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In the latest entry in Upcomer’s League of Legends global power rankings series, we welcome two new teams to the list. China’s Bilibili Gaming make their LoL power rankings debut, and South Korea’s T1 returns to the top 10 after a three-week break. As it stands, League of Legends Champions Korea is the only league of the four major regions that has yet to conclude its regular season. Between FunPlus Phoenix’s dominance, Royal Never Give Up’s hard-fought resurgence and the revolving door of middle-of-the-pack League of Legends Pro League teams finding their way onto our rankings throughout the split, it’s more clear than ever that the LPL boasts sensational talent across the board.
With split standings more or less locked in around the globe, our latest top 10 could also be a glimpse into the future at the strongest teams heading to the 2021 League of Legends World Championship. Here are the teams that impressed us the most over the past week, followed by our regional top five rankings down below.
10. T1, LCK
Record:11-6 (25-17) | This week: 2-0 (4-1) | Movement: New
T1 return to our LoL power rankings after their impressive wins over Fredit BRION, Gen.G and DRX. With just one week left in the regular LCK summer split, the team looks much better heading into playoffs. They began the series against Gen.G with a win in Game 1. T1 top laner Kim “Canna” Chang-dong’s Jayce simply outclassed Noh “Burdol” Tae-yoon’s Irelia, finishing the game with a 5/2/6 KDA (kills/deaths/assists) ratio. Gen.G quickly responded with a win in Game 2 to force both teams to a must-win Game 3.
T1 took control of Game 3, with Lee “Gumayusi” Min-hyeong dominating the bottom lane and finding kills for his team. His Aphelios recorded a 11/2/4 KDA, holding more kills than all of the Gen.G roster combined. T1 ended Game 3 in under 30 minutes with nearly a 13,000-gold lead.
T1 also put up an excellent performance against DRX in their 2-0 win. Gumayusi was once again the star man with a 5/0/4 KDA in Game 1 on Jinx against the LCK’s last-place team.
T1’s history in the LCK also makes them a strong candidate to qualify for Worlds. With their last game of the season against eighth-placed Hanwha Life Esports, T1 look poised to end the season with a win and carry that momentum into the playoffs.
— Rashidat Jimoh
9. Bilibili Gaming, LPL
Record: 10-6 (24-17) | This week: 2-0 (4-2) | Movement: New
Bilibili Gaming have made it onto our LoL power rankings for the first time ever. After barely missing the cut for a couple of weeks now, their performance in the final week of the LPL summer split was just too difficult to ignore.
After already clinching a playoff spot in Week 8, BLG were simply trying to improve their seeding in the final two matches of the summer split. After beating Ultra Prime, many were ready to pencil in a decent 1-1 week for BLG, since they had the red hot Royal Never Give Up squad as their final opponent. BLG instead rewrote their fate.
Game 1 of the RNG vs. BLG series ended in 30 minutes, with Bilibili taking a surprisingly methodical victory. BLG top laner Yu “Biubiu” Lei-Xin outclassed the shoo-in all-LPL top laner Li “Xiaohu” Yuan-Hao. Biubiu’s 6/1/7 Jayce embarrassed Xiaohu’s 1/7/2 Gragas, but that wasn’t the only shocking mismatch. BLG jungler Wei “Weiwei” Bo-Han also outplayed another all-LPL talent in RNG jungler Yan “Wei” Yang-Wei. In fact, it was Weiwei’s Viego that earned player of the game honors as BLG went up 1-0 in the best of three series.
Xiaohu, Wei, and the rest of RNG quickly bounced back in Game 2 as they dismantled BLG in 28 minutes. But in Game 3, BLG didn’t go away. In a near-50-minute slugfest, it was a combined effort of everyone on BLG to withstand RNG’s Infernal Soul as they clutched out two late game team fights to secure the win and the 2-1 upset.
With the win, BLG ended the summer split with a respectable 10-6 record good enough for the sixth seed heading into playoffs. As winners of three straight series, BLG have the second-largest current win streak in the LPL and are looking to make some more noise with their momentum.
— Warren Younger
8. PSG Talon, PCS
Record: 18-0 | This week: 3-0 | Movement: -2
PSG Talon did it again and polished off an unbeaten summer split in the Pacific Championship Series. In doing so, they remained the only non-major region squad in our LoL power rankings.
Although PSG look well ahead of the competition in their league and surprised the world at the Mid-Season Invitational, finishing the split 18-0 for the first time in PCS history remains an astounding feat. PSG’s run also makes the squad a likely dark horse at Worlds, much like they were at MSI where they beat some of the world’s best before losing to eventual champion RNG in the event semifinals.
This past weekend showed how successful PSG’s all-in strategy remains. Their most recent game against Berjaya Dragons ensured their perfect end to the regular split as they finished with a 13.7K gold difference and a big objective lead. Bot laner Wong “Unified” Chun Kit took the spotlight this weekend, ending this game 6/0/6 with over 26k in damage, a huge lead over BJD’s bot laner Law “K2” Chi Kit.
