This last weekend one of the most expected League of Legends events from this second part of the season took place outside the Seoul Olympic Stadium. The hyped up final between both telecom rival teams, SKT T1 and KT Rolster Bullets, did not fall short by any means. It had everything one would’ve hoped for, amazing play from both teams, individual skills to the best the worlds best league of legends region can offer, a comeback from a 0-2 situation, a wonderful organization, an amazing crowd to back up all of the hype, like all of that wouldn’t make it epic already there was a storm going on while the matches were being played on an outside venue.
In todays recap where are going to highlight three games:
- Game 1, where KT showed complete dominance with their fast push strategy.
- Game 3, with SKT showing their answer to the KT’s strategy while being down 0-2.
- Game 5, the fifth and decisive blind pick game to end the series.
Before going into the games lets check out some simple but cool individual player statistics on a head to head for each role.
|Player||SKT Impact||KT Insec|
|Go to Pick||Zac, 5W-0L||Zac, 5W-2L|
|Player||SKT Bengi||KT KaKao|
|Go to Pick||Jarvan IV, 3W-1L||Elise, 4W-0L|
|Player||SKT Faker||KT Ryu|
|Go to Pick||Orianna, 3W-0L||Zed, 3W-0L|
|Player||SKT Piglet||KT Score|
|Go to Pick||Vayne, 7W-0L||Twitch, 3W-1L|
|Player||SKT PoohManDu||KT Mafa|
|Go to Pick||Nami, 8W-0L||Sona, 4W-1L|
- Lee Sin
- Sona (PoohManDu)
- Nunu (Bengi)
- Kennen (Impact)
- Vayne (Piglet)
- Orianna (Faker)
- Jarvan IV (Insec)
- Elise (KaKao)
- Fiddlesticks (Mafa)
- Ezreal (Score)
- Gragas (Ryu)
SKT Telecom had an AOE composition oriented to peel for a late game Bloodboil Vayne using all of Kennen-Nunu-Sona-Orianna tools to keep her alive while she fires away on the enemy team. A weak point of this composition is the lack of a long range engage aside from Flash-Crescendo coming from Sona, which is not a reliable engage.
KT Rolster Bullets played a pick composition, utilizing Fiddlesticks-Elise single target crowd control paired up with Gragas-Jarvan (Top lane) burst damage (and consequent CC from their abilities). Using an overall very mobile team with all of their members except fiddlesticks having a dash-shift and also all of them except Ezreal having at least 1 cc tool (soft, hard or both in some cases).
The bullets started laning phase of by using a 2v1 swap between bottom and top lane, sending Fiddlesticks and Ezreal to shove the top lane against Kennen while Jarvan dealt with Vayne-Sona bot. After a slow start, when SKT decided to send their bot lane topat seven minutes to have regular 2v2 and 1v1 lanes again, even before any turret fell down (being SKT’s top turret lower on hit points than KT’s bot lane turret), Insec and Kakao made the smart decision of doing an unspotted 2-man dragon giving the Bullets the first gold lead of the game at almost 1k.
A couple of minutes later on a 3v3 engagement in the top lane with both duo lanes and the junglers first blood of the finals was shed by Score’s Ezreal onto Bengi’s Nunu. The trade ended 2 for 1 in favor of KT, featuring a double kill for Score, taking down SK top outer turret right after extending their early lead to 2k by the ten minute mark.
There was a turning point of the game around the twelve minute mark where everything all around the map turned into the Bullets favor. First off it started with a Kakao gank on the now 2v2 bot lane, ending up in 2 kills for KT, with Score and Kakao taking down Piglet and Poohmandu. Just as the action concluded at the bot lane, in mid Ryu used Explosive Cask to push Faker out of position for the Insec gank coming from the top lane netting them another kill, meanwhile this happened mid, the 3-man group botlane got yet another kill in their favor onto Bengi’s Nunu, finishing a 4 for 0 kill trade (and bot lane outer turret) all around the map in favor of KTB in the span of 1 minute, extending their lead to 5k.
From this point on the Bullets managed their lead with methodical play, pushing all of their advantages, taking down two more dragons (3-0 overall) and two more turrets with SKT being unable to answer to the push due to the early Gauntlet on Ezreal, Gragas Explosive Cask, Elise cocoon and Fiddlesticks Fear-Silence adding up to their composition lack of a long range engage I mentioned before going into this recap.
