Going into the 2019 season, it was our intention for Jonathan "Grig" Armao to be our starting jungler, until he discovered pain in his wrist that got progressively worse over the course of the off season. We went through a long diagnostic process and recovery process while Matthew "Akaadian" Higginbotham was promoted to our LCS team, and Gabriel "Fanatiik" Saucier was brought on as our Academy substitute for the short term. After consistent physical therapy, Grig's wrist seemed to be in shape for him to practice, but it was late into the season and Akaadian had integrated well into our current structure that we decided it would be best for Grig to finish off the split in Academy and for Akaadian to be our primary jungler for the remainder of Spring.
For the summer, both Akaadian and Grig will be our starting junglers for LCS. We will be using the time before LCS starts as well as some of the earlier season to determine how to leverage two players for the position to strengthen the team. We will keep everyone updated as we go through this process, but please cheer on both of our junglers in the meantime.
We revamped our Academy program this year and while we are delighted with the Spring 2019 Academy title, we feel that there is a lot more work to be done to help discover and train new talent in our region and we hope to continue to push on that boundary. With both Akaadian and Grig starting for the LCS team, we're happy to announce that Mingyi "Spica" Lu will be our new academy jungler. We initially met Spica at Riot's Scouting Grounds at the end of 2017 where we were impressed by his skill and work ethic -- he is joining us in Los Angeles after finishing up his senior year in high school. We're also excited to invite our trainee AD Carry, Johnson "Johnsun" Nguyen to work with our academy team pending his visa approval.