David Hollingsworth
David Hollingsworth
David has written for games media outlets for the last seven years. With his first major esports role being with Esports News UK covering mostly UK League of Legends. David is also a member of the British Esports Association and is an advisor to them on World of Warcraft Esports. More recently David has worked for Esports Insider and Red Bull as an esports journalist.

LoL: LEC 2022 Spring Split Power Ranking – Week One Update

Mad Lions left the trophy on stage after their 2021 LEC win
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With the LEC back in action, ESTNN continues our look at how our teams stack up.


Latest Update; Jan 17

The League of Legends European Championship (LEC) is back and we’ve got a Power Rankings to maintain. Check in with this list every week for our updated look at the league. We’ll be updating this list after every week of matches, with new insight based on the week before. But don’t worry, we’ll keep our week one prediction under each new update so we can remain humble when someone makes us look stupid (probably Vitality).

Week one recaps – Day One, Two, Three

10 – Astralis

Original placement 8th – down 2

We’re going to repeat this line later but “someone has to come 10th”. Right now, we might have got Astralis and SK in the wrong place, so we’ll correct the record this week. Astralis face off against Fnatic and MAD next week, so they could face the prospect of being the only team at 0-5. That said, they can always spring a shock, so watch this space.

What we said in pre-season

Astralis finished the 2021 Summer Split in joint-seventh place alongside Excel. Having added Kobbe and Dajor to the roster, it doesn’t appear to have moved on much from 2021 with both players likely to be side-grades at best. Look at a lot of the teams at the bottom end of the table, providing they’re building a roster it’s fine, if they’re just mearing looking to exist within the LEC, it’s less than ideal.

9 – Excel Esports

 Original placement 9th – Non-mover

Another team to go 1-2, we’re happy with what we’ve seen from Excel so far. They picked up a big victory against Vitality but based on their 0-3 week that may not be as significant as we thought. Regardless, Excel looks to be in the right spot based on its current form.

What we said in pre-season

After failing with their goal of making playoffs in their first three years, Excel needs a new drive for 2022. Having retained four of its roster, adding just Finn in the top lane, Excel are at least looking to build on 2021. Sadly, they’ve retained a roster that ended 2021 outside the playoffs once again, while Finn is likely to be an upgrade, it could be yet another challenging LEC split for Excel Esports.

8 – SK Gaming

Original placement 10th – Up 2

Look, week one was a crazy week, and while we’re not going to start making crazy predictions we may have been slightly harsh on SK Gaming. As we said below “Someone has to come 10th in a Power Ranking”, and maybe we picked the wrong one of the three? While SK only picked up one win, it was against MAD, one of the sides that looked the best during week one. SK play G2 and Excel next week, so a 1-1 week would be solid progress for the roster.

What we said in pre-season

Someone has to come 10th in a Power Ranking, and while it could be one of three sides, SK Gaming was chosen. SK Gaming added Sertuss and Gilius joined the roster, while former jungler Treatz swapped to support for 2022. While Gilius has the experience, he left Schalke 04 after the side was purchased by Team BDS. Ultimately, SK Gaming doesn’t look like a roster that will challenge, and while they could end up placing higher than 10th, it’s unlikely they’ll challenge for anything in Spring.

7 – Team BDS

Original placement 7th – Non-mover

With a 1-2 record in week one, we think BDS will be happy with how their LEC life has started. Losses to Misfits and Fnatic were expected, but a win against Excel is a major plus for the new roster. Week two will see them play Vitality and Rogue, a win in either of these would go a long way to maintain the week one momentum. We’re happy with the placement so far, as the title of “best of the rest” seems fair.

MORE FROM ESTNN
LoL: LEC 2022 Spring Split Day Three Recap

What we said in pre-season

Team BDS are the newest side to enter the LEC, buying the spot off FC Schalke 04. As a new side, BDS has decided to build an entirely fresh roster for 2022, and on paper, it looks like a good start. They’ve picked up the former G2 head coach GrabbZ, and added some new faces, three of whom hail from the side's native France. Top laner Adam, jungler Cinkrof, mid laner Jaylink, ADC x Matty, and support LIMIT will lead the line for BDS in 2022. While BDS are unlikely to finish in the top three, they have a massive fan base, and their potential to be a success in the LEC is huge.

6 – Misfits

Original placement 6th – Mon-mover

The LEC stage set up for a showdown, showing the Misfits Gaming side

Misfits are where this list starts to get difficult. With a 2-1 record in week one, they find themselves in joint third. Due to how many sides are tied, we think we need another week to judge Misfits. Victories against Astralis and BDS would firmly place them ahead of the bottom of the pack, but a defeat to Rogue means they’ll need some work to break into the top spots.

What we said in pre-season

It might be a case of “best-of-the-rest” for Misfits in 2022. Having lost Kobbe and Razork, they’ve added Mersa at support, with Neom rejoining in the ADC role, and Shlatan moving up from the academy roster. Sadly, the Misfits roster doesn’t scream quality, and even sixth might be generous.

