Round 2 of LCK is finally starting again next week. Although the Coronavirus put a temporary halt on the league, the players continued their practice in their respective facilities. Now, it’s time for that practice to pay off.
The LCK has many rivalries. From the classic Telecom derby between SKT and KT, new rivalries are born each season, and it always keeps the fans excited to see their favorite teams face off against their rivals. When teams face off on huge stages, such as the LCK finals or at Worlds, not only do those rivalries seem especially competitive and fierce, they’re etched in the fans’ memories for a long time.
What kind of stories and rivalries do teams have with one another in the LCK 2020 Spring? To ensure further entertainment from watching the LCK, we have compiled a list of teams’ key storylines and rivalries, based on the post made by Pixlulu on the LoL Inven boards.
Vs. T1 - T1 was Clid’s former team. Against T1, who fully washed away their nickname, ‘Clid’s one-man army’, will Gen.G be able to utilize Clid well into victory? Also, Bdd vs Faker is always a match up that will get everyone excited. As they’re both former world champions, the fans will be cheering for their respective teams more fiercely than ever.
Vs. DRX - DRX is Gen.G’s top laner, Rascal’s former team, and it’s also a team that’s like home to Bdd as well.
Vs. HLE - HLE acquired CuVee, a top laner that’s formerly been with Gen.G for 5 years. Some may joke about how CuVee left the team without even looking back because Hanwha serves better food to their staff… Whatever the case is, a big part of the reason why Gen.G is where they are today is because of CuVee, so for Rascal, CuVee will prove to be a huge obstacle that he has to overcome.
Vs. Gen.G - Gen.G was able to take a valuable resource from them, and that resource is Clid. In order to prove that he can perform a lot better than Clid, Cuzz will especially stay sharp against them. To determine which team will be on top of the standings, T1 will have to prove that they are superior in all positions.
Vs. DRX - As cvMax and players from Griffin found their new home with DRX, it’s safe to say that the matchup is an upgrade from the classic T1 vs Griffin matchup. T1 is also the team that denied cvMax of two LCK Championships, so he will do whatever it takes to take the throne from T1. It’s always a treat to see Chovy face off against the legendary mid laner, Faker, who looks to create his own legacy by taking him down. Another point to watch is the bot laners matchup, where Teddy has always proven himself since his Jin Air days, and Deft has always been considered one of the best bot laners in the world.
Vs. DWG - Coach Kim, who helped shape a team of rookies into a world championship contending team, has now become the head coach for T1. He has seemingly swapped places with Zefa, who was a key member of T1’s coaching staff last year, which shaped a unique rivalry
Vs. T1- As aforementioned, for cvMax, Chovy, and Doran, T1 is a team that’s been a nightmare to them and a team that they must defeat. Not only does Chovy’s prowess on the Rift rivals that of Faker and the other top mid laners, the top lane matchup is a battle of the rookies (Doran vs Canna), so many fans are expecting a heated battle between the two teams.
Especially for cvMax, if his team is able to take down a top team in the standings like T1, he will be able to prove that he was never wrong. For cvMax, taking down T1 will not only hold meaning in taking down his worst nightmare, it’ll also prove that Griffin was very wrong to sack him as well.
Vs. KT - The former head coach for DRX, Hirai, has now found himself a new home with KT. As he was the head coach for DRX since the IM days, DRX is definitely a team that he’ll want to take down.
Vs. Griffin - Griffin’s a team that’s ill-fated, both emotionally and even legally. Is there need for further explanation? Doran vs Sword, and cvMax vs Sword(?)... There are a lot of points to look out for.
Vs. Gen.G - Fly was the former mid laner for Gen.G, and left the team to join AFS without achieving much on Gen.G. However, he’s now performing quite well in his own unique way. The captain of AFS, Spirit, was also part of Gen.G since their Samsung Blue days, so for the two aforementioned players, it’ll be like a battle against their former selves.
Vs. HLE - The bad relationship between Spirit and NoFe, who’s now the coach on HLE, is a very obvious one. When Spirit was benched for pretty much the entirety of last year, he was very expressive of his disdain for NoFe. Whenever Spirit is starting for AFS, the community always highlights the conflicted relationship of Spirit and NoFe. Whenever Spirit wins, he always says things like “Are you watching, NoFe?”, which signifies the not-so-friendly relationship between the two. Whatever the results may be, the community will always be excited when the two teams clash.
Vs. T1 - As aforementioned, the two key members of each coaching staff have traded their spots. However, with the loss of coach Kim, DWG is struggling to perform as they did last year. In order to not only prove themselves that they can do well without coach Kim, but also to prove Zefa’s worth, DWG will have to push themselves to the limit to take down T1.
Vs. SANDBOX - Ghost will be looking for blood against SANDBOX. He was a force to be reckoned with on SANDBOX last year, but he has now transferred to DWG. Both teams were put on spotlight as the super rookies of the LCK, and even though Ghost has performed well on SANDBOX, they have opted to not re-sign with Ghost. Although the announcement on Ghost’s recruitment from DWG was pretty sudden, it’ll be exciting for fans of both teams to see how he’ll perform against his former team.
Vs. Gen.G - The relationship between the two teams is very complicated. The current GM for Gen.G’s LoL squad, Lee Ji-hoon, has been the former head coach for KT for a very long time. Also, unlike the current KT’s reputation, they were formerly known as ‘Gen.G killers’, as KT once had a dominant track record of 19-0 against Gen.G. On the flip side, there was once a time where Gen.G denied KT a ticket to Worlds, so historically speaking, there’s a heated rivalry between the two teams. It’s also noteworthy to mention that Bdd, who’s now the mid laner for Gen.G, was one of the reasons why KT was able to avoid being relegated to Challengers Korea.
Vs. T1 - It’s the classic Telecom Derby. Although KT isn’t performing as well as they did when they were at their prime, they’re currently on a win streak, and has fans excited to see how they’ll perform in Round 2, so it’ll be worthwhile to see how they’ll perform against T1. The mid lane matchup being the classic Faker vs Kuro is also a cherry on the cake, so for the old school LCK fans, they’ll really enjoy the match between the two teams.
Vs. Griffin - There are a lot of rumors about how Ucal, the current mid laner for Griffin, wanted to go to KT, but has been denied by KT. Ucal was in his prime when he was on KT, and KT was at their prime when Ucal was part of their team. KT treasured and raised this young prospect, and it seems that KT has that much sentimental value for Ucal as well.
Ironically, 33% of Griffin’s 2nd place finishes is because of KT, and at the time, Ucal was the mid laner for KT. It feels like fate is playing tricks to have the same mid laner now play on Griffin, and it’ll be a unique, but a heated matchup for both teams.
Hanwha Life Esports
Vs. Afreeca - Although NoFe doesn’t make it as obvious as Spirit does, NoFe looks to prove that he was never wrong by defeating AFS. Also, because of Spirit’s provocations, HLE’s fans will be more on edge against AFS.
NoFe recently donated 10,000,000 KRW (roughly 8,000 USD), to help aid the battle against the COVID-19 pandemic, and since fans are aware of the rivalry between the two people, they facetiously ask Spirit why he doesn’t donate as well.
Vs. Griffin - Lehends was part of Griffin last year, but left to join HLE. Despite the team underperforming in general, Lehends’ performance has never dwindled. Will Lehends’ Yuumi be even more fierce against his former bot lane partner, Viper?
A managing editor who can do more things than you think.
Striving for perfection to achieve excellence in esports