Several players from 2017 Immortals found success in the 2018 Spring Split

An Echo of Immortals in the 2018 Spring Split

Leading into the 2018 Spring Split, ESPN’s Jacob Wolf reported that Immortals would not be included in North America’s franchised LCS. The League of Legends community responded to the decision with disbelief, anger and confusion. They also wondered, “If IMT did not get accepted into the LCS, then which teams are safe?”

A Brief History of Immortals

Immortals entered the NA LCS in 2016 with Huni, Reignover, Pobelter, Wildturtle, and Adrian

Image from LoL Esports Flickr

Immortals entered the NA LCS in 2016, announcing Huni, Reignover, Pobelter, WildTurtle and Adrian as its roster. Dylan Falco would coach. They finished the 2016 Spring and Summer regular seasons in first and second, respectively, but only secured third in both playoffs. IMT barely missed Worlds that year, because they lost to Cloud9 in the Regional Qualifier.

In 2017, Immortals broke up and completely rebuilt its roster around Pobelter. Flame, Dardoch, Cody Sun, and Olleh joined as starters, while Anda signed as a substitute. Hermes moved up to fill the head coaching position. During 2017 Spring Split, this roster finished seventh in the regular season, narrowly missing playoffs. In the mid-season, Immortals traded Dardoch to CLG for Xmithie, imported Ssong as head coach, and brought on Stunt as a substitute. The invigorated team rose to second place during the Summer regular season and playoffs. IMT booked their first ticket to Worlds, where they finished 14th-16th.

And Immortals’ time in the NA LCS ended there. They would not get a new opportunity to dominate North America like 2016, or go to Worlds like 2017. The team fully disbanded, and the league moved on.

EX-IMMORTALS IN 2018

Immortals traded Dardoch to CLG in 2017

Image from LoL Esports Flickr

Following Riot’s permanent partners announcement, Team Liquid acquired most of Immortals’ released roster. Xmithie, Pobelter, Cody Sun, Anda and Olleh joined the organization initially, but Cody Sun went on to 100 Thieves and Anda went to FlyQuest. Flame and Stunt signed with FlyQuest, as well. TSM picked up Coach Ssong to lead their new roster.

Four fifths of Immortals’ 2017 roster met in the last stage of playoffs. Xmithie, Pobelter, Olleh and Cody Sun made it to the finals, yet again, with Team Liquid winning the whole split and 100 Thieves second. Flame, Anda and Stunt finished the split in eighth place, and Coach Ssong finished fifth-sixth with TSM. However, this was the first time Anda and Stunt entered a split as starters. Flame performed perfectly fine as an individual top laner. And Coach Ssong helped build TSM into a formidable team, even if they fell short in playoffs.

Looking back at previous iterations of Immortals, Huni, Dardoch and Adrian made up three fifths of Echo Fox this split, finishing third in playoffs. Wildturtle joined FlyQuest in eighth place, but had several stand out performances himself. Reignover played with CLG to secure seventh place, and Dylan just led Fnatic to their first LCS title in two years.

Immortals Echoing through the LCS

Olleh, Cody Sun, and Zmithie used to play on Immortals in 2017

Image from LoL Esports Flickr

Each of these individuals had significant development during their time on Immortals. Ssong, Huni, Reignover, Flame, and Olleh might not be in North America without importing with IMT. Xmithie and Pobelter might not be as renowned as they are now without taking Immortals to Worlds. Cody Sun, Anda and Stunt might not have starting roles this year. Wildturtle and Adrian’s stock definitely rose after their time on IMT, and Dardoch’s trade may have spurred changes with him. Dylan Falco got his first coaching job on Immortals, long before joining Fnatic.

Although Immortals’ organization no longer plays in the LCS, their players and staff have spread throughout the league. Many individuals had their LCS debut with IMT, and, through their development, upgraded the ecosystem overall. IMT put up strong performances throughout 2016 and 2017, leaving their mark in the history books. Although its banner no longer hangs in the LCS arena, Immortals’ legacy echoes on through the players and coaches they brought to the table.

credits

Images: LoL Esports Flickr

The Game Haus covered the NA LCS finals LIVE. You can ‘Like’ The Game Haus on Facebook and ‘Follow’ us on Twitter for articles, pictures, videos, interviews, and more content from Thomas and other contributors!

Team Liquid won the 2018 NA LCS Spring Split finals against 100 Thieves

The NA LCS Spring Split closes with 100 Thieves skunked by Team Liquid 0-3

Leading into Sunday’s match versus 100 Thieves, Team Liquid rolled into The Fillmore Theatre for a red carpet treatment. When asked about facing Meteos, Xmithie commented “it’s going to be a really tight match-up. It’s whoever the better team is, to be honest.”

The series turned out to be almost completely one-sided, favoring Team Liquid. 100 Thieves drafted advantages for every lane over the course of the best-of-three, but Liquid responded with better execution overall. Each subsequent game looked worse and worse for 100 Thieves, with compounding mistakes spelling their downfall. Here is how it went down.

Team Liquid won the 2018 NA LCS Spring Split finals by beating 100 Thieves

Image from LoL Esports Flickr

Game One

Impact’s pocket pick locked in for the first game seemed to trip up 100 Thieves. A couple of failed ganks top-side allowed Doublelift and Olleh to gain the early lead in bottom lane. Getting zoned from CS and losing significant trades, Cody Sun and Aphromoo rotated top and secured First Blood. A teamfight win for Team Liquid gained them enough of a lead to Rift Herald, the first three turrets, and all three Drakes. 100 Thieves did gain momentum by picking off Doublelift and Pobelter and pressuring Baron. Xmithie made a miracle steal, which Liquid used to end the game in 29:33.

Game Two

100 Thieves opted for a strange extended level one invade onto Xmithie’s red buff at the beginning of game two. Impact and Meteos both died in the top lane around five minutes, but the real action started around 14 minutes. With Cody Sun and Aphromoo fairly low health, Liquid 4-man dove the duo resulting in a Double Kill for Pobelter’s Azir. Pobelter came up huge again when 100 Thieves collapsed onto Xmithie near the Baron pit. He Shurima Shuffled four members into his team for another Double Kill and a four-for-one. Liquid easily took the Baron at 20 minutes and closed in 26 minutes.

Game Three

Pr0lly and 100 Thieves went into game three with a top lane focused game plan. They drafted Ssumday Gnar and sent Meteos top to help him secure a Double Kill. A few minutes later, Ryu and Meteos helped Ssumday dive Impact under turret in a one-for-one. Meteos returned a third time to dive Impact all the way near his tier two turret, but Xmithie Skarner ulted him for a one-for-one again. Team Liquid then won a skirmish bottom lane, punished Ssusmday’s over-extension top lane, and took an Infernal Drake to equalize the game. Around 20 minutes, Meteos opted to camp a bottom lane brush for an extended time to surprise Impact, but got dragged by Xmithie under turret again without securing the kill. Liquid rotated and took the Baron, then dominated the last five minutes to end.

