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League of Legends

2019 Play-In Profile: Lowkey Esports (LK)

Lowkey qualified for the 2019 League of Legends World Championship Play-In stage.

This year Vietnam sends Lowkey Esports as its second seed. Lowkey was a third-fourth place team in the VCS for most of the year, qualifying to Worlds by winning the second place match in Summer Playoffs. They have maintained essentially the same roster all year, but Lowkey did rebrand from Forever Friends Gaming after Spring Split, and they moved Hani to starter and KingJ to coach. 

This is Nguyễn “Hani” Tuấn Phát and Đỗ “DNK” Ngọc Khải’s second year as pros, and Nguyễn “Artifact” Văn Hậu has played in the VCS since 2017. Nguyễn Phước “Celebrity” Long Hiệp and Bùi Nguyễn “Venus” Quốc Hoàng have the most experience within Lowkey. Venus played at Worlds 2017 as the Jungler for Young Generation. He has since role-swapped to Support. Celebrity has been a pro since 2015 when Vietnam was still part of the GPL. This will be his first World Championship, even though he made it to the International Wildcard Tournaments for MSI and Worlds with Saigon Jokers back in 2016. 

Lowkey’s greatest strength is their Baron control. They have a 64.3 percent Baron rate, which is highest in the VCS. Artifact and Celebrity are Lowkey’s players to watch, as they deal most of the team’s damage on scaling picks like Corki, Azir, Xayah and Ezreal. Compared to their VCS counterpart, GAM, Lowkey will play much slower, and draft much more predictably. 

Ever since GIGABYTE Marines shook up their group at Worlds 2017, fans have kept their eyes on Vietnamese teams. At MSI 2018, EVOS won 3-1 over SuperMassive to qualify to the Main Event. They secured wins over Fnatic and Team Liquid, but ultimately finished in last place. Phong Vu Buffalo was the VCS representative at Worlds 2018, auto-seeding into the Main Event. Again, they took games off of G2 Esports and Flash Wolves, but played spoiler more than contender to escape the group. This year’s MSI featured Phong Vu Buffalo, yet again, who qualified for the Main event by beating Vega Squadron 3-2. They won both games versus G2 (who would later win the event), but finished in last place. Lowkey will be fighting to join GAM in the Main Event, most likely competing with Hong Kong Attitude, Unicorns of Love and Royal Youth. 

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