2021 LCS Spring Split Preview

The League of Legends Championship Series (LCS) 2021 Spring Season is almost upon us. Apart from Riot Games’ tournament changes, several teams have made significant changes to their rosters going into the Spring Season.

Read on for all you need to know about the tournament, plus teams and players to keep an eye on.

LCS Spring Split Overview

The LCS 2021 Spring Season will start on Friday, February 5 and run through Saturday, March 14. Ten teams will participate in a double round-robin format with best-of-one matches all around. The Top 6 teams will qualify for the Mid-Season Showdown, with the Top 4 teams starting in the upper bracket. Fifth- and sixth-place teams will start in the lower bracket.

Unlike in previous years, the LCS 2021 Spring Season records will also carry over into summer. Some other changes include something called LCS Lock In, a “three-week season kick-off tournament to determine who’s the team to beat in 2021, and who earns a $150K winner-takes-all grand prize.”

The teams participating this year are:

  • 100 Thieves
  • Cloud9
  • CLG
  • Dignitas
  • Evil Geniuses
  • FlyQuest
  • Golden Guardians
  • Immortals
  • Team Liquid
  • TSM

Group A will consist of TSM, Team Liquid, 100 Thieves, CLG and Golden Guardians. Group B will contain FlyQuest, Cloud9, Evil Geniuses, Dignitas and Immortals.

Riot will stream the tournament on the official LCS Twitch account (watch at https://lolesports.com/en_US/). No match schedule has yet been released. Riot announced it would expand the regular season to five games a day, three days a week (Friday, Night League at 3 p.m. PT; Saturday and Sunday at 1 p.m. PT).

Key Teams to Watch

LCS has seen some significant roster moves leading up to the 2021 LCS Spring Split:

  • Cloud9 leads the charge with its acquisition of G2 Esports ADC Luka “Perkz” Perković. While this move was unexpected, it might be what Cloud9 needs to bring it out of a rut. Cloud9 ended the 2020 season by falling in the playoffs to Evil Geniuses. Backing up Perkz is Australian top-laner Ibrahim “Fudge” Allami, whom Cloud9 just promoted from its Academy roster. Are these two players the secret ingredients Cloud9 needs to take home the 2021 LCS Spring Split season?
  • Speaking of big moves, TSM lost two of its biggest players last season due to retirement: mid-laner Søren “Bjergsen” Bjerg and bot-laner Yiliang “Doublelift” Peng. To replace them, TSM brought in mid-laner Tristan “PowerOfEvil” Schrage and promoted bot-laner Lawrence “Lost” Hui from the Academy roster. Both have big shoes to fill, and it’ll be interesting to see how they perform under pressure.
  • 100 Thieves pretty much has an all-new roster, having signed almost the entire 2020 Golden Guardians lineup back in November. With the team’s solid 2020 run, it was only a matter of time before the players got swooped up by another big-name organization.
  • Finally, Team Liquid brought in Danish jungler Lucas Tao Kilmer “Santorin” Larsen and the popular British top-laner Barney “Alphari” Morris. Between the 2018 and 2019 seasons, Team Liquid made headlines by winning four consecutive League of Legends titles, but they couldn’t bring that heat into the 2020 season. Perhaps these two new additions can help Team Liquid become the best North American League of Legends team once more.

Key Players to Watch

The 2021 LCS Spring Split looks to be full of rookies and international imports:

  • As previously mentioned, Fudge was promoted from the Cloud9 Academy roster to its main one. With the Academy team, he pulled off two consecutive playoff victories. He’ll likely bring this experience to the main roster and help fill the shoes of the player he replaced, Eric “Licorice” Ritchie.
  • Speaking of imports, FlyQuest signed jungler Brandon Joel “Josedeodo” Villegas from Argentina. This will be Josedeodo’s first time playing in the North American scene, although his accomplishments in the Latin scene are nothing to be scoffed at. While on the R7 roster, his team won the LLA Closing Playoffs in 2020 and even made it to the Worlds 2020
  • Cloud9’s Perkz is another international player to watch. He’s been an ever-present player at the European LEC championships, and he’ll bring that EU experience to Cloud9’s NA organization.
  • Immortals’ 2020 season wasn’t the best, placing eighth and 10th at the LCS 2020 Spring and Summer championships. Its presence at Worlds has been missing since 2017, when the team left with a 14th-16th place finish. When Jérémy “Eika” Valdenaire left for the Academy roster, Immortals promoted mid-laner David “Insanity” Challe from that same Academy roster to the main one. While on the Immortals Academy roster in 2018-2019, he helped lead his team to Top 5 finishes in both the splits and playoffs of that season. That makes him another rookie worth following.

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