The Expectations for Misfits and Kobbe
In recent League of Legends news, Misfits Gaming announced that Kasper “Kobbe” Kobberup would join as the bot laner for their League of Legends team in the LEC. The Danish player’s return to Europe ahead of a critically important Summer season could make or break the 2020 year for the organization that had finished mid-table in Spring.
What Does Misfits Need?
The Misfits organization has done a remarkable job bouncing back from its disastrous 2019 season, which saw a superteam built from multiple star names flounder into eighth and then ninth-place finishes.
Misfits finished a respectable sixth place in the 2020 Spring season with a mostly untested roster of newer players, linked by Fabian “FEBIVEN” Diepstraten in the mid lane. That said, the Spring season made clear that it would require an immense improvement from the roster if the Misfits organization hoped to make a return to the international stage at the World Championships. The level of improvement required is a hurdle that is more easily overcome through a roster move.
Additionally, they built a very solid top half of the map between top laner Danny “Dan Dan” Le Comte, Iván “Razork” Martín and FEBIVEN, so the only changes could really come from the bot lane between bot laner Yeong-hoon “Bvoy” Ju and Petr “denyk” Haramach. While Bvoy is not untalented, he was consistently out of step with the rest of the lineup. Given Kobbe’s proven history of fitting into teams with strong mid-jungle synergies, this is an example of a good scouting decision.
— Misfits Gaming (@MisfitsGG) May 11, 2020
What is Kobbe’s Playstyle?
Kobbe most recently played on Team SoloMid in the League of Legends Championship Series (LCS). After an improbable up-and-down rollercoaster of a Spring season, the team ultimately ended fourth in the postseason. That roster still had untapped potential and could have risen closer to the aspirations of the one-time North American kings given some time. Alas, TSM instead elected to trade for ninth place Team Liquid’s bot laner Yiliang Peter “Doublelift” Peng and traded Kobbe to Misfits.
It is a curious move, given that Kobbe was in no way a debilitating factor on TSM’s roster. A sturdy and stable bot laner for most of his career, Kobbe performed to the level that could be expected of a team that played primarily around the top-mid half of the map.
Given the importance of maintaining early-game safety for bot laners in the current metagame, Kobbe largely played competently and conservatively with the lack of resources afforded to his lane. In the later stages of the game, he delivered well enough in team fights with consistent damage that did not astonish, but of which criticism would be generally unwarranted.
This reflects in his statistics. Of the starting bot laners who played a majority of games, Kobbe is generally in the middle or upper half of the table in all relevant categories. TSM did not structure their strategies around him as the primary carry, but instead focused heavily on the top lane, and Kobbe played accordingly.
This is not for lack of ability; Kobbe’s time on Splyce demonstrated that he is perfectly capable of playing as the team’s driving force. Rather, he seems the type to fit well into a roster’s structure and can adjust his style to the resources afforded to him.
— lolesports (@lolesports) April 5, 2019
What Should Kobbe and Misfits Expect in Summer?
For both Misfits and Kobbe, an appearance at Worlds would be the mark of a successful decision. Due to the changes to Worlds qualification, this is a difficult path that will require a top-three finish in the Summer Playoffs.
Finishing first is almost certainly out of the question. Since the domestic European league’s inception, only Alliance in 2014 Summer has broken the stranglehold between Fnatic and G2 Esports on the region’s crown. Given both teams’ current form, it is a trend unlikely to be broken. Second or third place would also be difficult to reach. The loser of Fnatic and G2 Esports will likely claim second. Meanwhile, third place is in the grasp of the upstart rookie team MAD Lions and the perennial top three gatekeeper that is Origen.
Third place is not impossible for Misfits, but a more realistic goal would be fourth. Fifth would be disappointing but not bitterly so, as it would still be an improvement from sixth in Spring. The Summer roster should aim for a top-three finish while aspiring for fourth, and be prepared to be satisfied with fifth.
Kobbe and Misfits will play in the LEC 2020 Summer season. Expect the LoL odds for Misfits to explode if they have a solid Week 1.
The season begins on June 12, 2020.
This article was contributed by Michael Jeong.