In the 2020 League of Legends Champions Korea (LCK) Spring Split Finals, T1 defeated Gen.G 3-0 to win their ninth LCK championship. After the finals series were over, T1 gathered for an online press conference to answer questions from the media.
How do you feel winning the championship?
Kim “Kim” Jeong-soo: I feel really good about winning the championship. I really didn’t expect us to win 3-0. I’m thankful to the players that they gifted me a fantastic day today. I hope the players improve more through today’s experience.
Lim “Comet” Hye-seong: This is my first championship. I don’t really feel it yet. I’ll have to see when I get up tomorrow. Zefa told me about this. So this is how it feels.
Kim “Moment” Ji-hwan: It’s my first championship as well. I also don’t feel it yet. I’m so thankful that I’m able to have this experience thanks to the coaches and players.
Kim "Canna" Chang-dong: I didn’t know we would win 3-0 today. I feel good that we won easily thanks to the other players. I’d like to thank the coaching staff and other players that they made me into a royal-roader.
Moon "Cuzz" Woo-chan: I’m very happy that I won the championship as a starting jungler in three years. I’d like to thank everybody who helped me grow up to now.
Lee "Faker" Sang-hyeok: It’s the first time I won a championship in such a unique situation. Thank you to the coaching staff and the team office for helping us through difficult situations. We’ll keep this momentum and do well during the summer as well.
Park "Teddy" Jin-seong: I feel good that we won 3-0 today. Since the coaches and players all did well, I think I was able to play comfortably. I’d like to thank them.
Lee "Effort" Sang-ho: I got to win the championship again following last season, so I’m very thankful. To the coaches as well. I’ll make sure I do my best in preparing the next season as well.
Early in the season, many people said that T1 wasn’t that strong. How did you overcome those evaluations? When was the hardest point of the season?
Kim: When we first formed our roster, objectively speaking, it wasn’t a “championship-winning-roster”. I thought so too, and other people in the scene also said that. I don’t think we overcame the evaluation. We finished both rounds with a 7-2 record. I think everything just went well.
Gen.G let Varus through twice. Did you predict that they would?
Teddy: I thought they wouldn’t ban Varus. I played Varus twice today, and I think it was alright since my teammates did well today.
Gen.G focused their bans on the jungle. What did you think? Were you confident?
Cuzz: When I saw Gen.G’s games, it seemed that Clid’s champion pool got narrower. On the other hand, I’ve been proving that I can play many different champions. When they targeted their bans on me, I felt good and I was really confident.
It’s the ninth LCK championship for Faker. You’ve stepped over your previous record. Also, you bought Phage twice and sold it. Did it affect your game?
Faker: I can’t believe that I’ve won the championship nine times. It’s amazing that we won so many. About buying the Phage twice… I just groaned.
Due to being late, LCK took away two of your ban cards in Game 1. How did you deal with the situation?
Kim: There was a misunderstanding. We all were going to leave at 1:30, but the company misunderstood and they said only Faker and I had to go at that time. When I read the rule book, I thought it was a bit vague. Anyways, what happened happened, and we just said among ourselves, “It doesn’t really matter we didn’t have two ban cards.” It wasn’t a big deal.
In the semifinals, you had a lot of unconventional picks, but today, they were conventional.
Kim: I think by unconventional, you mean non-ADCs. We just simply thought they weren’t good so we decided to play with conventional picks. We didn’t care how many bans they had. We wanted to broaden the diversity of our champions to gain an advantage during the draft.
The fans have been cheering for you from afar due to the coronavirus. A word to them?
Faker: School is starting later, there’s a lot of difficulties in society because of the coronavirus. I’m thankful to those who cheered for T1 even in this difficult situation. I’d like to praise those who’ve been enduring well being quarantined at home.
Canna became a royal-roader. How do you feel?
Canna: I’m happy that I’ve become a royal-roader. I dreamt of it in my dreams, and I think I got it easier than I thought. The emotion hasn’t really hit me yet.
How do you think Varus is in the current meta?
Teddy: I think Varus is quite good. I had confidence in my Varus so I picked him first.
T1 players all have different experience and personalities. What did you focus on while leading them?
Kim: I did my best with the coaches. It’s only been five months since I’ve been here, so it’s not that I changed a whole lot. The players had potential all along. With the coaching staff changed, the atmosphere would have been different, but I’m thankful to the players that they trusted and respected us. Except for Canna, all of them are veterans. There wasn’t much to do for them. As for Canna, it would have been a hard time. Since he’s a rookie, I asked a lot from him. I’m thankful that he followed well.
You brought the game flow through stealing objectives. Was that planned?
Cuzz: During the objective fights, they were hitting the objectives first so it wasn’t good for them. We were able to fight confidently. I could say that all the plays were planned. They shouldn’t have been hitting the objectives but were.
During the pre-game interview, “fanboy” Perkz was cheering specifically for Faker. He said that he hopes you win this final and says hi to him. Anything to say to Perkz?
This season was held with mainly online matches in the team house. Did that affect the performances?
Kim: I don’t think the players were any less nervous because it was an online match. It wasn’t much different for us.
Faker is the oldest mid laner to have won the championship. What’s your secret for maintaining your prowess for long?
Faker: When people around me ask me how I’m so good, I always answer: eat well, sleep well, and live healthy. For real, I maintained my condition well and did my best before coming to today’s match. That should be why we got good results.
You showed tears today. Why did you shed tears? And a word to the many amateur players that hope to become a royal-roader someday?
Canna: I had a lump in my throat because I felt thankful to everybody. I put in a lot of effort on my own end, and I think tears came out because it felt that effort finally paid off. To those who want to become a royal-roader, I’d like to say effort and hard work never betrays you. Do your best.
What kind of player do you want to become? Do you have a specific goal?
Canna: My goal would obviously be to win Worlds. I’d like to become a player that is remembered by the team, and a player that the team doesn’t want to lose.
You’ve become a part-owner of the team. How did it change you?
Faker: I don’t think much changed. I think I’ve become more responsible.
Perkz criticized Gen.G’s draft and Wadid also said their draft was ‘literally unwinnable’. What did you think?
Comet: We also thought our draft was better in all three games, but I don’t think their draft was literally unwinnable. There were parts where they could have done better. We had a wider champion pool and prepared better. There were picks we didn’t show. Although our draft wasn’t perfect, we expected there would be many dogfights, so we prepared champions that fought well on their own, and everyone did well.
You won the championship with T1 again. How do you think you improved as a player this year?
Effort: Until last year, I relied a lot on the other players. But this season, I made my decisions more on my own. I think I improved the most in this part.
Did you urge the other players to destroy the Nexus again as well?
Effort: (Laughs) Yes, today as well, I wanted to finish the game surely and quickly so I urged them to hit the Nexus.
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Images via Riot Games Korea