Most Valuable Player. Not an easy concept to define. If a team wins all of their games, often each player contributes to the victory in League of Legends. Discerning who “pulls the most weight” seems futile. Players that contribute more than their fair share to a victory often sit on mid or bottom tier teams, but it’s hard to call someone an MVP if his team doesn’t win.
The EU LCS regular season ended weeks ago, and Emily Rand and I discussed who should receive the MVP for the split during the final day of games before playoffs. G2’s dominance played a large part in our final decision, but we also considered players who became the defining factors in wins and losses on mid tier teams.
Second MVP Runner-up: Splyce’s Martin “Wunder” Hansen
Splyce barely treaded water throughout most of the regular season, but they looked more holistic toward the end of the split. With Blade of the Ruined King buffs, Wunder drove through top lane on carries like Fizz and Kennen, pulling pressure and opening opportunities for Jonas “Trashy” Andersen to invade on top side. As the game progressed, Splyce learned to transition well into a comfortable 1-3-1 setup with Wunder diligently pressuring inhibitors.
Wunder finished the regular season dealing 23.7% of Splyce’s team damage (third of all top laners) and a positive CS@10 difference of 1.6. His team relied on him to draw pressure in the mid and late game, as evidenced by him receiving 28.8% of team CS after 15 minutes: the most of any top laner in the league.
Splyce may have only competed as a middle-of-the-pack team, but Wunder’s contribution to their success was obvious. He stood out as Splyce’s core, making him a powerful candidate for MVP.
MVP Runner-up: Unicorns of Love’s Kiss “Vizicsacsi” Tamas
Vizicsacsi could have easily earned Yahoo Esports’ MVP Award. Emily and I prioritized the fact that G2 looked like the best team in Europe (they still do) over how much Vizicsacsi has contributed to the success of the second best team in the league. If we had submitted our ballot to lolesports repeatedly, we may have sent in an envelope with Vizicsacsi’s name in the number one spot 50% of the time.
Among top laners in the EU LCS regular season, Vizicsacsi was third in experience differential at 10 minutes, first in percentage of team damage dealt, and first in kill participation. Vizicsacsi is a rare case where the statistics clearly emphasize his influence. He’s both a powerhouse in lane, and he dominates in the context of UoL’s teamfight-focused style.
Vizicsacsi served as a strong threat both in teamfights and in lane. He has made steady progress as an individual player since his EU LCS debut in 2015 and remains a reliable pillar in each iteration of Unicorns of Love. Unicorns of Love return to the final this week largely because of the value he brings to the team.
Most Valuable Player: G2 Esports’ Jesper “Zven” Svenningsen
Though I have repeatedly sung the praises of (and would normally give them my MVP vote to) both Kim “Trick” Gangyun and Alfonso “mithy” Aguirre Rodríguez, Zven played the most reliably of any G2 member this split. Trick occasionally found himself on the wrong side of the jungle without pressure from his lane, and mithy fumbled trades in laning phase. Meanwhile, Zven dealt consistent damage and opened up teamfights for G2.
At 25.4% of team damage dealt and a staggering 8 CS above his opponents at 10 minutes — despite mithy’s difficulties — Zven took over the pressure role on his own while Ki “Expect” Daehan and Luka “PerkZ” Perković juggled the jungler between them. Perhaps part of this award is a long overdue acknowledgement for the value Zven has had in the EU LCS since his rookie debut, but when we thought of G2 this split, we thought of Zven.
Zven is Yahoo Esports’ 2017 EU LCS MVP.
All statistics taken from OraclesElixir.com.