The LEC roster -rotation has continued as Son ‘Mickey’ Young-min has shifted to Excel Esports according to reports. This makes for the second significant roster move made by team Excel so far this month after adding Petter ‘Hjarnan’ Freyschuss at ADC earlier this month.
The English team struggled in their first year in the LEC, ultimately finishing 9th overall. After a rough start to the season, starting mid laner Fabian ‘Exile’ Schubert was benched and replaced by Jordan ‘Special’ Scheffer. While Scheffer was undoubtedly an upgrade over Schubert, he was still considered a mid-to-lower-tier mid laner in the LEC.
And while they should be proud of their efforts over the last year, team Excel Esports has not been resting on their laurels. Despite being one of the poorer or smaller-market LEC teams, Excel are not content to stagnate in mediocrity; they have shown ambition and drive by signing both current reigning Worlds semifinalist Hjarnan at ADC and Mickey as their new mid laner, addressing some clear issues.
With regards to Mickey, while it is true the Korean mid laner does not have the best reputation amongst League of Legends fans and community, perhaps team Excel LEC roster is where his fortunes will change. Having started his career for the Afreeca Freecs way back in 2016, Mickey then went on to the ROX Tigers and shortly after Team Liquid in 2017. In summer of 2018 and after a year and a half in North America Mickey joined the ill-fated Golden Guardians. It was at the Guardians that Mickey’s reputation would develop, being labelled as toxic after incidents led Mickey to quit and abandon his team mid-season. This led to his return to Korea to join the APK Prince for Spring of 2019, though they failed to qualify for the LCK.
So while this move is definitely an ambitious one made by team Excel Esports, it is undoubtedly also a risky one. Mickey is a mid-tier Korean mid laner at best, and with Europe being known for producing top-tier mid lane talent, this decision seems to be a financial one, a ‘budget option’ for a team who needs to improve. Best case scenario, Mickey meshes well with team Excel and becomes an average mid laner in the LEC; worst case, they are left in the same position as they were at the end of last season.
Whether this happens or not, this move in the short term is not a bad one. Only time will tell if it pans out or not, so stay tuned to esportsnow.bet for future updates.