Team Liquid’s win marked the second 3-0 victory of the weekend, with Echo Fox defeating Clutch Gaming one day earlier in a similar fashion. This is Liquid’s first ever LCS split win, making them the fourth organization to hang their banner. They will participate in Riot’s Mid-Season Invitational in Europe May 3 to May 20, representing North America. Team Liquid, 100 Thieves, and Echo Fox will also represent North America at Rift Rivals July 2-July 8, facing Europe’s best teams.

credits

Images: LoL Esports Flickr

The Game Haus covered the NA LCS finals LIVE in Miami. You can ‘Like’ The Game Haus on Facebook and ‘Follow’ us on Twitter for articles, videos, pictures, interviews, and more from Thomas and other contributors!

FOX Altec did not prepare anything special for Clutch Gaming's bot lane

FOX Altec on facing Clutch’s bottom lane for third place: “I was not afraid of Clutch’s 2-v-2.”

Echo Fox decimated Clutch Gaming in their third place match of the NA LCS Spring Split playoffs. Their top-side trio of Huni-Dardoch-Fenix took over every single game, leaving both bottom lanes to their own devices. Such inactive bottom lanes are very different from the other games of quarterfinals and semifinals.

Quarters and Semis

Looking at Team Liquid’s victories over Cloud9, Doublelift and Olleh accounted for roughly 73 percent kill participation. Sneaky was involved in 86 percent of Cloud9’s kills. In the TSM-Clutch series, Zven and Mithy combined for an 8-27-23 scoreline (1.15 KDA) versus Apollo and Hakuho’s 20-7-48 (9.71 KDA). When Echo Fox lost to Team Liquid and Clutch lost to 100 Thieves in semifinals, Doublelift and Cody Sun won Player of the Series, with Doublelift specifically dominating TL’s series. Altec and Adrian combined for a 1.31 KDA in that series.

Third place match

Compare those matches to the third place match. Altec only participated in 36 percent of Echo Fox’s kills. Even as support, Adrian was only involved in 51 percent. FOX barely used their bottom lane to take the 3-0 over Clutch Gaming, turning the “bot-centric meta” on its head.

FOX Altec did not preapre anything special before facing Clutch Gaming in the third place match

Image from LoL Esports Flickr

When asked about preparing to face Apollo and Hakuho leading into the third place match, Altec responded “I was not afraid of Clutch’s 2-v-2. Sure, Hakuho has looked good on Thresh, but Adrian and I have unique picks of our own that we can pull out whenever we need to. We practiced a lot in scrims, but we didn’t prepare anything special for this series.”

Altec and Adrian played fine. They didn’t need to do more than keep Apollo and Hakuho glued to bottom lane by constantly pushing. Echo Fox only banned Thresh once, but Clutch drafted Tahm Kench and Braum for Hakuho, while Apollo’s Caitlyn and Varus failed to earn any early pressure. Adrian’s Nami was crucial in disengaging any roams and ganks from Febiven and Lira, keeping Altec safe.

Fenix, Dardoch, and Huni’s spectacular play won this series. With their snowballs rolling, Altec and Adrian simply needed to play safe, which they accomplished. Clutch’s bottom lane was unable to gain leads for themselves, and they watched the rest of their team crumbled.

credits

Images: LoL Esports Flickr

We are covering the NA LCS finals LIVE. You can ‘Like’ The Game Haus on Facebook and ‘Follow’ us on Twitter for more sports and esports articles from other great TGH writers along with Thomas!

100 Thieves’ First Place Heist

When 100 Thieves entered the North American League Championship Series in 2018, nobody could’ve expected much from them. Despite a solid roster, this new organisation was going up against the powerful line-ups and established infrastructure of old guard teams like Team SoloMid, Cloud9, Team Liquid, and Counter Logic-Gaming. With the likeable face of owner Matthew “Nadeshot” Haag at the helm, 100 Thieves looked poised to establish their brand, but do little else. However, the Thieves ended up doing far more, pulling off the ultimate heist to steal the coveted first place spot at the end of the regular spring season before anyone knew what was happening.

Their ascension to first was a genuine surprise to fans and analysts alike, so it’s worth taking a closer look at what got them there. Will the strengths that took them this far be enough to carry them to a victory in their first ever split? Let’s have a look.

Image courtesy of LoL Esports

 

A Favorable Battlefield

 

The Early Meta

The early spring split meta was characterized by a focus on the top lane. Carries were in, while the majority of tanks seemed comparatively weak. Junglers tended to roam towards the top side of the map. While both mid and bot lane play was defined by this focus, with these lanes expected to cede or apply pressure for the sake of top lane plays. With this both lanes forced to be wary of roams or teleports from fed carry toplaners. Teams like Echo Fox and Cloud 9 understood this, building their incredible early-split records by effectively utilizing their confident top lane carry players in Heo “Huni” Seung-hoon and Eric “Licorice” Ritchie.

It was in this meta that 100 Thieves first found success, with a strong early record, despite seemingly playing a somewhat different meta. Where other teams looked northward, the Thieves chose to play largely around their botside duo, Cody “Cody Sun” Sun and Zaqueri “Aphromoo” Black. Early ganks and pressure would, compared to other teams, be more directed at Cody Sun, who boasted one of the highest first blood participation stats of any AD carry. Cody Sun would prove that he was worthy of the attention, consistently able to snowball small leads to become the primary late game carry.

Image courtesy of LoL Esports

 

The Meta Moves On

As the split progressed, each patch would further entice tanks to return to the top lane. Nerfs to one of the most reliable tank bullies, Gnar, tank-suited items like Banner of Command becoming increasingly attractive, nerfs to Cinderhulk specifically targeting jungle tanks and the removal of Tracker’s Knife giving top/jungle duos less vision to play with all contributed to top lane tanks becoming the norm again. This was a change that suited 100 Thieves toplaner Kim “Ssumday” Chan-ho. Though Ssumday has played a large variety of champions in his career, he has traditionally looked the strongest on tanks. In tank focused metas he can be an impassable rock both in the top lane and in teamfights.

As a result of these changes, the meta shifted towards the bottom half the map, yet surprisingly, 100 Thieves attention didn’t always stay there. Though Cody Sun continued to be a major part of the Thieves’ victories, it was as the top/jungle power duos of the league began to falter that 100 Thieves chose to prove that they could play to both sides of the map. Though they didn’t necessarily transition to a top-focused style, they proved that Ssumday couldn’t be underestimated, allowing him to butcher his enemies on a surprise Darius pick. They also sometimes chose to give him more attention on picks like Cho’Gath, on which he could carry while still being the Thieves’ primary frontline. Though he still remained mostly a tank player, it was times like this that one remembers that Ssumday has in the past been a consistent and terrifying carry on picks like Fiora, and even Kled. By the end of the regular split, there remained no doubt that he ought to be feared if he chooses to bring more aggressive picks out again.

