The inevitable happened as the Unicorns of Love faced Misfits in the first round of the EU LCS Summer Split Playoffs. Mid laner Fabian “Exileh” Schubert’s flaws were exposed for all to see as Misfits comfortably swept the series.
The Unicorns of Love’s German mid laner, Exileh, has fallen from a potentially prodigal European mid lane talent to a liability for what could have been Europe’s best team.
The warning signs were evident from early on in the Summer Split, as Exileh struggled to regain the fine fettle of form he had enjoyed in the Spring. The mid laner has been unrecognisable from the player that narrowly missed out on a place at the Mid-Season Invitational to G2 eSports.
From early in the Summer, it was clear to both fans and fellow EU LCS pros that something was amiss with Exileh. Indeed the meta had shifted away from champions upon which he felt comfortable, and the German was having difficulty adapting.
In a Week 4 mid lane power ranking, Fnatic’s Rasmus “Caps” Winther went so far as to place Exileh as the third worst mid laner in the league:
“I think right now, over the past couple of weeks, Exileh has had a really rough few weeks.
“It’s weird, the first week he was really showing up, but then as the split starting progressing, he just became worse and worse.”
Rasmus “Caps” Winther
Though Exileh’s deficiencies were evident in the EU LCS, it wasn’t until Rift Rivals that has weaknesses were fully exploited.
Exileh was dominated by all three of the NA LCS mid laners he faced, amassing a 1.6 KDA ratio for the tournament and behind 6.8 CS at ten minutes on average. The German ended the tournament with the highest number of deaths per game of any player.
If they weren’t already, alarm bells should have been ringing for the Unicorns of Love management team as the World Championship hopefuls returned to LCS action.
Chasing playoff success to secure their first trip to Worlds, UOL struggled to establish any form of consistency as Exileh continued to struggle in the mid lane.
Losing out on the top spot in Group B after a string of disappointing defeats against weak opposition, the Unicorns faced the daunting task of a long playoff run, starting with Misfits.
All of Exileh’s previously highlighted flaws came to the foreground in the playoff series against Misfits, with his opposite number – and former Unicorns of Love favourite – Tristan “PowerOfEvil” Schrage, dominating proceedings from start to finish.
Aside from the frequent positional errors, disastrous laning phase and criminal lack of damage output, perhaps the biggest hindrance presented by Exileh’s inclusion in the UOL roster is his restrictive champion pool.
Seemingly unable to adapt to the majority of the meta’s most powerful mid lane picks, Unicorns of Love entered the series with their hands tied.
From the Kassadin pick into Lucian for Game 2 to the inability to pick Lucian into Orianna for Game 3, Exileh put UOL on the back foot from the laning phase… and that’s before his antics on the rift started to affect the team’s chances of success.
— lolesports (@lolesports) August 19, 2017
The flaws present in Exileh’s play were laid bare in both the EU LCS Summer Split and Rift Rivals, yet seemingly little has been done to amend these faults.
Unicorns of Love paid the price for burying their heads in the sand by being dumped out of the playoffs, and it could yet get worse. The World Championship moves further out of reach with every Exileh performance.