When Philadelphia 76ers bought Team Dignitas and the LCS spot of Apex, it was clear that they had big plans for the 2017 NA LCS season. Rumors have been going around concerning prospective players. Well, time for speculation is over because Team Dignitas announced its full LCS roster and introduced its coaching staff.
Looking at the roster first, Team Dignitas will have Korean Kim “Ssumday” Chan-ho in the Top Lane, Lee “Chaser” Sang-hyun in the Jungle, Lae-Young “Keane” Jang in Mid, Benjamin “LOD” deMunck as ADC and Alex “Xpecial” Chu as Support. While some players seem to be better than others, all of them are experienced, which is a great thing for Team Dignitas moving forward.
Going from the top, literally, Ssumday is one of the best Top Laners in Korea, with three years under the banner of KT Rolster, one of the best Korean teams, under his belt. Assisting the team from the jungle is Chaser, who has 2 years playing in Korean Jin Air Green Wings and Longzhu Gaming organizations. Even though DIG’s new Mid Laner is Korean, he has NA residency, because he’s been playing in NA for years, representing organizations like Curse Academy, Gravity Gaming and Apex Gaming, starting with June 2014. DIG’s new AD Carry, LOD, is also no spring chicken when it comes to playing on the LCS, he’s represented teams like Team Curse, Team Coast, Cloud9 G2A, Ember, and Team EnVyUs. Last but definitely not least, the team’s Support, Xpecial, is one of the biggest veterans in LoL eSports, having started his career on Team SoloMid in April, 2011. Yes, you read that right, 2011. Xpecial is one of the last mohicans of the first wave of League pros.
To support the three Koreans on the team, Team Dignitas also signed a couple of Korean coaches, Kim Jung-su and Park Jae-seok. The first used to coach the finalists of 2016 World Championship, Samsung Galaxy, which should help the team to develop the great macro play, especially in the late game, that SSG was known for in this year’s worlds, while the second coach comes from Oh My God, according to thescoreesports.com.
Looking at the team as a whole, the most immediately concerning thing about is that the Top Laner talent seems to be the biggest in a meta, which seems to be revolving around the Bot Lane. While Xpecial is not likely to be called one of the best in the world, he can still more or less hold his own on the Rift. LOD, however, will probably get outshone by Team Liquid, Team SoloMid, and C9 AD Carries, if not others. The Mid Laner, despite being experienced, is nothing to really write home about when the Western Faker, Soren “Bjergsen” Bjerg is still playing. The Jungler, while promising is unlikely to match the abilities of Kim “Reignover” Ui-jin or Joshua “Dardoch” Hartnett. All of that put together implies that Team Dignitas is likely to be a middle-of-the-pack NA LCS team, strong, but not strong enough to butt in into the eternal trifecta of Team SoloMid, Cloud9 and Counter Logic Gaming/Team Liquid.