 

Credit Where Credit is Due

This story is about far more than Cody Sun and Ssumday, however. Credit must also be given to jungler William “Meteos” Hartman and midlaner Yoo “Ryu” Sang-wook. Meteos had the highest first blood participation percentage in the entire league, ensuring his team regularly got an early leg up. Mostly playing champions with powerful pick and engage potential like Skarner, Sejuani, and Zac, Meteos would also often help the Thieves find beneficial midgame fights. Also using creative angles and vision control fought for alongside Ryu to find flanks and engage opportunities. Though not always as aggressive as junglers like Joshua “Dardoch” Hartnett or Dennis “Svenskeren” Johnsen, Meteos’ high kill participation stat is testament to his ability to be in the right place at the right time. He was able to repeatedly demonstrate confident and intelligent frontline play.

Though one of the less flashy players of the team, Ryu also provided immense value. Often in the past a ‘role’ player, less interested in stealing the glory than in setting up his team for victory, Ryu has looked comfortable in a meta interested primarily in the side lanes. His Ryze has looked fearsome, giving 100 Thieves’ the opportunity for map plays at various points in the game, and safely scaling to the late game to provide an AP counterpoint to Cody Sun’s damage. Another popular Ryu pick that excels in sidelane metas is Taliyah, whose Weaver’s Wall ultimate can be used to roam, block escape routes, force fights and secure objectives.

Praise must also be given to Aphromoo, one of North America’s most storied supports, who played one of his best splits in years. Cody Sun may have often carried 100 Thieves to victory, but the story of Cody Sun must also be the story of the man who protected him. Aphromoo boasted a 100% winrate on Braum over 7 games. Yet he also broke from the established meta at times to deliver incredible carry performances of his own on champions like Thresh and Blitzcrank. One notable play in their second game versus Team SoloMid saw Aphromoo making a split-second decision to engage with Rakan, despite the team being 4v5 at the time. The resulting teamfight win would catapult them ahead and lead to their victory.

Past this, Aphromoo also lends his incredible shotcalling prowess and experience to the team. Though he reportedly doesn’t solely shoulder the burden of shotcalling, he has time and time again proven his ability to keep a level head and make confident and smart calls in the tensest of situations. He has undoubtedly been one of the primary voices behind many of 100 Thieves team plays.

Image courtesy of LoL Esports

 

Playing the Map

Ryu, Meteos, and Aphromoo were often able to help 100 Thieves find good fights. Ssumday’s frontlining and Cody Sun’s ability as a carry were usually able to make sure they won them. But a good team knows when not to fight as well, and 100 Thieves was no different. Sometimes a lead can be built upon by taking fights and overpowering the opponents, but 100 Thieves regularly opted to instead extend their leads with clever map plays, wave control, and rotations.

One of the marks of a good team is never letting your opponent get something for nothing, and the Thieves would often respond to enemy picks or seized objectives by themselves rotating, setting up waves, or seizing vision control in crucial parts of the map. Fights would rarely be taken desperately, and 100 Thieves knew how to build up advantages and work from behind until they could set up a good fight.

 

Potential Pitfalls

Despite their strengths, possible weaknesses do exist. Champions like Ryze and Taliyah play to Ryu’s strengths, but they’re also two of the only champions Ryu has consistently played and looked good on. Though rarely the main target of ban focus, one has to wonder how Ryu would cope if his comfort picks were taken away. Meanwhile Ssumday, though having a champion pool demonstrably large enough to be able to avoid ban focus, is still likely to continue picking and playing tanks, and answers to this have already begun to pop up.

In the European LCS quarterfinals, Trundle, a strong anti-tank champion, was picked four times by three different teams, with a 100% winrate. Meta reactions of a different sort may prove problematic as well, with Kog’maw, a fantastic anti-tank ADC seeing play, and top lane counterpicks like Fiora still being viable (though also potentially effective in his own hands). Meanwhile Cody Sun hasn’t always looked quite as stellar in lane as he has in fights. Though the team plays with and around him very well, it remains to be seen how well he would cope if he were substantially set behind early. With aggressive and mechanically potent AD carries like Yiliang “Doublelift” Peng still in the playoffs, Cody Sun may meet his match.

These worries exist, yet are unlikely to be enough to oust 100 Thieves from the secure position they find themselves in. Weaknesses are part of any team, and 100 Thieves likely understand theirs. They also clearly understand the meta, both how to play it and when not to. The Thieves seem well suited to patch 8.5, and with this being the patch the playoffs are being played on, it’s hard to deny that 100 Thieves have a favourable battlefield.

 

The Value of Veterancy

Any team heading to its first playoffs will face certain issues. The possibility of nerves can’t be ignored for rookies, or even for experienced players who’ve nonetheless never played a best-of-5 series. The pressure of the situation can be immense, especially as whatever team you’ll be facing will have had at least a week to plan for facing you and you alone. Any player could be the focus of bans or jungle ganks. Strategies that served well during the regular season may not hold up to scrutiny and planning. And with all eyes on you, the pressure to perform, and the stress of making a mistake that could lose a crucial game, can add up. Many teams that have looked mighty in the regular season have faltered in their first test in the playoffs, like Team Liquid in the summer of 2015, or Immortals in both splits of 2016.

It is here that the value of a veteran squad comes to bear, and that is undoubtedly what 100 Thieves is. Toplaner Ssumday has played extensively in the LCK, one of the most competitive and high-level leagues in the world, and has been a finalist there multiple times. Jungler Meteos has won the North American LCS twice and attended worlds multiple times. Ryu, also a veteran of the Korean scene in the pre-LCK days, represented Europe at worlds, making it all the way to the semi-finals. Aphromoo, a famous team leader and shotcaller, led his long-time team Counter Logic Gaming to every single NA LCS playoffs during his tenure on the team, as well as two split victories and a historic international performance by a North American team at the 2016 mid-season invitational. Even Cody Sun, the youngest and least experienced team member, has represented his region on the world stage. These players have been around the block.

Image courtesy of LoL Esports

This experience was undoubtedly important in helping 100 Thieves recover from their mid-split slump. Any new team needs time to gel and work out how they want to play, and players who aren’t new will often have their own ideas about how they want to play the game and how the team should function. As an experienced squad, every member of 100 Thieves will have been in this situation before, understanding the need to maintain mental strength and motivation while maturely working through their issues to shape up in time for playoffs.

It’s fair to ask if 100 Thieves will be able to carry their regular split success forward? Any team is prone to mistakes and failure for any number of reasons, no matter how strong they look. But experience is valuable, and this team will not fall prey to pretty squabbles, nerves, or the standard pitfalls of inexperience.

 

The Rest of the Road

We’ve seen how 100 Thieves got to where they are. But the question before us now is whether they can carry this success forward. The spring quarterfinals were intense and full of surprises, from Team Liquid’s confident sweep of Cloud 9 to the incredible upset pulled off versus TSM by Clutch Gaming, a team that had previously seemed more like a playoffs-stocking-filler than a genuine threat. It is in this chaotic battlefield that 100 Thieves find themselves in as they wait for their semi-finals matchup versus Clutch Gaming. Though the Thieves would appear to be favored in this matchup and have seemingly superior players in the top and AD carry positions, Clutch may also be well poised to take advantages of some of 100 Thieves’ weaknesses.

