Rift Rivals Recap: EU Dominates NA Once Again
Last weekend, Rift Rivals showcased an all too familiar disappointment for fans of the NA LCS. Once again, North America proved to be no match for Europe, as well as other regions like the LPL and LCK. While Europe’s performance was stellar, showcasing a strength not seen in years, NA teams struggled to find their footing. However, this outcome could serve as a valuable learning experience for the future of the region.
The EU LCS teams adapted to the new meta with ease and displayed a level of comfort and creativity that NA teams lacked. This is a promising sign for the region’s growth, especially considering their struggles at Worlds last year. On the other hand, NA’s weaknesses were highlighted on an international stage, revealing their known flaws and vulnerabilities.
Let’s take a closer look at what this means for the NA LCS in the current competitive League of Legends scene.
EU Outperforms NA
Gone are the days of the “EU LUL” meme, as Europe proved its dominance at Rift Rivals. While G2 Esports and Fnatic showcased exceptional performances, the same cannot be said for any NA team present. However, this experience provides an opportunity for NA teams to reflect and address their shortcomings before Worlds.
It’s important to note that NA teams did not deviate from their usual playstyle at Rift Rivals. Their strengths and weaknesses, which are evident in their weekly games at home, were on full display. This exposure allows for a clearer understanding of their weaknesses, which can be used as a valuable learning tool.
Recognizing Individual Weaknesses
Each NA team at Rift Rivals displayed their unique shortcomings, reflecting the weaknesses they face domestically. For example, 100 Thieves, known for their late-game comebacks, struggled in the early game against EU teams that prioritized effective communication and proactive rotations.
However, EU teams have the veteran experience to match 100 Thieves’ late-game prowess and possess the knowledge of how to close out games. This is an area where many NA LCS teams struggle.
Echo Fox, on the other hand, relies too heavily on individual talents like Huni and Fenix, often leaving themselves vulnerable to punishment. While this strategy works against less experienced opponents, EU teams like Fnatic exploited this weakness by focusing their attention on shutting down Echo Fox’s star players.
Adapting to the Meta
Liquid’s struggles at Rift Rivals highlighted their difficulties in adapting to the meta. While EU teams like G2, Fnatic, and Misfits quickly embraced the new strategies, Liquid seemed unsure and less confident in their own playstyle. This lack of adaptability hindered their performance against EU teams who had perfected and honed their strategies.
Misfits, G2, and Fnatic understood their team’s strengths and leveraged them to make the meta work in their favor. Liquid, on the other hand, focused on discovering new strategies rather than refining their own strengths. This approach proved to be a hindrance against teams that had a clear understanding of their style.
Working Towards Improvement
Moving forward, the top NA teams, such as Echo Fox, 100 Thieves, and Liquid, have the opportunity to address their weaknesses and strive for improvement. Echo Fox and 100 Thieves possess unique styles and solid foundations that can be strengthened by focusing on areas where they fall short. Liquid, on the other hand, must work on adapting their established strategies to different situations rather than constantly pursuing new ones.
Even if no significant improvement is made, the worst outcome would be another early exit at Worlds. Nonetheless, this has become a familiar reality for NA teams, and it can serve as a catalyst for growth and improvement in the future.
[Related Keywords: Rift Rivals, NA LCS, EU LCS, League of Legends, esports]