2020 LEC Off-Season Team Roster Changes
The 2020 LEC off-season is finally here, which means we have a bevy of exciting roster changes to go over. When it comes to unexpected twists and turns, the LEC is nowhere near as chaotic (and entertaining) as the LCS, but that doesn’t mean there’s nothing big to go over. On the contrary! Most LEC teams have either made small, nuanced changes, or went for entirely new line-ups with promising up-and-comers leading the charge.
If you’re a fan of the “little leagues” like the Polish Ultraliga or, say, the French LFL, you’ll be elated to find out that we’re going to see some of their most prominent rookies on the LEC stage come 2021. This is what Europe does so incredibly well: developing native talent. Now sure, there’s still a solid number of seasoned veterans who no longer warrant the starting spot, but the situation is nowhere near as egregious as in North America.
That’s both good and bad, depending on how things pan out. If these rookies deliver and perform up to expectations, then we’re bound to see a repeat of Rogue and MAD Lions. If, however, they fail to compete on even footing, their teams will struggle mightily to remain even remotely relevant. The European region is still fairly top-heavy, and these young rookies will need to bring something unique to the table if they intend on trading blows with the who’s who of the LEC.
With that out of the way, let’s go over some of the latest and most exciting 2020 LEC roster changes!
2020 LEC Roster Changes
Rogue — The boys in blue will be making two big changes in time for 2021, with Andrei “Odoamne” Pascu and Adrian “Trymbi” Trybus (former AGO Rogue support) joining the starting line-up. These are both interesting changes. The former is definitely an upgrade over Finn “Finn” Wiestål (who’s now signed with CLG), although the latter might not pan out all that well. Losing Oskar “Vander” Bogdan — their most seasoned shotcaller — is not an easy pill to swallow. Now, no one’s questioning Trymbi’s talent, but he’ll definitely have some huge shoes to fill; Rogue will also need to allocate shotcalling duties in a different way, now that Vander is no longer a part of the team.
Regardless, they’re still stacked with talent, and there’s no reason to doubt them going forward, especially not after such a stellar 2020.
Schalke 04 — This is where things get a lot more interesting. S04 is bringing over former Team SoloMid top laner (and champion, mind you) Sergen “BrokenBlade” Çelik, along with Dino “Limit” Tot (formerly of SK Gaming). Again, we have one signing that is not only surprising but also quite positive, and another that’s somewhat of a letdown. BrokenBlade is more than worthy of the starting spot, but Limit isn’t all that big of an upgrade over Han “Dreams” Min-kook (if at all). Regardless, the fact that BrokenBlade will now be reunited with his old TCL mid laner Felix “Abbedagge” Braun should definitely provide Schalke with an extra bit of synergy — something that will surely come in handy at the very start of the season. Neither signing will make Schalke 04 into an instant contender, but if Erberk “Gilius” Demir keeps performing as well as he did in 2020, they’ll definitely have a shot at reaching the playoffs once again.
SK Gaming — With Limit off to Schalke, SK Gaming will be bringing over former TSM support Erik “Treatz” Wessén. This one is definitely a surprise, but most people forgot that Treatz is not only European but had first made his name in teams like Team ROCCAT and Movistar Riders before moving over the Atlantic and signing with Team SoloMid as their Academy starter.
Is he an upgrade over Limit? Well, depends on whom you ask, but he’s at worst a sidegrade. In any case, he’s a solid signing and could, at best, empower SK Gaming going forward. The rest of the team is filled with talented rookies (Kristian “TynX” Østergaard, Ersin “Blue” Gören, and Jean “Jezu” Massol are all making their LEC debut) although it remains to been whether this young line-up will be able to compete with their more seasoned peers and colleagues.
Jesse “Jesiz” Le is definitely a great coach, but he’ll have a lot of work to do come 2021, that’s for sure.
Misfits — Misfits will be promoting their Academy top laner Tobiasz “Agresivoo” Ciba to the starting line-up, and have also signed former LDLC mid laner Vincent “Vetheo” Berrié to replace LEC veteran Fabian “Febiven” Diepstraten. This isn’t exactly a premier line-up, but with Kasper “Kobbe” Kobberup and Vander aboard, Misfits will at least have a couple of seasoned veterans to lead the charge.
MAD Lions — Along with İrfan “Armut” Berk Tükek, MAD Lions have supposedly finalized a deal with Movistar Riders jungler Javier “Elyoya” Prades. The fact that they’re replacing Zhiqiang “Shadow” Zhao is definitely a surprise. Granted, he didn’t look good at Worlds (maybe that’s even an understatement), but we’ve seen his highs and what he’s truly capable of. Is he inconsistent? Absolutely, but he’s worth the starting spot (and a bit more time to further develop and grow). Whether he’ll get scooped up by another organization is anyone’s guess at this point.
Either way, MAD Lions will surely remain a relevant threat throughout 2021.
Fnatic — With Martin “Rekkles” Larsson leaving his old team, Fnatic will need to scramble and find a suitable replacement. Of course, no one can fill the void left by his absence that easily, but at least there are a couple of great free agents out there that would surely be game to try — namely Elias “Upset” Lipp and Juš “Crownshot” Marušič. Both marksmen have proven their worth and are capable of delivering when it matters most.
Whom Fnatic will eventually go with still remains to be seen, though. The Yasin “Nisqy” Dinçer signing is old news by this point, but it’s still worth mentioning as it’ll heavily affect Fnatic’s synergy (and playstyle) going forward. Seeing how he’s known for enabling his junglers, we could end up seeing an even more dangerous and impactful Oskar “Selfmade” Boderek. That, in itself, is quite a frightening thought. The outlook isn’t all that grim for the boys in black and orange, but early growing pains (and mistakes) are all but guaranteed.
That’s it for now! The 2020 LEC off-season has only just begun, so expect further roster changes to be announced in the days and weeks ahead! Most teams have already finalized their line-ups, but there are still a couple of key spots left, so stay tuned!