Evil Geniuses Roster Changes Incoming, Coach Irean No Longer With the Team
Evil Geniuses accomplished quite a lot in 2020, although it always felt like LoL roster and coaching staff changes were inevitable in the long run. EG’s Top 3 finish in Spring was a surprise, but it didn’t last long. Far from it, in fact. Once the Summer Split came around, it became evident that EG was nothing more than a severely flawed, relatively one-dimensional challenger — a team that couldn’t improve all that much.
By the end of the regular season, things became clear: Evil Geniuses had to go for severe LoL roster changes if they intend on challenging the upper echelon of the LCS. Fortunately, it seems as though they’ve gotten the memo as well.
The first in what we can only assume will be a slew of changes relates to their coaching staff. Young-cheol “Irean” Heo will no longer serve as the head coach. Where he’ll go next remains to be seen. Even though EG failed to leave much of a mark in the second half of 2020, Irean’s stock didn’t diminish much. The job he had was by no means easy. EG had to adapt and grow, and yet almost none of their players could do so. Dennis “Svenskeren” Johnsen, Daniele “Jiizuke” di Mauro, and Heo “Huni” Seung-hoon all have entrenched playstyles that are defined by unrelenting aggression and a ton of bravado (for better and worse). They’re high variance players. They’ll either win on their terms or fail to try. There’s no in-between. You always know how they want to play the game out. There’s very little variation involved, regardless of whom they’re up against.
In short, that isn’t exactly a line-up that’s easy to lead, especially given how they cannot bend in any which way playstyle-wise.
It’ll be interesting to see if EG will look to retain such an identity or if they’ll try to assemble a much more balanced team. As far as we know, their starting line-up is still in flux. Expect a lot more news from the Evil Geniuses camp going forward as they invested a ton of money and have very little to show for it.
An Uncertain Outlook
When it comes to Evil Geniuses and 2021, there’s nothing concrete to talk about or hold onto. They’ve fielded a strong albeit incohesive roster. They were far too volatile and inconsistent with standing a chance of upsetting the long-established status quo. Furthermore, most of their wins came off of their mechanical talent alone — nothing more, nothing less. There was some semblance of cohesion from time to time. However, these moments were too few and far between to warrant a spot higher up the standings.
Overall, a change in their coaching staff is a good start, but it’s far from the most important decision. They need a more consistent top laner (maybe Eric “Licorice” Ritchie) and a head coach with a proven track record (perhaps Bok “Reapered” Han-gyu). Most importantly, they need to decide on their starting mid laner. A seasoned veteran like Eugene “Pobelter” Park seems like a good fit, although that would heavily depend on the rest of the line-up.
There are so many question marks revolving around Evil Geniuses at the moment. Hopefully, they’ll find success in navigating the upcoming off-season and the chaos that’ll ensue.