5 – Team Vitality

Original placement 1st – down 4

To be clear, we did not want to make such a dramatic change to the power ranking after one week. That said, we can’t really put a side first, have them lose all three games and still keep them in the top three. Especially given how well other sides perform. We’re not ready to say Vitality is bad, far from it. We just need to reign in our expectations for a few weeks and take stock of what Vitality has to offer.

What we said in pre-season

For Vitality, they’re the closest Europe has to a super team right now, and with it, they’ll be looking to win their first title. They’ve retained 2021 jungler Selfmade, and support Labrove, while adding top laner Alphari, mid-laner Perkz, and ADC Carzzy. While it might be too early to pin a favourite to the LEC title, you’d be mad not to consider Vitality as one of the favourites. With talent and experience across the roster, Vitality has gone from a sixth-placed side in 2021, to one of the most hyped rosters in League of Legends.

4 – G2 Esports

Original placement 4th – Non-mover

We put G2 4th because we weren’t just how the new members would gel. Thankfully, it looks like G2 is going to be a contender in 2022 at the very least. All roads lead to Worlds for many of these rosters, and the Spring Split looks like a good proving ground for this new roster. With caPs and Jankos leading the line, the three rookies are in good hands.

What we said in pre-season

Having formed a “dream team” at the start of 2021, that roster has been ripped apart for 2022. G2 has made three new signings, with top lane Broken Blade, and bot lane duo Flakked (ADC), Targamas (Support). Just caPs and Jankos remain in the active roster. Mikyx will remain with G2 Esports as a sub, with no team looking to trigger his buyout. Now, the big worry for G2 is how well these new players can gel together, and how quickly they can do it. It’s certainly safe to say that, on paper, G2 are a weaker side than 2021, but that’s with the caveat that MAD has also been downgraded.

3 – Rogue

Original placement 5th – Up 2

 

Sometimes it’s nice to be wrong, and we’re so glad to see Rogue doing the business in week one of the LEC. After missing out on the title in 2021, despite leading at the end of the Summer Split, Rogue has started strong. We’re not going to get too carried away with ourselves, however. Rogue won all three matches, but they were against sides ranked lower (by us). Week two will see them come up against MAD and BDS, the former of which victory would cement Rogue as a Spring Split contender. Sometimes it’s nice to be wrong, and we’re so glad to see Rogue doing the business in week one of the LEC.

MORE FROM ESTNN
LoL: LEC 2022 Spring Split Day Two Recap

After missing out on the title in 2021, despite leading at the end of the Summer Split, Rogue has started strong. We’re not going to get too carried away with ourselves, however. Rogue won all three matches, but they were against sides ranked lower (by us). Week two will see them come up against MAD and BDS, the former of which victory would cement Rogue as a Spring Split contender.

What we said in pre-season

Having managed to finish the 2021 regular season in first place, it’s a weird 2022 for Rogue. Having lost Inspired and Hans sama, they’ve added Comp and Malrang to their roster. Crucially they’ve retained Odoamne, Larssen, and Trymbi, so the roster should at least be able to grow over the course of 2022. For now, we’ve put them in fifth place, but if the roster can gel fast, we might see Rogue challenge sooner rather than later.

2 – Fnatic

Original placement 3rd – Up 1

Well, after a 3-0 week it’s safe to say that Fnatic looks good. Yes, you’d expect them to beat BDS and SK, so second is fair for now. They did beat Vitality and had Vitality not lost to everyone, that victory would probably hold more weight. Week two will see Fnatic face off against Astralis and Misfits, which should see Fnatic move to 5-0. Momentum is king at the start of a season, and with so many roster changes Fnatic could give themselves some needed breathing room.

What we said in pre-season

It’s safe to say that Fnatic had a turbulent off-season/Worlds. Putting aside all the drama between players, and leadership fallouts, Fnatic has somehow managed to come into 2022 with a deadly-looking roster. With Upset and Hylissang staying (Nisqy has also remained as a sub) – Fnatic has added Wunder (former G2) in the top lane, Razork (former Misfits) jungler, and mid-laner Humanoid (MAD). Fnatic might not be favorites, but they’ll be up there with the best, providing they can work together as a team quickly.

1 – MAD Lions

Original placement 2nd – Up 1

Yes, it’s weird putting a side that went 2-1 first when two sides went 3-0; however, MAD looked really good in week one. At the time their match one victory against Vitality looked like a masterstroke. Now, they did lose to SK, but the win against G2 looked clinical — and prevented G2 from going 3-0 for the week. Week two sees them face off against Rogue and Astralis, and we’re ready to say now that whoever is victorious in the MAD v Rogue series is likely to be first in our Power Rankings next week (spoilers).

What we said in pre-season

After a double title-winning year in 2021, MAD Lions are looking to build on that for 2022. Surprisingly for some, MAD replaced two of their double-title winning players as new mid laner Reeker, and ADC Unforgiven joined the roster. The pair replaced outgoing players Humanoid (now at Fnatic) and Carzzy (now at Vitality). It’s easy to look at MAD as favorites due to their performances in 2021, however, MAD has lost two of their best players to rival teams, so it might not be so simple this time. Plus, with the emergence of a new “super team”, MAD might face a new challenger to their throne.

Check back next week to see if we’ve got it right, or if someone else decides to have a 0-2 week and throw the list into chaos!

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