Just like in Europe, the last week of play in the North American League of Legends Championship Series was absolute chaos. TSM, left for dead just a week ago amid a three-game losing streak, came up with a big 2-0. Team Liquid looked unbeatable until they lost to TSM. The whole week was an absolute mess.
Because of the hectic nature of results, voting on the LCS power rankings has been a struggle all season—but after week four, things really went haywire. Our voters have some wide-ranging disagreements when scoring each team from one point (worst) to 10 points (best). But here’s how the votes came out:
Below we’ll do our best to explain our rankings. Be warned that all of this will probably be turned upside down in a week.
The rear: Clutch, OpTic
Both of these teams started the split with hope, and now, that hope is fading fast. We keep waiting for Clutch’s Korean top-jungle duo of Heo “Huni” Seung-hoon and Nam “LirA” Tae-yoo to figure it out, but what if they never do? What if LirA was a green Smite control jungler and Huni is only good on Rumble and Gangplank? Those are real questions Clutch have to start asking themselves, and we haven’t even gotten to their issues in the bot lane yet.
OpTic actually had a chance to upset Cloud9 last Sunday. Jungler William “Meteos” Hartman was playing like a man possessed against his former team, and ADC Noh “Arrow” Dong-hyeon was playing well on a crit champion, which isn’t a traditional strength of his. But the whole game was undone by a fatal misstep from mid laner Lee “Crown” Min-ho. It was a bit unlucky, but if OpTic have to get lucky to win, that’s not a good sign.
Anyone’s guess: 100 Thieves, CLG, Golden Guardians
It’s anyone’s guess what you’ll get out of these teams on a week-to-week basis. 100 Thieves won two straight in week three and then lost two straight last week. CLG picked up a fairly-unimpressive win over Clutch before losing to Golden Guardians. Votes for CLG ranged from fifth place to 10th. The bottom of the LCS is really bad.
A new contender: FlyQuest, TSM, Echo Fox
TSM return to the top half of the standings after spending a week at the very bottom. Seeing TSM that low seemed unfathomable just a few weeks ago, so it’s good that they figured out how to play as five.
FlyQuest continue to show that mere competence is scarce in North America. They’re fifth in the league in kills, but have the second-fewest deaths, proving that if you don’t beat yourself, you’ll probably do well in this region.
Echo Fox are unbeatable on Sunday and they’re doing it by smashing lane phase, which is something that many fans didn’t expect. Sunday Echo Fox might be as good as Team Griffin.
Still the same: Team Liquid and Cloud9
Both of these teams had scary moments last week and Liquid actually lost to TSM. We don’t want to discount TSM’s efforts too much, but the game was a bit fluky. Liquid top laner Jeong “Impact” Eon-yeong blind-picked Yorick and got countered by Jax. He died to a lane gank when he didn’t have vision and then the rest of Liquid just watched as the Jax took a whopping three turret plates. No big deal, Jax is just one of the most ridiculous scaling champions in the game.
We’ll give Liquid a pass as long as they take Yorick and bury him.
All photos via Riot Games.