Team Liquid top laner Gabriël “Bwipo” Rau locked in Shyvana top against Immortals’ Mo “Revenge” Koddoura in the League of Legends Championship Series Sunday. According to the official LoL esports stats Twitter, the pick hasn’t been played in the LCS since Jan. 2018, however, the last time Shyvana was played top lane in the LCS was Apr. 2015.
Old LCS fans might recall solo lane Shyvana’s prevalence in the league in earlier seasons. The last LCS player to bring the Half-Dragon into the top lane was former Team Impulse top laner (now Evil Geniuses) Jeong “Impact” Eon-young, who picked it in the 2015 spring playoffs against Team Liquid. According to Games of Legends, former Cloud9 top laner An “Balls” Le has the highest win rate with the champion in the history of the LCS with an 80% win rate across 15 games. LCS caster Sam “Kobe” Hartman-Kenzler commented in champion select on what made the pick so popular years back.
“One of the things from the origins of top lane Shyvana, if we go all the way back to the M5 days, was hard pushing on your lane and helping your jungler invade the top side of your opponent,” Kobe said.
If any top laner in the LCS was going to resurrect this ancient pick, it’s no surprise that it was Bwipo. Known for his champion pool flexibility and willingness to experiment, Bwipo has played a total of eight unique champions across 11 games played so far in spring, counting this match. Rather than the Ability Power burst and Attack Damage bruiser Shyvana builds that are popular in solo queue, Bwipo opted into a mixed Ability Power tank build with Frostfire Gauntlet as his chosen Mythic item.