Diving into Excel’s 1-5 start and how it may or may not be Vetheo’s fault.
What I had touted as the dark horse to win 2023 LEC Winter is spiraling down an embarrassing streak of losses after Week 2. The Excel “superteam” featuring reigning LEC champion Odoamne and last year’s flashiest MVP Vetheo, were supposed to take the league by storm alongside franchise player Patrik. Then why is this team, who excited all the analysts and pundits around the world, tied for last place with Astralis, a team who they have LOST the head-to-head to?
Part of the reason as to why seems to be is Vetheo himself has been quite lackluster in his new team environment. Easily the people’s MVP of last year’s Spring, Vetheo has been a fly on the wall in his new team. He does not have the same carry potency as he did on Misfits last year, and he is struggling to have the same impact on a team where he has more good players to play around.
This is one of the primary reasons that I had Malrang as the split MVP as that year. If you go back and read my blog post on the topic, my primary reasoning for choosing Malrang over Vetheo as 2022 LEC Spring MVP was because Vetheo was propped up heavily by Shalatan’s mid lane pressure as well as Mersa’s Yuumi picks. If you remember, a lot of those historic comebacks also came off the back of Shalatan securing the original Chemtech Soul, which was later removed for how absurdly game warping it was. While I think Vetheo is definitely mechanically capable of being the same player as he was during his MVP run, I do not think he has the right resources to prop him up for that kind of run again.
And that brings me to my second point, which is Xerxe. Now, in my last video, I did explain how Xerxe could be a potential shortcoming to this team, because he did not fit in stylistically with what the team needed. With strong laners like Vetheo and Patrik, you would want a Jankos or Markoon type jungler to facilitate the laners so they can flourish and carry the teamfights. Xerxe has never been a ganking jungler, and his over reliance on farm takes away from additional resources, such as pressure and camps, that could be funneled into the carries. Because of this synergy issue, Excel often