As the regular season of the LPL 2020 Spring split is nearing its end, so is the weekly look at each individual team of the LPL. This week’s team is Dominus Esports, a team that failed to make their mark in Spring.
Natural joined the team in the Summer split of last year. Previously known as Ale, he was one of the top laners for OMG for Spring of last year, alongside Xiyang. Despite OMG’s struggles, he showed great promise and was given the chance to join Dominus. Alongside their new top laner, Dominus recovered from their poor start to the split, almost making it to playoffs. Natural is a carry top laner by heart. His Malphite game versus Suning was his first tank game of the split. While yes, he is very proficient on the likes of Irelia or Aatrox, he doesn’t seem to play tanks at all. And with champions like Ornn being meta since the start of the year, and other tanks slowly showing up in the meta, the team’s fans can’t help but wonder if Natural can handle the top lane alone.
One of the three legacy SinoDragon players still on this team, XiaoPeng has been on the roster for a long time. Before SinoDragon rebranded into Dominus and before SinoDragon were an LPL team, XiaoPeng was their jungler. He fought alongside Mark and Gala to make it into the LPL. While the team’s results haven’t been the best, XiaoPeng has performed well ever since joining the LPL. A Kindred player, XiaoPeng loves to pray on the enemy jungler and is known for his early aggression. The heart of the team, Dominus relies on XiaoPeng to get them started on the map. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case and this leaves Dominus lost on the map, usually resulting in defeat. This split hasn’t been kind to XiaoPeng, as he was unable to get his hands on Kindred, and he seems to be struggling a lot more than usual.
In one of the biggest off-season transfers, Xiye left World Elite and joined Dominus. Despite being regarded by many to be a better mid laner than Twilla, now known by XiaoWei, the team lacked the synergy needed. Dominus seemed to have lost their identity without XiaoWei and found themselves in a dilemma. Either play the better performing mid laner or play the mid laner with more synergy. After multiple games rotating in and out, Dominus finally made the call to stick with Xiye. While the road hasn’t been easy, the team started to look better, making cleaner calls and playing to each other’s strengths. As for Xiye, he loves to dive in and get the job done himself. Regardless if he is on assassins like Leblanc, mages like Lissandra or carries like Corki, Xiye can be found in the heat of the battle, taking down your backline.
The second player of the SinoDragon trio, Gala is the carry for Dominus. As mentioned above with XiaoPeng, he has been with the team for quite some time now. The main difference being his performances. While XiaoPeng was once celebrating as being one the better proactive junglers, many feel like Gala never proved his mettle in the LPL. He was never able to stand up versus the likes of Uzi, iBoy, JackeyLove or LWX. And even when compared to the new, young talents like ZWuji or Asura, Gala still fails to perform. As the Spring split comes to a close, Gala will need to up his performances in Summer, if Dominus want to have a good shot at playoffs.
The partner in crime of Gala for many years now, Mark rounds out the SinoDragon trio. Like the other 2 before him, Mark has been with this team since before they were an LPL team. Gala has been the only carry that Mark has ever played with professionally, and so his synergy with Gala is impressive. With a passion for engaging tanks, Mark’s most played champion is Tahm Kench, which he uses not as a defensive tool, but as a tower diving tank. With his expertise on how to play engage tanks, Mark helps calls the shots, and can often be found diving turrets alongside XiaoPeng. Despite his tanks being meta for the Spring split, Mark failed to perform at his usual level, only starting to come to his own at the end of the split. Dominus will need Mark to play his best if they want to make playoffs in the Summer.
Spring hasn’t been easy for Dominus. Although they still can mathematically make playoffs, their chances are nearly nil. At this point, the best they can do is start getting it together and get ready for Summer. And they have been showing glimpses of greatness. XiaoPeng has been a consistent MVP for the team. Mark has finally regained his form and Xiye seems to be working better with the team. Now, all they can do is finish out Spring and keep it up in the Summer split.
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