Clutch Gaming midlaner Fabian “Febiven” Diepstraten has been one of the more impressive midlaners in North America this split, and alongside his aggressive and confident jungler Nam “Lira” Tae-yoo, may be just the right person to exploit 100 Thieves’ potentially weaker mid lane, especially with some well-considered bans. However, much of their success in the quarterfinals was predicated on a series of incredible performances on Thresh from support Nickolas “Hakuho” Surgent, and if this pick is banned away from him, Clutch Gaming’s botlane may find themselves outclassed by Cody Sun and Aphromoo. Meanwhile, on the other side of the bracket, Echo Fox will undoubtedly have used the time provided by their playoff bye to sort some of the issues seen in their shaky end to the regular season. Their semi-finals opponents Team Liquid look bloodthirsty and motivated to seize their long-awaited first finals win.

Though their trials are far from over in this unpredictable climate, 100 Thieves truly earned their first place finish, and cannot be underestimated. They have the skill, the experience, the flexibility and the shotcalling of a top team. It’s time to see if they can steal not just the first seed, but the split victory and the hearts of the fans.

Fantasy LCS

Fantasy LCS – Week 9

The final week of the LCS is here, and with it, the last chance to improve your Fantasy LCS position. Many teams are still in the hunt for a playoff spot, and there will inevitably be many exciting games. Here is a look at which players may exceed expectations, as well as those that will probably disappoint.

Start:

Vincent “Biofrost” Wang – Support for Counter Logic Gaming

Opponents: OpTic and Team SoloMid

Biofrost’s fantasy value has gone up and down along with Counter Logic Gaming’s success this year, and going into Week 9, that is a very good thing for his fantasy owners. Winning the last four games straight, Biofrost has had two 50+ point weeks in a row. This week they are facing a struggling OpTic Gaming, and long-time rivals TSM. CLG will have to pull off two big wins for even a shot at the playoffs this year, and their Bot Lane duo is likely to lead the way.

 

Kim “Fenix” Jae-hun – Mid Lane for Echo Fox

Opponents: FlyQuest and 100 Thieves

Despite being on first place Echo Fox and the second highest scoring Mid Laner in the LCS, Fenix is still only being started in 57% of fantasy leagues. Although last week was not their best, they will be fighting hard to secure first place in the last week of the Split. On a team that tends to focus on their Mid and Top lanes, and up against two of the weaker Mid Laners in the league, Fenix is primed to produce a lot of fantasy points.

 

Fantasy LCS

Cody Sun and Aphromoo (Courtesy of LoL Esports)

 

Cody “Cody Sun” Sun – ADC for 100 Thieves

Opponents: Clutch Gaming and Echo Fox

Cody Sun has had an exceptional season. He is currently tied for the most kills in the NA LCS with 70, and is second only behind Altec in ADC fantasy points. Though they have already secured a playoff spot, their game against Clutch Gaming will be one to watch. The two teams are currently tied for third, and the winner of this game will likely have an advantage in the postseason. On Sunday they face Echo Fox, who tends to struggle in the Bot Lane, despite what the fantasy points show. Unless something happens to completely throw off Cody Sun, he should have a strong showing this week.

 

Mads “Broxah” Brock-Pedersen – Jungle for Fnatic

Opponents: Giants Gaming and FC Schalke 04

Last week, Fnatic secured their first place spot in the EU LCS, and Broxah played a large role. On a team full of experience and talent, he has consistently given his teammates what they need to succeed. While not yet a Jungle legend, he has been a solid fantasy performer. His 14+ average points per game should earn him a starting spot in more than the current 63% of leagues.

 

Eric “Licorice” Ritchie – Top Lane for Cloud9

Opponents: Team Liquid and FlyQuest

On a team full of veterans, rookie Top Laner Licorice has more than held his own. Second only behind Heo “Huni” Seung-hoon in the NA LCS, his fantasy performance this split has been equal to his success on the rift. Playing high damage Champions has helped him earn a position-high 49 kills, and doesn’t hesitate to go head-to-head with some of the most experienced players in the league. Jung “Impact” Eon-yeong and Lee “Flame” Ho-jong are both on the bottom half of the table in terms of fantasy points this season, and Licorice can be expected to take advantage of them this week.

 

Sit:

Michael “MikeYeung” Yeung – Jungle for Team SoloMid

Opponents: Golden Guardians and Counter Logic Gaming

Joining the LCS halfway through the 2017 season, MikeYeung made a name for himself as a breakout star with Pheonix1. Understandably, many people picked him up for their fantasy team this season expecting big things. While he’s not at the bottom of the Jungler ladder, he’s also far from the top. The Golden Guardians are no longer the easy matchup they were early in the season. On top of that, CLG is on a rampage in their push to make playoffs, making it unlikely that MikeYeung will find fantasy success this week.

 

Andrei “Odoamne” Pascu – Top Lane for Splyce

Opponents: Vitality and Giants Gaming

Odoamne is an an experienced player on a team that has done quite well in the second half of the split, which is the only explanation for him being started in 40% of fantasy leagues. He is a prime example of good plays and teamwork not always translating to fantasy scores, especially for Top Laners. He is currently 14th in terms of total fantasy points for his position, and facing Kim “Ruin” Hyeong-min and Lucas “Cabochard ” Simon-Meslet in the final week of the split is unlikely to improve his standing.

 

Eugene “Pobelter” Park – Mid for Team Liquid

Opponents:  Cloud9 and OpTic Gaming

Although a bit up and down, Pobelter has had a decent season so far. Unfortunately for fantasy owners, the past two weeks have been some of his lowest, and this week is not shaping up to be much better. Team Liquid’s first match is against the number one Mid Laner Nicolaj “Jensen” Jensen, who is on the first place team in the NA LCS. Next on the schedule is the struggling OpTic, but Tristan “PowerOfEvil” Schrage rarely makes things easy for his opponents. Pobelter will have to be in top form to put up even average fantasy scores in Week 9.

Fantasy LCS

Wildturtle (Courtesy of LoL Esports)

Jason “WildTurtle” Tran – ADC for FlyQuest.

Opponents: Echo Fox and Cloud9

WildTurtle had a huge week last week with 50 points, but that is unlikely to repeat. FlyQuest is ending their difficult Spring Split by facing the two teams that are tied for first place. While the Echo Fox Bot Lane has shown some flaws, they are still such a strong team overall that it is unlikely to pan out well for WildTurtle. After this tough game, they will have to turn around and face Cloud9. Zachary “Sneaky” Scuderi and Andy “Smoothie” Ta have been impressive all season, and are unlikely to give up many fantasy points to WildTurtle.

Kim “Olleh” Joo-sung – Support for Team Liquid

Opponents: Cloud9 and OpTic Gaming

Leading Immortals to the NA LCS finals last split, Olleh was being talked about for possible MVP honors a few months ago.  This year has been a much different story. While enough people have held onto last seasons performance to have him starting in 72% of fantasy leagues, their faith has not paid off. Olleh is currently the fourth worst support in the LCS in terms of average points per game, and aside from a couple decent weeks early in the Split, he and Yiliang “Doublelift” Peng  have seemed very out of sync. If they can figure out how to be on the same page, they could be a powerhouse in the Summer Split, but chances are that won’t happen before Saturday.

