Team Dignitas will head into the Summer Split of the North American League of Legends Championship Series having retained each member of their starting roster. Following a satisfactory performance in the Spring, DIG will strengthen the squad with the additions of Terry “Big” Chuong at support, Lee “Shrimp” Byeong-Hoon in the jungle and Johnny “Swifte” Ngo as the team’s substitute.
At the turn of the new year, Team Dignitas became one of eSports’ major talking points. After an exciting rebranding and investment project involving the Philadelphia 76ers, the former Apex Gaming League of Legends roster was provided with a black and yellow makeover. DIG immediately put their new funds to good use, acquiring heavyweight Korean talent in the former of top laner Kim “Ssumday” Chan-Ho and jungler Lee “Chaser” Sang-Hyun.
The new Dignitas squad was not without its critics, but after a shaky start the secured a spot in the regional playoffs for the first time since 2015 and a 5th/6th place finish, foundations to build upon in the summer.
With a formidable roster, many analysts expected Team Dignitas to finish towards the top of the NA LCS standings for the 2017 Spring Split, yet these predictions perhaps failed to account for the amount of time required for the line-up to gel together. Perhaps it should have been expected that with two Korean imports on the roster, communication issues and team play would be a long-term project.
The organisation’s ‘long-term approach’ is evident in the roster announced for the Summer Split. Alongside Ssumday and Chaser, Mid Laner Lae-Young “Keane” Jang, Marksmen Benjamin “LOD” DeMunck and Support Alex “Xpecial” Chu will continue to build upon the synergy forged towards the end the previous split.
In addition to the team’s familiar faces, coaches Brandon “Saintvicious” DiMarco and David “Cop” Roberson opted to run a seven player lineup. Newcomer Big, who joins the squad from Echo Fox, will make his debut during the team’s opening match against Team EnVyUs.
“Last split, we were able to make it all the way to playoffs from being tied for 10th place. During the season we learned a lot about our weaknesses so we’re picking up two new players to improve on that.
“With the addition of Big and Shrimp as in-house players/subs, we can start to work on the things we were missing last split and develop new styles of play.
“In addition, both Chaser and Ssumday have also been showing great progress from their English lessons as well which should help their in game communication. As for our goals, we’re always aiming for first place.”
David “Cop” Roberson, Team Dignitas Head Coach
Whilst challenging for first place would mark a remarkable turnaround from Team Dignitas, fans are certainly expecting to see an improvement from the squad in the Summer Split. Concerns remain regarding the Dignitas bot lane, now reinforced by the addition of Big, though the team will be hoping to silence their critics with a test run against Team EnVyUs.