The 2020 off-season brought many surprises, from returning star players to the complete dismemberment of superteams. Fresh faces, new imports, and a handful of other wildcards made the 2020 off-season one worth following. But among all the cool, safe, not-so-risky straight upgrade signings, which teams made the most questionable moves? We’re here to name, shame, but also raise our glasses – to say nothing of our eyebrows – at the best and weirdest of the worst roster moves.
To many European (and even the occasional international) League of Legends fans, Konstantinos-Napoleon “Forg1ven” Tzortziou is a household name nobody attempts to pronounce.
The Greek ADC made a name for himself as far back as Season 4, renowned for both his hyperaggressive playstyle and apparently equally aggressive personality. His talent is remarkable, and Forg1ven definitely has the potential to rise to the top again. The biggest risk, however?
He’s taken a two-year break from competitive due to mandatory military service. S04 are not only gambling on the chance that Forg1ven has the potential to reach his former glory, but also that he is anywhere close to that level now after that long break.
G2, Caps and Perkz
The mad lads did it. After a dominant Season 9 that only saw the European powerhouses toppled in the World Championship Final – meaning they lost only a single best-of series over the course of the entire year – G2 Esports have opted for a roster change… of sorts.
Both Rasmus “Caps” Winther and Luka “Perkz” Perković performed admirably throughout the year, and were the linchpins to G2’s success. The fact that they are willing to swap roles after seemingly finally acclimatizing to their current set-up suggests something between drive, desperation, and sheer boredom rang through the G2 camp this off-season.
Can these top talents replicate their 2019 form, especially now that they’ve swapped roles? Perkz’s success as an ADC (after roleswapping at the end of 2018) suggests that the one in a million chance may strike gold once again. Alternatively, they could miss their mark completely (as some EU teams – cough, Misfits – have been prone to do) and change it up before Summer Split begins.
Misfits, entire roster
I don’t have much to say about Misfits except that this is clearly a rebuild year after their superteam crashed and burned spectacularly. On paper, the 2019 Misfits looked like a superteam to rival G2 – and yet they fell short of even reaching playoffs.
Ill content with even keeping the same Academy rookies that kept them relevant throughout Summer, Misfits have overhauled their rookie roster with… more rookies. Will these untested talents rise to the occasion? Or were fans right to raise their eyebrows at the import of Bvoy, a middle-tier marksman in a wildcard region?
Speaking of wildcard regions, Mithcell “Destiny” Shaw comes to the LEC all the way from OCE. The Australian support was picked up for his communication skills, and – according to head coach Andre Guilhoto – because he has a strong enough voice to not just be dominated by established marksman Elias “Upset” Lipp. Charisma and enthusiasm in droves are enough to facilitate a healthy team environment (I would know), but can Destiny walk the walk as well as he talks the talk?
Being from a wildcard region, Destiny also enters the 2020 season with everything to prove – this is the support player’s one and only chance, and if he falters OG even have former MSF hold-over Hiiva on the bench.
Mads “Broxah” Brock-Pedersen’s departure came as no surprise to fans following the apparent internal discord running rampant through Fnatic. His replacement in Oskar “Selfmade” Boderek seems great on paper, as the Polish jungler styled on people left and right throughout 2019, but integrating a new carry into the line-up seems risky at best.
Broxah fulfilled a much-needed utility role for the team, and trading this away for Selfmade – who has zero hesitation to pull the trigger on engages, much like his support – could find Fnatic caught out for their over-aggression.
Adding Selfmade comes with the bonus of reuniting him with Tim “Nemesis” Lipovšek; they formed the core of an EU Masters-dominant MAD Lions. Newsflash, however: the jungle/mid duos in EUM 2018 were nothing compared to the ones these players will face in the LEC (bar the duos that literally also got promoted from there).
Team Liquid, Broxah
Speaking of Broxah, and also of utility roles, it seems only fitting that EU’s premier supportive jungler steps into a similar role in NA’s premier championship team.
Team Liquid have made an upgrade on paper, but the loss of longtime rock Jake “Xmithie” Puchero may throw synergy for a loop during an otherwise irrelevant spring split. The apparent Visa issues may do the same.
Team SoloMid, Dardoch
Wow, why are most of these junglers?
TSM is known as the place where most carry junglers go to die. The pick up of Joshua “Dardoch” Hartnett has been something that fans have been asking for since 2017, but his persistent attitude problems still haunt him to this day.
Former Optic Gaming staff went on record as stating that Dardoch saw no LCS playtime under their banner in 2019 due to out-of-game issues, and therefore TSM are really going to have to shore up their supportive staff. On a similar note, TSM is a no bullshit organization – therefore Dardoch should take this last chance to shine and keep his ego in check.
It’s funny that we mention TSM being the death knell in most junglers’ carry playstyles, when there are a few other players that have fallen apart under the organization.
One of those is multiple times EU LCS champion and Worlds semifinalist Jesper “Zven” Svenningsen, who was supposed to bring TSM back into championship contention. Due to mismanagement, and his own shortcomings at times, Zven and his iterations of TSM fell short.
C9 are taking a gamble on this pick-up, as Zven comes into 2020 looking for the championship title he was perhaps too mentally checked-out on TSM to claim. He also has huge shoes (okay, somewhat average-sized) to fill as veteran ADC Zachary “Sneaky” Scuderi has taken a step back as the organization’s franchise player. At least he’ll be staying as a streamer for now, allowing us to still see those “you’re so hot, brother” tweets we all crave.
Golden Guardians, Keith
Considering that Choi “Huhi” Jae-hyun looked like a more than serviceable support – and continues to be one of their best players in Academy – GGS have effectively disrespected him with this pick up.
A marksman considered to be too good for Academy but not good enough for LCS over his 5+ year career, Yuri “Keith” Jew is a strange case. Moved to support in order to allow his marksman partner to be more aggressive in lane, the fact that GGS have opted for this move over a rookie will draw considerable community ire if it doesn’t work out.
With GGS placed in the bottom three of most power rankings, it’s unclear if it will.
Immortals, entire roster
How the mighty have fallen. Championship contenders – and holders – Xmithie and Paul “Soaz” Boyer should be shooting for the top of the standings. Their ability to facilitate their carries can only go so far if said carries play sub-optimally, though, and with the gigantic question marks in every single other role, Immortals are truly a head-scratcher this season.
Immortals on paper leave me… whelmed. No doubt you feel the same.
- Immortals entire existence 67%, 2 votes2 votes 67%2 votes - 67% of all votes
- TSM signing Dardoch 33%, 1 vote1 vote 33%1 vote - 33% of all votes
- Caps and Perkz switching roles 0%, 0 votes0 votes0 votes - 0% of all votes