The 2023 LCK Spring Split is right around the corner. It was a hectic offseason for the LCK, as there were many moves during the stove league. Several players went abroad, and several returned as well. Most of the teams had roster changes — big or small, and we won’t be able to tell if the changes were positive or negative until the season is underway. Still, we could take a look at how the changes went to predict who would prevail in the spring split.
Top: Kim “Rascal” Kwang-hee
Jungle: Kim “Croco” Dong-beom (Kim “Juhan” Ju-han)
Mid: Yoo “FATE” Soo-hyeok
Bot: Seo “deokdam” Dae-gil
Support: Cho “BeryL” Geon-hee
DRX is the defending World Champion, but only BeryL and Juhan remain from their championship roster. All the other players left for other teams — even their head coach. However, as many say, BeryL is always the heart of any roster he’s in, and he stayed. BeryL has reached the finals at Worlds three consecutive years and won two of them — the only other active player who has achieved this feat is Faker.
Although I ranked them 6th, remember that the ‘22 DRX also finished the LCK summer split in 6th place before their miracle run at Worlds. Anything can happen, especially when you have the “LoL Whiz” around.
Top: Choi “Doran” Hyeon-joon
Jungle: Han “Peanut” Wang-ho
Mid: Jeong “Chovy” Ji-hoon
Bot: Kim “Peyz” Su-hwan
Support: Yoo “Delight” Hwan-joong
One of the biggest figures in LoL Esports left Gen.G during the stove league, as Park “Ruler” Jae-hyuk left to play in the LPL, and this is a massive loss for the team. Son “Lehends” Si-woo also left to play for KT Rolster, so Gen.G has a completely new bot duo for 2023. Peyz and Delight will have to fill in the shoes of the all-stars, and LCK isn’t really a league that’s friendly to rookies.
The new bot duo still has great potential, and the top side in Doran, Peanut, and Chovy is extremely strong. Although they may not be able to do as well as last year, Gen.G will be a big threat to the LCK teams.
4. KT Rolster
Top: Kim “Kiin” Gi-in
Jungle: Moon “Cuzz” Woo-chan
Mid: Gwak “Bdd” Bo-seong
Bot: Kim “Aiming” Ha-ram
Support: Son “Lehends” Si-woo
KT Rolster had two big changes in their roster — the top and mid lanes. Although they lost solo kill machine Kim “Rascal” Kwang-hee and rookie of the year Lee “VicLa” Dae-kwang, they picked up Kiin and Bdd, players that are recognized as one of the best in their roles. Both Kiin and Bdd didn’t have many players to rely on in previous rosters, but this time, anybody on the team could carry if given the chance.
With the additions, KT Rolster gained more diversity for their win plans. If the players could mix well to build good teamwork and synergy, they could climb even higher in the rankings.
3. Hanwha Life Esports
Top: Hwang “Kingen” Seong-hoon
Jungle: Kim “Clid” Tae-min
Mid: Kim “Zeka” Geon-woo
Bot: Park “Viper” Do-hyeon
Support: Kim “Life” Jeong-min
Hanwha Life Esports is one of the biggest winners of this offseason as they revamped their 10th-place roster completely and gathered together a star-spangled roster. Kingen and Zeka are Worlds 2022 winners. Kingen won the finals MVP, while Zeka was voted 2022 LCK MVP, and to aid the champions on the top side, Clid returned from the LPL. In the bot lane, Worlds 2021 winner Viper was paired with creative support Life.
Clid and Life having the least decorated career on this roster shows how strong it is, and that will definitely put Hanwha Life Esports on the top end of the standings.
2. Dplus KIA
Top: Kim “Canna” Chang-dong
Jungle: Kim “Canyon” Geon-bu
Mid: Heo “ShowMaker” Su
Bot: Kim “Deft” Hyuk-kyu
Support: Kim “Kellin” Hyeong-gyu
DWG KIA was rebranded to Dplus KIA heading into 2023, and there were some changes in the roster as well. As top laner Jang “Nuguri” Ha-gwon decided to retire, they signed Canna to take his place. In the bot lane, they signed Deft, who just won Worlds. He will be paired with consistent support Kellin. Meanwhile, the ‘21 world champion mid-jungle duo in ShowMaker and Canyon is just as strong.
Both Hanwha Life Esports and Dplus KIA have three world champions, but as Dplus KIA has more experience together as a team, I believe they will fare better during the spring season.
Top: Choi “Zeus” Woo-je
Jungle: Mun “Oner” Hyeon-jun
Mid: Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok
Bot: Lee “Gumayusi” Min-hyeong
Support: Ryu “Keria” Min-seok
With the one and only Faker re-signing with the team on a three-year contract, T1 will go with the exact same roster as in 2022. Last year, the only change was the addition of Zeus. This means that the roster already has the best teamwork in the LCK, if not the world. In 2022, this roster went to the finals in all competitions they attended. After an undefeated spring championship, T1 was the runner-up at MSI, in the summer split, and at Worlds as well.
Getting used to playing with new teammates is very important in the spring season, and T1 does not need any of that. They definitely have a huge advantage heading into 2023.