The Lock In tournament was a fantastic new event added to the start of North America’s LCS season this year. It allowed teams to get in some exhibition-style reps “on stage” without the stress of actual playoff international event qualification. For teams like Immortals and CLG, Lock In provided more time for visa issues to resolve before the real Spring Split games begin. And for the stronger teams, like Cloud9 and Team Liquid, Lock In gave plenty of real-time preparation for best-of series, drafting, and developing the meta. For fans, this tournament delivered on numerous high moments, including introducing rookies and high-dollar imports, Zven’s Pentakills, and two five-game series. However, Team Liquid’s bottom lane “Tacticore” securing multiple 2v2 kills in laning phase throughout the tournament might be the most memorable aspect of Lock In.
CLG Wildturtle + Smoothie
Tactical kicked off the tournament with a First Blood Double Kill with his Samira against CLG. CoreJJ (Leona) engaged onto Wildturtle (Kai’Sa) with Zenith Blade and Shield of Daybreak. Smoothie (Sett) tried to keep Tactical at bay, but he was able to close the gap using Cleanse and Wild Rush. Smoothie Ignited Tactical and CoreJJ Ignited Wildturtle, who responded with Cleanse-Flash. Tactical follows with his own Flash-auto for the kill. Smoothie tries to escape, but he did not have Flash to begin the engagement. CoreJJ stunned him with Leona’s combo, and Tactical finishes Smoothie off with Flair.
100 FBI + Huhi
Versus 100 Thieves, Tactical (Samira) started by proccing Huhi’s (Lulu) Guardian by auto-attacking FBI (Apehelios). CoreJJ (Leona) engaged onto FBI while he was extended beyond his minion wave, Igniting him in the process. Tactical dashed forward with Wild Rush, which prompted Huhi to Exhaust him and FBI to Flash. Tactical Cleansed, CoreJJ Flashed to land Aftershock, and they cut down FBI with auto attacks through Lulu’s shield. Huhi also Flashed to disengage.
TSM Lost + SwordArt
CoreJJ landed his Nautilus hook onto Lost (Kai’Sa) to kick off the First Blood versus TSM. Just as the melee minion died, CoreJJ locked up Lost and unloaded his whole kit alongside Tactical (Miss Fortune). Lost immediately Healed, but CoreJJ followed with Ignite, and SwortArt (Leona) landed his combo onto CoreJJ. Lost Flashed with a sliver of health, which Tactical matched, and SwordArt Ignited Tactical. CoreJJ body-blocked the Preyseeker, while SwordArt continued chipping down Tactical’s health bar. Rather than Flash away, SwordArt turned for one last Zenith Blade onto Tactical, but CoreJJ killed him before it finished. CoreJJ finally Flash-hooked Lost for the Double Kill.
FLY Johnsun + Diamond (Game 1)
In Game 1 of the FlyQuest series, Tacticore took another 2v2 kill with the Samira-Leona duo. CoreJJ landed the Zenith Blade-Shield of Daybreak combo onto Johnsun’s Seraphine. Tactical followed through with the Wild Rush. Johnsun Cleanse-Flashed , while Diamond (Maokai) Arcane Smashed and Exhausted Tactical. Just as Johnsun charmed Tactical with Encore, CoreJJ hit level 6 and cast Solar Flare. The slow on Johnsun was just enough for Tactical to Flash, auto, and dash to kill both members of FLY’s bottom lane before dying to turret.
FLY Johnsun + Diamond (Game 2)
For Game 2, Tactical kept Samira, but CoreJJ selected Rell support. Around 6 minutes in, CoreJJ wrapped behind Johnsun (Kai’Sa) as he overextended in lane. Johnsun Supercharged to run away from Tactical as he used Wild Rush, but CoreJJ’s Crash Down-Attract and Repel combo stunned him just ahead of the turret. Johnsun did not have Flash or Heal. Diamond Flashed over the wall to try to shield his AD carry, but the Ignite and Tactical’s damage were enough to get the kill.
C9 Zven + Vulcan (Game 1)
Tacticore even scored a pair of 2v2 kills in Game 1 of their final series against Cloud9. The first one occurred when Team Liquid pushed a wave into C9’s turret. Vulcan (Sett) stunned Tactical (Xayah) with Facebreaker while CoreJJ (Leona) moved towards river. Zven (Kai’Sa) landed several Icathian Rain rockets and Vulcan Ignited. Tactical Flash-Bladecallered, CoreJJ Flash into Shield of Daybreak, and Zven Flashed all at the same time. Both marksmen auto-attacked each other to death in a one-for-one trade.
Minutes later, TL’s bottom duo killed Vulcan with no trade kill. The broadcast never showed the full replay, but CoreJJ stuns Vulcan long enough for Tactical to throw several Clean Cuts through him and Bladecaller for the root. Vulcan threw the Haymaker to shield some of the damage, but it was not enough to survive through CoreJJ’s Ignite.
C9 Zven + Vulcan (Game 2)
CoreJJ busted out the Blitzcrank for Game 2 versus Cloud9, and it paid off with securing First Blood in the bottom lane 2v2. Right as Tactical (Kai’Sa) used Icathian Rain to clear the caster minions, CoreJJ threw out Rocket Grab and pulled Zven (Senna) into turret range. The burst damage from Power Fist, Static Field and the turret shots killed Zven before he could Flash.
Team Liquid’s bottom lane had the most aggression in lane of any LCS team. CoreJJ and Tactical took down most of the best duos in the league, including 100 Thieves and Cloud9. They are looking like a key factor in Team Liquid’s strategy, involving firm dragon control and drating for bottom lane priority. Their first match of the 2021 Spring Split is Friday, February 5 against Immortals.
Best Bot Lane in the LCS?
There is no doubt that Tacticore like to get in there and put pressure on their opponents. They do so early and often in most games. The fact that they have done so in nearly half of their games so far in 2021 is a clear indicator that they like their chances in every 2v2 matchup. If there was any doubt about who the best bot lane duo in the LCS are, Tactical and CoreJJ have pushed those away with their incredible play so far this season.
Listen to The Liquid Lowdown Episode 1: https://www.spreaker.com/user/10719087/liquidlowdownep1