That aggressive play may not work as well on the international stage, particularly after PSG put the major regions on notice in the most recent international event. Even so, PSG could be a dangerous foe for any team that runs into them in China later this year.
— Carolynn Soba
7. Liiv SANDBOX, LCK
Record: 11-5 (25-17) | This week: 2-0 (4-1) | Movement: +1
With just one game left in the LCK regular summer split, SANDBOX sit at the top of the standings. They’ve extended their winning streak to seven games with wins over Hanwha Life Esports and Fredit BRION.
SANDBOX made it hard for HLE in Game 1 with three kills before 13 minutes. Top laner Park “Summit” Woo-tae appeared nearly-unstoppable on Camille with a 5/1/5 KDA. Although he overstepped in the early game, handing HLE their first kill and a lifeline in the game, he made up for it in a baron pit fight in the game’s 28th minute. HLE went on to fall before the 34-minute mark after failing to deal with the constant side lane pressure from SANDBOX.
Game 2 between both teams was more of the same story, with Summit running the show on the Jayce. His performance earned him a 6/2/5 KDA in the game. Even though both teams were quite close in kills throughout the game, SANDBOX’s ability to secure dragon soul and baron enabled them to knock down most of HLE’s towers. After wiping out all members of HLE in the elder dragon fight, SANDBOX closed out the game, strengthening their claim on a first or second seed in the LCK regular summer split.
After missing out on playoffs in spring, SANDBOX have completed a massive turnaround with their summer performance. If they are able to defeat DWG KIA in Week 10 of the LCK, they will cement their position in the LCK, making their case as one of the teams to watch heading to playoffs.
6. Top Esports, LPL
Record: 10-6 (23-15) | This week: 1-0 (2-0) | Movement: +4
Top Esports finished off the LPL regular season on an upswing, taking out two playoff teams, Team WE and OMG, with a 4-0 game count. Sure, they did still lose to the 5-11 Ultra Prime the week before, but when they play well, Top Esports still have that incredibly high ceiling that even FunPlus Phoenix and Royal Never Give Up would struggle against.
TES’s biggest strength is in their mid laner, Zhuo “knight” Ding, who has earned the most MVPs in the whole league at 14 across the summer split. He tops most of the relevant mid laner stats, and has been a sort of a solo carry for TES in many of their games. He’s like the Top Esports version of Jeong “Chovy” Ji-hoon when he was on DragonX, except TES actually has other incredible players; they’ve just been inconsistent this summer.
When Hung “Karsa” Hao-Hsuan and Yu “JackeyLove” Wen-Bo step up, the team is nigh unstoppable. They are all some of the best mechanical players in a League that’s filled with the world’s best mechanical players. If they turn it on for the playoffs, as JackeyLove usually does, then they’ll easily make it to Worlds, given the LPL’s four seeds. But if they continue playing inconsistently, they may find it too difficult to string together three wins in the playoffs’ best of five format.
— Parkes Ousley
5. Rare Atom, LPL
Record: 11-5 (25-16) | This week: 2-0 (4-2) | Movement: +2
Rare Atom took the “Enigma of the LPL” role and ran with it all year as they’ve vaulted up (and down) the LoL power rankings. Heading into Week 9 of the LPL summer split, people were still unsure if this team was as good as their record showed. In Week 8, they dropped from the third seed down to the sixth seed due to their poor performance. But just when people thought they were simply a slightly above average squad, RA flipped the script again.
In their two matches to end the summer split, RA went up against fellow playoff team, Suning, and the down and out Invictus Gaming team. In typical RA fashion, both of these matches did end up going to Game 3. And in both of them, RA managed to come out on top. Bot laner Hu “iBoy” Xian-Zhao continued to impress as he took two of the four player of the game awards for RA in Week 9.
Their 2-0 week catapulted them back up the standings as they finished with an 11-5 record, good enough for the third seed heading into playoffs. With notable teams like RNG and Top Esports below them in the standings, RA still give people doubts that they are a top-three team, let alone a real threat to make it to Worlds, but they have the wins to back it up and excel in high-pressure situations.
4. NongShim REDFORCE, LCK
Record: 11-5 (25-17) | This week: 0-1 (0-2) | Movement: —
The new kids on the block are taking names and may also take first place for themselves if they end Week 10 strong.
NongShim REDFORCE’s recent 0-2 loss to Afreeca Freecs is another bump on the road to recovering from last week’s middling 1-1, but not reason to sound the alarms. The flexible NS squad is still looking like one of the LCK’s best hopes to make a splash at Worlds this year.
Getting swept by a middle-of-the-pack team in a best of three is by no means an ideal way to enter playoffs, but have faith that NS will turn it around. Game 1 was fairly close while the second game was much more one-sided; despite the losses, performances from mid laner Kim “Gori” Tae-woo and jungler Han “Peanut” Wang-ho inspired hope at certain points in the series.
NS rounds out their staggeringly successful summer run with matches against last place DRX and a stagnant Gen.G. With a playoff bye on the line and Worlds qualification at the forefront of their minds, it should be smooth sailing.
