The LCK 2017 Summer Split kicked off last Tuesday and we already saw 10 matches during the last 5 days. The week was full of scenes that were shocking in many ways. SKT T1, the team that won the championship at MSI 2017, was defeated by Samsung Galaxy, and KT Rolster, the team that made it to second place last season, was falling apart. Let us review the matches that took place this week and have a look at the best moment and the best player in this week’s Weekly LCK.
ADC Xayah and Support Rakan are the first champion couple that has been released together. As their label suggests, they express their love for each other in-game. They throw cheesy lines at each other, and fly together when they recall. However, the perfect couple has to say farewell when it comes to professional leagues. Xayah is highly preferred among professional players for her damage-dealing capability, while Rakan is not picked much. It’s not that Rakan is a low tier champion, but there are others who can replace Rakan and are stronger than him.
No one expected anything from Xayah and Rakan when Jin Air Green Wings picked them when playing against ROX Tigers. The audience thought maybe JAG was trying to gain a slight advantage in lane. However, that wasn’t what JAG was thinking. The aggressive attacks from Jayce, Graves, and Xayah were well combined with Galio’s shield, but JAG needed one more thing. They needed someone to distract the enemies and buy time for Galio to engage. This is what a Jungler usually would do, but JAG decided that Rakan was the right vastayan for the job.
It wasn’t an easy task. Rakan had to distract the enemies, survive, and regroup with his allies. Rakan is not a champion with high durability. Getting hit by a crowd control skill would definitely kill him. If a tank champion had his abilities, it would be pretty OP. But Rakan is very squishy. The fate of JAG rested in SnowFlower’s hands.
▲ A match that showed JAG's perfect team comp.
And the strategy worked. SnowFlower showed some clever movements, and was especially amazing when he pulled off some perfectly-timed engages. First, he attacked Shy who already used up his ult, and killed him off. Then he waited in the back until Mickey’s Cassiopeia used her ult. (He got hit by the ult eventually, but the distance was safe enough.)
That was when Rakan became the champion. All the enemies, Kennen, Cassiopeia, and Ashe, used their ults and no one was left to stop him from engaging. The rest is as you see in the video. Rakan rushed to the enemies, charmed all of them, and escaped in the blink of an eye. After 1.5 seconds, ROX had to face Kuzan’s Galio, who was ready to taunt.
JAG’s strategy with Rakan was an inspirational one. Of course the strategy worked because JAG is a team that is well balanced between attack and defense, but Rakan is surely a champion that can show amazing teamwork with tanks like Galio and Shen, the tanks that have strong CC abilities.
Zac is the champion that was either picked or banned in all matches of the LCK and LCS. There are two reasons why Zac can dominate games. First, it is hard for the opponents to check if Zac is coming to gank them. Second, Zac’s ganks are extremely strong.
There is only one way for the champions without any special mobility skills to escape: Flash. It you get hit by Zac when you don’t have Flash, you have no other choice but to die , unless you are the best player in your region and can attack him back.
▲ You have no other choice but to die, unless you can escape with Flash.
There’s another reason pro gamers are not willing to let the opponent team take Zac: Zac is a tanky champion that deals quite a lot of damage to those around him. Furthermore, even if he gets killed, Zac can still come back to life once more using his passive ability, Cell Division, which enables him to roam around fearlessly in enemy territory. On top of that, other players on Zac’s team will be able to engage in a team fight with more ease, and even if the enemies manage to kill Zac, they won’t be able to easily score a kill if the rest of the team protects the remaining chunks of their Zac.
▲ It’s almost painful to watch this.
If I were to pick two players that shined the most in last week’s match, I’d pick LZ’s top laner, ‘Khan’, and ADC ‘Pray’. With what Khan showed, his fans were able to let go of the worries they had since LZ’s late salary issues. The most impressive match was the one they played against KT on the first day of LCK. Khan literally destroyed KT with his Jarvan IV throughout the 1st and 2nd sets. His skill wasn’t limited only to team fights; KT had to stay on high alert the whole game, as they didn’t know when or where Jarvan IV might suddenly appear. That meant his movement and macromanagement surpassed those of the others.
Pray is a player that shows extremely aggressive gameplay, even when playing as ADC, a role that usually should play safe. But even if he doesn’t stick to common sense, he’s one of the top players in the world. The composure he showed during the match against KT, and his general keenness in League is indescribable. Game 1, LZ vs KT, was full of team fights where more than 20 collective kills took place. But Pray did not die once, even when he was being focused by KT, and he was playing Ashe too. His skillshots are flawless. This video should be enough to explain everything.