After buying the Renegades’ NA LCS spot for Christopher “MonteCristo” Mykkles, Team EnVyUs, contrary to their status as the best Overwatch team and Top 10 CS:GO team in the world, established themselves as a middle of the pack NA LCS squad, finishing 5-6th in the 2016 NA LCS Summer Split Playoffs after losing 1-3 to Cloud9. The core of the team, Shin “Seraph” Woo-yeong, Noh “Ninja” Geon-woo and Nickolas “Hakuho” Surgent have renewed their contracts with the team on Christmas Eve. The team’s Jungler and AD Carry were announced the next day.
EnVyUs will be represented by Nam “lira” Tae-yoo in the Jungle and Apollo “Apollo” Price in the AD Carry positions. You might notice that the roster has three Koreans and two Americans. While usually teams are limited to two foreign players, nV’s Top Laner, Seraph, has residency, counting as a native NA player due to the fact that he’s been playing in the region for more than 2 years, having joined CLG in May 2014. While he’s not what you would call the best in the region with that spot taken by players like Jung “Impact” Eon-yeong, Kevin “Hauntzer” Yarnell, probably Lee “Flame” Ho-jong and Kim “Ssumday” Chan-ho in no particular order, he proved himself to be good enough to make sure that his team doesn’t have to worry about relegation.
The new additions to the team, lira and Apollo, are a mixed bag. While Apollo is a very experienced AD Carry, having started his serious pro career in November 2013 on Team Coast and going on to play for Team Impulse, Team Dignitas and Apex Gaming, which was later bought by Philadelphia 76ers together with Team Dignitas and assimilated into the more popular brand, he’s still not what you would count among the best AD Carries in NA. Of course, with nV seemingly not going for the title of NA LCS Spring 2017 Champion, that’s fine. Apollo should be able to help the team stay in the middle of the standings.
The third Korean to play on the roster, lira, is a different matter. Before joining Team EnVyUs, the Korean played for teams like KT Rolster Arrows, CJ Entus Frost, Rebels Anarchy and afreeca Freecs. While not a leader on either of those teams, his long-time exposure to the quality of Korean solo queue and the general level of play in the LCK should allow him to at least hold his own in the NA LCS. With that in mind, the team EnVyUs roster looks to be fit to compete in the upcoming NA LCS Spring Split.
To reiterate, while the team isn’t weak by any means, it’s not what you would call the strongest roster in North America either. Middle of the pack? Sure. NA LCS Spring Split Champions? No… Not unless Team SoloMid and Cloud9 really mess up. With a new Jungler on C9 and the loss of the leading pressure of Yiliang “Doublelift” Peng on TSM, it could happen, however, it’s not very likely.