The cream often rise to the top, and these teams have definitely set themselves apart with the most LoL grand finals appearances.
As an esport, League of Legends is extremely competitive, filled with upsets, clean sweeps, and close series. But ever so often, a team dominates the scene that it becomes all but expected for them to appear at the grand finals of most international events.
These squads exemplify skill and strategy, etching their names in esports history. Their recurrent presence showcases a devotion to mastery, pushing the boundaries of competition, which earns them millions of devoted fans and inspires players. This article will take a look at these commanding presences.
Royal Never Give Up (formerly Starhorn Royal Club) — 5
Royal Never Give Up (RNG) emerged as a powerhouse in China’s LPL scene. Royal Club had two consecutive grand finals appearances during Worlds, placing second in 2013 and 2014. Since then, the mechanically-gifted ADC Uzi has served as the team’s foundation. Additionally, their Jungler inSec popped off in 2014 with his flashy plays and innovative Lee Sin gameplay.
The team hadn’t seen a grand finals participation in international events until 2018 when RNG won the Mid-Season Invitational (MSI) against Kingzone DragonX. The exhilarating clash showcased RNG’s prowess on the global stage, firmly solidifying their reputation as an international contender. Another spectacular achievement followed this victory, as RNG claimed the 2021 MSI title, triumphing over DWG Kia and reaffirming their dominance. Their victories didn’t stop there, as RNG continued to shine, defeating T1 in the grand finals of the 2022 MSI, marking their triumphant return to the winner’s circle.
Counter Logic Gaming — 7
Counter Logic Gaming (CLG), hailing from North America, first won an international event during the Season 6 Intel Extreme Masters, besting TSM. The event also included Worlds Season 1 winners Fnatic. CLG would go on to meet TSM in two more international event grand finals and often come up short, like during the IGN Proleague Season 4 and 2012 MLG Spring Championship.
CLG’s highest accomplishment was placing second in the 2016 MSI against then SK Telecom T1. All in all, Counter Logic Gaming appeared seven times in International Events.
Team SoloMid — 7
Team SoloMid (TSM), a household name in the North American scene, has had a rollercoaster of a journey. TSM had four finals participations in 2012, winning two: 2012 MLG Spring Championship and IGN Proleague Season 4 against CLG. The team led by midlaner Reginald would also clinch second place in the IEM Season VI – Global Challenge Kiev and MLG Summer Arena against Moscow Five and Azubu Blaze, respectively.
The “Bjergsen Era” led to several domestic victories and memorable rivalries. TSM’s win in IEM Season IX – World Championship against Team WE was their most notable win on the international grand stage. Lastly, ADC superstar Doublelift joining the team was just what they needed to win Rift Rivals 2017 – NA vs. EU versus Unicorns of Love. This was the seventh and last time TSM has appeared in the grand finals of an international event.
Fnatic — 8
Fnatic, Europe’s pride, boasts a storied history in LoL esports. Their charismatic leader, xPeke, pulled off the iconic backdoor in the 2013 Worlds, etching it into history. The next time the team participated in a Worlds grand final was their 2018 run, losing to champions Invictus Gaming.
Aside from that legendary Worlds Season 1 win, Fnatic tends to lose decisively in international events. Like with their clean sweep loss against SKT Telecom T1 in the IEM Season X – World Championship and another clean sweep loss against KT Rolster Bullets in the IEM Season 8 World Championship.
T1 (formerly SK Telecom T1) — 12
T1’s journey is a story of pure dominance. With three Worlds championships in 2013, 2015, and 2016, it became evident that the whole team was full of ace players, without even mentioning the unkillable demon king Faker. Despite their dominance, T1 is not without its fair share of upsets, like not winning a game in the grand finals of Worlds 2017 against Samsung Galaxy or the remarkably close series against DRX in Worlds 2022.