5 Years ago, Doublelift was considered as one of the best ADCs in North America. Today, Doublelift is still considered as one of the best. What will be his future in the next 5 years?
Winning the Spring Split Finals and going to MSI, Doublelift continues to build himself substantial reputation and acknowledgment. Despite this, the meta currently tests the top tier Marksman players. By looking at Rekkles, the meta had taken away the champions he had mastery over. But throughout the Summer Split, Doublelift has proven Marksman champions are not out of the picture.
After the win against CLG (Saturday), we were able to sit down with Doublelift and listen to his perspective. Let’s see what Doublelift has to say about the meta, his future, and Imaqtpie.
¤ The meta has shifted what was seen as the norm for League Of Legends for the past several years. How have you and your team coped with these changes?
I think every team was pretty similar. At first, they were like “Oh, everything is viable and you can play whatever you want.”. Everyone is trying to figure out what the best is. But after awhile, I believe people realized that some stuff isn’t really that good. AD carries are still good in most situations. Sometimes, you can play AP or bruiser champions bottom. Supports are a lot different. Shielding supports are not that strong right now. Therefore, you see more engage and damage supports such as Fiddlesticks and Pyke.
Most changes are to the bot lane, but the biggest changes are mid and jungle. The gold funneling strat. I saw the game when Faker played Taric, and I got really depressed. When something is so strong that Faker has to play Taric, it made me feel like they really messed something up.
Regarding the bot lane, I did a recent interview when I said: “It is not that fun to see Faker playing Taric and Uzi playing Vladimir-Yasuo.”. Honestly, I think it is fine to have Vladimir and Yasuo to be viable bottom. It opens a lot of different team comps. It is very interesting to see an AD carry player play that stuff. It is still a carry. It just carries in a different way. Vlad looks for dives and Yasuo looks for crazy outplays.
Mainly, what I don’t like to see is the gold funneling strat. Everything else, including the bot lane, is totally fine right now. Maybe I’ll make some changes to AD carry base stats because I think they are too weak early game.
¤ Recently, Rekkles stepped down due to the meta changes bottom. What is your opinion on this? Do you think other AD carry players will do the same or are ADCs still viable?
If you look at all the games from the top teams with high tier players from every region, those teams, except for EU, still play AD carries bottom. It is weird because you don’t really need to learn Vladimir or Yasuo. I mean, you can. It is a big bonus for your team.
It is really cool. If I got really good at Yasuo and people had to ban my Yasuo, that would be something interesting which has never happened in League Of Legends. It is just so weird. I don’t understand why Rekkles did that. You see Uzi still playing Kai’Sa, Ashe, and Varus. He is doing fine.
¤ From the interview with Olleh, he revealed that he had a lot of difficulty in managing his confidence throughout Miami-MSI-Summer Split. In your perspective, how has Olleh’s performance evolved since last split?
When I first started to play with Olleh, he would die a lot (laughs). I wasn't playing for KDA, but I was trying to play perfectly which means not dying. Now, it has totally switched. When I try to learn new champions and go 10 deaths every game, Olleh is playing solid. He has definitely improved a lot since we started playing together. The new meta has been pretty hard for me to adapt to, but I still like it.
Olleh’s mentality had a pretty big problem during MSI. I think he has been working on it and has accepted that it is a problem he needs to address. I really respect that kind of mentality. Olleh doesn’t ignore it and say “Oh, maybe next time we will do better!”. He is really trying to improve himself. I really respect people like Olleh. He is absolutely trying his best.
¤ In your personal opinion, where do you rank TL right now in this meta?
Everyone tells me we are the best (laughs). It makes me feel like everyone is trolling us or something. We actually have a terrible win rate in scrims against C9’s new roster. It feels like if C9 played the way they play in scrims on stage, they would be just god tier. I am not really sure what the magic answer for your question is. I believe we are one of the top teams. Top 2. If C9 can’t perform at that level, we might be the best… again. We are always looking out for strong competition. In my opinion, TSM, mostly, is the strongest team.
