When Lee "IgNar" Dong-geun joined FlyQuest as its starting Support for the 2020 League of Legends Championship Series season, he became part of very exclusive company. Aside from Dignitas Top Laner Heo "Huni" Seung-hoon, IgNar is the only player to have competed in South Korea's League of Legends Champions Korea, Europe's League of Legends European Championship, and now, North America's LCS.
IgNar joined Inven Global's Nick Geracie after a 2-0 opening weekend to discuss re-uniting with his former mid laner Tristan "PowerOfEvil" Schrage, adjusting to North America, and why he's looking forward to playing against TSM's Vincent "Biofrost" Wang.
I'm joined by FlyQuest Support IgNar, who just went 2-0 in the first LCS games of his career. How are you feeling after this weekend?
Starting with a win is always a reason to be happy, especially when it turns into a 2-0 week. Then, like you said, it is my first week in NA, so I'm really happy.
How did the games go compared to your expectations? Were you nervous to play in a new region?
I was pretty comfortable because I've watched a lot of NA LCS and LEC, and personally, I'm more afraid of aggressive support players. EU has a lot of aggressive Supports, but NA supports seem less focused on proactivity. Because of this, I had a lot of confidence in my ability to play well in North America.
It wasn't just you, either. FlyQuest as a team looked more proactive than both of your opponents this week. Would you attribute that to your familiarity with PowerOfEvil?
We're not proactive solely because of me and PoE, but I'd say we do make the team as whole more proactive. We went to Worlds 2017 together as teammates on Misfits, and we had good synergy as a Mid/Support combo. We have very similar game sense and we watch the game in the same way, so I think how we catalyze fights makes the entire team more proactive.
You've played in Europe and South Korea for several years. Was there something specific that made you want to come to North America in 2020?
I didn't have any specific goals in the off-season, but I thought I would end up staying in Europe. However, I ended up not getting many offers in Europe this off-season, and FlyQuest looked like a really good opportunity to show what I can do in a new region, so I wanted to give it a try.
What are your thoughts on North America so far outside of the game? Have you had a chance to experience anything?
I heard from others that the food in NA is really insane, and I didn't like food in Berlin all that much personally. The Korean food here is legit. It's the same as the food in Korea.
Do you think previously playing in EU is making your adjustment to playing in NA easier?
In my experience, Europe and South Korea are similar. In Berlin, everything was nearby. If you're there, you can go to a gym or go shopping both in walking distance, but in NA so far, I've had to take Uber every time. This whole country is too big! Aside from that, everything is pretty much the same, so it's not hard for me to get used to it.
Los Angeles is very spread out, you need wheels to get just about anywhere.
Yeah, I think so too. It's been a little bit harder for me in that regard.
You already knew PowerOfEvil before joining FlyQuest, but you've now had some time to get to know your other teammates. How do they differ from your expectations?
I thought everyone on FlyQuest would be nice, but now that I've arrived and lived with them, they are so nice. They're really nice guys and it's been really fun to live with them.
It's good to hear that you guys are getting along well! Going back to your point about NA supports being less proactive, why do you think this is the case?
I don't know. The LEC can be strange, but all of the supports are really proactive. They're ready to use Flash to engage without getting scared. It's just like "I can go...ok?" And then you go. *laughs* That's a lot scarier to play against for me, because it's unpredictable. There are really good supports in LEC like Fnatic's Zdravets "Hylissang" Iliev Galabov and G2 Esports' Mihael "Mikyx" Mehle. In NA, I think there are good supports, but they are more focused on Braum, late game teamfights, etc.
Are there any specific NA supports you're looking forward to playing against?
I don't have much information to go off of because I haven't played against any of the NA supports before this year, but maybe Biofrost. Not only is he on TSM, he was also a part of the team two seasons ago when I played against TSM at Worlds.
Thank you so much for the interview, IgNar. I'm glad to hear all is well so far, and I hope you have had a warm welcome to the LCS. Is there anything you'd like to say to your new North American fans?
I don't think many people know about me in NA because I'm new here, but I want to make sure everyone knows me as someone they can count on to play well. Keep watching and cheering for me, please!