The first attempt to answer the objective push KT had been doing since the turning point came almost ten minutes later around 22 minutes when PoohManDu engaged over KT with a Flash-Crescendo on top lane’s inner turret. The fight ended on a 2 for 2 overall, but the three remaining members from the Bullets (Ezreal-Elise-Gragas) were all full health while two of the three survivors from SKT were forced to recall back to base, allowing KT to take down the top inner turret, pushing the balance in their favor once more.
The Bullets kept controlling the pace of the game in a dominant way, trading kills whenever possible as long as it allowed them to take down a turret right after, not giving the late game Vayne composition SKT was running any room to breathe, denying vision all over the map, inside SK’s jungle and at both Baron and Dragon pit, taking yet another uncontested Dragon.Near the 28 minute mark KT pushed back SK and took down Baron without any possible response from the Telecom rival team, being too far behind and not having their only unreliable long range engage tool since PoohManDu’s Flash had been burned moments before.
With Baron buff on them and with their massive gold-objective lead advantage the Bullets pushed down top lane turret-inhibitor after trading 4 for 3 on a turret dive coming from Insec’s Jarvan. After KT came back from base they rotated to the bot lane where they caught Bengi out of position and with the 5v4 advantage were able to also take down bot turret-inhibitor, leaving two open lanes to SKT’s base for the super minions while the Bullets fell back to take down yet another dragon, patiently but constantly extending their lead even more.
At 33 minutes on a desperation play and with a 15k lead deficit, with a Flash-Crescendo SKT engaged on to KTR with the fight resulting in an ace for 3 kills in favor of the Bullets, featuring a Score quadrakill, giving them the immediate chance to push for the win at 34:20.
|KT Score||Ezreal, AD Carry||11-1-12||259||96%||467|
Game 3 (KT 2-0)
- Lee Sin
- Zed (Faker)
- Zyra (PoohManDu)
- Vi (Bengi)
- Vayne (Piglet)
- Malphite (Impact)
- Jarvan IV (Insec)
- Elise (KaKao)
- Ezreal (Score)
- Gragas (Ryu)
KT Rolster Bullets tried to continue with the same strategy they used during Games 1 and 2 (both wins for them), running a fast objective push with disengage capabilities such as Gragas Explosive Cask, Lulu’s Q and Elise cocoon and single target cc to generate pick up kills coming from Lulu and Elise. Having as their main engage tool Jarvan Cataclysm+Lulu’s Wild Growth.
SKT Telecom went for a double front line tank+assassin heavy dive composition, taking advantage of and Zyra’s crowd control capability to follow the initiation dive from Vi-Malphite, coupled with the huge amounts of damage coming from Zed-Vayne, who are also two good carries to follow dive tanks.
The game started with the advantage swinging into SKT’s favor right of the bat; with first blood going to PoohManDu over Score after the SK forced a 4v3 level one fight in their bot lane tribush were the Bullets botlane+Kakao tried to pick up a kill on Piglet (blew his flash). Both teams went for normal 1-1-2 lane setup with Impact making use of his teleport to get back to top lane after the level one play on bot.
The first lane blood came in for Faker on Ryu on a straight up 1v1 in the mid lane both blowing Flashes and with Faker using Ignite after bullying Ryu around for the first few levels.
A couple of minutes later the focal point of SKT counter strategy to the fast objective push KT was proposing for the third time in a row saw the light.
How can KT take the objectives if they can’t ever get their push going? If they can’t ever take one small advantage and snowball that into a lead to transform it in more objective control. SKT’s way of stopping the fast push control was to have a heavy dive team with the likes of Zed-Vayne/Malphite-Vi and the multiple CC coming from Zyra, to make aggressive rotations to other lanes getting as much kills as possible, how can the Bullets push turrets if they are dead or scared of pushing too far?
With the vision control early on SKT took the first Dragon of the game at 10 minutes with Vi-Zyra and Zed having no opposition coming from KT’s side, taking a 3k gold lead.
Just under a minute later Kakao went for a 3v2 gank bot, but with a combined score of 4-1-4 (Piglet being 3-0-1) from SKT’s bot lane against a 1-4-1 from KT’s bot lane+jungle, and even with SK’s duo being at half hp, they managed to turn it around and exchange 3 for 1 in their favor, featuring a DOA’s Bloodthirsty Support Award for PoohManDu’s Zyra taking the triple kill.
