Martin ‘Rekkles’ Larsson came into this spring split with huge expectation on his shoulders. Many proclaimed him as the “best Western ADC” and now at arguably the best European team Elements, formerly Alliance. Reports suggested that Rekkles was unhappy with the team environment at Fnatic, where senior players like xPeke and Soaz were not as motivated as he was. His decision to leave a very good team in Fnatic showed he was willing to do anything to be the best, which at Elements looked like it would happen. The best European ADC had joined the strongest European LCS team, it seemed nothing could possibly go wrong. Until it did.
Elements started the season against Rekkles’ former side Fnatic in a game which many expected would be fairly straightforward for Elements. Fnatic had completely overhauled their roster, with only team captain Yellowstar remaining in a team with 2 new Korean imports. Many believed this new Fnatic side wouldn’t be able to cope with the language barrier of two new Korean players and their new additions were unproven at competitive level. However Fnatic comprehensively outplayed Elements in just 35 minutes.
Things would go on to get worse for Elements. Their indecisiveness playing style meant they often made poor calls and were soon well below the top of the ladder. Their 7th place finish with a 7-11 record meant they missed out on the playoffs, something that seemed incomprehensible at the start of the split. A team that was expected to dominate the EU LCS ended up being dominated on many occasions. It wasn’t just their playing style that was indecisiveness either. Numerous roster changes replacing the support, top lane and jungler meant there seemed to be a real lack of team cohesion in most games. Things had gone badly wrong for Elements and it seemed changing their team wasn’t working as a solution.
It is easy to criticize Rekkles after Elements’ spring split, particularly as he didn’t live up to the huge hype expected of him. Whilst I do feel he under performed and contributed partly to Elements downfall, I do not feel he is no longer in the top 2 of European ADCs, second to only SK’s Forg1ven. Rekkles’ passive style combined with Elements indecisiveness was a recipe for disaster. Questions were raised when Rekkles replaced Tabzz that his passive play style would not suit Elements, which turned out to be exactly the case. Tabzz was an agressive ADC; always looking to flash forward and make plays. Rekkles was a passive ADC; looking for team mates to engage and make plays whilst he had the damage in the backline. Whilst on paper Rekkles may have been a better ADC than Tabzz, his play style didn’t fit well with Elements.
Where does this leave Rekkles now? The Daily Dot article claimed that Rekkles was once again “unhappy with the team environment and its current state”. I personally believe a move from Elements would be a very good thing for Rekkles, providing he moved to the correct team. It’s clear his play style didn’t fit well with Elements however it may fit well at another team. His one bad split at Elements doesn’t mean he has turned into a bad ADC. The Daily Dot article also states he is “reportedly looking to re-join Fnatic”.
If Rekkles was to re-join Fnatic, replacing current ADC Steelback, I feel this would be a great move for both parties. I believe Rekkles is a better ADC than Steelback. Although he performed very well for Fnatic in their 2015 Spring Split, with the best Western support in Yellowstar I believe most ADCs could do well. Rekkles and Yellowstar are a proven bottom lane that has performed on the world stage. Fnatic’s new aggressive, turret-diving play style would also suit Rekkles. He would not need to make plays for Fnatic as they have players like Febiven, Reignover and most importantly Huni to do this for him. It would be a similar Fnatic to the one he left, a Fnatic he performed very well in. A Fnatic side with Huni, Reignover, Febiven, Yellowstar and Rekkles is a terrifying prospect and a side that could dethrone SK from the top spot in the EU LCS. Rekkles moving to Fnatic would not only improve his individual play but improve a very strong Fnatic side as a whole. I want Fnatic to be the best they possibly can be and compete at Worlds and Rekkles offers them the best opportunity to do this.