Just as the jungle continues to break League of Legends, professional western junglers have broken the chance to easily create a ranking. With players constantly swapping in-and-out of the position during the break, it’s difficult to accurately assess how good everyone is. Will Elyoya’s experience at MSI bring him to the next level? Will Selfnade’s new team allow him to truly come into his own? Will Dardoch play less than fifty champions? It’s hard to say right now. Taking everything currently known into account, though, here are the top 10 strongest junglers in the West.
1. Kacper "Inspired" Słoma — Rogue
2. Javier "Elyoya" Prades — MAD Lions
Inspired has it all. He has wise decision-making for a young player and ingenious jungle pathing. He’s skilled enough to create early game havoc while still selfless enough to play more supportive champions when needed. He not only has the overall best statistics of any jungler in the West but has a greater impact than any other player on his team.
Inspired may be the new king of western junglers, but he’s already got someone new gunning for his spot. Though it’s taken him time getting used to the LEC and international play, Elyoya has risen to the occasion every time. With an aggressive playstyle instrumental to MAD’s early game, sparring time with Wei and Canyon could help him reach the next level. His sophomore split will be one of the most exciting stories to watch in the West.
3. Marcin "Jankos" Jankowski — G2 Esports
4. Oskar "Selfmade" Boderek — Team Vitality
Last Split, Jankos had one of the easiest-looking jobs in the regular season. Assured his lanes would be fine in the early game, Jankos spent most of his time relaxing and dining in the jungle. Despite his low kill participation, he still led all LEC junglers in kills. It’s a no-brainer to expect him to do it again. Jankos has repeatedly proven to be one of the most talented junglers in the world but without the necessity to always get his hands dirty, he could become atrophied compared to those ranked above him.
If it was any other player besides Selfmade, his switch to an almost completely new lineup would make him difficult to gauge. But it is Selfmade — he’ll be bloodthirsty, impactful, and a ton of fun to watch. He created so much of the identity of Fnatic last split that one can expect him to do the same on Vitality. Even so, the unproven lineup casts doubt whether he’ll pass the benchmarks he laid last Split.
5. Robert "Blaber" Huang — Cloud9
6. Iván "Razork" Martín Díaz — Misfits Gaming
7. Lucas "Santorin" Tao Kilmer Larsen — Team Liquid
MSI brought down a lot of the hype around Blaber. He might not the best early game jungler in the world but he still is the best in NA — a proactive dynamo with the luxury of having great solo lanes and months more experience with them could make him even better. NA fans must hope that other junglers can rise to challenge him and keep Blaber engaged, or otherwise his conditioning potentially going into Worlds could be as disastrous as MSI.
Razork desperately needs his team to follow-up on his confident attacks or he’ll continue to die more than almost any other jungler in the LEC. If Misfits do that, Razork may finally have the stats to match his actual talent. Though his strong individual play hasn’t translated into many wins for his team, one could argue Misfits will the worst team in the league without him. He’s the only player on the team to make any confident plays and if he gets a lane partner with the same skillset, the identity Misfits could change completely. Without that, he’ll continue being just a good player on a mediocre team.
Despite his impressive form recently — playing every facet of the jungle well — Santorin can’t catch a break. Last Split, he played better every week, looking poised to overtake Blaber in a showdown for the finals. Now that he’s healthy, he has to weigh potentially playing without Liquid’s star top laner. Questions of whether Alphari comes back or if Santorin synergizes with Jenkins are still up in the air, but Santorin has done enough to prove himself a once-again formidable jungler.
8. Joshua "Dardoch" Hartnett — Team Dignitas
9. Mingyi "Spica" Lu — TSM
10. Can "Closer" Çelik — 100 Thieves
Dardoch had a great Spring performance and gave new life to his career. He went from someone many considered washed-up to being voted to the 3rd LCS All-Pro Team. Although his counting stats don’t jump off of the page, watching him in-game shows a proactive player that is the heartbeat of his team’s playstyle and his enormous champion pool makes him a unique threat to other teams. The biggest concerns are if he and Aphromoo can lead the younger players to a strong bracket run this time, and if Dardoch can effectively build synergy with whoever his mid laner is before then.
Spica is another player with a peculiar jungle toolbox. He’s not as effective as other players ranked above him in impacting the early game. Surprisingly, he shines most in the late game. Not only is he a solid decision maker that thrives when under pressure, but his neutral objective control is some of the most impressive in the West. He needs to round out his skill set to contribute as others ranked above him, but the future looks bright for the young jungler.
Closer looked solid last split, but nowhere near what we’ve seen in the past. The synergy on 100 Thieves just wasn’t very strong, and you could often find Closer flubbing ganks and initiations. Hopefully a more talented mid laner and one of the most legendary coaches with him will reveal the Closer of old, but it’s possible we’ll never see him again.
I write. I rap. I run. That’s pretty much it.