We’ve finally reached week five, the halfway mark of the LCS Spring Split. For the majority of the season so far, more than half of North America’s teams have been incredibly inconsistent. Even top-tier organizations like TSM and 100 Thieves have had a hard time finding their groove. The only teams that have looked good so far are Team Liquid and Cloud9. Many people were questioning how successful North America would be in international tournaments, seeing as most of the league is looking weak.
Luckily for NA fans, the midway point of the Spring Split may mark the start of a turnaround for the LCS. Teams that were slated to do well were able to take home convincing wins. Although some teams are still underperforming, the league is finally taking shape after remaining a huge mess of teams underneath Liquid and Cloud9 for four consecutive weeks. However, there is still a lot of time before the playoffs. Therefore, there is plenty of room to make a move for the postseason. Let’s take a look at our power rankings for Week Five of the LCS Spring Split.
1. Team Liquid (9-1) [↔️]
2. Cloud9 (8-2) [↔️]
4. TSM (6-4) [+4]
3. FlyQuest (5-5) [+1]
7. Golden Guardians (4-6) [↔️]
5. Echo Fox (4-6) [+1]
9. OpTic Gaming (4-6) [↔️]
6. Counter Logic Gaming (4-6) [-1]
8. 100 Thieves (3-7) [-5]
10. Clutch Gaming (3-7) [↔️]
The 2019 #LCS Spring Split Standings at the end of week five:
— LoL Esports (@lolesports) February 25, 2019
Top Contenders: Team Liquid, Cloud9
All is right in the world as Cloud9, Team Liquid, and TSM make up the top three teams in the LCS once again. It felt weird looking at the standings and seeing teams like FlyQuest and Clutch Gaming at the top of the North American food chain. However, as we watch Week Five pass us by, the old guard seems to be too strong for the young blood, at least for now. There isn’t much to say about Team Liquid, who tops our Power Rankings this week once more. Each of their players are top three in their role, and their decision making and macro are almost perfect.
Meanwhile, Cloud9 showed why they were definitively the second-best team in NA by taking down FlyQuest and the struggling CLG. Zachary “Sneaky” Scuderi has been a dominant force in the bottom lane, boasting the most kills in the LCS at fifty. His laning is still a bit of a problem, as he is third last in creep score difference at ten minutes, but he makes up for it with his excellent team fighting skills in the later stages of the game.
Additionally, their budding star top laner Eric “Licorice” Ritchie has been performing well through week five, leading all NA top laners with 32 kills and 54 assists. He is strong in lane and is a huge catalyst for their success. Their newest addition, Yasin “Nisqy” Dinçer, has also settled into his role really well in such a short amount of time. He leads all LCS mid laners with the most kills, assists, and has a 70.5% kill participation. Their team synergy has been off the charts, and their games have been some of the most exciting of the season.
Possible Challengers: TSM, FlyQuest
If I’m a TSM fan, I wouldn’t celebrate just yet. However, I’ll also admit that it is hard not to get excited about this team right now. After an impressive past two weeks, TSM looks to be on the upswing. Their focus on the top side of the map is paying dividends towards their success, as Sergen “Broken Blade” Çelik has become a crucial part of their game plan. Søren “Bjergsen” Bjerg’s laning phase has been great as always, as he leads all mid laners in average gold difference at ten minutes, experience difference at ten minutes, and has the second-highest CS differential at ten minutes. If they can stay true to their game plan and keep their macro clean and sharp like it was this past week, we could see TSM push for a deep playoff run in a month.
On the other hand, FlyQuest suffered another 0-2 week at the hands of TSM and Cloud9. It is clear that this team cannot stand up to the upper echelons of the LCS. However, they are able to win games that they are expected to win, which is important. Staying consistent against lower-tier teams puts them at a higher level than most of the league. Still, they haven’t taken that necessary step up to meet the Team Liquids and Cloud9s of North America. At the crux of this team lies the veteran trio of Eugene “Pobelter” Park, Jason “WildTurtle” Tran, and Lucas “Santorin” Tao Kilmer Larsen.
Santorin has quietly become one of the best junglers in the league, leading all junglers in KDA, first blood percentage, and racking up a whopping 74.8% kill participation. Pobelter has also become a reliable source of firepower for FlyQuest, but WildTurtle has been average at best. If FlyQuest is to push for that next level, it may need to come from their rookie top laner, Omran “V1per” Shoura. His development could decide FlyQuest’s fate as a playoff team.
Middle-of-the-Pack: Golden Guardians, Echo Fox, OpTic Gaming
Again, this group of teams will always fluctuate in our power rankings due to their inconsistencies with their play. Sometimes they look like possible playoff contenders but other times they look downright bad. Golden Guardians is a great example of this, as they’ve been able to take down teams like TSM and Echo Fox. However, they also lost to Clutch Gaming this past week too, who has been the worst team in the league. They need to play around the top side of the map a lot more if they want to win. Ultimately, if we look at their entire body of work up to this point, Golden Guardians look the most set for a top-five position in the LCS.
Echo Fox and OpTic Gaming are interchangeable. Lee “Rush” Yoon-jae’s streak of never ending a week 0-2 has finally ended with losses to Team Liquid and Golden Guardians. Luckily for them, these two teams are considered stronger than them, so they won’t lose much stock in our power rankings. Meanwhile, OpTic Gaming goes 2-0 this week, but against two of the weakest teams in the region. Although it pushes them up the standings and in our power rankings, I still need to see this team take down FlyQuest, Echo Fox, and even Golden Guardians.
The only bright side for OpTic Gaming is that they might have found the final iteration of their starting roster. By replacing William “Meteos” Hartman with Joshua “Dardoch” Hartnett, they now have plenty of firepower to support Lee “Crown” Min-ho in the mid lane. The former World Champion has been struggling mightily this season. Among all LCS mid laners, he is dead last in kills, assists, and KDA. Hopefully, these changes can help him flourish in the second half of the Spring Split.
Struggling at the Bottom: CLG, 100 Thieves, Clutch Gaming
CLG and 100 Thieves had one of their worst weeks yet. For CLG fans, this disappointment isn’t new. This team hasn’t been able to perform well since 2017, and they’ve had roster problems ever since the departures of Jake “Xmithie” Puchero and Zaqueri “aphromoo” Black. However, 100 Thieves had a ton of hype surrounding their lineup before the start of the Spring Split. In fact, to many people, this team was supposed to be one of the best rosters in North America. Unfortunately, they’ve fallen short of those expectations.
There just isn’t any synergy between these players at all. At some points, it’s like watching a horrendous game of solo queue, where each player has muted their teammate’s pings. This hasn’t been a great season for Choi “huhi” Jae-hyun, who has the second-lowest KDA of any mid laner. He also has a lowly 58.5% kill participation, while sporting 20.4% of his team’s deaths. I think 100 Thieves need to find a change in mentality before doing anything else. They need to build synergy at the simplest level because they don’t look together at all.
Lastly, Clutch Gaming finally broke their six-game losing streak with a win against Golden Guardians. They’re still the worst team in the league in our power rankings until they can string together some convincing victories. Heo “Huni” Seung-hoon has been one of the worst performers in the LCS, and their bottom lane has been mediocre at best. I don’t see Clutch moving from this bottom spot anytime soon, until 100 Thieves has something to say about it.
What are your thoughts on our Week Five Power Rankings for the LCS? Let us know what you think in the comments below! If you want more LCS coverage, check us out here!