Today we will see how SK Telecom T1 managed to completely shut down and dominate the JAG Falcons during the second game of their best of five series for the OGN Champions quarterfinals, while playing a fast push strategy against a late game split push composition. The winners of this match ended up winning the series three games to none, and Game 2 serves as the best example of the winning team’s dominance over the losing team.
Game 2 Picks and Bans:
|SKT T1 Bans:||SKT T1 Picks:|
|Falcons Bans:||Falcons Picks:|
JAG Falcons lineup: Vladimir (Miso), Evelynn (Reapered), Zed (Roar), Vayne (Raven), Sona (StarLast)
SKT T1 had a fast push / AoE disengage composition, favoring taking down turrets non-stop with Bloodboil Caitlyn, while having all of Nami-Nunu-Orianna (Tidal Wave, Aqua Prison, Iceball, Bloodboil and Shockwave, Dissonance) tools to disengage from any attempts of the Falcons to engage on them. As their initiation source (if needed) they had the Zac-Orianna-Nami ults combo of death (Lets Bounce,Shockwave, and Tidal Wave), all while Bloodboiled Caitlyn attacks freely from the back, taking advantage of Nunu (Snowball+Absolute Zero) and Nami (Aqua Prison + Tidecallers Blessing) peeling.
JAG Falcons had a strong AOE composition with Vladimir-Sona-Evelynn (Crescendo, Hemoplague, Agony’s Embrace), followed up by Zed instakilling one of the enemy carries with Death Mark (either Caitlyn or Orianna) and then Vayne-Vladimir cleaning up all of the low health targets with their late game sustained damage.
For SK Telecom T1 it was all about the fast push turret and objective taking, trying to shut down Vladimir during the early game, not letting him pick up fly for a split push farming fest during the mid-late game. The second part of SKT T1 strategy, and as a reaction to JAG’s picks, was to have espectacular vision control over the entire map, flooding river and bushes all over the field with pink wards (with PoohManDu opting to go for mass pink wards over oracles) to stop Evelynn from flanking their team.
JAG Falcons first started their pick selection with a Vladimir (Flash-Ghost), Vayne, implying they were going for a split-push Vladimir and a AOE late game oriented composition. After their initial picks, the JAG team tried to pick reactively to SKT’s fast push composition, going for the duo assassins, Evelynn and Zed, with both being a death threat to any member of SKT wanting to apply pressure on one of their turrets.
During the level one, SKT placed a ward on their red jungle entrance and then moved up through their mid lane and river to get inside the enemy red side jungle to put down aggressive wards. They went down river after and pinked the Falcons blue buff over the wall. The Falcons played as defensive as possible, putting down wards on both river entrances to their jungle (mid and banana bush) and letting SKT move freely during the entire level one period.
During the early/laning phase the game was all about which team was able to get their strategy rolling first and decide the next 15 minutes of the game, either SKT destroyed some turrets and gained map control (for Dragons and kills) before Miso’s Vladimir was able to outduel anyone in the game, or the Falcons managed to stop the fast turret push from Caitlyn-Nami until Miso and Zed could build up some items to gain total map control. SKT went for the 2v1 lane swap, as a part of their strategy of shutting down Vladimir early as much as possible so he never gets to ramp up his unstoppable split pushing.
SKT’s duo lane drawing Reapered form the jungle to avoid top turret from going down early.
After taking down top turret SKT T1 swaped lanes back to normal, sending their duo bot and Impact top, moments later on a Bengi gank, Impact was able to get first blood over Vladimir. Miso died yet again after coming back to lane, at 9:40 minutes, showing how much SKT wanted to negate Falcons split push strategy attempts.
First of the two deaths from Miso on Bengi’s ganks.
During lane phase Faker was a focal point of SKT T1 strategy, completely outclassing and destroying Roar, hitting Falcon’s strategy hard, by not being able to have Zed with some items early, and making him unable to generate easy kills all around the map. Instead, Faker had a 40 cs lead over Roar and near the 10 minute mark he managed to get a kill on JAG’s mid laner.
Faker killing Roar after following flash with Shockwave.
At 11 minutes into the game SKT moved down to take dragon and Reapered got caught while trying to get vision over SKT movement, on the follow up SK was able to also kill Raven and Starlast, securing dragon, a 3 for 0 kill trade and JAG’s bot lane outer turret right after. At this point of the game, everything was rolling in SKT’s favor, they had the map/buff and vision control over the Falcons, negating Evelynn flanks and Zed to pick up kills, further allowing them to push even more for turret and objectives (dragon-Baron). Also falling under their plans, was the fact that Miso’s Vladimir split push was not enough to draw the necessary attention and his duelist capabilities were not at the point where the Falcons needed them to be at 12 minutes of the game.
