Fnatic's run through the lower bracket of the 2021 League of Legends European Championship Summer Playoffs to qualify for the World Championship was impressive on multiple fronts, but amongst the most eye-popping was the performance of AD carry Elias "Upset" Lipp. In Fnatic's nine wins across its series against Team Vitality, Misfits and G2 Esports, Upset's scoreline was 70/1/61 - an otherworldly 131 KDA.
This isn't to say that Upset's performance in Fnatic's six losses across the series was poor — a 3.0 KDA across six losses is well above average — but his role in Fnatic's wins simply cannot be understated. Here is a look at Upset's individual performance in Fnatic's nine wins in the post-season thus far:
The KDAs of AD carries are often inflated due to the role often supplying the lion's share of consistent damage in a team composition, but one death across nine games is preposterous. What do these performances tell us? Upset thrives on late-game hyper-carries who possess an ability to allow them a bit of leeway in the way of mobility.
Tristana's Rocket Jump, Ezreal's Arcane Shift, Xayah's Featherstorm, and event to some extent some of Aphelios' abilities provide upset with temporary get out of jail free card, but perhaps more impressively, give him the ability to absolutely take over a teamfight in Fnatic's favor by chasing fleeing opponents down with Rocket Jump's reset on kills, Ezreal's incredibly low cooldown on Arcane Shift, or in some cases, the cc provided by Xayah's feathers.
Upset's individual play has been stellar, but is also the aggressive playstyle of Fnatic, especially in the case of support Zdravets "Hylissang" Iliev Galabov, that enables Upset to use his mobility aggressively simply because of the absurd amount of space Hylissang and jungler Gabriël "Bwipo" Rau create due to their 'all-in' style of play.
Hylissang has received criticism for his play when it falls flat because it looks awful, and it comes with many deaths, but the 2021 LEC Summer Split has been one of the finest splits of his career. Throughout the past few months, Upset and Hylissang have established themselves as the best Western bot lane duo, and arguably a top 3 pair in the world as well.
Before Fnatic competes at Worlds 2021, its specific seed must be decided by the remaining matches in the LEC Summer Playoffs. Fnatic will look for its fourth win in a row against Rogue this coming Saturday, with the loser settling for the 3rd Worlds seed while the winner will face reigning champion MAD Lions in the finals for the summer title and the 1st Worlds seed.