LCS 2022 power rankings leading into Lock In

The LCS is back for Lock In 2022, and that marks the return of our power rankings. With the pre-season tournament giving us a first look at each new LCS roster, here’s how they stack up heading into the mega year ahead.

In 2022, Dexerto is proud to present power rankings for League of Legends in the LCS. We will be tracking the performance of all the teams right here, considering their form, how they’ve performed with their strength of schedule, and more every week.

After yet another disappointing World Championship campaign, NA teams have splashed the cash on plenty of imports. However, some have opted to look closer to home to rebuild their sides for the year.

Without further ado, here’s the LCS 2022 power rankings ahead of Lock In.

10. Counter Logic Gaming

A better rebuild that’s for sure

Jenkins Liquid LCS Summer 2021
Tina Jo for Riot Games

CLG made solid off-season moves around rising NA talent, including Jenkins (pictured).

While CLG’s roster on paper should have been a playoffs contender in LCS 2021, it certainly didn’t pan out that way. That’s why the approach of at least testing rookies and second-year players on their roster ⁠— four native NA talents at that too ⁠— is smart. You can import all you want, but CLG have got some great players they can build around for the years to come.

Former Liquid top laner Jenkins and EG jungler Contractz stand out, but both Palafox and Poome have stood their ground in the LCS before. Luger also had a solid showing in his one LCS game during Summer 2021 despite losing. There’s a lot to look forward to for this CLG roster, even if immediate results are hard to fathom.

9. Dignitas

Feeling a bit Blue

Blue thinking on stage while playing for SK Gaming in LEC 2021
Michal Konkol for Riot Games

Blue had a shocking finish to his LEC campaign in 2021, and will be looking to rebound on Dignitas.

Dignitas have some identity searching to hunt for to start LCS 2022 in the absence of Aphromoo. There’s some cool pickups ⁠— River from PSG Talon is a snag, having proven his worth over the last two years on the PCS side. Biofrost coming back from a year-long break is a great addition to a relatively inexperienced side.

Blue is probably the most confusing pickup of all though, especially when there’s NA mid laners like 5fire still on the table. Blue was below average in the LEC to say the least, and we can say the LCS is a meme, but I’d much rather see Dignitas invest locally than pick up a middling-at-best import to round out their roster. Could be proven wrong though.

8. FlyQuest

Aphromoo’s Kindergarten yet again

Aphromoo and Johnsun playing for Dignitas in LCS 2020
Colin Young-Wolff for Riot Games

Aphromoo, paired again with Johnsun after their 2020 Dignitas stint, should give FlyQuest more stability in 2022.

After speaking to Aphromoo (and Johnsun) before LCS 2022 Lock In, you get a sense that the 29-year-old LCS veteran is used to this position of raising new talent to the summit. Partnered again with Johnsun, there’s an air of hope around this FlyQuest roster that crumbled without a dedicated leader in 2021.

Bringing Kumo up from Academy and toucouille over from EU Masters are solid options. However, you cannot help but think FlyQuest lacks the flair the top six sides have to really make a splash. With time this roster will blossom ⁠— you can have faith in Aphromoo to do that ⁠— but expect a rough start.

7. Immortals

Finding a higher power

PowerOfEvil TSM LCS Championship 2021
Oshin Tudayan for Riot Games

Immortals could hardly ask for a better mid lane upgrade than PowerOfEvil.

Immortals have made one big upgrade they needed by bringing in PowerOfEvil for Insanity in mid lane. While the latter was solid, Immortals needed the flair of POE ⁠— who should dominate in this control-mage centric, Crown-building meta ⁠— to really take them to the next level.

Not shaking the boat too much has given Immortals a very solid standing for the rest of the year. However, given the level of upgrades other teams have made, it’s hard to see them cracking the top four.

6. Cloud9

A fall from grace

Fudge looking up at camera LCS summer 2021 cloud9
Oshin Tudayan for Riot Games

There are some question marks over Fudge’s role swap to mid lane, but not as many as the rest of Cloud9’s off-season.

So, how hard did Cloud9 lose the offseason? It’s a question that gets asked of the legendary side every year, and one they always answer with a resounding now. 2022 might be a step too far. In fact, the only seemingly sane move they made in the off-season was keeping Blaber in the jungle.

