00:40: #10 Team 8
07:05: Team 8 being limited strategically by their roster
11:12: #9 Coast
16:40: Cris being an interesting case
21:50: Bot Lane being a crap shoot thanks to jungle changes
24:42: #8 Dignitas
25:30: Shiphtur being on a worse team than the Coast team he left
28:50: Crumbz forgetting how to play League in the middle of every split.
33:20: Shiphtur’s struggles when his team is behind
34:50: Shiphtur’s Katarina
39:35: #7 Team Impulse/Matt makes a cringe worthy pun
37:40: XiaoWeiXiao’s Yasuo pentakill at the 2014 Summer Playoffs
52:42: #6 Winterfox
53:00: Matt being politically incorrect
57:20: Importing players not being worth unless skill level is vastly superior to domestic options
1:03:00: #5 CLG
1:13:40: The Protect the Doublelift comp
1:20:30: Why Xpecial is better than Aphromoo
1:24:30: Judging teams based on their own expectations
1:27:25: Scarra being good for CLG
00:00: #4 Gravity
03:25: Hauntzer’s potential
05:25: Keane and a reluctant pun
07:40: Morgana as a flex mid
09:00: Why Matt thinks Saint is really good
12:30: Gravity playing well together
21:10: #3 Team Liquid
24:40: Matt pleads the 5th on some questionable rankings
26:30: Visa Issues with Piglet and Fenix potentially holding them back this split
38:15: #2 TSM
38:30: Community perception of players changing in hindsight.
40:40: Santorin not needing to be a better player than Amazing to be better for TSM
44:20: Amazing as a poor ganker
54:00: Bjergsen as the best Mid Laner in NA
1:10:40: Lustboy’s vision control and RNGesus
1:16:15: #1 Cloud 9
1:23:30: Hai being a strength and weakness of Cloud 9
1:31:50: Final Thoughts on the Rankings (Things we can do better/what we’ll do next time)
#1: Cloud 9
#3: Team Liquid
#4: Gravity Gaming
#7: Team Impulse
#10: Team 8
The NA LCS looks to be broken up into three very clear tiers. The bottom 3 teams of Dignitas, Coast and Team 8 clearly have the lowest ceilings of any of the NA LCS teams. The middle group of Gravity, CLG, Winterfox and TiP all have defined strengths that will keep them out of the relegation zone and weaknesses that will prevent them from being top 3. The top 3 teams are clearly separated from the rest of the LCS by their strong rosters, superior infrastructure and cohesive play. There are a few teams that have the potential to surprise, including TiP if their communication is better than expected, Winterfox if their korean imports aren’t as bad as people think, and CLG if Xmithie is able to return to the player he was when he was on Vulcun. This is going to be a big transition split for a lot of teams. With the Spring Split being shorter and more meaningful, the pressure will be on the teams incorporating new players to adjust quickly and effectively in order to set themselves up well for the Summer Split and beyond.
A Message from the Site Manager, Ryan Tang
Hey guys, so we partially go through this in the video, but for the guys who don’t want to sit through two randoms talking for 3 hours, here’s a short breakdown on my final thoughts on the project.
First off, I wanted to thank the community for all the support and general engagement. I was really happy to see all the positive comments and how well the project was generally received, it was much more than I ever expected! At the same time, I saw a lot of the criticism. A lot of it made sense and I took a lot of it to heart, so I wanted to take some time to address what I saw as the two biggest concerns and explain how we’re going to do a better job next split.
It’s hard to place a set numeric value on players and their attributes.
When I first envisioned this project, I really wanted to both shy away from the conventional “everyone is good” mentality and encourage less experienced writers to feel comfortable expressing their opinions, even if they were controversial. I’m not at all an experienced writer myself – I think I have a lot of room to improve – but I’ve felt that this environment would be really helpful for a lot of rookie writers like myself.
Unfortunately I don’t think that I went about this in the clearest way possible. I was often very disappointed because I felt like these numbers turned off fans from the really strong storyline building and historical context many of our writers brought to the table.
At the same time, this was entirely our fault because we didn’t do a good enough job of explaining the numbers and what they meant. When many outside fans or players looked at our rankings, they would just see a single number without much context behind it. I think that next split around, we’ll try to improve the rankings themselves (perhaps with a clearer grading or tier system) and tell our panelists to do a better job explaining them.
Another issue was that we tried too hard to separate a player’s individual and team-wide contributions. This led to some pretty off-kilter rankings for various players. Overall, I think the team-wide categories we picked weren’t particularly well-explained or well-chosen (due to some overlap.) We’ll work on improving both our grading system and categories for next split. Please e-mail [email protected] if you have any feedback or suggestions!
Our panelists will come back next split with more experience.
One big criticism from the community was the inexperience of our panelists. On one hand, I think this makes a lot of sense. It’s going to be hard for amateur journalists to gain the insider knowledge that various professionals have – we were mostly flying blind on certain players, like Winterfox’s Avalon. On the other hand, I felt this was pretty unfair. Not only do I think it’s good to encourage newer writers to voice their opinions, and I think that it’ll be difficult for newer writers to break into the scene and make connections without first taking the plunge.
However, a lot of times, the greenness of our analysts would come through. Many of our picks just don’t make sense when we look at them again from an outside context. I personally ranked CaliTrololz as the best top laner heading into next LCS split. Taking another look, that just doesn’t make a lot of sense. Other times, we would either underrate players due to a single recent bad performance (Link, WildTurtle) or go overboarding hyping up a new prospect (BunnyFuFuu vs. LemonNation.) A lot of these will be fixed next split with both more experience and a more stringent ranking process.
We’ll be keeping many of our panelists for the next split, and I know that after an extra split of training their analysis, we will get a lot better. In addition, we’ve received interest from various experts of both the NA scene and other regions. Expect a much stronger panel after these pick-ups and internal improvement!
Thanks for your support. We’ll come back stronger than ever next split.