LEC Winter Season Team Preview: Team Heretics

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LEC Winter Season Team Preview: Team Heretics

The newest team of the LEC has got a very strange pack of players together, but they just might be the perfect squad to introduce Heretics.

We have reached the end of the LEC Team Previews before the League of Legends EMEA Championship Winter Split, as we have arrived at the last team, Heretics. The Spanish organization initially announced that it wanted to create a strong Hispanic identity with its roster, but ended up having no players from Spain or other Latin countries on the team. Nevertheless, Heretics look great and are eager to step in the Berlin Studio for the first time.

Toplane – Shunsuke “Evi” Murase

The biggest surprise of the new LEC team was it’s toplane acquisition, as they managed to sign Evi from the Japanese LJL. A crowd-favorite for sure, Evi will be the first Japanese player to compete in the European Leagues. The 27-year-old veteran has spent 5 years of his 8-year career playing for DetonatioN FocusMe, the most successful team of the LJL. After the first few years of professionally playing League, he has been the perpetual champion of the Japanese region: he first got the title back in 2017 with Rampage against DFM, then after winning Summer Playoffs, DFM decided they want to have him on their team. Since then, there has only been 2 split which he and his team hasn’t won, one in 2018 Spring Playoffs, then again in 2020 Summer, where they got 2nd place. Evi has played in every single World Championship since 2017, and while he and his team only got through Play-Ins once, he’s a player with an incredible amount of domestic and international experience.

Team Heretics toplaner Evi

He has been known for his strange picks, such as Urgot and Lillia, also playing carry toplaners such as Akali and Tryndamere, the latter being his second most played Champion in 2022. He played 16 games of Gnar, however, so he can be a weakside toplaner as well. Whatever Heretics need, he can deliver, which is why the Spanish org signed him.

Jungle – Marcin “Jankos” Jankowski

The other big acquisition of Team Heretics was Jankos, who was let go from G2 Esports after the team only got 1 win in the Worlds Group Stage. The jungler who will play until he’s 80 has had a long career indeed. He started in 2013 with Team Mistral, then qualified for the EU LCS with H2k-Gaming in 2014. However, H2k didn’t keep him, so after a brief hiatus. He joined Team ROCCAT, where he played for 2 years. After H2k realized their mistake, they signed Jankos, who helped them achieve top 4 in the 2016 World Championship. After H2k disbanded, Jankos went to play for G2 Esports. They was part of the Golden Generation, making top 4 one more time at Worlds in 2018 and Finals in 2019, winning 5 European Champion Titles, and getting first place in the 2019 Mid-Season Invitational.

Team Heretics Jungler Jankos

One of the greats of the region may have had his ups and downs, his career is far from over. Never wanting to retire, he’s known for his amazing work ethic, analyzing VODs right after the games end. He has a pretty sizable Champion pool as well: while he’s most comfortable on ganking junglers such as Jarvan IV and Xin Zhao, he can play farmers like Viego and Wukong proficiently as well. As long as he stays off Nidalee, he should be a class jungler for Heretics.

Midlane – Lee “Ruby” Sol-min

The first lesser-known player on the team will be Ruby. The young Korean will join the team from the Prime League, where he played for Unicorns of Love Sexy Edition. Before the ERL’s, he played in Korea for Team BattleComics, and VSG, and was a substitute in Afreeca Freecs. He left Korea to play for Rogue Warriors in the LPL, before joining BOOM Esports in the PCS. He won the CK 2019 Spring Playoffs with VSG but failed to qualify for the LCK. After finishing second in Summer, he left for China, but he didn’t find any success: Ruby and Rogue Warriors finished in 13th place in the 2020 LPL Spring Split, and got knocked down to 15th in the Summer. With Boom Esports, Ruby at least qualified for the 2021 PCS Spring Playoffs by finishing in 5th place, and got 4th place in Summer, after which he and his squad got into the top 6 of the 8-team PCS Playoffs. After joining UOLSE, his performance greatly improved. In his first Split of the Prime League, Ruby finished third, then qualified for the 2022 Spring EU Masters, where the UOL Academy team got as far as the quarterfinals. In Summer, they dominated the domestic teams, getting 1st place in bot the Regular Season and the Playoffs, but they couldn’t get past top 8, as Team Heretics knocked them out in the first round of the last stage.

