LEC 2019: Ranking LEC mid lane players for week 1

BUSAN, SOUTH KOREA - OCTOBER 21: Caps of team Fnatic plays against team Edward Gaming during the quaterfinal match of 2018 The League of Legends World Chmpionship at Bexco Auditorium on October 21, 2018 in Busan, South Korea. (Photo by Woohae Cho/Getty Images)
BUSAN, SOUTH KOREA - OCTOBER 21: Caps of team Fnatic plays against team Edward Gaming during the quaterfinal match of 2018 The League of Legends World Chmpionship at Bexco Auditorium on October 21, 2018 in Busan, South Korea. (Photo by Woohae Cho/Getty Images) /

EU has always been a region of mid lane talent, and this first week of LEC play reinforced that nicely. But where there are winners, there are losers.

Since long before Faker took to the stage and wholly redefined what was possible from the mid lane, the dirt road cutting down the centre of Summoner’s Rift had been the focus of our attention. Where the marksmen in bot lane have their supports to keep them alive, and top lane is a rogue’s gallery of bruisers and tanks, mid lane is the arena of outplays, burst and 1v1 kills. The waves come faster, the champs die easier, and the jungle’s on both sides of the lane; what’s not to love about mid lane?

And while the season is chock full of surprises yet to come, some early speculation on the game’s most exciting lane is in order. Some of the players looked great in their first week back; some… maybe not so much. Today we’ll be looking at the bottom five mid laners in the league; look for the top five in the next instalment. Let’s rank mid!

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10. Felix ‘Abbedagge’ Braun

Abbe had a rough start to his time in the LEC. During his game against Vitality, he failed to harass Jiizuke in lane in his first game, despite bringing in Lissandra against his opponent’s Yasuo. He gave up multiple ganks throughout that game and seemed lost during team fights. Though his squad managed to squeak out a win against Vitality on the back of great performances by Odoamne and Memento. Abbedagge also failed to rise to the occasion in his game against G2 (admittedly a difficult match for ANY team). This performance might just be nerves on a new stage (this is Abbe’s first split in Europe) but continued performances of this level will mark him as the weakest mid laner in the region.

9. Tim ‘Nemesis’ Lipovsek

Fnatic is used to going down a few games early in the split, but losing three games in the first week is bad, even for them. Nemesis (a newbie to the LEC) had his job cut out for him replacing Caps, and no one expected him to fill that role in his first week on Fnatic. However, a general lack of coordination saw the team lose out early to SK In their first game, then squander their own leads in a second game with SK (after a client bug forced the first game to be remade) and their later set against Origen. In the latter, Nemesis was spoon fed an early kill, yet was still heavily out-farmed by Nukeduck’s Vayne. Credit where it’s due: Nemesis showed some promise with a great Galio ultimate, turning a fight during his second game. But he needs more good performances to convince us he’s having a positive impact on the team.

8. Chres ‘Sencux’ Laursen

Like Fnatic, Rogue went 0-2 on the week, a fate that was not entirely Sencux’s fault. He did a fine job trying to carry his squad in their game against Excel but was not able to turn the tide at the most integral moments. Avoiding CC and bursting the right champions is the job of any mid laner worth his salt and Sencux failed to deliver in that regard. However, in their match against Misfits, he gave up an early kill to Maxlore’s Lee Sin (one champion you really don’t want to feed kills in the early game) and helped create an enormous snowball that swallowed their team whole. Though Hans Sama’s Draven play probably sealed their fate regardless. From a veteran of Sencux’s status, these performances are hardly forgivable, especially when leading a rookie squad.

7. Fabian ‘Exile’ Schubert

While Exile did not look horrible in any of his games, nor did he dominate his lane or inspire confidence in his mechanical abilities. We’ve seen some truly incredible mids play Galio in the past, but his current role seems to be that of the Malzahars of old: constrain the lane, prevent the snowball, then initiate fights with his ultimate. Yet Exile’s Galio against Rogue did none of this: Sencux went 3-1 through the midgame and only faltered on the back of one very well played team-fight around the Baron. Exile had a major role in that final team-fight, walking away with a double-kill; however, one well played fight does not forgive kills given up early game. He’ll need to step up his game, especially facing the likes of Caps and Nukeduck in mid.

6. Daniele ‘Jiizuke’ di Mauro

After so many insane performances on Karthus throughout the first week’s games, Jiizuke’s own use of the champ might best be described as… disappointing? He went down 0-2 in lane to a pair of telegraphed ganks early in the Splyce game and then relied heavily on his champion’s utility to assist throughout the team fights that followed. Conversely, he worked (unsuccessfully) to carry his team in their other match against FC Schalke 04, keeping up in CS with Yasuo despite a range disparity in his lane. However, he was not able to cinch the legendary carry performance required to tip the scales of that game. After the beauty of Jiizuke’s play during Worlds, we can hope he is just getting warmed up for the regular season. If not, our Italian champion may be in trouble.

While it’s easy to point to standout carry performances from mid, it’s sometimes difficult to direct blame to a single lane or source when a team does poorly. Nevertheless, mid is the lane of action, and all of the players on this list failed to live up to the potential of their champions and their role, if only barely.

dark. Next. A Look at the Pro Meta – 2019 Spring Week 1

Think I placed someone wrong or overlooked a particularly weak performance? Liked the content? Either way, please comment below! I’d love to hear from you.