now they look to be even stronger with the addition of SK Gaming's captain Nyph.
This team was brought together with one ultimate goal: The Season 4 World Championships. Though they look to be off to a great early start, the team has only been together for one month, and even less time than that with Nyph. Teams that have been together longer may be able to throw Alliance on the back foot.
Ultimately, it will come down to how quickly this team can come together as a unit, combined with their individual mechanical strengths that will make or break the season for them. All signs indicate that they are doing well in scrims against the other LCS teams, so look for them to finish in the top 4 almost assuredly, with them being a strong contender for the number one slot.
|Top||Evgeny "Darien" Mazaev|
|Mid||Aleksei "Alex Ich" Ichetovkin|
|Marksman (ADC)||Evgeny "Genja" Andryushin|
|Support||Edward "EDward" Abgaryan|
|Jungle||Danil "Diamondprox" Reshetnikov|
Recent Competitive Record: 2-0 vs XD.GG in Battle of the Atlantic
1st Place IEM VIII Cologne - Professional Bracket
5-8th World Championship Finish
15-13 LCS Summer Split Record (4th), 3rd Place EU Playoffs
Perhaps the most famous of the teams in the EU LCS, Gambit Gaming have long been the stalwarts of the EU in terms of competitive League of Legends. They have been more or less together in the same form for over three years now, with the exception of a journey overseas for Edward to play for Curse, briefly.
Though they only finished in 4th place in the regular season, they were just 3 games behind the Lemondogs who sat in 1st. They went on to place 3rd in the EU Playoffs and perform well in the World Championships taking games off of Samsung Galaxy Ozone and Vulcun (now XD.GG), before progressing from Group Stage to fall to Najin Black Sword in the Quarterfinals. They did all of this without Edward.
Now that Edward's back in his rightful place alongside Genja in bottom lane, it's looked to be a completely revitalized Gambit. Combine this with their quick adapation to the Season 4 changes, are we're looking at potentially one of the strongest teams in the World, let alone Europe. So far, they've proven just that with their wins at IEM Cologne and against XD.GG in the Battle of the Atlantic.
Look for their aggressive playstyle and uncoventional picks to give them an edge in this split, but they could lose a few games if they let their experimentations get out of hand, as we almost saw with Edward's Support Amumu pick against XD.GG in the Battle of the Atlantic (though they won despite the... questionable pick).
|Top||Paul "sOAZ" Boyer|
|Mid||Enrique "xPeke" Cedeno|
|Marksman (ADC)||Martin "Rekkles" Larsson|
|Support||Bora "YellOwStaR" Kim|
|Jungle||Lauri "Cyanide" Happonen|
Recent Competitive Record: Lost 0-2 to Cloud 9 in Battle of the Atlantic
IEM VIII Cologne 2nd Place Finish (0-2 to Gambit Gaming)
3rd/4th Place Finish in World Championships
15-13 Record in Summer LCS (2nd), 1st Place EU Playoffs
Fnatic looked unstoppable last split. Though they only had a 15-13 record in the Summer LCS, due to the 4 way tie at the end of the season they ended up finishing in 2nd place. Then in the playoffs, they took down the Lemondogs, the only team to really look dominant and have a record to back them up in the regular Season. Heading into the World Championships they continued to look dominant, taking out North America's lone hope in Cloud 9 before ultimately being taken out by Najin Black Sword in the next round.
Fast forward a few months. Starting Marksman Puszu is replaced with Rekkles, formerly of the Copenhagen Wolves, who had been waiting to join the team pending his turning 17 to compete in the LCS. Everything pointed to Fnatic being even stronger after this addition, but it has turned out to be quite the opposite. At IEM Cologne they failed to clinch first place, falling to the revitalized Gambit Gaming. And then in the Battle of the Atlantic, they let Cloud 9 get their revenge in a 0-2 set.
So what happened?
Fnatic is going to have to work hard to get back to the form they were in with Puszu. As long as they are able to work on the synergy that the team once had, they are still a strong contender in the EU scene. Look for them to make a run at the top slot this split, assuming their issues with team conhesion can be worked out.
Supa Hot Crew XD
|SUPA HOT CREW XD|
|Top||Mimer "Mimer" Ahlstrom|
|Mid||Amaury "Moopz" Minguerche|
|Marksman (ADC)||Rasmus "MrRalleZ" Skinneholm|
|Support||Maxime "Migxa" Poinsosot|
Recent Competitive Record: 2-3 to SK Gaming in Spring Promotion Tournament
2-0 over Meet Your Makers in Relegation Matches for Lemondogs slot.
Off the back of the Lemondogs DQ from the LCS, the Supa Hot Crew comes roaring into the LCS in a convincing victory over Meet Your Makers. These relative rookies are looking very strong in their rotations and movements around the map, the one thing they seem to lack is mechanical strength in farming, as they fell behind early both games. They will have to look to shore these issues up if they want to have a shot at making it through this split.
SHC faces another issue - their Jungler, Amin, was not old enough to compete in the LCS. So now SHC will have to scramble to find a last minute replacement for Amin, and hopefully have some sort of cohesion as a unit. Perhaps we will see Impaler return to claim his substitute spot that he had in the Spring Promotion Tournament.
Again, the storyline here is one of experience versus new blood, and it'll be interesting to see if these rookies have what it takes.
Photo Credits: loleSports