The 2018 LoL World Championship is just right around the corner, and this year, twenty-four teams have a chance to take the Summoner’s cup and go home with a year’s worth of bragging rights as the world’s best.
Of course, getting to that point is much easier said than done. After all, the 2018 LoL World Championship will be a month-long tournament that will test teams in ways that they never thought possible. Over the years, we’ve seen underdogs rise up and heavy favourites disappoint. As such is the nature of this high-stakes tournament, where only the victorious is celebrated.
Having said that, we give you our initial power ranking for the 2018 LoL World Championship, starting from the heavy favourites all the way down to the underdogs.
The Potential Finalists
- KT Rolster
- Royal Never Give Up
- Afreeca Freecs
- Gen G
Contrary to popular belief, there only exists a very miniscule gap between KT Rolster and Royal Never Give Up. So small that it won’t come off as a surprise if either of these two teams end up going home with the title of world champions.
Royal Never Give Up are truly formidable — they are the back-to-back LPL champions and MSI champions. However, roster limitations for this tournament forced them to only be able to bring Hung “Karsa” Hau-Hsuang as a substitute, leaving Liu “Zz1tai” Zhi-Hao at home. This is a huge loss to the team as Zz1tai’s wide champion pool is a great asset.
That presents a window of opportunity for KT Rolster. Unlike Royal Never Give Up, they have a very reliable five-man roster.They don’t rely on substitions to mix things up and can rely exclusively on their five-man roster to try out several different strategies. The team has an all-star caliber lineup that can match up against anyone in the world.
Then there are Afreeca Freecs and Gen G. The former has a rather deep understanding of the meta and can take games off of anyone with their unconventional picks and strategies. Meanwhile, for the latter, they are the reigining world champions, and despite their rather underwhelming season so far, they’re no strangers to turning it up, or so to speak, when it counts the most.
Close, But Not Quite
- Invictus Gaming
- Flash Wolves
- Edward Gaming
Invictus Gaming looks to step out of Royal Never Give Up’s shadow as a representative of the LPL. Their strong laning phases and drafting tendencies allow them to secure advantages, but their decision-making and team fight communication leaves a lot to be desired. Invictus Gaming can go to the finals due to the sheer talent in their roster, but if their fundamental problems are not addressed, they might end up short yet again.
As for Fnatic, they are easily the best Western teams at the 2018 LoL World Championship. You could even argue that their talent is on par or even better than other Asian teams. Their ability to play around tempo is exceptional, and they could go on another deep run based on that alone. Not to mention, they have a six-man roster that gives them a lot of flexibility in terms of drafts and playstyle.
The kings of the best-of-one-format, Flash Wolves took a second-place finish in the group stages of the MSI 2018. That makes them dangerous against anyone, especially if they can play as well in best-of-five games as they do in best-of-ones.
The last of LPL’s representatives, Edward Gaming have had a rather up and down season. But, even so, they deserve their place near the top. They are that good. The veteran leadership of Tian “Meiko” Ye is enough to push the team towards clear directions. Meanwhile, Hu “iBoy” Xian-Zhao is a mechanically gifted AD Carry, and the return of marksmen into the meta may mean stronger performances of the team overall.
- Team Liquid
- Phong Vu Buffalo
- G2 Esports
All of the teams in this cluster have considerable talent in their rosters, but the expectation is usually that there are so much better teams playing at the 2018 LoL World Championship that they might not make it out of the group stage, and if they do, they will surely struggle.
Team Liquid will surely look towards a better performance than what North American teams have historically done. But, while Yiliang “Doublelift” Peng is definitely in peak form, his solo laners just aren’t simply on par.
Phong Vu Buffalo hails from the VCS, a region known for high-tempo games and unrelenting aggression. This may surprise a lot of teams during the group stages, and might look to upset some higher-seeded teams. Make sure to be on the look out for their superstar top laner Pham “Zeros” Minh Loc, who is exceptional at carry champions.
Cloud9 is an enigma; they’re good, one of the best even, and they have a coach in Bok “Reapered” Han-gyu, who’s always ready to pull out an unconventional draft. But, we don’t really know just how well this team will perform against international competition, especially their rookies. The first few matches will give us a better grasp of how strong the team really is compared to everyone else, but don’t be shocked if they make it all the way through the group stages.
As for G2 Esports, this is the first time they’ll play as EU LCS’ third seed. They definitely would have loved to have had a better season, but they’re here so they might as well make the most out of it. Although they’ve had a disappointing season, it’ll be interesting to see just how well G2 Esports have improved during the downtime.
- Team Vitality
- MAD Team
- 100 Thieves
Out of all these teams, Team Vitality have the best chance of pulling off upsets at the 2018 LoL World Championship. They’re aggressive and they play fast. That’s a recipe that can catch anyone off guard. But, it can also backfire, and if they’re not careful, they could end up digging themselves a huge hole early on. We could say the same about MAD Team, at least, in terms of playstyle, but we’ve seen them enough against better teams to know that they’re just not as good.
For finalists last spring, G-Rex look a little out of sorts. They found a spark during the regional qualifiers and took the LMS’ third seed. However, the team just seems like they are on a downward trajectory, which is also what we could say the same about 100 Thieves, who have not seen the results they had hoped for when they traded superstar jungle William “Meteos” Hartman for Andy “AnDa” Hoang.
With both G-rex and 100 Thieves focused on their bottom lanes and the meta becoming more kind to slower-paced teams, they could put on a much better show than expected come the 2018 LoL World Championship.
It’s An Uphill Battle From Here
- Gambit Esports
- SuperMassive Esports
- KaBum! Esports
- Dire Wolves
- Ascension Gaming
- Infinity Esports
- Kaos Latin Gamers
- Detonation FocusMe
These play-in teams have one thing in common — they’re just not that good.
Making it out of the play-in stages is an achievement in on itself for these teams, and that’s all you need to know. If nothing else, these teams could use their appearance at the 2018 LoL World Championship as a chance to practice against the best teams in the world and use that to improve further next season.
Are You Ready for the 2018 LoL World Championship?
Playing on Patch 8.19, the 2018 LoL World Championship will see a rather fresh meta. This means that there’s still a lot to discover yet.
Expect teams to use this as a chance to show their strength in their own unique ways and deliver the performance of their lives.
After all, while fame is fleeting, the legacy of becoming the world’s best lasts forever.
Click here for the latest betting odds for the 2018 LoL World Championship.
Do you agree with our power rankings for the 2018 LoL World Championship? Do youthink KT Rolster or Royal Never Give Up will lift the Summoner’s Cup? Or will another team end up doing so? Be sure to let us know your thoughts in the comments down below.