League of Legends Patch 9.6 tier list: top lane edition

Transcended Kayle. League of Legends.
Transcended Kayle. League of Legends. /
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League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games.
Transcended Kayle. League of Legends. /

Which top laners sit atop our League of Legends tier list following the Patch 9.6 adjustments?

From a mini-rework of Urgot’s kit to buffs to Ornn, Gnar, Nautilus, Shen, Trundle, and Kayle, along with nerfs to Jayce, there is a lot to discuss in our Patch 9.6 tier list. Which League of Legends champion emerged at the top of the pack now the sites we audit have data on Patch 9.6?

The tier list

S tier: Riven, Jax, Kayle
A tier: Vladimir, Sylas, Irelia, Kled, Yorick, Teemo, Nasus, Jayce, Kennen, Darius, Gangplank
B tier: Illaoi, Urgot, Yasuo, Garen, Camille, Pantheon, Renekton, Olaf, Vayne, Akali, Sion, Quinn
C tier: Wukong, Neeko, Poppy, Malphite, Rengar, Ryze, Tryndamere, Rumble, Fiora, Singed, Aatrox, Mordekaiser, Shen, Gnar, Cho’Gath, Dr. Mundo
D tier: Volibear, Maokai, Viktor, Tahm Kench, Ornn

Rising champions

Kayle (C tier to S tier)

We talked more about Kayle in the mid lane tier list, but it’s important to note that Kayle didn’t just get straight buffs. She had some adjustments to her W and E (removing of cast time on W and a bugfix to her E) that clearly gave her some benefits.

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While in the last patch most players were struggling to figure her new kit out. Now that they have more experience on the Judicator, it seems that the stats and experts agree she is a top-tier pick.

Urgot (C tier to B tier)

Urgot received some hefty changes to his kit in Patch 9.6, namely to his W and E. His E now procs that oh-so-annoying shield instead of his W, but at max rank you can have the W going infinitely. That’s certainly helped Urgot’s kit and made him feel a bit less oppressive to play against.

Before, you’d just W anytime you were taking a trade to get that bonus slow resist and damage, plus gain a shield to win every time. Now, if you want to get that shield you have to use your only escape/engage tool. Urgot is still going to do well in trades with that W, especially once you max it, but at least he’s going to take damage now.

Teemo (B tier to A tier)

It was quite surprising to see Teemo dip to B-tier in the last tier list, but the Swift Scout has risen back up in Patch 9.6. He’s probably thrilled to see one of his big lane nemesis – Jayce – get those substantial nerfs.

Falling champions

Volibear (B tier to D tier)

It’s no secret that Volibear as a champion is in a tough spot. His kit doesn’t offer a lot in terms of what a traditional tank (tons of CC) or juggernaut (intense dueling power) would want. Unfortunately for Voli, only one site has him ranked as B-tier champion while three don’t even have him listed as a top laner.

Wukong (A tier to C tier)

Wukong dropped like a stone in this tier list, despite no big targeted changes affecting him. He’s not alone, though, as champions like Rengar, Renekton, Singed, and Poppy also fell from A tier to C tier.

There doesn’t seem to be any real connection to these champions falling off, other than that they all tend to be a bit more dive heavy. It will be interesting to see if they stabilize in the next patch.

Maokai (C tier to D tier)

Maokai is also feeling a bit left behind in this tier list. Once the go-to tank, Mao has just felt left behind for a while, to the point that most tier lists have forgotten about him.