TL Santorin on finals performance: "Going 0-3 against 100 Thieves is, in my head, unforgivable."


100 Thieves has been crowned LCS champion following a 3-0 win over Team Liquid in the finals of the 2021 League Championship Series Championship. TL came into the series undefeated and rightfully favored, but 100 showed up far stronger on the day and won its first LCS title as an organization. 100 Thieves will be North America's #1 seed at the 2021 World Championship, with runner-up Team Liquid at #2 and Cloud9 at #3. 



After the loss to 100 Thieves, Team Liquid's players and coaches joined members of the press for a LCS Championship post-match conference hosted by The Story Mob's Miles Yim to discuss the series and look ahead towards Worlds 2021. 



Santorin, I know this has been a rather difficult split for you. But I still want to look ahead to Worlds. In your view, how does it feel to be returning back to Worlds and representing North America?


I mean, right now it feels awful. I didn't perform well today, and for me...I mean this kind of meant everything for me. So I'm still looking forward for Worlds, but my performance today was not something that I want to show at Worlds obviously. So this is a learning step for me, for sure.



Obviously, all of us that have been covering you have seen your growth throughout playoffs, and you guys had a lot of momentum, so this one goes out to everyone. But we'll start with CoreJJ: what happened today? What do you think happened today against 100 Thieves in your opinion?


CoreJJ: I mean, past week we played well. We played well while in practice. I mean, this week was a little bit more harder than a usual week. And then we couldn't perform well compared to our previous weeks.


Kold:  I think 100 Thieves played well today. Respect to them. They showed up on the day and we didn't, and sometimes that happens.



Hello everyone. Commiserations on your playoffs run. This question goes out to Kold. Many people will look back on this series regarding specifically on the non- ban towards Viego for 100 Thieves—in which Closer then used to perform pretty well. And so I'd like to know, what was the rationale in not banning Viego within the draft in those first two games?


We were pretty happy with the trade we got in the games, and that's why. I think we have shown in practice we can beat it and we just didn't do it today.


I think in hindsight—makes sense to have that thought process. Maybe we should have banned it, maybe we shouldn't. Can't change the past. We decided on it and we stand by it. And maybe there are some afterthoughts after—like re-evaluating whether or not it was the right decision—but we thought in the moment that it was the right decision.


Jensen, I wanted to ask you something regarding Worlds. At the beginning of Spring, we were talking about the overall mid lane pool following Bjergsen's retirement, and how while there were some competitors of Perkz and everything that you felt like the overall mid lane pool hadn't quite reached that level that it had when you and Bjergsen were kind of the two guys at the top.


Now that the season is over and NA is sending three relatively strong mid laners: yourself, Perkz, and Abbedagge, do you feel like this class of mid laners can match or exceed the potential of previous mid lane players who attended Worlds on LCS teams?


It's hard to say. It's just probably about the same, if not maybe even slightly worse. I don't think the mid lane pool was too hot this Summer, at least. I think there wasn't like any mid laner where I was like, "Wow, this guy played really well," besides I think Jiizuke, who played really well individually. But other than that, I think, you know, it feels kind of similar to last year.


I think the mid laners can for sure go toe-to-toe with the other mid laners from China and Korea, but I don't think it' didn't feel like it got better from last year. 



Hey there, I have a question for Kold. Yesterday in the press conference, I believe it was Cloud9 CEO Jack Etienne said something about, "These are the best three teams that NA has ever sent to Worlds."


As a coach, and as someone who is obviously studying the other two teams that are going, along with yourself, how do you feel like NA will do at Worlds this year? Jack also mentioned he thinks all three teams could get out of groups into brackets, which is incredibly bold. How do you feel about that?


How do I feel about that? To be honest, I hadn't really put much thought into it before now. I think individually, we have players that can make it—just whether or not the teamplay will allow it to. And also how the bootcamp goes. So we will see in a month and a half's time.


I think the potential is there, but it really depends on what kind of teams show up. Because I think if anything, this season has shown the highs and the lows of all of the teams going. So if the teams that are representing NA show up with their highs, I think it's a very fair assessment that they can make it out.



This question is for Santorin. I know that this has been a really tough year for you with lots of challenges. How are you holding up right now, and where's your head at?


I mean, obviously...playing like I did and we did today...Going 0-3 against 100 Thieves is, in my head, unforgivable. I feel like throughout playoffs we were the stronger team. And I personally didn't show up today. So when it comes to how I feel personally, I don't feel great right now. 


I'm still looking forward to Worlds and I'm hoping that with some time, I can come back to go to Worlds and actually like prove ourselves as players and as a team. Because quite frankly, I didn't show up today, and that's not something I can let myself down on.



This question is for Kold. Last week, you went against 100 Thieves and the series was pretty close—a 3-2 result. Despite it being really close, co you think you underestimate 100 Thieves today? 


Maybe. I don't think so. I think they just showed up and we didn't. I think it's pretty apparent to when you see our guys, that this game mattered a lot for every one of us. And sometimes the pressure can make more harm than use. And I think that is maybe part of the reason why we lost it.



What are some things you're going to be working on heading towards Worlds here?


Kold: I'll take that one. I think first of all, this split and this season has been a very very stressful season for our entire team. And we need to use the next week to rest and recharge. And after that we will be bringing full force into the boot camp and preparing there. But this season has been very long for all of them. And first step in order to be able to perform at Worlds is to get some rest.



Hey Alphari, you've now completed your first year here in the LCS. Obviously two finalist appearances are great for most people. How do you feel about this specific performance against 100 Thieves?


I mean, I don't feel good or happy about this performance, obviously. Going 0-3...even losing 3-2 is not good enough. It's not what I play for. So I feel pretty bad, because I want to come first. And we didn't. So it sucks, pretty much.


Yeah, I got to get a quote from you too Tactical. Obviously, you've been here on winning and losing sides here. Kind of want to get your thoughts on how you're feeling right now.


I'm feeling pretty sad. To me, the game meant a lot, but we couldn't win.



All images by: Tina Jo/Riot Games via ESPAT

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