 

Find the rest of my articles here. If you would like to contact me or keep up with things I like, find me on Twitter: @buttsy11. For more of the best esports news, follow The Game Haus on Facebook and Twitter. Thanks for reading!

Featured image courtesy of LOL Esports

Meteos breaks down their win over TSM and talks 8.4 changes

Hey guys, somehow, Meteos broke my camera again. It was fixed last week, and I go to interview him and it isn’t. I hope you enjoy the interview though. He is always extremely insightful and fun to talk to. Again, you can find the audio of our conversation below, and look out for other interviews on our YouTube Channel.


 

You went into the match giving TSM a power combo with Galio and Camille which they’ve proven to be really good at, so how were you  prepared to shut TSM down like you did?

Well yesterday we played against Xayah + Rakan and it’s just really hard to play against. We had one of our worst games against Liquid. So we said “Let’s not play against Xayah + Rakan again,” and we ended up getting it which was sweet. It just seems like that combo is really strong right now, everybody is winning with it. That gave us a lot of options to make big plays bot lane. And of course their picks were really good too with the Camille and Galio which makes a strong comp. But it turned into a game of they need to dive on us, and we need to not let our carries die to their dive. And at some point in the game, Riot decided that carries should never die to a dive. So I think dive comps are really hard to successfully pull off, so after the draft I was feeling pretty good. I was Sejuani into a Zac which is pretty good for Sej. I think we played to our strengths pretty well – not a perfect game – but I like the way we played. It was a disciplined game, we tried to press our advantages, tried to not let them get anything for free, and it went pretty well.

 

Since our last conversation, 100 Thieves has gone 3-1 which means you are 4-1 in your last five games after your mid season losing streak. So how is the team doing now as we gear up towards playoffs?

Well I think we’ve been doing a lot better, obviously, but we are still not totally where we need to be. Yesterday against Liquid… not a good game at all. I think that it’s going to take some time to get used to the new patch because I think that vision control was definitely one of my strong points as far as junglers go. I think that I could generally get down lots of vision and figure out where the enemy jungler is going to be. So without trackers knife, the game is super different. So it’s not just that I have to relearn what I’m doing, but the whole team has to learn to play around less vision and less information… Gotta keep working on our macro and our communication. I think we’ve come a long way, but we’ve still got a lot of work to do.

 

TSM is often thought of as a top performing team, even when they were losing this season. Other teams have ranked them very highly, and Cody Sun even said it on stage today. Where would you rank them, which team do you think is toughest for you and 100 Thieves to beat?

That’s a good question. I probably think that Echo Fox and C9 are the best teams. They just play really smart. They’ve got super good individual players. There are multiple levels of teams, and I hear this in other games and sports too. The bottom level – you don’t really know what’s going on. The middle level – you generally know what you’re supposed to do. And the top level – where you know when you’re not supposed to do what you’re supposed to do. So it’s a slightly less optimal play, but it works in this situation because it might not have been what the others were expecting. I think Echo Fox and C9 are really good at that part. They know how to play the game methodically, and they do a lot of surprises, like Lucian top. In my opinion, those are the hardest to play against.

 

Photo provided by LoL Esports Flickr

I’d love some insight on the meta on the new patch with the Tracker’s Knife change and Banner of Command.

Banner is really weird. I don’t necessarily hate it, because I like anything in the game that makes things happen and makes fights start. And Banner is pretty good at that because the tank minion will run over your whole base if you don’t do anything about it. I think it is probably over-tuned right now and I imagine it will get nerfed, but there are some counters to it. Like Tahm Kench can eat the siege minion, Syndra can just pick it up, Ezreal is good at killing it using Qs since it’s only immune to magic. But it can definitely be pretty troublesome. I think that the Banner itself is kind of a weak item stat wise, and you don’t want to rush it on everybody because you’ll just lose fights. I think it’s pretty cool, but just over-tuned right now.

I like the idea of a tank minion being able to take down a tower, because it actually opens up more comps. Like if you don’t have an adc that can hit the tower, it doesn’t matter because the siege minion can bring it down. And I really don’t like games where it comes to a point where it is stalemated, like you can never hit the turret or you will eat a bad engage or take really free damage. So I like that it basically forces the other team to engage on you unless they want to lose their whole base slowly. So I think that part is cool, but it does feel like the counters to it now are kind of gimmicky. You need these specific champions, or Minion Dematerializer into the late game. So I think they could rebalance it to just take reduced physical and magic damage but not be immune to one. So your tank minion will do damage to the tower, they can’t kill it for free, but it won’t be invincible. I think something like that would probably be a good change.

 

And what about your thoughts on the jungle champions and changes?

I’m not super happy with where jungle is, because it seems like the reason things are viable aren’t because you put so much time in it. Like “I want to play Elise, but this champion is just terrible, I can’t clear my jungle and I don’t scale whatsoever.” So a few changes I would like… I think it’s too hard to kill jungle camps, especially as the game goes on. Initially when they had Spirit Stone, the idea was that laners aren’t supposed to be poaching jungle camps. Junglers are supposed to farm the jungle camps and laners are supposed to farm the lane. And I thught that was pretty cool. But now it’s like my adc will kill a camp twice as fast as I can if I’m on a jungler.

And you still have to play tanks, because like I said earlier, dive champions really aren’t that viable. The only thing my champion can do is attempt to kill the adc and I can’t do it then I’m so useless. Like, if I pick Vi in a game, even though her early/mid is not terrible, what do you do when a teamfight rolls around? I’m going to try to ult their carry. They’re going to have Tabi, GA, I’ll get exhausted, they’ll have Heal and shields. They wait for Vi to ult and then instantly kill her. I think the meta is pretty inhibiting of what champions are actually playable, so you are going to see a lot of the same ones unless they get nerfed to the ground/unplayable… Unfortunately, it seems like all the balance changes just seem to look at what champions are played and just nerf them to the ground and then you have to play stuff like Nunu, and it sucks… But hopefully some good changes come.

 

Photo provided by LoL Esports Flickr

Lastly, we have seen a lot of 1-1 weeks from some of the top teams. Are these teams trying new things, or are we just seeing some of the weaknesses that maybe they’ve had all along?

Hmm, good question. I do think that as the season goes on, we’ve seen GGS winning a lot of their games, even against the top teams. CLG beat C9 recently. I think sometimes it can be the case that teams guaranteed into playoffs get kind of comfortable, but the teams that really want to make playoffs get super hungry. Generally in competitive League, what I’ve found is the team that wins generally just makes less mistakes. So if you really, really need to win, versus a team who is just kind of there – they don’t want to lose obviously, but they don’t need the win – they may be a little bit more relaxed, more careless with things. All these teams in the LCS are good even if they’re at the bottom of the standings, it’s not like they’re a bad team with bad players. If you give them enough opportunities, anyone can win.


