The League of Legends offseason is up and running, and less than a week in, we have already had some huge roster moves. Like any offseason, many teams are looking to build a new superteam; however, this year, most of the heavy investments into the LoL roster come from North America.
The North American teams, representing the LoL Championship Series (LCS), are known for two things – having plenty of money to spend and consistently underperforming on the international stage. While the former likely won’t change for a while, the LCS franchises are working on changing the latter, namely with the influx of talented players from Europe.
LCS Acquire Four Big-Name EU Talent
The offseason is far from over, yet many teams are already in the final stages of finalizing their rosters. And those mainly come from the NA region, where the esports organizations did not waste time to round up their squads for the 2022 season.
While seeing an esports organization form their rosters before the end of November is exciting, the hottest talking point of this offseason was the inevitable roster swap between the two western regions. The North American squads acquired four big talents from Europe this time out, with rumors suggesting there might be more on the cards.
Most notably, Team Liquid acquired two European players in former Fnatic top laner and jungler, Gabriël “Bwipo” Rau and Rogue’s ADC Steven “Hans Sama” Liv. The former rivals in the LoL European Championship have been acquired by the four-time LCS champions, where they’ll play in the new North American super team.
Likewise, Evil Geniuses got their hands on Hans Sama’s former teammate and Rogue’s jungler Kacper “Inspired” Słoma. The 19-year-old is set to sign a contract in the coming days, transferring to the NA league for the first time in his career.
Last but not least is the former SK Gaming mid laner Ersin “Blue” Gören, who joins Dignitas.
While it’s unclear how much money the LCS teams had to pay to sign some of the EU’s biggest stars, it’s fair to say that the numbers are in the millions. But is worth noting that Bwipo has entered free agency this offseason.
Seeing teams spending big this offseason makes a lot of sense, knowing that the 2022 LoL World Championship will be hosted in North America. And all of NA’s teams will be eager to win the coveted Summoner’s Cup on their home soil.
Europe Welcomes Back Three Players
If there are players leaving Europe for North America, it’s only fair that the LCS gives a few players back. Three EU-born players will return home for the 2022 season, including two of the game’s biggest stars.
Team Liquid’s former top laner Barney “Alphari” Morris and Cloud9’s former mid laner Luka “Perkz” Perković are confirmed to return to Europe. Joining the duo in their trip back from NA is CLG’s former top laner Finn “Finn” Wiestål.
While it has yet to be announced in which team they will land, reputable sources have already unveiled their new homes. As reported, Perkz and Alphari will join forces at Team Vitality, who are building a new EU superteam this offseason.
The exact buyout for the duo is unclear, but it’s likely in the range of $10 million, considering Perkz’s buyout price in 2020 was over $6 million.
Finn, meanwhile, has been confirmed as Excel Esports’ new top laner on Friday, November 18. Before leaving for LCS, Finn was the top laner for Rogue between 2019-2020 and has now returned back home after one season.
Likewise, Perkz has spent only one season with Cloud9 but decided to return back to Europe to be closer to his family. Meanwhile, Alphari has spent a year with Team Liquid, helping the team win the 2021 LCS Lock-In tournament.
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