It’s been an amazing 2017 for League of Legends, with great plays and even greater stories. With that in mind, we’re taking a look back at some of the best.
We’ve put together a list of 10 of the best players storylines this year. These players may not have all had the best results in 2017, but they all had the best stories.
10. Mike Yeung
Kicking off our list is the rookie superstar MikeYeung, who helped North America to win their Rift Rivals showdown against EU and placed 10th with Phoenix1 in the summer split.
MikeYeung exploded onto the NA scene this summer, with impressive performances on carry junglers that quickly earned him a fan following.
And despite that disappointing 10th place finish, MikeYeung earned Rookie of the Split for his stellar play, and ended the year off by signing with TSM for 2018. Though he is still relatively inexperienced, MikeYeung will definitely be a player to watch heading into next year.
Uzi, who comes in at ninth on our list helped Royal Never Give up win the spring split in the LPL, come second in the summer and place in the Top 4 at the world championship. He is also China’s All-Star AD carry.
One of the LPL’s most veteran players, Uzi was a key figure in China’s move toward all-Chinese rosters in 2017, and RNG were one of its most successful examples.
Uzi is a part of China’s League of Legends history, and thanks to his play this year, he is also a part of its future. With more Chinese teams looking to follow the examples of squads like Royal and OMG, we’re excited to see where the region’s domestic talent can go.
In eighth is IgNar who placed fourth with Misfits in the spring split and second in the summer. He is also Europe’s All-Star support.
As a relatively new team, Misfits put up strong results in 2017. But besides making it to the summer final against G2, their story really got interesting at the World Championship.
Thanks in large part to IgNar’s innovative support play on Leona and Blitzcrank, the plucky Misfits took SKT to five games, and came within inches of knocking the defending champions out of the tournament. It was further than anyone expected Misfits to go, and though SKT won in the end, it was one of the most exciting series of the year.
Coming in at number seven, Xmithie placed 5th-6th in the spring split with CLG, second with Immortals in the summer split and attended the World Championship.
Xmithie’s story in 2017 really comes down to the summer split. He came into an Immortals roster that struggled to find its footing in the spring split, placing 7th, and he changed everything.
After CLG and Immortals swapped junglers Dardoch and Xmithie, all eyes were on a flashy, seemingly empowered CLG roster.
But Xmithie smashed those expectations. He flipped the script on an Immortals squad the community had largely written off.
His stabilizing presence in the jungle was a huge factor in Immortals making it to the summer finals in North America. And although the team did not find much success at Worlds, it probably wouldn’t have made it there at all without Xmithie.
Number six on our list is Europe’s veteran AD carry, Rekkles. Fnatic’s roster of relatively untested players put up surprisingly consistent results in the EU LCS this year, placing third in both splits. And thanks to his performance this summer, Rekkles was named the MVP.
But it was at Worlds that Rekkles led the team to its most surprising result.
Number five on our list is Doublelift. Doublelift’s 2017 started with a lull as the veteran AD carry took a step back from the scene after a grueling end to 2016.
But his passion for the competitive scene drove him back to the Rift sooner than he expected, and Doublelift subbed in for Team Liquid to help that team salvage a tough spring split.
He returned to TSM for the summer and helped that team win another domestic title, though they went on to struggle at Worlds. But the ending to his year might be the most significant, with Doublelift returning to Team Liquid in earnest ahead of the 2018 spring split. And though that team seems untested, we’re excited to see what seems like a friendly rivalry bloom.
Number four on our list is Crown, who placed third in the spring split and fourth in the summer.
But Crown’s biggest achievement of the year, his win at the 2017 World Championship came after a year of personal struggles for the mid laner.
Crown might not have been the strongest mid laner in Korea this year, but along with his teammates on Samsung he overcame personal adversity and brought it all together when it mattered most.
Crown’s story is proof that persistence and hard work can take you all the way.
Number three on our list, Bdd became the starting mid laner on a Longzhu roster that had a terrible spring split. But with the help of their summer roster, Longzhu brought it back to win the split.
And though that had a lot to do with Pray and Gorilla’s leadership, Bdd was a huge factor in their summer run, going toe-to-toe with the likes of Faker, and finally living up to his enormous potential.
Coming in at number two is Ambition, who was also part of Samsung’s third place spring split and fourth place summer rosters.
But at Worlds, Ambition led his team to the Summoner’s Cup, with a huge 3-0 win over SKT in the finals.
But for Ambition, the win was a story four years in the making.
After what seems like a lifetime in esports, Ambition finally got his revenge on Faker. And what better way to do it than on League’s biggest stage?
And finally, at number one, who else could it be but Faker? Faker’s 2017 started off strong with another domestic title and a win at the Mid-Season Invitational, but in the back half of the year the world’s most successful player and most successful team stumbled.
Faker’s phenomenal play in 2017 cemented him as the best player in the world, but it was his defeat at the end of the year that showed us a new side to Faker. Not satisfied with his many accolades, Faker was devastated by his loss. He’ll enter 2018 hungry, with something to prove once again. And we’re excited to see where he goes.
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