LCS 2021: Why Fans Should Be Excited for TSM in 2021

Photo by David Lee/Riot Games.
Photo by David Lee/Riot Games. /

Let’s look at why TSM fans should be excited for the coming LCS season.

The TSM story of 2020 was one of redemption followed by unimaginable failure. 2021 will be perhaps their most challenging task yet, now that their anchor in the mid lane, Bjergsen, has retired. With the loss of Doublelift to retirement as well, TSM enters the new LCS season with a rebuild roster.

Four of the five roster spots have been turned over from 2020, who will be looking to erase last year’s painful exit from Worlds. Let’s see what TSM fans should be expecting from their team in 2021.

Last Year

9-9 in the Spring Split, 12-6 in the Summer Split

It was a year of improvement from TSM, who went from finishing in fourth place in the spring regular season and playoffs to winning the whole thing in summer. In the Spring Split, the TSM roster finished in fifth place, but managed to make it to the second round of the loser’s bracket before losing to FlyQuest.

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In the summer, the team made a splash by re-acquiring Doublelift, which vaulted them to a fourth-place finish in the regular season. After a shocking loss in the first round to Golden Guardians, TSM went on a miracle run through the loser’s bracket, beating Dignitas, those same Golden Guardians, Cloud9, and Team Liquid, on their way to beating FlyQuest in a five-game series for the championship.

The Offseason

Despite everything that happened last year in the LCS, the team will go down in infamy for being the only #1 seed to go 0-6 in their group in Worlds history. After such a performance, it was inevitable that this roster would be broken up, and even moreso after Doublelift and Bjergsen retired.

To replace those two legendary players, TSM brought up their Academy ADC Lawrence “Lost” Sze Yuy Hui and acquired star mid laner Tristan “PowerOfEvil” Schrage. THey also made a huge splash by acquiring star support and recent Worlds finalist Hu “SwordArt” Shuo-Chieh from Suning. With import restrictions, that meant Broken Blade was gone, replaced by Heo “Huni” Seung-hoon. Mingyi “Spica” Lu is the team’s only returning player.

The Coach

It’s actually their former mid laner Søren “Bjergsen” Bjerg. One of the greatest LCS players of all time this is Bjergsen’s first time as a professional coach. It’s going to be interesting to see his style and what he can do with a brand new roster.

Players to Be Excited About

The acquisitions of SwordArt and Huni are eye-catching, and Spica and Lost are both rising players. However, I think TSM’s biggest offseason acquisition was PowerofEvil, who I rated as the second-best mid laner in the LCS behind only Perkz.

Season Prediction

Talent-wise, this team can stack up to anyone in the LCS. Synergy-wise, though, it’s a bit less clear. None of these players have existing relationship or chemistry, other than Huni and Spica playing together on Echo Fox and Spica and Lost joining forces on TSM Academy.

As a result, this team is going to have to rely on brute-force winning lanes while they build up their synergy. Unfortunately, that has not been the strong suit of this team’s laners in the past. The team might go through a lot of growing pains as they learn to play together.

What are the Fans Excited About?

From the TSM subreddit:

"I’m ready for TSM to start anew this year, for the first time in a long time we won’t have Bjergsen in the mid lane, and we have changed 4/5 members that went to Worlds. This roster is full of risks and thrill, and I’m excited to take this ride wherever it goes. My hope is that TSM outperforms analysts and makes the haters cry some more, but really I’m just excited to see how the next chapter of the TSM LoL team unfolds– aquawarrior21"

"TSM to prove all the haters wrong and win LCS again– Lost-Antelope"

"Win worlds ez clap– PhysicsIsSpicyMath"

The “fk it, Baylife” attitude is alive and well with the TSM fan base. They’re definitely not the heavy-weight favorites that they have been in past years and this does mark the start of a brand new era for this team. The question will be whether the new era will have the same success as the previous one.

"I’m excited to see Huni’s redemption spurred on by Spica’s touch. The math is simply.. Spica’s known for touching his boys. Huni did well on Echo Fox around the same time Spica was with EF. Ergo Huni will smurf again because Spica touches his boys– chupe_fiasco"

Let me just pull out my calculator…yeah it checks out. But seriously, Huni’s redemption arc and Spica’s continued development should both be big stories to watch from this team. I’d love to see a return of FNC and IMT Huni that was such a dominant, versatile player.

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"I’m super excited to see coach Bjergsen take over the league. I think he’s gonna achieve great things with the team and im very confident in our lineup. POE definitely my first choice mid laner to replace bjergsen.– Daviddaba"

"Coach Bjerg.– LouUmRuKlExR"

"It’s a new era in TSM. We’re swapping out 80% of our roster from last year with the most iconic substitution coming in the mid lane. It’s going to be weird seeing someone other than Bjergsen in the mid lane, but I’m excited to see what Coach Bjergsen has in store for us in terms of preparation and drafts.– rillamaster"

Coach Bjergsen is definitely interesting because, truthfully, we don’t know whether he’ll excel in the role or not. While I’m not quite as confident in the rest of the roster, I definitely agree that PowerofEvil was the best player TSM could have gotten to replace Bjergsen. The guy has been arguably the best mid in NA for the last two years and it’s time people start recognizing that.