— Nick Ray
3. Edward Gaming, LPL
Record: 12-4 (25-10) | This week: 1-1 (3-3) | Movement: +0
Edward Gaming came into the final week of the LPL summer split still sitting on top of the standings but not at the No. 1 spot in our LoL power rankings. In their two matches in Week 9 against Li-Ning Gaming and the top-ranked team, FunPlus Phoenix, they had a chance to take back the throne.
After defeating LNG 2-1, a date with FPX would not only determine the No. 1 seed in the LPL heading into playoffs but also the top spot in the rankings. Especially since the other team ahead of EDG, Royal Never Give Up, saw their win streak snapped at the hands of Bilibili Gaming. With everything on the line, EDG went to war.
In Game 1, FPX trounced EDG. EDG top laner Li “Flandre” Xuan-Jun struggled against FPX’s world champion top laner Jang “Nuguri” Ha-gwon. FPX cleaned up EDG in 25 minutes. Game 2 saw EDG flip the script. Flandre looked good in his bounce-back game, as did spring split all-pro mid laner Lee “Scout” Ye-chan. But it was their underappreciated jungler Zhao “Jiejie” Li-Jie who made play after play on Diana that helped lead EDG to Game 3. Jiejie picked up his ninth player of the game award of the summer split, putting him in second place among junglers in the region.
Game 3 put the spotlight on the bot lane of EDG. Spring split MVP, Park “Viper” Do-hyeon got off to an amazing start on Kalista but, just like Game 1, Flandre and Scout struggled. In a battle of Viper versus the world, Viper fell short. FPX subbed in their rising star, rookie top laner Ping “Xiaolaohu” Xiao-Hu, who not only put Flandre in check but also made Viper a nonfactor. FPX’s mid laner Kim “Doinb” Tae-sang stole the show on Sylas going 8/0/12 as FPX won the series 2-1 and locked up the one seed.
EDG showed they can hang with the best and at times be the best. But their star-studded roster is going to have to play like a cohesive unit. One bad series from any of the players can end their run for the LPL title. But if all players play at their peak, the LPL title and the number one spot on our LoL power rankings could both be theirs.
2. Royal Never Give Up, LPL
Record: 10-6 (25-14) | This week: 0-1 (1-2) | Movement: —
RNG went from smacking half the LPL with a 3-0 last week to dropping their last match of the split to BLG 1-2. They’re still undoubtedly one of the fiercest teams qualified for the playoffs this split, but that series highlighted how much upset potential exists going into the LPL post-season.
RNG went blow for blow with BLG this series. The opener was a BLG-sided shocker and ended with a 7-22 scoreline. RNG answered back with a flashy performance of their own to tie things up, and while the deciding match was close, it ultimately came down to RNG getting outplayed in teamfights and high-pressure scenarios around objectives (RIP to Yan “Wei” Yang-Wei’s smite at the last Elder Dragon fight).
To come back from a post-Mid-Season Invitational slump and become one of the hottest teams in the most competitive region in the world is no easy feat, but RNG’s Cinderella story is nowhere close to being over. If this RNG lineup wants to show everyone that they’ve at least regained their strength from MSI, they’ll have to make a splash in playoffs and qualify for Worlds.
1. FunPlus Phoenix, LPL
Record: 13-3 (28-11) | This week: 2-0 (4-1) | Movement: —
Tell your friends that FunPlus Phoenix are winning Worlds. Tell your family, tell your teachers, tell your tennis coach, tell your dog, tell your favorite TV characters and anyone else who will listen, “FPX are winning Worlds!”
TES may have superstar knight in the mid lane, but FPX has Super Carry Doinb in theirs. Doinb is having the best split of his life and, along with knight, he sits at the top of all the stats as well. He has an incredible champion pool and really accelerates the game along with Gao “Tian” Tian-Liang, as the two work seamlessly together controlling the early and mid game.
You’ll actually rarely find Doinb in his own lane post-Level 6. He’s more likely killing the enemy jungler at red buff or counter-ganking top lane to support the ever-pushing Jang “Nuguri” Ha-gwon.
In the last game of the regular season, FPX took down the second place team, EDG. They’ve won eight series straight, almost tying RNG’s own win streak, and they finished the season with a 72% win rate at 28-11. They have the fastest average game time in the whole world. They don’t let their opponents play, they don’t even let them blink. And at this point, as long as they plug in their keyboards, there’s no chance they don’t make it to Worlds.
LoL Regional Power Rankings
- TSM (TSM)
- Evil Geniuses (EG)
- Team Liquid (TL)
- 100 Thieves (100)
- Cloud9 (C9)
- Rogue (RGE)
- G2 Esports (G2)
- MAD Lions (MAD)
- Fnatic (FNC)
- Misfits (MSF)
- NongShim REDFORCE (NS)
- Liiv SANDBOX (LSB)
- T1 (T1)
- DWG KIA (DK)
- Gen.G (GEN)
- FunPlus Phoenix (FPX)
- Royal Never Give Up (RNG)
- Edward Gaming (EDG)
- Rare Atom (RA)
- Top Esports (TES)