After further extending their already huge lead over the Falcons, SKT T1 continued to apply their never-ending pressure over turrets, pushing mid and bot inner turrets at the same time, negating Miso from split pushing if the Falcons wanted their base to stay alive.
SKT’s 0-1-4 pushing formation, drawing Vladimir from the top lane.
The continued pressure not only forced Miso away from split pushing, but also forced the entire Falcons team to make a move over SKT to stop them from taking down their base turret by turret. At 14:30, JAG tried to engage on SKT T1 by having Vladimir flashing forward while casting Hemoplague and Sona-Evelynn following up with Crescendo and Agony’s Embrace, even though the initiation was somewhat successful, SKT’s 7k gold lead made presence with the fight ending in a 2-0 trade in favor of SKT, also allowing them to take down JAG’s bot inner turret.
SKT responding to the engage coming from the Falcons.
After going back to base and healing, while taking advantage of their ridiculous 10k gold lead at 15 minutes into the game, SKT T1 got the earliest Baron buff of this OGN Champions Seasons, at 16:37 minutes without the Falcons even having vision or knowledge of it.SKT taking Baron without the Falcons being aware of it.
With a 12k gold, 8-0 kill and a 5-0 turret lead, and Baron buff, Faker’s team continued with their strategy to siege down turrets with Caitlyn-Nunu, taking down JAG’s mid inner turret and forcing them to engage on an uneven fight if they wanted to keep their inhibitor and their hopes of winning the game alive.
JAG’s Starlast engaged coming from the side with a Flash-Crescendo.
The fight would. as expected, turn in SKT’s favor, trading an ace for just one dead over PoohManDu’s Nami, allowing them to take down mid turret and its inhibitor.
At 21 minutes in a desperate attempt to stop SKT from tearing their base apart, the Falcons engaged on them near bot lane inhibitor; even without Baron buff, SKT’s lead was too big, allowing them to quickly get two kills both of JAG’s carries, Zed and Vayne, instantly forcing a surrender from the Falcons, hopeless of stopping SKT from pushing down their Nexus with only 3 members being alive and with major ultimates on cooldowns.
|SKT T1 Faker||Orianna, AP Carry||7-0-7||241||514||82%|
Bans, Picks and mind games:
Its important to note, that for this game in particular, both teams picked and played reactively to what the other team was playing. We could see at the start, how after starting their pick selection with Vladimir and Vayne, the Falcons tried to counter SKT’s fast push soon to be composition, with two of the best assasins in the game (Zed and Evelynn), same happened with SKT, after locking in Zac they reacted to the Vladimir-Vayne split push late game idea from the Falcons, with a fast push turret composition by picking up Caitlyn and Nunu (they had an endless amount of compositions to go with instead of this one).
SKT’s support player, PoohManDu, had more than one stack of pink wards (at least more than 5) in more than one ocassion during the game, he used his huge amount of incoming gold (due to the enormous lead they had) to just buy pink wards over and over and fill every blind spot with a pink ward, preventing Repeared (Evelynn) from ever getting a good flank engage on them. It was an interesting and in the end right kind of choice, being that with or without oracles, you can’t see Evelynn coming if your bushes are not pink warded.
Was the key point SKT T1’s stomp victory over the JAG Falcons. Every person of the team, but specially Piglet (most of the time with Bloodboil) and Faker, applied pressure from the get go, pushing, pushing, pushing all day, keeping up the pressure on every lane they went to, taking down turret after turret while opening other objectives (Dragon/Baron). The non-stop pressure was what stopped JAG’s strategy from ever taking off, Roar never got the chance to build items to roam and pick up kills, Miso was never able to split push his way to the enemy turrets, Repeared spent most of the early game helping top turret, and was never able to flank SKT (previous point), and last but not least, Raven on Vayne (after being heavily outfarmed by Piglet during lane phase) never got the chance to do an easy clean up with Vayne’s insane damage while on Final Hour.
What did we learn?:
That if MadLife is god, Faker is Jesus. But aside from that, during this game we learned how lethal can ANY strategy be if executed to perfection while being reactive to what the enemy team is trying to do, like SKT did during this game. We are talking about 6 turrets, 17 kills, an inhibitor and a 17k gold lead in under 22 minutes, all that, just by playing their strategy exactly how they had to play it, and reacting accordingly to the strategy the enemy team tried to pull off. This Game 2 was only one of the three games in the series shutout, but it best serves as an example of SKT1’s victory over the JAG Falcons.