 

 


Find Meteos on Twitter @MeteosLoL. Check back here for more content and our YouTube channel for my video interviews! If you’d like to contact me, go ahead and tweet @parkeso. For pictures and stories, follow my Insta @parqueso. If you’re not big into social media, email me at parkesotwo@gmail.com. =)

Fantasy LCS

Fantasy LCS – Week 7

Entering the final third of the Fantasy LCS Split, it’s time to start taking things seriously if you want to secure the best result for your league. Here are some quick tips to help fill whatever question marks your roster may have.

Start

 

Kim “Wadid” Bae-in – Support for G2

Opponents: Splyce and Giants Gaming

Despite dropping one to Fnatic last week, G2 have looked very strong since Week 3, stringing together 7 wins in a row. Wadid has been a solid performer for the team, and has also put up consistent fantasy points. His 12.43 average points per game have earned him the #5 spot for supports in the LCS, and he is still being started in only 30% of fantasy leagues. Wadid and the rest of G2 will be looking for redemption this week, which should also mean big fantasy points.

Charly “Djoko” Guillard – Jungle for Giants Gaming

Opponents: ROCCAT and G2 Esports

If history is anything to go on, this will be the week to start Djoko. Two of his highest scoring games were against G2 in Week 2, and ROCCAT in Week 3, when he put up 23.67 and 23.42 points, respectively. On top of that, Djoko is coming off of a 40+ point week. He is being started in 2.8% of fantasy leagues despite being the #6 Jungler in average points per game.

 

Cody “Cody Sun” Sun – ADC for 100 Thieves

Opponents: Team Liquid and Team Solo Mid

Cody Sun persevered through a difficult early Split on an unproven team, and has clawed his way to being the #4 ADC in the LCS. 100 Thieves beat Team Liquid in Week 2, and Cody Sun scored 24 points in that game. Even though they lost to TSM when they played them in Week 3, Cody Sun was still able to post a respectable 14.6 points. Owned in 59% of fantasy leagues, and starting in less than 40%, there are lots of opportunities for him to slide onto some rosters for this week.

Cody Sun

Courtesy of LoL Esports

Sit

 

Trevor “Stixxay” Hayes – ADC for Counter Logic Gaming

Opponents: Cloud9 and Team Liquid

Counter Logic Gaming has been having a rough split. They have had a few decisive wins, but many more big losses, and Stixxay’s fantasy performance reflects that. His inconsistent showings have landed him at #16 on the list of ADCs, and although his starting percentage has been dropping, it still sits close to 50%. Up against Zachary “Sneaky” Scuderi and Yiliang “Doublelift” Peng, the best place for Stixxay is on the bench this week.

 

Mihael “Mikyx” Mehle – Support for Misfits Gaming

Opponents: Fnatic and H2K

Looking at the overall numbers, Mikyx is one of the top Supports in the League. His average points per game puts him above everyone else in that role other than Adrian “Adrian” Ma of Echo Fox. Looking more closely, however, the data tells a different story. Setting aside the stellar game against Vitality last week, Mikyx has struggled in recent weeks. His points per game average since the start of Week 4 has been less than 7, and includes a score of -1.58 against ROCCAT. This week, up against the #1 Fnatic and the newly revitalized H2K, is unlikely to be when he returns to his early season numbers.

 

Daniele “Jiizuke” di Mauro – Mid Lane for Team Vitality

Opponents: FC Schalke 04 and Fnatic

Since going 19-2-15 in his first 3 games, there has been a lot of hype around Jiizuke. Since then, however, his fantasy scores have steadily dropped, leaving him at #12 in the LCS. To make matters worse, Team Vitality has hit a four game losing streak.  It seems like teams have started to figure out how to take down Team Vitality, and one way they’re doing that is with early pressure on Jiizuke to shut him down. As more teams catch onto that strategy, it will likely push his numbers even lower.

Fantasy LCS

Courtesy of LoL Esports

Snag

 

Samuel “Samux” Fernández Fort – ADC for Unicorns of Love

Owned in 30% of fantasy leagues.

Flying under the radar, Samux currently sits at 7th in the LCS among ADCs. He has helped carry the Unicorns of Love to three straight victories, racking up 17 kills and only 3 deaths during those games. If UOL continues their push as the split wraps up, look to Samux to lead them.

 

Raphaël “Targamas” Crabbé – Support for Giants Gaming

Owned in 4% of fantasy leagues.

Even this far into the season, many people may not know newcomer Targamas. In his first year in the LCS, he is boasting 12.62 points per game, placing him fourth among supports.  It’s true that he has had a few rough games, but so far those have been outweighed by the good.  Owned in only 4% of fantasy leagues, he is at least worth picking up as a backup support.

 

If you would like to contact me or keep up with things I like, find me on Twitter: @buttsy11.  For more of the best esports news, follow The Game Haus on Facebook and Twitter. Thanks for reading!

Featured image courtesy of LOL Esports

Cloud9 and Smoothie are doing very well with Alistar

The winningest player-champion combos in the NA LCS

*Presence of champion with specific team – Pick rate of champion with specific team – Win rate of champion with specific team (Presence of champion within the NA LCS – Win rate of champion within the NA LCS)

FOX Dardoch – Zac

Dardoch and Echo Fox have been very successful with Zac

Image from LoL Esports Flickr

80% PRESENCE – 50% PICK – 100% WIN (54% PRESENCE – 77% WIN)*

Since Echo Fox has a 90 percent overall win rate, it is easy to point out strong player-champion combos that exist on this team, but not others. Altec’s Kalista and Fenix’s Cassiopeia are good examples. However, it is clear that Dardoch’s Zac has been the most successful. FOX picked the blob in five of ten games, and teams banned him another three. Dardoch carries a 100 percent win rate, while the LCS holds 77 percent.

Echo Fox generally utilizes Zac to gank the mid and top lanes from fog-of-war, then engage and disrupt teamfights in the mid-late game. Dardoch clearly understands the limits of the champion, often peeling with a sliver of health, only to regenerate using Warmog’s. Even if the power picks of the jungle move away from tanky initiators (Sejuani, Jarvan IV, etc.), Echo Fox and Dardoch will probably keep Zac as a pocket pick.

C9 Smoothie – Alistar

Cloud9 and Smoothie have been very successful with Alistar

Image from LoL Esports Flickr

90% PRESENCE – 50% PICK – 60% WIN (66% PRESENCE – 40% WIN)*

Smoothie has been showing the power of the current support role. Constant engages and peeling, surprise roams and ganks, protecting and enabling carries–these are all characteristics of Cloud9’s support. Alistar seems like the perfect champion for Smoothie, which is why he is virtually pick or ban in Cloud9’s games. Most teams are able to snag Braum or Taric, the highest presence supports, but Smoothie sometimes prioritizes Alistar over them.

Alistar is a popular pick in most metas, because of his repertoire of crowd control and tankiness. In the hands of a team shot-caller, the minotaur can realize its true potential. GorillA, Mata, and Ming are also currently prioritizing Alistar in other regions. Smoothie’s mastery of this champion put Cloud9’s opponents in the difficult position of choosing whether or not to ban him out and give Jensen or Sneaky a power pick. Even if the meta shifts, Alistar will remain a pocket pick, and Smoothie has a diverse pool.

