Welcoming the 2024 LCK Spring Split, the head coaches and players of the 10 teams gathered for Media Day. On this day, participants shared their aspirations for the upcoming LCK season and answered media questions. While all teams unanimously picked T1 to be the strongest, the media was able to listen to what they had in mind.
What are your resolutions heading into the new year?
OK BRION Choi “Edgar” Woo-beom: Another year has embarked upon us, and I think it’s similar again this year. I hope we can become a team where each player gets better evaluations after the game than before. I hope the players get through the year without regrets.
OK BRION Park “Morgan” Ru-han: Our roster changed this year, and I hope we can get good results by working hard together.
Dplus KIA Lee “Zefa” Jae-min: It’s been a while since I was head coach. There are players that I’m already close to, and there are new players as well. I’ll work hard to do well this season and show a good performance to the fans.
Dplus KIA Heo “ShowMaker” Su: I’ll adapt well with the new players and work hard so that we can get good results without any regrets.
DRX Kim “Kicro” Mok-kyoung: We have a lot of rookies, so I’ll make sure that we can do well by making a good team. Happy new year.
DRX Park “Teddy” Jin-seong: I’ll work hard so that we can get good results with the new members.
FearX Yoo “Ryu” Sang-wook: Our team has been rebranded. With a new mindset, my goal is to show a performance better than last year. We’ll work hard to do so.
FearX Kim “Willer” Jeong-hyeon: I believe team names look cooler if they play better. I’ll work hard to become a cool team.
Gen.G Kim “KIM” Jeong-soo: We have many veteran players, so we’ll work hard to do well.
Gen.G Son “Lehends” Si-woo: My goals are getting good results in international tournaments and having a happy year with my teammates.
Hanwha Life Esports Choi “DanDy” In-kyu: I hope all the players and fans can smile at the end of the year.
Hanwha Life Esports Han “Peanut” Wang-ho: My goal is to get better results than last year.
Kwangdong Freecs Kim “cvMax” Dae-ho: We’re going into the next season with almost the same roster. We’ve been working together for a while now, so we’ll work hard to show more fun games. Rather than results, we’ll show you an upgraded performance.
Kwangdong Freecs Kim “Taeyoon” Tae-yoon: Since we’ve been building our team synergy for over a year, we must do better. I want to play better and play games without regrets.
KT Rolster Kang “Hirai” Dong-hoon: I’ll do my best, thinking every game is my last game.
KT Rolster Kim “Deft” Hyuk-kyu: I’ll work hard so that I can have a fun season with my teammates.
Nongshim RedForce Heo “irean” Young-cheol: This year is also a year where we are bringing up players from the Challengers. Since it’s our second year, we’ll have a better performance.
Nongshim RedForce Park “DnDn” Geun-woo: There were a lot of regrets last year. This year, we need to prove. I’ll make sure we prove ourselves.
T1 Kim “kkOma” Jeong-gyun: Last year, the players had a tough and busy schedule. My goal is to keep the team healthy.
T1 Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok: Like last year, my goal is to follow my goal to learn and grow.
(To Faker, ShowMaker, Lehends) Hwei doesn’t have a high win rate in solo queue. What are your thoughts on Hwei?
Faker: Hwei requires proficiency in playing the champion. Depending on how it’s researched, I believe it can appear.
ShowMaker: I played Hwei a lot since its release because it’s a champion with a new mechanism. Depending on the players’ proficiency, I believe it’ll be played by certain players.
Lehends: I think Hwei can be played in the support role. I played it often, but it’s really difficult to get good at it.
(To kkOma) T1’s schedule last year was really busy. The team went through international tournaments, Asian Games, and even extra events after the season was over. How are the players? How are you planning to manage the team?
kkOma: I said my goal was to keep the team healthy, and I didn’t say it just because last year was busy. Faker, for example, has been running for an extremely long time. If this goes on for too long, hard times could come, both physically and mentally.
When I said healthy, I meant all of those things. When players feel they need to win the championship, the stress is big, so I want to relieve the players from the stress.
(To Deft) As you moved to KT Rolster, Pyosik and BeryL, who hoisted the Summoner’s Cup with you in 2022, moved together. And T1 has the same roster you defeated in that Worlds. What do you think about T1?
Deft: I think they are much better than the team we faced in 2022. Besides T1, there are many strong teams in the LCK. I’m happy that we can set them as obstacles to overcome and take a challenge.
(To Deft) One of the biggest changes this season is the changes on the map. They say that the red side bot is very disadvantageous. How do you think the play will change?
Deft: As many people have said, I agree that playing on the red side bot is difficult. Besides that, it feels that the Rift is rather bigger now, so I’ll need to concentrate more when playing slower ADCs.
(To KIM) You’re back in the LCK. Gen.G has been doing well domestically, but not as well internationally. What ideas do you have to solve that?
KIM: I’ve already told the players at our workshop that they are anxious in big matches that lead to passive plays. If I continue to give feedback and have them show their best in the games, I believe it’ll be better.
(To KIM) How do you plan to overcome T1?
KIM: We’re focusing on beating T1. I don’t think there are any answers but to work hard.
(To Faker) Last year, you had a wrist injury. Although you won Worlds, you weren’t able to win any other competitions. Are you aiming to win everything this year?
Faker: One of my goals this year is to win domestically and internationally. My biggest goal is to work hard every day in that process.
(To Faker) For your teammates, it was their first world championship. What advice can you give them?
Faker: There are different sources of motivation for everyone. Generally, I can say that winning the championship is important, but it’s more important to show the fans a good performance, so we need to focus.
