Most disappointing performances in League of Legends this year
When it rains, it pours.
Over the past decade, the competitive League of Legends scene has played host to some of the most incredible moments in esports. From this year alone, for example, fans have watched fairy tale stories come to life, heartbreaking losses, and everything else in between.
But even though there were many amazing moments this year, there were also some significant missteps that were just as poignant. The bright lights of triumph might outshine these moments, but they still cast a shadow that will last in the minds of every supporter just as long as the triumphant moments.
Here are some of the most disappointing performances in League esports in 2022.
The most disappointing performances of 2022 in League of Legends
A group stage to forget for NA
When fans took a look at the field of competition at the 2022 World Championship, the expectations for North America’s representatives were set pretty low. The tournament boasted one of the most stacked lineups in League history, with multiple top challengers ready to battle for the throne.
The LCS, on the other hand, has always been considered an underdog at international events, and with all three reps jumping into tough groups, the chances at a knockout stage berth were pretty unlikely. Even with such low expectations, however, the region was still able to disappoint Western fans.
100 Thieves, Cloud9, and Evil Geniuses went a collective 3-15 throughout the two weeks of groups, making it one of the worst performances in the region’s history at Worlds. The only team to win against a major region at the tournament was EG, who swept MAD Lions in the play-in stage and won a single game against T1.
Another year, another LPL collapse
Last year, the LPL watched as FunPlus Phoenix inexplicably crumbled during the group stage at Worlds 2021. This year, they had to watch again as another second seed from the league fell to the wayside, dressed in the red and black jerseys of Top Esports.
Even with some of the most talented players in the competitive scene—including superstar mid laner Knight, and two former World Champions with Tian and JackeyLove—they couldn’t break out of groups against DRX and Rogue. It was a shocking end for a team that many predicted would reach the semifinals of the tournament based on their firepower alone.
FPX and TES actually had very similar trajectories from the Summer Split onwards, with both teams finishing as the best team in the regular season, eventually losing in the finals, and getting eliminated early at Worlds. In 2023, fans should pay attention to the next second seed to come from the LPL, because if they end up dropping out of the tournament early too, then we might have another curse to speak of in LoL Esports.
MAD Lions (unfortunately) make history
Although Rogue did qualify for the knockout stage at Worlds this year, the rest of their European brethren didn’t fare so well. MAD Lions, for example, made the history books as the first and only team from a major region to miss the group stage after failing to pass the play-in stage—and for two years in a row.
Granted, expectations for the European fourth seed were relatively low since they didn’t even win a single best-of-five series on the way to Worlds, since the region was awarded an extra slot due to the LCL’s absence from the tournament. Even still, failing to break into groups twice is a hard pill to swallow, especially when you were denied the chance by a team from your rival region.
In response, MAD tore down a majority of its roster this past offseason, parting ways with Armut, Unforgiven, and Kaiser in an attempt to wipe the slate clean and start a new journey with a fresh outlook and lineup.