It's not working. The hyped up team of this split were built around a group of veterans, that barely changed their lineup coming into the split. Fnatic is not performing.

Players haven't really been able to transition their learning experience from Worlds to the LCS stage, a new coach bringing in a different and new style and most important a bot lane without synergy.

The bot lane Rekklessang, Hyliless, Helirekk or whatever you want to call that bot lane, is not carrying. Rekkles is probably still at least the second best performing ADC in the league, the lane itself doesn't seem to really be able to reach anything near to its full potential. However, Fnatic’s performance has been less stellar than most might have expected. Despite their 3-3 record, the team has performed far lower than the expectations were, due to maintaining their roster almost unchanged. Anyways the team has played a bit messy after the mid game and the team is struggling to beat the top teams in the league.

Is the new player really the problem?

Hylissang seemed like an upgrade to Jesiz in the offseason. A player with a bigger champion pool and more experience as a support player and obviously one of the engines that drove the unicorns to success. Then he doesn’t play that different from Jesiz. He focuses on roaming and making plays, something Jesiz also did last year. Although during the laning phase they would often sit and wait and let Rekkles farm up, which was the total opposite for the unicorns. Not only playing a more aggressive laning style with Samux but also being more roam oriented prior to the 10-minute mark. Which has not only shown in the performance of the duo lane not being synced yet. The styles are not really adding up.

The best the bot lane and Hylissang have actually performed yet were in their first game against splyce and against Roccat this weekend. In general, once again his performances on Rakan stood out from the rest. So far he played 50% of his games on “engage” type of champions. He played a major role in those three games, which they only lost one game to Misfits, mostly due to team-related problems rather than individual problems.

Let’s take the meta into account. Bot lanes are playing scaling oriented AD carries most of the time. Independent of rune setups it is all about hitting the 2 item spike earlier than the enemy ad carry. Either by playing an Ezreal, go for the Caitlyn farm pressure lane or simply scale up with varus or Tristana if your Kalista is banned. While the meta benefit a farm-oriented laner like Rekkles it is definitely less optimal for a player like Hylissang since tanks and defensive supports will have a higher priority than your typical playmaking support picks. So the jungle pressure has been more solo lane oriented than focusing your early game gameplan around the bot lane.

Actually, Fnatic's early game is extremely strong.

They are very coordinated and execute their gameplan very cleanly. One of the biggest factors is always their “safe pressure” on bot lane. While they shift their focus to the other lanes based on drafts, they always pick safe lanes for the bot lane. Farm and maintain the pressure. That's what it needs to so. Out of the six games, all of them had this in common and only the Xayah and Rakan lane from Fnatic actually goes for aggressive lane trades and more roaming in the early stages of the game. Otherwise, Hylissang will stay bot and provide Rekkles the support to pressure the lane. They don't go risks and focus on denying farm from the opponent bot lane. There are two main reasons for this. First, it being a pressure to force jungler attention from the enemy team and second play safe because Broxah is more focused on playing around the top and mid in the early game.

So, in fact, the duo lane itself isn’t the problem. Then in the games where they changed that said strategy, one being against Misfits. They played far more aggressively through their bot lane. Even went further against H2K by going for a sivir fast push strategy and getting all tier 1 turrets around 10 minutes. Clearly, Fnatic's preparation is really good when getting into their matches, there was no game where they were massively behind. They were either even or slightly ahead when reaching the 10-minute mark of the game. They don’t seem to lack confidence in their bot lane either.


Although their early game might be stellar, it is hard to say the same for their, mid to late game strategies. So far Fnatic has been a stylistic mess. A team playing many different variations of one strategy and keeping all their options open. Only one consistent stood out of the rest and it is their inability to play siege. Even if Fnatic prioritizes Azir so much they only had their success with it when Caps had a double frontline or an engage support. As we’ve seen in their matches against Vitality or H2K as soon as Caps didn't have the frontline he assumed the engaging role even if wrong or right. Or didn't manage to get a lead on top lane to play their 1-4 splitpush draft against Vitality. The Shotcalling is a mess and it seems like the team falls apart after 15 minutes of the game. They aren’t 100% sure what is the right call. Often Broxah and Caps let their instincts get the best of them and they get caught a few times and Hylissang doesn't provide that confidence after laning phase on champions like Janna or Taric. After leaving the coordinated laning phase the team plays chaotic

The players aren't really synced.



Fnatic is definitely not playing to their strengths either.

If you compare their performances when playing around pick offs or around team fighting to their other games, they did fewer mistakes and have been more decisive.

For an example let's take the game against Roccat. They had a beautiful draft with a lot of engaging and cc. While giving sOAZ his Camille and Rekkles his Tristana. Giving the one his winning lane and a carry champion while still keeping the main carry on a scaling champion. Not only was it a snowbally draft, that played towards their early game strengths but at the same time provided a lot of pick off opportunities to the team at a later stage of the game. A game that Fnatic has mastered for years already.

Although they playing better when in their comfort zone, Fnatic still has problems after the early game. They might keep winning when they ahead, however, they often accumulate smaller mistakes or do a big mistake as soon as they lose momentum.

Against H2K they had a great start and snowballed out of their early turrets, however, they never managed to capitalize on their lead and one mistake during the late game gave H2K the fight they needed to turn things around.



Wasn't too different against Misfits. Showing that the Fnatic lineup that they still struggle when getting punished for their plays and playing from behind.

It is difficult to speculate why Fnatic is simply not sticking to their guns and securing a few important wins in the beginning of the season. One of the theories is due to their new head coach Youngbuck is that they are trying out different things to learn those. He often would invest a game with G2 in a bo3 to test a pick, a strategy or a certain jungle pathing. If it backfired they would either adapt to the opponent or going back to their old strategies and most of the cases they would still come out as the winners in the bo3. The problem now is that there are no best of series anymore and we only have one match. So they can't adapt or play their comfort zone in a series to secure the wins while still testing out and keeping unpredictable towards their opponents.

Probably the results could be a lot more in Fnatic’s favor if it wasn't for the format changes. They are middle of the pack in the standings, but should still be the strongest team in the league right now. Anyways their new player might be a factor to their shotcalling problems in the mid game, but definitely not the major one. We might have to wait until playoffs to see their full potential.


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