The Deep Dive: Week 4

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The Bot lane role is probably the most straightforward in League of Legends: your job is to farm better than your lane opponent and deal damage in team fights, and anything beyond that is basically a bonus! Okay, that’s oversimplifying, but even in a properly nuanced view of the role, it’s still the “easiest” to measure statistically, which can make for some fun discussions around player performance.

Today, we’re going to look at the farm-and-carry stats on the Bot laners in the LEC and LCS and see who has been performing best in those categories through the first three weeks of the 2020 Spring season.

Champion Pool Context

Quickly, before jumping into player analysis, let’s offer up some context on the influence of champion pool. The table below shows average DPM for the Bot laners that have been played five or more times in the LCS, LEC, and LCK in Spring 2020.

Champion Games (Pro) DPM (Pro) WIN% (Solo Queue) DPM (Solo Queue)
Varus 13 517 47.5% 584
Aphelios 72 513 49.7% 677
Xayah 22 499 48.2% 598
Senna 48 463 53.2% 595
Miss Fortune 65 459 52.2% 641

Only champions with 5+ pro games in 2020 Spring, LCS/LEC/LCK.
Solo queue stats reflect Diamond 1+ across all regions.

Based on these stats, if you see players with multiple games on Varus or Aphelios, expect their DPM numbers to be a bit higher, while Senna numbers can be expected to be a bit lower. Miss Fortune is a bit of an oddball, because her solo queue damage numbers are extremely high but her damage output in pro play has been lower, possibly due to some inflation from her solo queue win rate.

On to the fun part of the analysis!

LEC Bot Laners

The big standout in this list is Carzzy, who not only tops the DPM charts for LEC Bot laners, but actually own the second-highest DPM in the entire LEC (behind Perkz’s insane 752). Carzzy has been the most straightforward example of a player who is earning and receiving a lot of resources and then getting good value out of them. He’s playing high-damage champions, winning his lane, and then dealing 34.9% of his team’s damage to champions, and that has been a very important part of the MAD Lion’s 4-2 record so far.

It’s no surprise at all to see Caps showing up next in the damage chart. The only surprise is that he isn’t first. G2 has been destroying the league again, and the role-swap between Caps and Perkz hasn’t slowed down either of them whatsoever. Impressively, Caps isn’t relying on having farm funneled into him in the mid/late-game; he’s receiving the lowest share of post-15-minute resources of any bot laner in the LEC (and only WildTurtle is getting fewer resources than him in the LCS). That doesn’t mean Caps is under-fed: he’s creating the second-biggest lead coming out of the early-game, with a very impressive +561 GXD15. He’s working with an advantage, but he isn’t being greedy later on. Now add the observation that Caps has three games on the low-DPM Senna, which makes his numbers even more impressive in context.

Crownshot, Upset, Hans Sama, and Rekkles round out the middle of the DPM pack, but their paths to those numbers are quite different. Crownshot has been losing his lane but is soaking up a ton of farm later (36.3%) to compensate. Rekkles, on the other hand, has been absolutely dominating the early game with the second-highest GXD15 of LEC/LCS bot laners (behind Zven), and he’s soaking the second-most mid/late-game farm as well, which makes his 436 DPM much less impressive by comparison, especially with three games on Aphelios. It’s worth pointing out that Fnatic have the shortest average game length in the LEC, which tends to suppress DPM numbers, but they also have the second-highest combined kills per minute (CKPM), so it’s not like there haven’t been enough fights for Rekkles to participate in. Perhaps the strongest argument in Rekkles’s favour is his 9.0 KDA and 8.8% death share (DTH), which compares favourably to Crownshot’s 3.3/14.8%. Crownshot has clearly had to take more risks in order to earn his damage output, while Rekkles has stayed safer and lived to fight another day.

LCS Bot Laners

Unlike the LEC, the statistical story for LCS bot laners contains a few more surprises. Bang, FBI, Altec, and Stixxay lead the way, despite their teams owning a combined 9-15 record. That could probably lead to some interesting discussion of the difference in play styles between regions, but let’s stay on-topic!

Bang’s statistical profile this season fits in with the role he has typically played throughout his career: he isn’t the strongest laner, but if you get him into the mid/late-game with a reasonable about of farm and a bit of room to work, he’ll start pumping out the damage as an excellent team fighter. Now that he has Jiizuke on his team to draw pressure away from him during the laning phase, Bang should be able to keep putting up numbers from this, and soon it’s going to start converting into more Evil Geniuses wins, as well. The main takeaway from his champion pool is the Sona pick. He had horrible laning numbers and 450 DPM in that game, which is normal because the Sona is chosen more for its utility. If you remove that game from the sample, Bang’s numbers get even better, and EG’s win/loss record might also improve. Don’t sleep on this player or this team; they have a lot more to show.

Moving down the list, it’s fascinating to see the damage numbers coming out of FBI, Altec, and Stixxay despite all of them losing lane, with Altec and Stixxay especially faring poorly at the 15:00 mark. Altec is the most noteworthy of these three players to me, because unlike the other two, his team’s results have been good. As the primary carry behind the Immortals’ 4-2 record, with 33.0% damage share, Altec deserves credit for what he’s achieved so far. It’s tempting to suggest that IMT should capitalize on Altec by building their game plans around him more, instead of around Eika who has only put out 368 DPM despite doing better in lane. That might be a trap, though, because so far Xmithie’s pathing has been heavily focused around mid lane most games, which is keeping Eika afloat when he might otherwise be falling way behind and contributing even less. The best path forward for IMT is probably for Altec and Hakuho to solve their 2v2 problems on their own, so that Xmithie can continue babysitting Eika and put IMT in better mid-game situations overall.

Quick comments on a few other LCS Bot laners:

  • Zven gets to use Rekkles’s excuse of playing in short games, but Cloud9’s CKPM of 0.64 has offered Zven fewer combat opportunities, which speaks in his favour. Zven’s numbers don’t tell his full story: he’s dominating the LCS, make no mistake about it.
  • Kobbe has been very good for TSM, and his low DPM can be attributed to TSM’s slow style (0.52 CKPM) and to a lack of good team fight setups from his teammates in some games.
  • Doublelift has played Senna four times and it has not worked out at all, which is abundantly clear in his DPM. But everything Team Liquid has done in 2020 so far is a write-off because of Broxah’s visa issues and Liquid’s apparent lack of commitment to investing themselves into these early-Spring games. The tides will turn; TL and Doublelift just need to make sure it doesn’t take them all the way until the Summer split to find their groove.

Tim Sevenhuysen is the founder of and Head of Esports Data Science for Esports One. He led from 2017-19 and was Statistical Consultant for Fnatic in 2015.