CG Lira – Skarner 

Clutch Gaming and Lira have been very successful with Skarner

Image from LoL Esports Flickr

40% PRESENCE – 30% PICK – 100% WIN (30% PRESENCE – 80% WIN)*

Skarner has spiked in priority in the NA LCS, since Riot introduced patch 8.3. Lira and Clutch Gaming are benefiting more from the champion, with a 100 percent win rate. Skarner’s versatility and powerful displacement potential allow the jungler to hard engage like no other. Globally, Skarner only has a 40 percent presence in professional play, but he has 100 percent presence for North America’s teams.

Clutch has had the most success with multi-initiation compositions, and Lira’s Skarner fits right in. Just like others on this list, Lira is a crucial shot-caller for his team. They rely on him to pull the trigger on plays, which makes Skarner even better than Sejuani, Zac, or Jarvan IV. Clutch has picked up three of its six wins with the pick, so they may suffer if Skarner gets nerfed.

TL Doublelift – Tristana 

Team Liquid and Doublelift have been very successful with Tristana

Image from LoL Esports Flickr

90% PRESENCE – 50% PICK – 60% WIN (66% PRESENCE – 55% WIN)*

While Tristana has been a top three priority AD carry, and rising, Team Liquid prioritizes her for Doublelift even more. They have only had one game in ten without Tristana picked or banned. She allows Doublelift to never truly have a weak point in the game. He can push waves easily, chip away turrets, and utilize Rocket Jump to get closer or farther from his opponents. When paired with Olleh’s top pick, Taric, Doublelift becomes an engage mechanism. He and Olleh work together to threaten stuns and kill pressure in lane.

Doublelift has shown mastery of nearly every marksman. He obviously enjoys high-skill options, like Lucian, but Tristana gives him versatility for his team. Doublelift has the fewest deaths per game and the highest CS per minute, due, in part, to his comfort with Tristana.

100 Cody Sun – Kog’Maw 

100 Thieves and Cody Sun have been very successful with Kog'Maw

Image from LoL Esports Flickr

70% PRESENCE – 30% PICK – 66.7% WIN (60% PRESENCE – 47% WIN)*

Kog’Maw is another marksman champion that has been popular this split. His Rageblade power spike, combined with the safety of the Relic Shield-Fleet Footwork bottom lane strategy, made him a prime option. While other North American AD Carries selected Kog’Maw for one game while he was meta, 100 Thieves locked him in three times. The team coordinated well with Cody Sun on an immobile, squishy champion, as they won two of those three games.

Cody Sun currently has the highest damage per minute and the highest damage share in the NA LCS. Kog’Maw, when played correctly, unlocks this potential. 100 Thieves scored wins against TSM and Team Liquid using this pick, which has allowed them to remain in the top five. With the meta shifting away from Kog’Maw, 100 Thieves have started a downward trend, even locking in a Jinx pick. Hopefully, they can click with other champions.

TSM Bjergsen – Taliyah

TSM and Bjergsen are doing very well with Taliyah

Image from LoL Esports Flickr

60% PRESENCE – 30% PICK – 66.7% WIN (42% PRESENCE – 40% WIN)*

TSM have three of their four wins with Bjergsen on semi-global champions, which is why Taliyah is a preferential choice. Her Weaver’s Wall allows Bjergsen to influence every phase of the game, from early roams to mid-game picks and late-game zoning. Champions like Taliyah put TSM’s steering wheel in Bjergsen’s hands, allowing him to directly control momentum. While TSM is having issues with coordination, it makes sense that they would pick Taliyah in three games, and other teams would ban her in another three.

Most professional mid laners have wide champion pools, rarely locking in the same one several times. With Zoe, Ryze, and Azir being nearly pick or ban for most of the split, NA mid laners go for Galio or a pocket pick if those three are banned out. Expect to see more mid laners picking or banning Taliyah, especially against TSM.

GG Hai – Orianna

Golden Guardians and Hai are doing very well with Orianna

Image from LoL Esports Flickr

40% PRESENCE – 30% PICK – 66.7% WIN (32% PRESENCE – 40% WIN)*

Orianna is to Hai what Taliyah is to Bjergsen. Zoning, shielding, slowing, hasting, stunning, and damaging–Orianna is the whole package. Hai is the central leader for Golden Guardians, so putting so much versatility and control into his hands makes sense. In their only two wins, Golden Guardians drafted Orianna for Hai, after Zoe, Azir, Ryze, and Galio were banned out.

With Lourlo and Contractz taking on initiation duty, and Matt playing more defensive options, Hai’s Orianna brings the necessary damage to stay relevant, while also boosting his teammates’ utility. He can put the ball onto Contractz’s Skarner or Camille for speedier engages. Lourlo’s Gnar or Illaoi can wombo combo with the Shockwave. Deftly can receive a large shield, if it comes to that. No one else in the NA LCS has played Orianna as often, or to as much success. Teams may start to let Hai have the power picks, instead.

credits

Featured Image: LoL Esports Flickr

Other Images: LoL Esports Flickr

Champion and Player Statistics: Games of Legends

Looking for a podcast covering EU and NA LCS? Check out LCS Weekly on SoundCloud. You can ‘Like’ The Game Haus on Facebook and ‘Follow’ us on Twitter for more sports and esports articles from other great TGH writers along with Thomas!

To continue enjoying great content from your favorite writers, please contribute to our Patreon account! Every little bit counts. We greatly appreciate all of your amazing support! #TGHPatreon

Cody Sun

Cody Sun on TL Snub: ‘If they’re going to pay so much money for Doublelift, then there’s nothing I can do about it’

Following a win against Team Liquid, 100 Thieves AD carry Cody Sun sat down with The Game Haus for a quick interview.

Talk to me about tonight’s game, how you think it went and give me some of your takeaways of the match.

“So since we’re playing against TL and they’re first place, it’s a pretty important match for us. And it was pretty important for me personally since they had three of my former teammates and I was supposed to start over Doublelift until they picked him up. I was kind of nervous going in.

cody sun

Photo courtesy of Riot Games.

I think our team played really well. I think our macro and communication was definitely on point. But for me, I played most of the team fights pretty poorly. I knew when Pobelter’s Azir ultimate was coming and I was like, ‘Be prepared for it,’ but somehow he still got me, like on the edge, or something. That was pretty sad. And the one around middle, we just didn’t know they were there. I should have still been more careful and back.

Overall, I really like how our team played today.”

Going back a bit, is there part of you that wishes you got to play with your Immortals teammates on Team Liquid?

“I’m still really good friends with all of my Immortals teammates, especially Olleh. It would have been great to play with them on Team Liquid, but I’m just enjoying my time on 100 Thieves. If they’re going to pay so much money for Doublelift, then there’s nothing I can do about it.”

Moments ago you claimed that you want this season to be “your year.” What kind of personal improvements do you feel like you need to make for this to come to fruition?

