1. G2 Esports
Record: 7-1 | League: LEC | +/-: +1
This week, G2 Esports have looked as unstoppable as Rasmus “Caps” Winther. Indeed, they solidified their status as Europe’s strongest and most creative team following lopsided victories against Schalke 04 and Misfits Gaming. In those victories, Caps scored a cumulative 17/3/5 KDA using Renekton and Talon.
If Caps’ picks weren’t enough to give head coach Fabian “GrabbZ” Lohmann gray hair, jungler Marcin “Jankos” Jankowski’s performance on Sylas (6/2/9 vs. Schalke 04) surely was. Gray hair or not, G2’s Week 5 contests (against Excel Esports and Splyce) might require the same creativity and efficiency they displayed this past week.
— Adel Chouadria
2. FunPlus Phoenix
Record: 8-0 | League: LPL | +/-: -1
It’s a post-Rift Rivals world and FunPlus Phoenix are still the team power rankings nightmares are made of. The last time we queued up these rankings, FPX remained undefeated while G2 Esports had just lost to Fnatic. The LPL didn’t perform as well as expected at Rift Rivals, but FPX were a bit of an outlier from their LPL peers, especially after they captured the only point scored by the LPL in the finals in their relay win over Griffin.
The thing about FPX is that they have a specific play style that works within certain parameters. This includes their beatdown of Griffin with Kim “Doinb” Tae-sang’s Pantheon mid. They excel at playing this style but don’t have the flexibility to deviate from it. This works in the regular season, during which this FPX roster has thrived and remains undefeated in their region.
— Emily Rand
3. Royal Never Give Up
Record: 5-1 | League: LPL | +/-: —
Alongside a few other LPL teams, Royal Never Give Up did not play last week. That makes it a bit questionable to keep them at No. 3 because they didn’t win, but they also didn’t lose. We decided to keep RNG this high because the recent meta shift should suit them, and they have remained one of the top teams in the LPL. We might even have more faith in them than FPX come playoff time regardless of record.
4. Kingzone DragonX
Record: 7-3 | League: LCK | +/-: +1
The rest of the power rankings panel is likely sick of how much I ramble about loving what Kingzone DragonX are doing. Kingzone are my favorite team in the LCK right now and performed well at Rift Rivals, taking down both FPX and Invictus Gaming. Although they had a shaky performance upon returning to the LCK, nearly losing to KT Rolster, Kingzone used Kim “Deft” Hyuk-kyu’s Ezreal and Jinx alongside support Park “TusiN” Jong-ik’s Tahm Kench to beat back a rising Damwon Gaming. Most importantly, Kingzone continue to know their greatest strength (playing through bot lane with Deft) but have been willing to try other compositions and styles that deviate from this, which made them successful in the more solo-lane-focused meta that kicked off the split. This Kingzone team has a surprising amount of flexibility, and it will be interesting to see them take on another rising LCK team, Gen.G, this week.
5. Top Esports
Record: 6-1 | League: LPL | +/-: -1
Rift Rivals looked a little rough for Top, but with Bai “369” Jia-Hao in the lineup, they look just fine. Top’s main issue at Rift Rivals was centered around drafts and poor early games, which clearly go hand in hand. Despite falling behind consistently, the team often found great teamfights and thus plenty of opportunities for Zhuo “Knight” Ding to shine. Top’s strategy has rarely gone past “teamfight and have Knight carry,” but it makes them a threat both domestically and internationally. The rest of the LPL summer split (and worlds) should reveal Top’s maximum potential with its full starting lineup and hopefully refined draft picks.
— Xander Torres
Record: 7-1 | League: LEC | +/-: —
Controversy erupted on Twitter after Fnatic’s loss to Splyce, an otherwise positive event that showed the team’s flaws and resilience. Knowing their drafting and execution flaws, Fnatic can diligently clean its play from misplays and miscalls, a welcome development for a team with worldly ambitions.
Although Fnatic’s fans have acted as if the team fell from grace, the team is among the best in the world at macro execution. When Fnatic’s plans unfold as predicted, playing against them is unfair; if you ask G2 and Team Vitality, they would agree based on their past matchups. SK Gaming and Rogue will likely feel similarly following Week 5.
7. Damwon Gaming
Record: 7-3 | League: LCK | +/-: +14
Unlike a team like Sandbox, which has surprised and defied all expectations, Damwon Gaming is finally rounding into the form that merited the whispers of their prowess during scrimmages last year at worlds. On paper, the top side of the map for Damwon might carry South Korea into the next generation with three blue-chip prospects all having breakout summer splits and a solid bottom lane doing what is asked from them. Although they lost to Kingzone by a 2-1 scoreline, ending their monthlong win streak, DWG is still in a good spot to grab one of the top seeds heading into the playoffs with a chance to secure one of those three precious South Korean spots at the upcoming world championships in Europe.
— Tyler Erzberger
8. Sandbox Gaming
Record: 8-2 | League: LCK | +/-: —
What a world we live in that Sandbox Gaming is leading the standings right now in the league that has produced countless world champions. This is the league of SKT, Samsung White, the ROX Tigers and, now, Sandbox — this weird, quirky team with a funny name that was expected to be relegated in the spring split but is now in the driver’s seat to make the finals of the penultimate tournament before worlds. If Sandbox can somehow hold on and make the LCK summer split finals, it will be the strangest (and best) Cinderella run South Korea has seen in its years of League of Legends supremacy.
Record: 6-2 | League: LPL | +/-: +5
Since awakening during a Week 3 victory against Origen, Splyce have asserted themselves as a contender in Europe. The owners of the longest active winning streak in Europe (five games) have performed consistently macro-wise: They play a war of attrition when leading, and they claw back to victory through side lane pressure when behind.
Splyce’s awakening has shattered the LEC’s team hierarchy that used to be race for first between Fnatic, G2 Esports and Origen. Their victories against Fnatic and the failing SK Gaming are no accident: Marek “Humanoid” Brázda’s growth and Tamás “Vizicsacsi” Kiss’ leadership continue to bear fruit, increasing consistency overall.
10. Team Liquid
Record: 9-3 | League: LCS | +/-: -1
Rounding out the week’s top 10 is Team Liquid, North America’s lone bright spot from an otherwise disastrous Rift Rivals. The three-time defending domestic champions returned to LCS play to face a quartet of teams jockeying for playoff positioning. Liquid largely passed the test — three wins over 100 Thieves, FlyQuest and Counter Logic Gaming outweighed a loss to Cloud9 — but the way both C9 and 100T dictated the early games left clear areas for improvement.
Jungler Jake “Xmithie” Puchero’s Jarvan IV has been integral to Liquid’s recent success. In three wins on the flag-and-drag specialist, Xmithie posted an impressive 85 percent kill participation and a 21.0 KDA with only two deaths. The veteran’s pressure across Summoner’s Rift allowed Liquid to maintain solid objective control and transition their early-game advantages into the mid game. As long as Xmithie maintains his stellar form, Liquid remain favorites to four-peat in Detroit at the LCS summer finals.
— Miles Yim