With a future with Søren “Bjergsen” Bjerg still on the roster already discussed and theorized, it’s time to move on to a much more daunting future. What if, after six years as the face of the team, Bjergsen decided that it was time to move on and went to another team? What does Team SoloMid do in that case? It may be time to take some very big risks.
Without Bjergsen, it could be in the interest of TSM to rebuild completely. It’ll be hard to make a super team with the current players available, especially when they will lack a top domestic mid laner. However, TSM can accelerate the rebuild process by taking some big risks in the Spring Split while having a proper backup plan for the following Summer Split.
While it will be a rough season for TSM fans that expected the team to remain competitive even if Bjergsen moves on, a rebuild would be the best way forward.
This time the import slots are locked into two roles without question. Like in the first part, ADC will be one of the roles, this time around the second slot will go towards picking up a new mid laner. Unfortunately, this means that TSM will have to drop current top laner Sergen “Broken Blade” Çelik. While they could send him into the Academy roster, it may not be enough to help him grow further as a player like a spot on the main roster would.
While TSM could avoid using an import slot by promoting Nicholas “Ablazeolive” Abbott to the main roster, it’s hard to say if he’s ready for the main roster yet. Overall, it’s clear that the loss of Bjergsen has made the use of import slots a lot less flexible for TSM.
Despite what most would be expecting, the roster rebuild will begin with the bot lane instead of the mid lane. This is where one of the two risks comes into play. That risk goes by the name of Konstantinos-Napoleon “FORG1VEN” Tzortziou. While most fans are fairly against the idea of bringing FORG1VEN due to his long time away from pro-play and various concerns about his attitude and current level of play, it could be a huge risk that could pay-off big time. In the case that he’s able to still perform at the level since his departure from the competitive scene for the army, FORG1VEN is capable of ensuring TSM is able to remain competitive on his own. Along with FORG1VEN, TSM will pair him with Andy “Smoothie” Ta, creating a strong veteran bot lane that has the potential to become one of the best in North America.
In the case this gamble fails and TSM must make a change for the Summer Split, they can look towards their Academy team where a strong bot lane in ADC Edward “Tactical” Ra and support Erik “Treatz” Wessén are ready for the promotion. As one of the better bot lanes in Academy, they’re nearing the point in which the only way they’re able to continue developing is to play on the main roster.
Another role, another risk to be taken. Much like part 1, that risk is in the form of Joshua “Dardoch” Hartnett. Overall much like part 1, the jungle role remains the same. If TSM is willing to take the chance, picking up Dardoch could be a huge boost, especially when paired with an ADC like FORG1VEN.
If TSM decides to play it safe, then again, like part 1, there are some veteran junglers like William “Meteos” Hartman who can fill the same role as Dardoch, minus the problematic attitude. Overall, TSM is very lucky that there are some solid domestic junglers that are available this offseason.
Finally, the mid lane, a role that TSM have only seen two players take in the team’s history. Like mentioned previously, TSM could play it safe and simply call up Ablazeolive from their Academy roster. But is he ready for such a role? Would Ablazeolive be able to keep up against the likes of Lee “Crown” Min-ho and Nicolaj “Jensen” Jensen? While Ablazeolive continues to improve, he’s mostly a known prospect at this point and it’s hard to say he can keep up against these great players.
Instead, TSM should go to exactly what worked in the past, Europe. Especially with all the talented mid laners in Euopean Masters, this could be the best chance for TSM to pick up their next face of the team. Obviously, the best target is Fnatic Rising’s Felix “MagiFelix” Boström, one of the best mid laners in the Academy scene around the world at the moment. Along with him, some other great mids include Ardian “nite” Spahiu on mousesports and Aljoša “Milica” Kovandžić on Vodafone Giants.
Overall, a great up and coming mid laner will help a lot in moving TSM forward in the scenario that Bjergsen leaves the team. Whether that’s Ablazeolive or an import mid laner is yet to be seen.
Like part 1, there are some solid domestic top laners to pick up like Aaron “FakeGod” Lee who can continue to grow and develop with the rest of the team. Aside from the domestic top laners mentioned in part 1, another solid option would be Colin “Solo” Earnest, who is coming off one of his best splits as a player. It would be a risk worth taking because if Solo continues to improve and build on his Summer Split, he could become one of the best top laners in North America. However, considering the young top laners available domestically, this risk may not be worth taking as much as other risks.
In a perfect world, TSM are able to simply pick up the best rookies available and become a world contender once again. However, this is not that perfect world. At the end of the day some of the players mentioned may not be well-liked by the fans, however, if the end goal is to become champions once again, some risks need to be taken.
Assuming TSM does take these risks, their roster could look like this:
ADC: FORG1VEN (or an unmentioned Moon “Route” Geom-su for a great up and coming Korean ADC instead)
Assuming TSM play it safe and rely on their Academy players and more domestic talent, their roster could also look like this:
Either way, if Bjergsen ends up leaving TSM, their roster going forward could be rough for a season or so. But with patience and proper development, TSM could become a contender sooner rather than later.
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Featured image courtesy of TSM Youtube.
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