Immortals has announced a surprise change to its League of Legends roster for the first week of the Summer Split, dropping its six-time LCS champion jungler Jake ‘Xmithie’ Puchero.
Immortals posted a video showcasing the lineup for its fixtures against FlyQuest and Counter Logic Gaming, with the notable absence of 29-year-old Xmithie shocking fans and analysts alike. With Xmithie dropping down into the academy team for week one, Nicholas ‘Potluck’ Pollock has been promoted to main jungler.
In a video posted by the organisation after the roster announcement, general manager Keaton Cryer and head coach Thomas ‘Zaboutine’ Si-Hassen discuss the team’s strategy following a disappointing Spring Split that saw Immortals miss out on the playoffs. They claim that they want to experiment with the starting roster to improve “synergy” and “cohesiveness” and make it explicit that it is not solely about certain players outperforming each other. This means we will likely see Xmithie back on the main roster soon, but to kick off the split without him is certainly a bold call.
At the time of writing, Xmithie hasn’t commented on being dropped from the main roster.
New Split, who dis?
— Immortals (@Immortals) June 10, 2020
The decision has been met with widespread surprise by the LCS community, including a number of casters and analysts who were definitely blindsided by the news. Sam ‘Kobe’ Hartman-Kenzler wondered:“How can you drop Xmithie???” while Isaac ‘Azael’ Cummings-Bentley warned that Immortals fans would not be pleased if this radical decision doesn’t get results.
Xmithie not in the Immortals starting lineup for Summer – WOW.
Putting your best player on the bench will demand immediate results out of Potluck or IMT fans will be VERY unhappy! https://t.co/Wi1UdcM0JM
— Isaac CB (@RiotAzael) June 10, 2020
Not many would have predicted that Xmithie, who this time last year was coming into Summer Split off the back of winning three LCS titles in a row with a dominant Team Liquid, would now be fighting for a place on a starting lineup for a team that finished eight in the league.