- The League of Legends Championship Series is starting soon
- Many teams have reorganized their rosters, filling their ranks with new talents
- Fans will be delighted to see many young players debut on the LCS
With the League of Legends Championship Series’ start nearing, here are some of the underdogs viewers might want to watch out for.
The LCS brings teams from all around the world to compete against one another, providing one of esports’ most popular content. Despite big names always being in the spotlight, each season brings in new talents, eager to prove themselves on the Summoner’s Rift. In the past few months, much of the North America scene changed, with many veteran teams rebuilding their rosters.
Many teams have searched to fill their ranks with new talents, many of whom come from the NA Academy scene. Despite not having the LCS experience of their veteran peers, working with them will give them a lot of opportunities to prove themselves. Here are some of the rookies fans should pay close attention to.
Having undergone major changes, TSM joins the LCS with its academy team. The organization came to this decision after their previous head coach, Bjergsen joined Team Liquid, and SwordArt abruptly left the team last October. This meant TSM had two open spots on its roster. The coach position was filled by new head coach Chawy, who went on to fill the missing pieces of the team with two players from the LPL.
These are Keaiduo and Shenyi, both having vastly different experiences. The latter had a short stint with FunPlus Phoenix, but Keaiduo has not yet performed on the main stage and comes to North America with just a year of competitive experience.
During the last year, Keaiduo played for ThunderTalk Gaming Young in the League Development League, which is China’s secondary league. His team remained at the bottom of the LDL standings in both splits. Despite this, Keaiduo showed skillful play with many champions, leaning towards Twisted Fate and Syndra, but remaining adaptive depending on his team’s composition. TSM said that outperformed a majority of the competition when the organization was scouting in Korea, and this landed him a position on the team.
Keaiduo will play as a midlaner in TSM’s new roster. The organization is relying on the player’s flexibility to work well with his team members and prove himself on the LCS stage. However, due to Covid-19 regulations, fans will have to wait until the official start of the 2022 Spring Split to see Keaiduo debut. He and TSM’s new support, Shenyi, were unable to attend the Lock-In tournament in Los Angeles. In their place, TSM’s Academy roster will be substituted in for the entirety of the roster, giving viewers a look into the future of who might join Keaiduo, when he no longer calls himself a rookie.
Cloud9 Isles and Winsome
After a bumpy season, Cloud9 parted ways with Perkz and Vulcan, and send Zven back to Academy. Now, with a rebuilt roster, C9 brought rookies from the League Champions Korea (LCK) and LCS Academy. In place of support player Vulcan come both Winsome, who is entering from the LCK Academy scene and Isles, who's stepping in from his time on C9 Academy. It is still unknown how the substitution between these two players will function throughout the Spring Split, but it is expected both will soon debut.
Isles is a veteran from C9’s Academy enduring the rotation of ADCs in the past few years that included k1ng and Zven. Before this, he was a prominent participant in his home region of League of Legends Circuit Oceania (LCO), formerly known as the Oceanic Pro League (OPL). Isles played well under Legacy Esports’ banner through 2019. Isles helped his organization become the undisputed best team in the region across both splits, but not being able to make it past the Worlds’ knockout stage.
Isles has some brief experience on the international stage, but Winsome debuts with only first-hand Korean regional knowledge. He played in the LCK Academy scene for Shadow Battlica throughout last year. Despite a rough start, the team triumphed by winning the October tournament and securing second place at the Academy Series Championship. Winsome’s short but impressive career caught the eye of Cloud9’s new head coach, bringing him in to fill the spot Vulcan left.
CLG had a rough 2021 and was left at 10th place on the LCS leaderboard. However, the organization decided to change its roster significantly heading into the 2022 Spring Split. Many veterans decided to leave in search of better opportunities, while new talents came to fill in the empty slots. One of them is Luger, who will make his LCS debut as a member of CLG’s squad.
Luger proved himself by helping his previous team of 100 Thieves Academy achieve great results at both the Spring Split and Summer Split. With such an impressive achievement, CLG grabbed the promising Turkish ADC for its starting roster.
Luger is joined in the bottom lane by former 100 Thieves Academy teammate Poome. The two stood out as one of the best bot lane duos in the Academy scene, despite both never having played together before the start of 2021. The two have already gained a lot of experience cooperating, which will surely come in handy in their new team.
The start of the 2022 season will be Luger’s debut, and he will have the opportunity to prove to the LCS that he is a great pick.