If you can’t beat them, join them – and Ruby did. The 24-year-old has some insane statistics on a few Champions: he has a 92% winrate out of 13 games on Ahri, and 80% winrate on Azir, with whom he played 10 games, and even had some matches on Cassiopeia and Aatrox mid. But the secret weapon is his Kassadin, who is set out to be one of the best midlane Champs of the Winter Split – and luckily for Heretics, Ruby plays the Voidwalker to masterclass.

Botlane – Jakob “Jackspektra” Gullvag Keppel

The first – and most anticipated – player who the Spanish team signed was prodigy ADC Jackspektra. The Norse has been all the buzz in the ERL’s, with many saying that he should’ve been on a team for the 2022 season. Jackspektra has played in the NLC for the first half of his career in teams such as Dusty and Riddle Esports, but he didn’t manage to get any wins Nordic wins with them. He joined the Spanish LVP SL back in 2021, playing for Cream Real Betis.EU. After he and his teammates finished 10th in Spring, they got 4th place in Summer, but got knocked out of the first round of Playoffs. After joining Heretics, Jackspektra has been unleashed: playing alongside Subicz “bluerzor” Dániel they managed to bounce back from an 8th-place finish last Spring, going on to win the SuperLiga, then getting to the top of the podium at the EU Masters Summer Main Event.

Team Heretics ADC Jackspektra

With mechanics of a veteran player, Jackspektra was a monster on picks like Zeri and Jinx, but thrived on the more aggressive picks, his Draven being one of the scariest in the ERL’s. While he had very high winrates on these characters, he only had 100% WR on two Champs: Senna and Ezreal, the former being an off-meta pick – but that doesn’t stop Jack from playing her to perfection. The community has very high hopes for the ADC of Team Heretics. Let’s hope he can live up to them.

Support – Mertai “Mersa” Sari

Supporting Jackspektra and the whole Heretics squad will be another fairly new player, Mersa. The 20-year-old has started out as a toplaner for Dawn of Stars back in 2019, but quickly swapped to support, and became a substitute for Greek Regenesis. He joined We Love Gaming in May 2020, winning the Greek Legends League 2020 Playoffs after becoming the main support of the squad. In the Winter Split, however, WLG only got top 6 in playoffs, so Mersa joined EBL Team SAIM SE SuppUp, and won the EBL in Season 8, finishing in the top 8 of 2021 Spring EU Masters. He played for Gamers Origin for a Split in the LFL, but got signed by Misfits Gaming at the start of the 2022 Spring Split. They finished in 4th in Spring and 5th in Summer playoffs, just missing last year’s Worlds.

Mersa has become an incredible support in a short period of time, hence why Misfits Gaming signed him after winning the smallest ERL’s. The Greek prefers initiators over enchanters, but did Yuumi-duty if the Cat was open to play. While he only played a few games with him, his Amumu is formidable. With the meta shifting towards picks like Maokai, Nautilus and the Sad Mummy, Mersa may have an even better year than before.

While Team Heretics failed to keep their word about a Spanish roster, they put together one of the most interesting teams of the LEC Winter Split. With big names such as Evi and Jankos, they won the crowd over, and more importantly, garnered some players who can show the way for the newbies. Both Ruby and Jackspektra will be rookies this year so that they will need all the help both inside and outside the game. But if they don’t break under pressure, Heretics could be a contender for Playoffs this Season.

With all the 10 LEC teams previewed, the only thing that remains is to wait – because in one week, the LEC starts, and we will see who will rise to be our first European Champion!

LEC Winter Season Team Preview: Team Heretics
Bence Loksa
Bence "Atreus" Loksa is a freelance journalist and League of Legends shoutcaster, covering all things esports and gaming, also yelling loudly at big plays happening on the Summoner's Rift. While his main focus is Riot Games' hit MOBA, he also dabbles in Call of Duty, VALORANT, and as of recent, the tabletop wargame Warhammer 40,000 - where he looks to make some grudges with his Leagues of Votann army.