With their 10k gold lead coming from all the early kills SKT was able to completely shut down the Bullets strategy, never letting the push ramp up with continued vision control and map pressure, with Piglet getting a kill in the top lane while red buff PoohManDu held bot 1v2, with Faker using all of Zed’s snowball power to get kill after kill on Ryu’s Gragas on straight up 1v1 scenarios.
Near the fifteen minute mark KT attempted to get a kill on Impact while out of position near the bot lane, but after being unable to kill him quickly due to his high health-resistances the rest of SKT joined, and on a very spread out fight with lots of small skirmishes the power of Zed-Vayne during small 1v1-2v2 fights inside a big 5v5 team fight showed, having two kills for each of them, netting SKT a 4 for 1 trade and bot lane outer and inner turrets.
From that point and on SKT was just too ahead and prepared for everything the Bullets could throw at them, even winning a 4v5 skirmish inside KT’s redside jungle (without 6-1-4 Piglet) on a contundent 4 for 1 trade, allowing them to take down mid inner turret.
A couple of minutes later Impact engaged over Ryu in the midlane forcing a 5v5 fight that went strongly in SKT’s favor, cleaning it up 5 for 0 in under twenty seconds, and forcing a surrender vote as soon as the game timer hit the 20 minute mark.
|SKT Faker||Zed, Mid||9-0-8||165||71%||497|
Game 5 (2-2, blind pick)
Picks:WTF 4 NINJAS
KT Rolster Bullets had a siege/push oriented composition, having the Caitlyn-Fiddlesticks combo to chunk down turrets easily. The also had regular to strong team fighting in Evelynn+Fiddlesticks combo followed by Zed-Shen and Caitlyn shooting people from the back of it all.
SKT Telecom used a similar composition/strategy to what they had showed during game 3 with a double front line tanks with dive skills, the crowd control heavy support (knock up, root and plat slow), and the assassin+Vayne combo to deal extraordinary damage in small skirmishes/2-3 man dives.
As it could be no different, the series ending fifth blind pick game started the best way it could start, with level one action. Only 40 seconds into the game both teams met up in river near the mid lane topside banana bush where Impact got a 3-man Flash-Taunt resulting in first blood the Bullets but losing Impact to Ryu evening up the trade 1 for 1. SKT went for the 2v1 swap from bot to top during the early lane phase.
At 6 minutes Insec attempted a Shadow Dash taunt under turret on PoohManDu but the later was able to dodge out of it with his Flash, following with Grasping Roots and a Stun from Piglet’s Vayne Condem, forcing Insec out of lane at level five. This became important just seconds later when Faker went for an all in on Ryu in the mid lane using to his advantage Impacts Stand United who had just hit level six in the same wave of minions Insec missed because of going back to base. Both 1v2 lanes turret (top for KT, bot for SKT) were taken down near the seven minute mark.
Eight minutes into the game 4 members of the Bullets encountered Vi-Shen near the Dragon pit clearing vision on river and engaged onto them forcing them to go back to base, securing KT the first Dragon of the game, lowering the gold differential to 200 gold from a little bit over 1k. After taking down the Dragon KT’s member moved back to mid lane and with a Fiddlesticks ultimate over Wraiths wall they were able to take down Faker and Impact who were trying to even up the trade by taking down the Bullets mid outer turret.
Near the 15 minute mark Faker and Bengi spot Kakao through a pink ward on bot lane tribrush and jump on him over Dragon wall, forcing Insecs Stand United (cancelled by Impact), and still get the kill on KT’s jungler before escaping from the rest of the enemy team separated by a beautiful Zyra Stranglethorns coming from PoohManDu. Taking advantage of that kill they just picked up SKT take down the second Dragon of the game (their first) just as it respawns. As an answer to the Dragon, Ryu and Insec try to take down Impact in the top lane forcing him to use his Stand United to get away safely.
A couple of minutes later while SKT tried to defend their mid outer turret, the Bullets engaged onto them with a Fiddlesticks ultimate instantly killing Faker, but with on a prolongued spread out fight SKT was able to come out on top on the kill trade 4 for 3, with their mid lane outer turret finally falling down.
