League of Legends

Svenskeren explains why his LCS titles with TSM 'weren’t that special'

by Isaac McIntyre

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Reigning MVP and Evil Geniuses franchise star Dennis ‘Svenskeren’ Johnsen has revealed why lifting the LCS trophy with his new team would mean so much, and why the three he won with TSM aren’t that special.

Svenskeren has already had a hugely successful LCS career, sparked by his move from Europe’s SK Gaming to TSM in 2015. After a grand final loss to Counter Logic Gaming, that Team SoloMid roster went on to win three championships in a row.

While three championship rings might be a great achievement for any League of Legends player, Svenskeren has admitted he doesn’t see his previous LCS titles — earned against Cloud9 and Immortals — as anything too special.

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Riot Games
Svenskeren forged an LCS dynasty with Bjergsen and Doublelift in TSM's superteam during the 2016 and 2017 seasons.

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According to the Evil Geniuses star, the fact his victories came amid one of the best rosters North America has ever seen, led in part by NA veterans Søren ‘Bjergsen’ Bjerg and Yiliang ‘Doublelift’ Peng, they “aren’t a big achievement.”

“I only won the title with TSM, and I personally don’t think it’s a big achievement, as I don’t think I contributed much to winning the title back then,” Svenskeren explained in an interview with Inven. “My first goal in 2020 is to win [with EG].”

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One thing that motivates the former TSM star, who most recently spent a two-year stint on North American darlings Cloud9, to win in 2020, is the fact he would be a centerpiece player for the team, instead of just another cog in the roster’s gears.

“This is a fresh team, so there’s nowhere for us to go but up,” he added. “This is a new roster… however, as all new teams go, everyone is super motivated, and for everyone to give their 110% from the start is something that I really like.”

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Riot Games
Svenskeren made it to the Worlds semifinals, but didn't win any silverware during his two-year stint with Cloud9.

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As well as the newly-built team coming together to allegedly “fix the dumpster fire LCS,” as chief executive Nicole LaPointe Jameson so nicely put it, Svenskeren admits he’s facing his own personal challenges heading into the new season.

Riot unveiled a new Summoner’s Rift to the world late last year, one that comes with new powers granted from drakes, and more importantly a dynamic map. While everyone is playing under the new rules, jungle has been affected the most.

“Well, Riot nerfed the jungle again this year, so this year’s going to be very hard… I might need some support,” the Dane joked of his potential individual performances. “In terms of picks, I don’t think it’ll be too different from the Worlds meta though.”

Riot Games
Riot Games
Svenskeren wants to prove himself as the focal point of a team, away from the shadow of Bjergsen and Doublelift.

And even if Svenskeren isn’t joking about the nerfs, he has a roster built for success under his leadership. Two-time world champion Bae ‘Bang’ Jun-sik headlines the rest of the squad, while European wildcard Daniele ‘Jiizuke’ di Mauro and Tristan ‘Zeyzal’ Stidam also add veteran stock to EG’s LoL lineup.

EG’s campaign for the title is set to start on January 25, as the LCS settles into its new three-day format with an added Monday evening timeslot.

Svenskeren’s bid for silverware may have already been handed a boost too — four-time defending champs Team Liquid are already under the pump, with big-money signing Mads ‘Broxah’ Brock-Pedersen potentially set to miss the start of the split due to visa issues. Eugene ‘Pobelter’ Park may replace the absent star.