The 2021 League of Legends World Championship main event kicks off on Monday, October 11, with the opening rounds of the group stage. With 16 teams in attendance, only eight will make it into the playoffs and take one step closer to lifting the coveted Summoner’s Cup.
But which teams have what it takes to go all the way and have their names engraved in the history books? With so much talent in Iceland, it’s hard to pick the favorites, but a few teams stand out.
Favorites Usually Win
Technically all teams attending the LoL Worlds have a chance to end up with the Summoner’s Cup in their hands. However, not all teams are created equal, and it doesn’t take a lot to spot which squads are considered the best and who carry the outsiders’ tag.
Even throughout history, one of the favorites usually came out on top, while outsiders’ came out short. The only notable exception to that were the Taipei Assassins in 2012.
Given the ongoing trend of one of the top favorites eventually winning the LoL World Championship, it’s fair to assume this year won’t be different. And when we talk favorites, there is one team that stands out.
The LoL Pro League (LPL) representatives and the 2019 LoL world champions, FunPlus Phoenix, hold the tag of the strongest team at the tournament. That isn’t too surprising, considering FPX field some of the best players in the world across all five positions, including Kim “Doinb” Tae-sang in the mid lane and the 2020 world champion, Jang “Nuguri” Ha-gwon in the top lane.
Don’t Sleep on DWG KIA and EDward Gaming
Talking about the 2020 world champions, LoL Champions Korea (LCK) winners, DWG KIA, follow FPX closely as the second-most-likely team to win the trophy. Like their Chinese counterparts, DWG KIA field exceptional talent across the board, while their most vital asset remains mid laner Heo “ShowMaker” Su.
Standing in the shadow of FPX and DWG KIA are the reigning LPL champions, EDward Gaming, who have returned to the international stage for the first time since 2018. As the most successful LPL team in history, EDward Gaming have high expectations on their shoulders as they look to escape the curse of quarter-finals exit, which is where EDG have ended four of their five appearances at the LoL Worlds (2014, 2015, 2016, and 2018).
Regardless of their past misfortunes, EDG enter the 2021 LoL Worlds with the most stacked roster they have ever had. Like FPX and DWG KIA, EDG field a very talented mid laner in Lee “Scout” Ye-chan.
However, their biggest asset is their bottom lane in support Tian “Meiko” Ye and ADC Park “Viper” Do-hyeon. The latter of whom is the standout start of EDG and a player who has found himself in the conversation of the best ADC player in history.
With so much talent across all three teams, it’s difficult to say which will come out on top. However, as any LoL World Championship before, a lot will come down to how the meta shapes up.
A mid-jungle meta could greatly benefit DWG KIA, while FPX will enjoy a meta that prioritizes pressure on the sidelines. But, there’s always a chance we will return to a more ADC carry-oriented meta, which is precisely what Viper and co. need to claim the title for themselves.
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