¤ There is a rumor going around that GGS is the scrim gods. What is your take on this?
Wow. Yeah, I don’t know. That rumor must have been started by Golden Guardians.
¤ Let’s talk a bit about trash talk. Although your fans are supportive of you for your talent and determination, your fans also love to support you for the trash talk. It brings some entertainment into a somewhat stiff industry. What are your opinions on fans viewing you as the go-to guy for trash talk?
I think it is awesome. I love it when people say “Dude… League is so boring… NA LCS is so boring. But then when I watch your games and watch your trash talk, it makes it exciting.”. None of us would have jobs if League was boring to watch. The only reason why pro players get paid money is that people watch us play games. If I hurt my pride because I trash talked and we lost or if I said someone was bad but I got 2v2 killed by them, it is okay. In the end, I am having fun and the viewers are having fun. It is not interesting if you aren’t willing to bet something on the game.
¤ Did you see the comeback Deftly made in Travis’ interview?
Yeah, that was good (laughs). That was really funny.
¤ In the LCK, teams are playing Kai’Sa jungle with three supports. Have you ever wanted to try that with your team? Maybe role swap like Huni did?
Yeah, I saw that game. I saw Griffin comeback with three inhibs down against SKT. At first, I was like “This game is so over.”. But with one team fight, Griffin blew it up with Viper on Kai’Sa. The next morning, I was like “Guys… did you watch that game?” (laughs). I am definitely thinking about it.
¤ 5 years ago, you were considered as one of the best ADCs in NA. Now you are still considered one of the best. Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?
Oh man, I have actually been thinking about this most recently. This morning, I was thinking about it while I was in the shower: “What am I going to do in the next 5 years? I am going to be 29.”. I’ll be really old.
I used to watch Street Fighter a lot, especially Street Fighter IV. It was really really fun to watch. There is this Korean player named Infiltration. He was super dominating. Watching him play, he was incredibly smart. His mechanics and reaction time was insane. Infiltration played so many characters.
Most Street Fighter professionals can only play one character. Infiltration could play basically any character. He had counter picks. One of the craziest matches was, in a big tournament, when he counter picked with a low tier character that no one played. Infiltration just blew him up. I was like “Dude… this Korean player is amazing.”. When I looked up his age, he was 33. Infiltration has the knowledge, the reaction time, and pretty much everything that a pro player needs, and he is 33 (at the time). Right now, I think he is even older than that.
I am inspired by these fighting game players. Fighting games are really hard to play. I’m inspired that you can be a pro player at any age. Hopefully, by the time I am 30, I can move onto something different. I really love it right now. If I still love it in 5 years, I am going to try my best to stick with it.
¤ Last week, Imaqtpie came to the NA LCS and joined you in the player’s lounge. How was it like to meet your rival?
Dude… Imaqtpie is literally the exact same person when he is streaming and how he is in real life. He is just a huge troll, and he is really funny. To call him my rival is like, I’m a pro player and he is an entertainer. Imaqtpie is really good. I feel like… hmm… I don’t want to compare Imaqtpie to Dopa. Dopa is not a pro player, but everyone is like “OMG, Faker Dopa! There are rivals in solo q.”. I am pretty sure one is an elo booster and one is Faker. They are not really Rivals. But yeah, I liked it. It was really fun.
¤ Do you have anything to say about Imaqtpie getting demoted to Diamond 1?
Oh s*** (laughs). Did he get demoted to Diamond 1 (laughs)? I can’t really say anything. I am like hard stuck Masters right now. AD carries... we are all struggling.
¤ Lastly, is there anything you want to say to your fans?
Thanks for cheering me on. Sometimes, I say really stupid s*** (laughs). It is so nice when people have my back even though I say something stupid. I still really love the fans, and I really love doing this job.