DWG KIA sealed a close 3-2 series against T1 in the semifinals of the 2021 LoL World Championship, getting a step closer to becoming the second team in history to win two straight World Championships. After the match, DWG KIA sat down for a press conference.
(To ShowMaker, Ghost) Ghost, you shed tears after the fifth game. How were your feelings? ShowMaker also looked in the camera for that pose at the end, so how do you feel?
Ghost: I thought that this Worlds will probably be the last tournament that we will play with these five members. It would’ve been very disappointing if our tournament ended here, but I felt relieved that we won the series.
ShowMaker: I made the face mostly because I was happy, but more because the cameraman said “Wow ShowMaker! Come on! Come on!” So I went to him right away and looked straight into the camera [laughter].
(To Khan) This is your last Worlds. Your excitement while shouting “Just fighting!” from the group stages was impressive. You probably couldn’t be as positive when you were behind 1-2 against T1. What was your mindset?
Khan: Whether in the past or in the present, I think the people who say that they really enjoy worldwide stages are completely insane. [Laughter] I acted like that because I wanted to show that I was calm, but I was actually very nervous and scared.
(To kkOma) - The team’s draft suddenly changed in the fifth game, letting Gumayusi pick Aphelios and answering it with Ziggs. Was this a prepared plan to shut out Gumayusi’s Aphelios?
kkOma: We tested and prepared a lot of different drafts. We decided to change our draft for the fifth game after seeing how the previous games were played, because it is a Bo5.
(To Canyon) The last teamfight all came down to the 50/50 smite. Were you sure that you would win the smite fight?
Canyon: When we were going for the smite fight, we wanted to take the dragon easily because we are a poke comp. But they were very aware of how much health was left on the dragon, so I prepared to win the smite battle ahead. I think Talon is favored against Xin Zhao, so I think I won because of that.
(To BeryL) Can you tell us why you decided to start Steel Shoulderguards over Relic Shield as your starting item on Maokai? What are some of the champion’s strengths?
BeryL: I think the strength of Maokai is in the late game, where he just becomes as reliable as top lane Maokai. In terms of the starting item, Steel Shoulderguards, it’s because Maokai has a really good base attack speed.
(To ShowMaker) This Worlds saw four of the best mid laners in the world compete for the Summoner’s Cup. As this series was arguably the deciding match of determining the best mid laner in the world, do you think you are the best mid laner in the world now? Where do you think you belong?
ShowMaker: Worlds is not over yet. We have to see how the finals go. I think it’s too early to say that I am the best mid laner in the world, but I feel happy to be evaluated as the best for making it to the finals.
(To kkOma) How do you feel about challenging the fourth World Championship?
kkOma: I am probably saying the same thing again, but I think DWG KIA making it to the finals for two years in a row and going for two championships in a row is more important than my personal career achievement. I want to win the finals for DWG KIA’s second Worlds title.
(To Khan) The finals are just a week away. How do you feel heading to the finals, and what will the preparation focus on?
Khan: Nowadays, I’m nervous to the point where I can’t even sleep properly. On the flip side, working with great teammates and coaches helped me gain a broader perspective on things, which ultimately improved my gameplay. I am thankful for the people who helped me play LoL. If you ask how I am going to prepare for the finals, I will focus on improving my form to create leads.
(To ShowMaker) There were a lot of expectations on your match against Faker. How do you evaluate today’s series?
ShowMaker: I think we played a very exciting series from both sides.
(To ShowMaker): How was T1 today different from the previous days?
ShowMaker: They prepared a lot of different drafts and they improved a lot since they played at LCK.
(To ShowMaker) Are you satisfied with your performance today? What did you think about some unexpected champions like Yasuo and Zilean? What was your game plan against those picks?
ShowMaker: I think my performance today was decent. I was surprised at those new picks, but I just played the way I always did.
(To kkOma) Who do you think will win tomorrow? Which team do you want to face in the finals?
kkOma: I honestly think it's a 50/50. Both teams play well. It will depend on their daily condition tomorrow and regardless of who wins, I hope they show us various picks by going to game 5. I really wish the series will go to game 5.
(To Canyon) How do you evaluate your performance today? How did it feel to face Oner?
Canyon: I played pretty well overall. There were a few mistakes during teamfights but flawless other than that. Playing against Oner was not easy because he’s so good at teamfighting.
(To kkOma) How confident are you in DWG KIA winning back-to-back championships?
kkOma: I am very confident but I want to avoid answering this question because the results were bad whenever I said I am confident. But we are confident regardless of who we face in the finals because our coaches and players are phenomenal.
(To kkOma) As you were undefeated up to the quarterfinals, how much did playing a close 5-games series help you prepare for the finals?
kkOma: Playing many games helps us find our weaknesses, so we’ll make sure to fix them for the finals
(To kkOma) Part of the community is calling this match the match of the century. How did you take care of the pressure against T1? Did this affect how the team played the game?
kkOma: In every game against any game, we have the same amount of pressure. There isn’t anything special because we are facing T1. Our players did not feel extra pressure. Maybe it's just me, but I think I feel the same amount of pressure against any team.
(To kkOma) You already won Worlds three times alongside Faker in T1. Today you won against him, and now you’re in the finals. How do you see this storyline building up about your “rivalry” against Faker?
kkOma: I don’t think a career as a player and a career as a coach is comparable. A player’s career is outstanding. I think DWG KIA winning the second Worlds championship is a lot more important. Again, building a great career as a player and a coach is completely different. I think it's much more difficult for a player.
(To ShowMaker) Did you expect 2021 to be a year full of success with the new coaches and players?
ShowMaker: Yes. I expected it.
(To Ghost) You are the owner of Worlds Jhin skin. Jhin was a very important pick up to game 4. What makes Jhin so strong? What made it so strong in this best of five series?
Ghost: There's a lot of factors to consider. I think the biggest factor is that I am a Jhin expert but Gumayusi is also a great Jhin player. Teammates also played well for Jhin. I think that’s why Jhin performed very well.
(Anyone) Faker said DWG KIA’s biggest strength is the mentality. What do you think about it?
Canyon: I think we have a great mentality, and the mentality is very important. I think he is correct.
(Anyone) Since winning Worlds is almost reality. Has anyone chosen championship skins?
[Everyone shakes their heads]
ShowMaker: I really thank you for asking, but it’s way too early to answer that. Talking about championship skins is… I’m sorry. [Laughs]
Images via Riot Games/Getty Images
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