SKT took down their second Dragon of the game (3rd overall) on respawn and just after they were finished and leaving the pit KT’s Mafa came in with a late Crowstorm allowing Faker to initiate with Death Mark and Stand United, making it yet again a spread out prolonged teamfight in which SKT’s composition shined a lot more than what the Bullets composition did, with this difference enlarged by the fact Piglet’s Vayne had a Blade of the Ruined King+Zeal while Score had started Blood Thirster+Zeal (building into Statik Shiv) on Caitlyn, going for a push build, which gave SKT’s AD Carry a huge DPS advantage during team fights due to Vayne’s Silver Bolts proc.
25 minutes in Faker’s team went for a Baron attempt being stopped by Mafa using Crowstorm over the wall but having the advantage of KT not engaging as a unit they took the fight to them on a wide spread out 4v4 (both Shen cancelling each others ultimates at bot lane) where SKT came ahead 3 for 1, with Impact outdueling Insec in the bot lane adding up to that. SKT could not finish Baron but aside from winning having an overall 4 for 1 kill trade they also got to take down the Bullet’s inner mid turret.
Three minutes later Faker assassinated Score near mid lane top side banana bush and traded his life for it while the rest of his team was able to finally take down Baron.
With Baron buff on them SKT proceeded to push their advantages hard taking down turret after turret while still being patient, knowing there was no way Insec could ever stop Impact being the later so far ahead and with Baron on him. At 32 minutes on a 4v4 fight in the bot lane Baroned up SKT dived behind KT’s inhibitor and traded 3 for 1 taking inhibitor right after, and while all this happened bot, in the mid lane one of the highlights of this Seasons Champions Summer happened, one of the biggest outplays you will ever see in professional play, followed of course by that same pro player unintentionally dying to turret shots.
On Baron respawn SKT cleared the vision and took it down again while KT tried to trade it for a hard push down the mid lane hoping it would hold back Baroned up SKT later down the stretch or to actually stop them from finishing Baron. They ended up trading Baron only for SKT’s mid inner turret.
SKT Telecom T1 went for the push on the top lane right after killing Baron while sending Impact to shove mid lane (bot pushing itself with super minions), when KT decided to engage against all odds seeing they had no other way around to stall this game and maybe comeback. As expected the fight went in favor of SKT, trading 3 kills for the life of Bengi while allowing them to push down both Nexus turrets and the Nexus for the win, putting and end to the series on a 3-2 score earning the rightful title of OGN Summer champions.
Keys to SKT Championship:
- They are fast, they are fun to watch, they dominate their opponents, and no, they are not Dominion like HotshotGG would say. Most important of these three qualities for the Telecom team is that they are fast, and my god how fast they are. Fast to do what you may ask? To react, to adapt and consume their opponents. Yes it took them two games, both losses, yes they were surprised but no matter the 0-2 and the fears and questions, they managed to react in time and come up with a new strategy to counter KT’s fast objective push that the Bullets played during the entire series one game after the other. Their fast reaction and strategy change gave them a quick recovery with an easy win in game 3.
- They are an evolved version of last OGN Champions SKT team and they are scary. Not only they improved in their individual play but the overall capacity of the team to come up with specific strategies for specific opponents, to learn new level more effective level one plays but also they learnt to be a cohesive unit during team fights (something they lacked of) with everyone getting their jobs done.
- They evolved from last Champions version of the team but they kept the strengths they already had. Their laning phase continues to be one of the best and most aggressive laning phase in the entire world.
- Their individual skill is over the top. Faker, mechanically speaking at least, is on a whole nother level from the rest of the mortals that play League of Legends, so much that some people doubt MadLife as their only true God and want to believe in a new God, a midlane God. SKT’s bot lane potential is limitless. PoohManDu has become one of the smartest and most skilled supports in the world and by his side he has a fast growing and also well skilled AD Carry (or marksman whatever) that keeps getting better each day finding more and more opportunities to shine, and having less credit that what he is given for, Piglet had more kills than Faker during this Champions Summer.
- Their Top-Jungle duo is maybe their weak spot in terms of individual skills but by no means they fall short to be world class players, Bengi is a top 3 jungler in Korea with good mechanics and incredible game/jungle knowledge. Impact is not only the hero SKT wants but the hero SKT needs, he adapts to every team composition, makes good calls, sacrifices himself for the good of the team (only member of SKT not to win the KDA award for his role :P) and plays whatever is best for the team, a true team-dedicated top laner.