The League of Legends esports off-season free agency rat race is now in full swing: How are the LEC’s top UK orgs Fnatic and Excel faring?

For many Europeans and fans from other regions outside NA, staying up at ridiculous hours of twilight to catch Jacob Wolf’s carpet bombing reveals on ESPN Esports was not an option.

To that we say, we’ve got your back. Megalodontus looks at the activity buzzing in the League of Legends esports player transfer market, starting with our very own LEC organisations.

Every fan always dreams big during the off-season transfer carousel. It’s chaos as money is thrown around by esports teams the world over, so it’s nice to have some order in one’s dreamworld at least (Faker signing on for a UKLC team for example because he just magically happens to like black pudding would top my list).

Anyway, before we dive into the real nitty gritty and see how our beloved flag-bearers in the LEC do, here is a very quick recap from the Free Agency Live Show by ESPN Esports hosted by Adra Ocal, Tyler Erzberger, Emily Rand and of course, the wolf himself Jacob Wolf.

The list of finalised deals before the show officially started

Along with several guests, the ESPN Esports panel discussed many rumours for the NA LCS and EU LEC:

  • [LCS] Cloud 9 acquires support Vulcan from Dignitas in a deal reportedly worth $1.5 million and rookie
  • [LEC] Rogue Esports extends support Vander’s contract by 2 years and finalised a deal for former Misfits’ ADC Hans Sama
  • [LCS] Cloud 9 to trade midlaner Glodenglue to Golden Guardians and get midlaner Palafox
  • [LCK] Support Effort re-signs a 2 year deal
  • [LEC] Misfits to sign jungler Razork and support Denyk from Giants Gaming
  • [LCS] Midlaner ry0ma from the OPL team Bombers to sign with 100 Thieves
  • [LEC] Former Schalke 04 ADC Upset will sign with Origen
  • [LCS] Former Schalke 04 support IgNar to sign with FlyQuest
  • [LCS] Team Solomid are acquiring Splyce’s ADC Kobbe

You might have noticed we left out Fnatic’s and Excel’s rumours. Fear not, read on. They get their own special section!

Fnatic are not just aiming for the top of the LEC

Fnatic’s projected roster for 2020

Right, where to begin. Fnatic are G2 Esport’s biggest rivals in Europe and for them, being second best is never an option. This is true for any esport they enter and even their academy roster dominated the UKLC.

So for 2020, it’s no surprise they’ve once again set about being as ambitious as possible to assemble a truly terrifying starting 5.

The first of these moves of course has to be the jungler, Selfmade. He is Nemesis’ old teammate from their MAD Lion days where they practically won almost everything in a single year.

Their synergy was a big key to this and if he isn’t building Infinity Edge on Rek’Sai, Fnatic will get the services of a truly formidable jungler, one I might add who has yet to reach his full potential, along with Nemesis and Bwipo.

Of course this means their starting jungler Broxah is leaving. Broxah’s next destination is over yonder towards Europe’s noisy -and currently it’s their only defining trait- neighbors in North America: the titans of Team Liquid.

Before Jacob Wolf broke this, Darius from The Shotcaller was the first to give out hints on his personal stream, while led many to believe the coach would have been Araneae, due to him being all of the above and having coached Nemesis/Selfmade before in MAD Lions.

Instead, in a shocking twist that didn’t point to the butler, Fnatic signed former Origen support Mithy to be their head coach.

The loss of their 6 star general Youngbuck to be fair is a chasm that isn’t easily filled. Mithy is unproven and many have rightfully pointed out that Fnatic’s squad might experience many clashes due to strong personalities and voices on the team. However if they can somehow find a way forward as a unit, they are looking far, far beyond LEC success in their first year, instead they are looking to develop a squad to keep their titles once conquered.

Excel Esports aim to make their playoff dreams a reality

Excel’s projected roster for 2020

Ah, Excel. Unlike their UKLC academy team, their LEC roster has not had the best of starts in the league with the big boys. Finishing 9th in Spring and last in Summer has stoked a fire in them, one which they are now using to do everything in their power to reach their goals without throwing the Bank of England at Faker.

They’ve appeared to have kept top-laner Expect and jungler Caedrel, though there’s been no word on midlaner Mickey as of yet.

Their first step was arguably the biggest buzz of the offseason: securing the services of none other than Fnatic’s former head coach, the 6 star general himself, Youngbuck.

Read more: Youngbuck: ‘I hope to help Excel grow and become a powerhouse team in the LEC’

It’s clearly a big statement of intent.

And their roster looks to be coming along just fine as well, already shaping up to be a playoffs contender with also a potentially high ceiling of improvement.

The deal for Splyce’s former support Norskeren appears to have been finalised but is also pending an official announcement from Excel. He’s had a rather up and down 2019 but has proven he has what it takes to survive in the LEC.

His botlane partner had many rumours thrown around the social media sphere and the prominent one was Zven from Team Solomid. Well, Jacob Wolf quashed that one rather quickly.

Patrik from Origen (otherwise formerly known as Sheriff) is one of the up and coming home grown ADC talent that has been booming in Europe.

He’s had a year of two halves: coming 2nd in Spring Playoffs and finishing 8th in Summer, missing out on Playoffs. With the botlane being a bundle of raw talent, it will be interesting to see how Youngbuck molds them.

Their midlaner is still being kept under wraps but there has been an interesting rumour broken by Deugemo, a prominent esports journalist in Italy…

Will we see the Italian Stallion arrive on British shores? That would certainly round up an interesting roster wouldn’t it.

With Youngbuck at the helm, in theory Excel should be a Spring Split contender for playoffs. Whether this happens in practice or not, we’ll have to wait and see.

Other rumours and transfer news after the show

Before we begin briefly looking at other ‘Wolf Bombs’, we wish Grievance all the best to secure even better prospects for Excel Esports. Cheers!

Here are a few tweets Jacob Wolf made after the show. Some have been announced thereafter such as Origen’s lineup for 2020 and Cloud 9 revealing Zven which confirms what Jacob Wolf mentions after the Free Agency show concluded.

There will be many, many more crazy changes to come with the world of social media currently abuzz with free agency tweets. And once Jacob Wolf starts tweeting again with a wide Cheshire Cat grin, the lunacy of rumours will begin once more deep into 2020.

And you can be sure we will keep you updated for all the coming moves happening in the British League of Legends circuit.

For more UK League content this week, remember to tune in to the British Esports & ENUK Proving Grounds from 6pm-10pm on November 18th, 19th, 20th, 21st, 25th, 26th, 27th and the final on 28th on Twitch here

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