With the Spring Split half finished, some players are starting to show their true strength while others crumble under the pressure. Each role has their top five players that outperform the others in that role in the LCS. The five players listed below are the best top laners in the LCS.
5. Kim “Ssumday” Chan-ho
Even though 100 Thieves are not performing to the high expectation everyone holds them to, Ssumday remains one of the best top laners in North America. When top laners are discussed, Ssumday is one of the names mentioned. It is rare he loses his lane, and he has the second highest kill participation (KP) at about 65% – tied with Heo “Huni” Seung-hoon .
Ssumday is well known for his domination in the top lane in 2018. Since then, he has not been able to perform at the same level. There is some speculation around whether it is because he lacks practice on the champions, or because his team does not play around him enough.
If 100T learns to play around Ssumday, they could pick up more wins. In fact, he could even be underestimated by other teams because of his team’s record. His performance on stage can improve if they want to make the miracle climb to playoffs.
4. Kevin “Hauntzer” Yarnell
Hauntzer is a player who’s skill speaks for itself. Even when the Golden Guardians were losing games, his performances did not falter. He has the highest KP sitting at 68%. Building synergy with his team has allowed him to excel in lane and return to his previous form.
Most of the time, Henrik “Froggen” Hansen is attracting all the attention from
the enemy team, but Hauntzer is always there to back him up. Some may argue that there are other top laners that deserve this spot, but other top laners are not as consistent both in lane and around the map.
If Hauntzer continues to play at the level he is at, GGS will continue to climb to the top and dominate the standings. He is a major contributor to the team’s success.
3. Jung “Impact” Eon-yeong
The most recent thing that people may remember about Impact is the first-pick Yorick. For the majority of the time that Impact has been in the LCS, he has been known as a tank player. He does not excel on carries as other top laners do and he tends to fall behind in lane.
Although he cannot play carries well, he applies a lot of pressure to side lanes on tanks while also absorbing a lot of damage for his team. He plays for his team even if it means him losing his lane. He sacrifices his lane so that the enemy top laner cannot get ahead, and most of the time it works out.
Being on Team Liquid, Impact performance looks better than a lot of other top laners. The superstar talents surrounding him help him play better on stage. Whenever he is in a bad spot Jo “CoreJJ” Yong-in and the rest are there to save him.
2. Sergen “Broken Blade” Çelik
The announcement of Broken Blade signing with TSM was one of the biggest question marks this season. Many people doubted that he would be able to perform to the level of other top laners in the LCS. Since his debut, he has been a staple in TSM’s recent success. He has shown he is able to compete with other top laners, including the others on this list.
Like Impact, he applies a lot of pressure to the side lanes and absorbs a lot of attention from the enemy
team. He rarely loses in lane in a one versus one, and he can play carry champions. He makes minor mistakes, but continues to assist his team. Also, he built double Youmuu’s Ghostblade and was still able to help his team win major fights.
Broken Blade is young and has room to grow. Over time he will become an unstoppable force in the LCS.
1. Eric “Licorice” Ritchie
This top laner has made a name for himself since his entrance into the LCS. Huni ranks him as the number one top laner in North America, and he is Licorice’s opponent. In 2018 he won Rookie of the Split, and later that year made a run at Worlds all the way up to Semi-Finals. No other rookie player in the LCS can say they accomplished so much in just one year.
His performance speaks for itself. He remains dominant in the top lane and holds the title as best domestic top laner in the LCS. He has the highest gold difference at 10 minutes and constantly contributes to the success of Cloud 9.
Licorice is by far performing better than any other top laner in North America, and it only seems to get better.
Omran “V1per” Shoura
Some may argue that V1per deserves to be on the list, but he does not outperform any of the listed top laners. The only times V1per has looked amazing were against teams at the bottom of the standings. He just holds the lane until his team needs him, other top laners on this list can apply pressure to multiple parts of the map.
In Week 5, he had little to no impact in the match against Cloud 9 or TSM which resulted in them losing. He was trying to match their map presence while C9 and TSM took advantage of every opportunity they received. With that in mind, there was also a time where he tried to chase TSM down for kills and it resulted in him dying.
He is an amazing top laner, but he still has a lot to work improve to be considered top five.
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