Fallen stars and early vacations: The best players to miss the 2022 League World Championship

Better luck next year, lads.

Buckle up, League of Legends fans. The 2022 World Championship is right around the corner, and as one of the most prestigious esports events of the year, it promises to provide incredible highlight moments to last a lifetime.

As usual, the competition is stacked with talent as every single region from around the globe has sent their best rosters to represent them at the most important international tournament. A whole year of blood, sweat, and tears has culminated into this final month, and the teams at-hand are ready to battle tooth-and-nail for a chance at a Summoner’s Cup.

On the other hand, there are a handful of different teams and players that failed to make the climb to the grand stage. Stars fell, juggernauts stumbled, and even icons of the game made mistakes.

Here are the best players to miss Worlds 2022.

Team Liquid’s… whole roster

ImageScreengrab via LCS Official

Many fans and analysts would agree 2022 was the year superteams died. In North America, one of the greatest lineups ever built in the region brought together some of the biggest stars in the west in an attempt to push for the deep Worlds run. It was a roster that should have burned bright, but instead, burned out by the end of their wick.

Bwipo, Hans Sama, CoreJJ, Santorin, and Bjergsen have a collective 17 Worlds appearances, 11 regional championships, and countless all-pro nominations.

Each player is at least top three in their respective role in the LCS.

But, in the end, all of those accolades meant nothing as they were ousted from contention by Evil Geniuses’ rising youth movement. Icons of the game, legends of the esport, and still sitting at home wondering what could have been.

TSM’s Spica

Photo via ESPAT for Riot Games

Ever since Bjergsen and Doublelift left for greener pastures, NA-born jungler Spica quickly became the new face of the franchise as he possessed both the premier talent, the personality, and the experience to help spearhead a new era for the organization.

But in the time that he was given the reins, the League rosters built around him failed to live up to expectations.

Whether it was the ninth place finish during 2022 Spring Split, the constant roster shifts leading to the 2022 LCS Championship, or the heartbreaking five-game series loss to EG, the two years of failure have led the 21-year-old to test free agency this year. He tried his damnedest in the playoffs, with an 82.2 percent kill participation and the highest average damage to champions per minute among LCS postseason junglers, according to Oracle’s Elixir. But now, he will sit back at home, watch Worlds, and ponder the next steps in his bright future.

Team Vitality’s Perkz

Photo via Riot Games/Michał Konkol

For the first time in his career, Perkz will not be attending the World Championship. The 23-year-old has always been the cornerstone of Europe’s hopes at the event, whether it was during his iconic five-year run with G2 Esports or his quick 2021 stint with Cloud9. This year, he came back to Europe with dreams of a triumphant return with “the biggest LEC roster we’ve ever seen,” but instead, he and the lineup fell horrendously short of expectations.

The amount of individual talent couldn’t outweigh the severe lack of cohesion on the roster, and as a result, they faltered in both the Spring and Summer Splits.

This roster is still signed on until 2024, but this year was such a failure that it wouldn’t be surprising if the team makes sweeping changes moving into 2023. Perkz might still be a top-tier mid laner in the LEC, but next month, he’ll be cheering for his European peers at Worlds.

Excel Esports’ Mikyx

Photo via Riot Games

Although Mikyx didn’t make Worlds this year, one silver lining he can take away for 2023 is he proved his worth to the European fans and its teams. Before the start of 2022, the veteran was stuck on G2’s bench after he, Wunder, and Rekkles were replaced in a massive roster overhaul.

Mikyx’s future was uncertain, with multiple teams seemingly content with their lineups, but Excel jumped into the fray, replaced their rookie support Advienne, and moved forward with one of the most experienced supports in the region. His knowledge and leadership skills were enough to push Excel to back-to-back playoff appearances, and now, a team doubted by all might have found the building blocks to future success.

Liiv SANDBOX’s Prince

Photo via Riot Games

There was a popular one-man show in the LCK this split, and its leading star was Prince in his performance with Liiv SANDBOX.

This summer, the 22-year-old led the regular season in kills, had a whopping 38.4 percent kill participation, had the third-highest average damage to champions per minute, and had some of the best early game stats in the league, according to Oracle’s Elixir.

He continued this domination through the playoffs, but ultimately, he and his team couldn’t withstand the roster-wide power that Gen.G’s superteam brought to the table. For all his heroics, Prince needed more support from his teammates, and they weren’t able to step up.

This off-season, any LCK team that needs an upgrade in the bottom lane will want to open up their wallets for this budding star.

LNG Esports’ Doinb and Tarzan

Photo via [Riot Games](https://www.flickr.com/photos/lolesports/49001181326/in/album-72157711607039142/)

At one point in League history, Doinb and Tarzan were two of the best players in the world. Even though that still might be the case, both of these talented stars find themselves watching Worlds from the sidelines after falling to Royal Never Give Up in an exciting five-game series for the final LPL spot at the tournament.

At the beginning of 2022, fans from around the world couldn’t wait to see Doinb pair up with Tarzan, but in such a stacked region like China, it was tough for the roster to keep up with other top lineups like Top Esports, JD Gaming, and defending world champions Edward Gaming.

Even still, Doinb was a major force for his squad, dealing 29.2 percent of his team’s total damage throughout the 2022 Summer Split, according to Oracle’s Elixir.

Tarzan, on the other hand, played 17 of his 39 regular season League games on Viego and Wukong, but only dealt an average of 287 damage to champions per minute.

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