After a grueling round of matches in week 3 the EU and NA LCS are beginning to get a picture of what the remaining weeks will have in store. As the best teams assert their places at the top of the pack, it will be interesting to see how the lower ranked teams adjust their strategies in an attempt to keep their heads above water. With mid-season looming on the horizon, EU and NA teams will clash to secure a ride to the playoffs. The coming week will be crucial, but before we make it there let’s take a look at the stars of week 3.
Top 5 Teams
Love it or hate it Immortals are once again the top team of the week. In two dominating performances (against admittedly weaker teams) Immortals put their stamp on the early season with a 6-0 start. As of the end of week 3 day 1, they had officially beaten every NA LCS rival at least once. While Renegades did give them a little trouble early, this team showed excellent macro strategy, and was able to close out the game easily. Their second opponent (Echo Fox) was almost another sub-20-minute game for the Immortals. Even though Echo Fox is a team of subs, these subs almost dominated Team Liquid in the previous week. Teams will now have to step-up their strategies, and forget their anxiety when playing against this North American powerhouse.
2. G2 Esports
After a somewhat mediocre week 2, G2 Esports is back in the top 5 for week 3. Two stunning victories for the new European team proved that G2 is not a team to be taken lightly. While both their games against Fnatic and UoL were sloppy in the beginning, G2 managed to hold on with solid objective trading when it seemed they were at a loss. This paired with superb Corki play by mid-laner Perkz earned G2 an outstanding 2-0 week that sets them in a tie for 1st place in the EU LCS. Many (including myself) didn’t think we’d see G2 amount to much, but here in week three the new kids in Europe are definitely making a case for themselves. Should the exciting team fights, and close games they’ve shown thus far continue it will be a pleasure to watch them as the season progresses.
It’s amazing to me that it took three weeks for Origen to make it into the top 5. Here was a team fresh from a semi-final finish at Worlds, and with only one roster swap. The expectations in week one were high, but it was clear to see that the communication wasn’t what it used to be. Now in the third week those issues seem to be resolved in the organization, and week 3 saw a pretty clean 2-0 from Origen. The games against Roccat and Elements saw a close early game, followed by Origen domination through objective control. The kills were high (for LCS games), but through the chaos the team seemed to keep their cool. Look for more from this world-class team in the weeks to come, provided that they keep this level of composure.
4. Counter Logic Gaming
Another team that was oddly not eligible for the top 5 in the previous weeks was Counter Logic Gaming. While not the best team out of Worlds they had still made it there, and they had also only swapped one player. With week 3 it seems that this old North American team has found their footing, and fixed some of the communication issues that were affecting them so heavily. In a 2-0 sweep of some of the lower bracket teams (Echo Fox/Renegades), CLG proved that they were still a team to be reckon with this split. If CLG keeps playing at this level I think they’ll be a shoe in for a top 2 finish in the playoffs. We’re still a long way from that though.
5. Team Liquid
Team liquid has had some startling lows in the past couple weeks, and fans of the team seemed worried about their prospects for week 3. After an exhausting two games Liquid made it out of week 3 with a messy 2-0 finish. The reason TL comes in last for my top 5 teams is due to how messy their two wins were. Game one against NRG was pretty clean, with close fights in the onset, but ending in a Liquid stomp. The second game did not go as well, as TL had to dig their way out of a deficit to beat Team Impulse. In the end it was the clutch shot-calling that impressed me the most about Team Liquid, and really served to underline the dormant potential in them. It’s is still far too soon to call this team one of the best in North America, but in week 3 they certainly made a case for themselves.
Top Players By Role
[DISCLAIMER] These may or may not be the highest scoring players for a fantasy week, but they are (in my opinion) the most impactful players of the week. These players may or may not do well in the fantasy week to follow, so make sure to account for everything before blindly throwing a team together based on my picks. The sources section at the end of the article is a great place for information!
Top – Odoamne
In week 3 Odoamne showed up big for H2K Gaming, helping his team to a 2-0 week. With a methodical game on Gangplank, and a much more aggressive game as Poppy this Romanian top-laner dominated his lane opponent. His pathing and teleport timings were on point, and his Poppy play is some of the best we’ve seen in Europe thus far. While he’s not the flashiest player we’ve seen this split, but his systematic top-lane play is always a pleasure to behold.
Jungle – Reignover
Week to week Immortals has been playing at the highest possible level in NA, and each week their jungler has been outstanding. Reignover had an amazing game of Poppy and another with Elise, where he dominated the map with his presence. His understanding of the enemy jungler’s pathing, combined with his mechanical prowess earned his team another 2-0 week. With plays like the his surprise kills on Gringe and Goldenglue (Echo Fox) it’s no wonder that he’d eventually make his way to this top 5 list.
Mid – Perkz
I’m pleasantly surprised to find that my top mid-laner is once again Perkz, as I had figured he would never see this list again. In two games of mid-lane Corki he amassed an impressive 18/2/11 KDA, and one of those games was against the heavily favored Fnatic! Perkz has shown us in week 3 that he is most certainly a player to be taken seriously, and I believe that from now on teams will not underestimate him. In the coming weeks we will see whether or not he can replicate his opening success, but for now he’s definitely the toast of the EU LCS.
ADC – Piglet
Piglet honestly could have made this list in the weeks past, however he was always edged out by others. In week 3 however, this former world champion showed that he is an adc to be feared in North America. With a dominating performance as Caitlyn against NRG Esports, and a calculated game of Lucian against Team Impulse Piglet went on a 10/3/17 rampage. While his team’s play in the second game was somewhat shaky, Piglet kept his cool and waited for the right moments to strike. The big test for Piglet will be next week though, as Team Liquid takes on the Immortals.
Support – Mithy
Mithy is a player I’m surprised to just now be placing in my top players list, but this week he finally stepped into his form from last season. In two games of Alistar, Mithy showed Team Roccat and Elements why they should fear the cow. His engages using flash into a headbutt/pulverize combo were very well timed, and almost always resulted in a kill for his teammates. Despite minor missteps early, Mithy seemed to be able to stay one step ahead of the enemy support and really showed us why he is considered a world class support. Now him and the rest of Origen have only to replicate their success over the next 6 weeks, how hard can that be…?
In the last week of action the cream of EU and NA rose to the top of the standing, while the weaker teams fell farther into a hole. Teams like Renegades, Roccat, and Giants are going to have a difficult road ahead of them if they want to make playoffs. The middle tier of both regions will be the most interesting to watch though, as these teams will by jockeying hard for a better position in the post season. Whatever happens in the weeks to come, the only thing that is certain is that the potential for upsets is enormous. Let me know your predictions for the upcoming week of games, and how you fared in terms of predictions for this past week in the comments below. Picking good fantasy players is difficult enough, but with the seemingly week-to-week skill difference it’s partially maddening. Trust me, as a fantasy LCS player I should know.