Coach LS clearly has a plan with his bevy of Korean imports ⁠— although Summit is yet to return to his 2019 highs, and Berserker is untested in a top league. Fudge does have mid lane experience too, albeit in second-tier Oceanic play, and is mechanically gifted. It makes it really hard to predict where Cloud9 stacks up, but the safe bet is middle of the pack.

5. Golden Guardians

The true winners of the off-season

Ablazeolive Golden Guardians LCS Summer 2021

Did Liquid or Evil Geniuses win the off-season? Neither in my eyes, because that mantle is held by Golden Guardians. Basically anything could have improved on their roster from this time last year, but the Warriors-backed organization has a real dark horse shot at Worlds this year. That’s how high I am on them.

Lost copped a lot of flak on TSM last year, but in reality he was arguably their second-best player behind Spica. Ablazeolive was robbed of Rookie of the Year (reading comprehension people), and with Licorice and Olleh providing plenty of experience to a fresh-faced Pridestalkr in the jungle, this is the well-balanced roster Golden Guardians needed after last year’s calamity.

4. TSM

Another baffling break raises questions

Spica TSM LCS Summer 2021
Tina Jo for Riot Games

Retaining Spica was good for TSM, but their new mid laner has put doubt on whether the squad can succeed.

TSM did make some decent moves in the LCS 2022 off-season, however they raised just as many eyebrows as Cloud9 with the signing of Keaiduo and Shenyi from China’s LDL. While Shenyi had some decent performances, Keaiduo must have really inspired TSM in scouting because on paper it doesn’t seem like a good fit ⁠— language barriers in this squad aside.

Huni, Spica, and Tactical are as good a core you could ask for to build around in North America. They are a solid spine, each one of them proven and ironed-on LCS starters. Slotting in two unproven players around them is good, but was importing the right idea? Under new coach Chawy, only time will tell.

3. Evil Geniuses

All aboard the Danny hype train

Danny is just 17 years old, but is already making waves in the LCS in a big way.
Riot Games

Danny is now Evil Geniuses’ franchise player, and it should pay off.

Evil Geniuses did the one thing they needed to this off-season: keep Danny. With the NA rookie locked in for another year, they have the one piece their rosters for the next five years will likely revolve around. Vulcan is a great support to have by his side, as he is basically IgNar but better.

Inspired was a great snipe by the scouts, and now all eyes will lay on the 17-year-old former Fortnite pro turned LCS fresh-face jojopyun. His stats from Academy 2021 don’t paint the most promising picture, but EG have faith in him ⁠— like they have in Danny ⁠— and it’s a fair gamble to take when the rest of your squad is so strong. Worst case scenario? Just promote Soligo.

2. Team Liquid

Is this the LEC?

league of legends bjergsen on TSM hi fiving fans
Riot Games

After seven years at TSM, Bjergsen is returning to pro play on Liquid.

I don’t think there’s been a more hype off-season shuffle than Liquid’s this off-season. Snagging Bwipo from Fnatic, Hans sama from Rogue, and bringing Bjergsen out of retirement (and away from TSM) ⁠— the stocks for this team have been through the roof since November. All these signings point towards an aggressive ideology of kill-thirsty LPL-style League, and the LCS needs that.

However, before they’ve even set foot on the Rift, Liquid has hit the stumbling block. CoreJJ’s inability to get a Green Card means for the foreseeable future Academy star Eyla will have to play as the team’s support. It’s not the end of the world, but they’ll be wanting him back to contest that top spot.

1. 100 Thieves

If it ain’t broke…

100 Thieves with LCS trophy
100 Thieves

100 Thieves enter the 2022 season as reigning North American champions.

NA’s number-one seed at Worlds 2021 managed to keep all five of their star players, so it’s hard looking past 100 Thieves to build on their successes and lead the LCS yet again in 2022. The side is more than the sum of their parts, and Abbedagge only helped to elevate the squad from great to legendary in 2021.

Bringing up NA’s next great hope Tenacity to play under Ssumday is a great call by PapaSmithy ⁠— although how much gametime is split between the two remains to be seen. Regardless, with top players all across the Rift and that pre-existing synergy, 100 Thieves should dominate LCS 2022.

The LCS 2022 Lock In kicks off on January 14.

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