review
LEC Spring 2020 Review

After months of competition, pitting the top European sides against each other, the League of Legends European Championship has come to a close once again for Spring 2020 and has crowned EU’s best team.

Lee "Couple Sodi Pops" Jones
Freelance Esports Writer
21st Apr, 2020·☕️ 7 min read
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After months of competition, pitting the top European sides against each other, the League of Legends European Championship has come to a close once again for Spring 2020 and has crowned EU’s best team.

Tournament Winner: G2 Esports

For the third time in a row and seventh time altogether, G2 Esports are the kings of Europe. The MSI holders and Worlds finalists were heavy favourites coming into the split after keeping the same team together from their hugely successful 2019 season (with a swap in the mid lane and ADC positions between Caps and Perkz).

The side came out swinging in the opening weeks, picking up six consecutive wins before falling in an unexpected 0-2 week 4 against rookie squad Misfits and strugglers Schalke. A 1-1 record the following week was then followed up by four perfect weeks, winning their final 8 games back-to-back and securing their first seed for playoffs.

G2 winn

Topping the regular season ladder gave G2 their choice of opponent for round 1 of the winners bracket, and they opted for newcomers MAD Lions who had exceeded expectations to 4th place. The young squad went a step further, upsetting the holders with a 3-2 victory which sent G2 to the lower bracket, making their path to the final much more difficult.

G2 then came up against Origen, who themselves had had another strong split and were widely considered the 3rd strongest side in the league. While G2 still did not look their strongest, a particularly impressive series from Caps saw the side pick up a 3-1 win and earned a rematch with MAD for a place in the final.

Caps was once again on top form, with an opening 14 kill game on Vayne a sign of things to come from the four time LEC champion. G2 picked up wins in the opening two games, and despite a fight back in game three which saw MAD get a win on the board, the holders were ultimately a cut above the rookie team and G2 secured their final against Fnatic with a 3-1 win.

With Fnatic looking the stronger of the two during playoffs, many had expected them to end G2’s dominance in Europe and a close final series was on the cards. G2 had other ideas.

fnatic v g2

In what was one of the most one-sided finals in recent years, G2 swept Fnatic in a swift 3-0 victory. G2’s form was reminiscent of that which they had displayed throughout 2019, while Fnatic’s performance was not close to the level that fans had come to expect. Decisive bot-lane focused wins earned support Mikyx the title of series MVP, as he won his third LEC title and did so with a new lane partner.

Featured Match: G2 Esports 2-3 MAD Lions (Playoffs Winner’s Bracket Round 1)

No game/series throughout the split caused more of a stir than that between G2 and MAD in the playoffs winner’s bracket. G2 had chosen to play against the young team as they were generally considered the easiest route to the semi-final, having already exceeded expectations in their fourth place regular season finish.

The opening game proved that MAD did not care about expectations as they shocked G2 into a 1-0 deficit. Rookie ADC Carzzy’s 14 kill performance on Kalista was too much for G2 to handle, while Caps’ lackluster Syndra match had led some to believe that he had given up on marksman champions altogether.

g2 v mad

Alternating wins for each team saw the series levelled at 2-2, where a single win for either side in the fifth match would secure the series. The final game was perhaps the most intense of all, as a mostly dominant performance from MAD was only a couple of auto-attacks from crumbling down as a G2 backdoor almost saw Caps’ Ziggs explode the nexus against the run of play. Managing to hold onto the game, MAD were then able to take the lead they had garnered to end the series themselves and complete one of the biggest upsets in LEC playoff history.

Featured Player: Jankos

jankos s

In a side that has had clear issues throughout the split, jungler Jankos has been the glue holding the squad together in order to still secure top spot in both the regular season and playoffs. As Caps moved to the bottom lane in a swap with Perkz, the Dane had shown signs of struggling to adapt to his new role and he was easily caught off guard on many occasions throughout the split. On the other side of the map, top laner Wunder’s form was not quite up to that that he had displayed throughout 2019.

Despite these setbacks, Jankos was still able to thrive with his side and propelled them to their third consecutive LEC title, earning split MVP in the process. G2’s reliance on him this split is perhaps best highlighted through his statistics, having 27.1% of their kills, 19.4% of their gold and boasting a 6.26 KDA and 5.33 average kills. For all stats mentioned, Jankos was the highest of all junglers in the league.

Best Bet

mad lions

The introduction of MAD Lions (previously Splyce) was accompanied by a roster which saw 2019 mid-laner Humanoid joined by four rookie players who had all emerged from the European Regional Leagues. As a result, the developmental side were hardly expected to make a push for playoffs and were instead tipped to struggle towards the bottom of the league.

Consistent form through the split not only earned them a playoff spot, but also secured fourth place and importantly meant that they would be placed into the winner’s bracket. Their subsequent upset of G2 in round 1 moved them onto a minimum semi-final finish, and at worst an overall 3rd place for the entire split.

Their semi-final loss to Fnatic and eventual defeat in the rematch to G2 ultimately ended their playoff run, however the side can be hugely proud of their achievements after being largely written off before the split had even begun. As hardly anyone would have tipped MAD Lions to even reach a playoff place, even less would’ve predicted such a high finish while taking down G2 along the way.

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