(To kkOma) You cut your hair short. Does it show your determination for another championship?
kkOma: [Laughs] After my second child was born, I simply wanted to cut my hair short because I didn’t care about how I looked. Every woman in the family did not approve of it. So I waited until the profile shoot, and cut my hair afterward. I always want to win the championship. My haircut does not have a say in that.
(To Faker) What’s different this year from the past years? Do you have any goals besides winning the championship?
Faker: After spending many years as a pro gamer, I realized that I want to make every year more valuable than the one before. I’d like to learn and work hard to set and achieve big and small goals.
(To cvMax) You’re heading into the season with the same lineup. They have much more experience now. What’s your goal for the season?
cvMax: People may not think it’s realistic, and they would say that I’m not objective, but my goal is and always has been to win Worlds. The middle goal is to reach the playoffs in the spring so that the players can get more Bo5 experience. My main focus is simply to make the players play LoL extremely well.
(To irean, DnDn) Nongshim RedForce has the same roster. What has changed from last year?
irean: I believe the teamfights and skirmishes were quite good last year. Our issue was about the macro. We weren’t able to deal with opponents’ mind games. What’s important is to move as a team, as if the players were controlled by one person.
DnDn: Our team synergy is good; we’ve been playing together for a long time. The map and items changed, so we said we should become pioneers in the new meta. I believe we’ll be able to work our way through and take a path of our own.
(To Faker) In a bookstore, there’s a column labeled: Books Faker read. How does it feel?
Faker: I was a bit shy to reveal the books I read, but I did. I think it’s good if people read books because of me. I don’t read an extreme amount of books, but I’m proud and thankful that I had a positive influence.
(To Faker, Deft) You’ve been playing for a long time. There were many changes to the Rift in the new season. How is the new season patch?
Deft: I’m still getting used to it. There are certain locations that feel odd, but if I play more, I’ll probably get familiar with it.
Faker: It does feel like a huge change, as the map and items changed a lot. It’ll take time to get used to, but I don’t think there will be a huge shift in the meta.
(To Deft) Smolder’s skillset was recently revealed. As a bot laner, how does it look?
Deft: I haven’t had a thorough look yet, but it seems to have a skill that goes over walls and a stack skill. I think it’ll be quite fun since it has many abilities needed as a bot laner.
(To Zefa, KIM) You weren’t head coaches in the LCK last year. How does it feel to be back? DK and Gen.G are both considered strong teams. What are your goals?
Zefa: I had a break last year and came back as an analyst in the Asian Games. Now I’m back as a head coach. I’m thankful to the Dplus KIA CEO, who asked me to come back. We’ve called up Lucid from Challengers and signed Kingen and Aiming. ShowMaker and Kellin are still here, and our goal is to win the championship. We’re working together in that direction.
KIM: I’ve had a long break, so I’m working twice as hard. My goal is also to win the championship. My goal is to work hard and go in the same direction all together.
(To Lehends) Gen.G has won three consecutive championships since 2022 summer when you were in Gen.G. If you win again this spring, Gen.G will become the first-ever team to win four straight. What are your thoughts?
Lehends: Regardless of such a record, winning the championship is all I’m thinking about. Also, since I wasn’t with the team in two of those championships, it’s not a record tied to me. My main focus is to win Worlds.
(To Hirai) You called up PerfecT for the top lane. He has been raised through KT Academy, and been on KT the whole time. What are your expectations for him?
Hirai: PerfecT is very earnest. He has prepared for a long time and is very strong-minded. If he works like he did, step by step, without trying to rush everything, he’ll do well. I hope he gains much experience and learns a lot. I’ll try to help him in that process, taking every step with him.
(To Peanut) Doran and Delight moved to Hanwha Life Esports with you. How do you think you’ll do in the new team?
Peanut: I’ll be playing with Doran and Delight, who were on Gen.G with me last year. I believe we can build a good synergy right away, but it’s a completely different team. We have a different style and a different strategy. If things click, we can grow a lot.
(To Willer) There are many changes in the jungle objectives. What are your thoughts?
Willer: There’s a new objective called Voidgrub Camp. I think this will make more top-side skirmishes. There are also more options to take when the team is behind in the dragon fight. It’s likely that junglers would pick champions that are good at fighting aggressively in skirmishes.
(To Peanut) The MSI champions will now head straight to Worlds. How do you think the change would affect the players?
Peanut: It could be different for each player, but I believe everyone’s eyes are set on winning Worlds. Having a ticket to Worlds guaranteed by winning MSI is a great source of motivation from the spring split, so I think it’s a positive change.
(To cvMax) Kwangdong Freecs is getting high expectations, but realistically, you finished in last place in 2023 summer. However, it is known that you practiced a lot against T1. What should fans expect?
cvMax: I always asked fans to have high expectations, but never delivered. [Laughs] But I’d like to ask you to get fooled once again and have faith. I believe we’ll do better. I’ll contribute to making the LCK a more fun league.
Any last comments?
Morgan: The season is just around the corner. We’ll all work hard and show a good performance.
ShowMaker: Starting the new season, I hope the fans are always happy. I’ll work hard to constantly show a good performance.
Teddy: We’ll be playing in the season-opening match, so I’ll work hard to show a good performance.
Willer: We’ll do our best to make FearX a good team, and make fans want to cheer for us.
Lehends: I’ll do my best, like always, and make LCK fun to watch this season as well.
Peanut: I felt that Hanwha Life Esports has a genuine approach to esports. I’ll fulfill their expectations and get good results.
Taeyoon: I’m looking forward to the season starting. I’ll do well and make the team worth looking forward to.
Deft: I’m on a new team with new teammates. I’ll work hard and show my best.
DnDn: Everyone is working hard. We’ll get good results.
Faker: This year, I have a new opportunity, so I’ll do my best within this given opportunity. I’d like to show a good performance to the fans and get good results.