“It’s just to be constantly on the grind. I’ve been playing this game, not just professionally, for a really long time. To improve, you just have to constantly work on your gameplay and yourself, and do a lot of self-reflection during your off time. Nobody plays this game perfectly, there’s always things to improve.

cody sun

Cody Sun in his post game interview. Photo courtesy of Riot Games.

I think, especially in North America, no matter how much you achieve in our region, it’s just the tip of the iceberg. When you go to Worlds, you open your eyes to so many better teams and better players.

I know I’m not close to where I want to be, but just having a goal to constantly work towards everyday feels pretty nice.”

What has it been like laning with a veteran support like Aphromoo with the leadership, experience and championship pedigree he brings to the table?
cody sun

Cody Sun embraces Aphromoo. Photo courtesy of Riot Games.

“I think Aphromoo is a fantastic teammate, leader and support player. He does so much for me, actually. He probably actually did a lot for the previous AD’s he played with. I’m pretty sure any AD that plays with him will instantly look a lot better because he looks out for you in every aspect of the game. Since he played AD carry himself, he knows what your role wants and he just helps you out. I feel like I can do so much more when I play with him.”

Now you’ve played for coaches with two very different backgrounds. Tell me about how playing for Prolly has been and how it compares to SSONG from your time with Immortals.

“Compared to SSONG, I think they have polar opposite coaching styles. SSONG is a lot more assertive. I think, because he comes from Korea, he obviously brings in the Korean culture when it comes to coaching. He’ll just pick you your champion and won’t really ask your opinions that much on the picks. He’ll do an entire draft and everything.

For Prolly, he’s a lot more democratic with his coaching style. In review, we have a lot more discussions. Our reviews take a lot longer than on Immortals, which can be a good and bad thing. I think we’re still trying to figure out the best way to do reviews as a team. It’s just different.”

You’re now 3-0, coming off an impressive win against Team Liquid. How do you guys stay on top?

“It’s just the start of the season, I think with everyone, all the veterans on our team, nobody is getting really hyped or anything. We could have just as easily lost the three games that we won, and it’s not like we’re this super powerhouse team or anything.

The best part about this team is that nobody has an ego. Meteos, Aphromoo and even like Sssumday and Ryu, they’ve won really important matches and they got really far in playoffs. Everyone just understands the process and wants to get better week by week.”

What are your impressions of Cloud9 and how do you feel like you’ll match up against them tomorrow?

“For C9, I think they’re also trying to mesh with each other. They have Licorice, he’s a rookie, and I know how it is to play as a rookie. It takes a pretty long time to get used to everything. Even really veteran players, I’ve asked Aphromoo, and even he gets nervous on stage, sometimes.

We’re probably just going to try to play our game. Be really macro-focused and not do anything too crazy. I think C9 is just as strong as Team Liquid.”

Featured image: Riot Games

You can like The Game Haus on Facebook and follow us on Twitter for more sports and esports articles from other great TGH writers along with David

To continue enjoying great content from your favorite writers, please contribute to our Patreon account! Every little bit counts. We greatly appreciate all of your amazing support! #TGHPatreon

Can Team Liquid finally break the “forever fourth” curse?

With the off-season underway, many roster moves have been rumored in the past few weeks. Most notably, Team Liquid has been rumored to be stockpiling North American talent. We already know owner Steve Arhancet isn’t afraid to pay with big dollars for players. With Team Liquid being accepted into franchising, even more money will be available for the team to spend on big name players.

becoming immortal

This may be a meme, but Team Liquid have been one of the most active teams this off-season. With Immortals being rejected from the NA LCS, many of their players were up for grabs. Team Liquid was quick to pull the trigger in acquiring 3/5 starting members from their roster.

Jacob Wolf first reported that they acquired the contracts of former Immortals players Jake “Xmithie” Puchero, Andy “AnDa” Hoang, Eugene “Pobelter” Park and Cody “Cody Sun” Sun. Xmithie, Pobelter and Cody Sun have built up synergy having qualified for Worlds last year and placing second with Immortals. AnDa is seen more as a project player who was a sub on the Immortals team.

Xmithie was regarded as the best jungler in NA during the Summer Split. His improvement was a major reason why Immortals qualified for their first World Championship after narrowly losing to TSM. The meta became extremely favorable towards his style and he flourished because of it.

Pobelter has often been regarded as the best mid lane talent actually from North America. He’s been in the scene from a young age and actually started out on team Curse. He is valuable as a talented player who doesn’t take an import slot.

Cody Sun may have struggled at Worlds, but during the regular split him and Olleh were one of the better bot lane duos. He’ll look to build off a solid rookie season in which we saw him improve vastly from spring to summer.

Adding more star power

Photo by: Riot Esports

We may have thought Team Liquid was done after acquiring most of the Immortals roster, but there was more. News broke  from ESPN’s Jacob Wolf that Team Liquid would be acquiring Cloud 9 top laner Jung “Impact” Eon-yeong. This is huge if it’s true. Impact has shown to be one of the best top laners in the world when he’s at his best. Having to sub out last year showed inconsistencies in his play, but if he’s a full time starter he can prove that he’s one of the best again.

Impact has been praised for his improved communication and mechanics. He also has one year left before he can become an “NA resident” player which could be valuable moving forward.

Lastly, Team Liquid have been rumored by The ScoreEsports to have acquired star ADC Yiliang “Doublelift” Peng. Doubelift has been a star domestically. Arguably one of the strongest ADC’s in the west, acquiring Doublelift would be a huge addition. During his time at TSM, Doublelift has been heavily criticized for his international performances. Domestically, he’s a monster, but we’ll need to see that he’s not burning out as being one of the first pros of the LoL scene.

What Will the Lineup Be?

While Team Liquid have been in many rumors of adding loads of talent, nobody knows what their actual lineup will be. Does the addition of Xmithie mean the end for former star Kim “Reignover” Yeu-jin? Team Liquid also acquired Korean mid laner Son “Mickey” Young-min towards the end of last split.

They’re also rumored to have two new ADC’s with Cody Sun and Doublelift. Does this spell the retirement of Chae “Piglet” Gwang-jin? Will they stick to their “10 man” roster with the Academy team? No team has been able to successfully make six man rosters work outside of Korea. Team Liquid’s owner, Steve Arhancet, seems to be serious about winning. With these additions they might be able to finally break their “forever fourth” curse and find their way to Worlds.

With many new teams entering the scene, Team Liquid at least have the advantage of having been in the LCS for so long. They should know by now how to win and build a successful team. With the money available now more than ever, they’ll need to show that they can rise above the rest.

Looking for a podcast covering EU and NA LCS? Check out LCS Weekly on SoundCloud.

To continue enjoying great content from your favorite writers, please contribute to our Patreon account! Every little bit counts. We greatly appreciate all of your amazing support! #TGHPatreon

You can ‘Like’ The Game Haus on Facebook and ‘Follow’ us on Twitter for more sports and esports articles from other great TGH writers along with Christian!

Cover photo by Riot Esports