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The Four Most Interesting 2016 Eastern LoL Teams

The League of Legends offseason is always an unpredictable time, but 2016 has been particularly chaotic. The Eastern regions of the LCK, LPL, and LMS were certainly no exception. Teams broke apart, players jumped from squad to squad, and regions were forced to rebuild.

As such, there’s a ton of very intriguing stuff happening to the teams out East. Let’s take a list of the four most interesting squads coming out of the Eastern scene.

Qiao Gu Reapers

2015 saw the first time Uzi since 2013 that Uzi didn’t make it to the World Championship finals. He didn’t even qualify for the tournament. For the aggressive and outspoken AD carry, it was time to move on.

The team Uzi found was Qiao Gu, the team fighting masters of China. A perfect fit for the mechanically gifted ADC, he’ll be brawling alongside mid laner DoinB and the always selfless Mor in the support role - perfect for Uzi’s style of taking every resource for himself. And he’ll have to start carrying to push QG over the top into the elite tier of China’s League of Legends scene.

LGD Gaming

The Chinese squad most willing to embrace the idea of importing Korean players, LGD has done it again, pulling in the newly minted World Champion. They’ve added him to their star-studded roster, alongside 2014 World Champion AD carry imp, as well as the perpetually feared PAinEvil (formerly known as We1less and GODV) and star playmaking support Pyl.

But with the current meta’s incredible importance on synergy between the top laner and jungler - something MaRin excelled with Bengi on on SKT - MaRin and new jungler Eimy will have to make sure they’re on the right page. While Eimy showed some promise on Unlimited Potential, LGD will have a lot of work to do to make sure the top of their map is in the place it needs to be.

ahq e-Sports Club

There was a time last year when many believed Taiwan teams couldn’t compete on the international stage anymore. ahq proved them all wrong.

The Taiwanese team showed up massively at the Mid-Season Invitational, then made it out of groups at Worlds. With Westdoor leading the team out of the mid lane with his flashy and spectacular Fizz play, AN looking better by the moment in the ADC role, and Ziv proving himself worthy of elite competition in the top lane, they’ve shown that the region that produced the Season 2 World Champions still has it.

Now, with a largely unchanged roster, they’re going to have to step up to compete with the rest of the world once again.

SK Telecom T1

Even the former World Champions weren’t safe from the chaos of roster swaps during the offseason. After becoming the first team to have won Worlds on two separate occasions, they only lost a single player. But it was a big one.

MaRin, the rock of their top lane, departed to China to join up with LGD, as discussed above. But not to worry, they’ve picked up Duke from NaJin em-Fire to pick up the carry top lane slack.

Interestingly, they’ve also picked up Scout and Blank for the mid and jungle slots, respectively. However, they haven't dropped anyone else. With SKT’s pioneering use substitutes - hey Easyhoon - will we see them employing the same strategy in 2016?

Oh, and they still have Faker. Having the best player who’s ever lived certainly doesn’t hurt their roster.

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