The group stages in Champions Spring 2014 featured a number of exciting games and upsets, leading to a very interesting bracket draw this past week. KT Rolster Arrows escaped a highly turbulent Group A that forced a tiebreaker between the two SK Telecom T1 teams, with K pulling out a decisive victory. Samsung Galaxy Ozone continued their solid, consistent dominance over group B with CJ Entus Frost predictably taking second place. Ozone’s sister team, Samsung Galaxy Blue, eliminated NaJin Black Sword from the group of death, earning top spot in Group C with the KT Rolster Bullets narrowly following. Group D was the only group that required a tiebreaker to determine first and second place; NaJin White Shield claimed victory over CJ Entus Blaze. Continue reading
Tag Archives: SK Telecom T1 K
The last time SK Telecom T1 K lost a best-of series was on October 16, 2013, during the semifinals of the World Cyber Games Korean Qualifying tournament. They lost to Samsung Galaxy Blue, an up-and-coming team with young talent, an established organization supporting them, and a veteran sister team that has experience beating the World Champions from previous events.
In spite of the interesting goings on in OGN Masters as well as the seemingly endless barrage of games supplied by both the North American and European LCS, it has felt like an eternity since the conclusion of Champions Winter 2014. As Doa and MonteCristo put it, it’s as though as followers of the Korean scene have experienced a sort of Champions withdrawal. With the 2014 Spring fully kicked off with the first day of matches between the SK Telecom teams, as well as CJ Entus Frost and Midas FIO, it certainly feels great to not only be able to watch some high quality Korean League of Legends play, but to write about it as well. The groups have been set, and it seems like the road to the finals of Champions Spring 2014 will go through SKT T1 K once more, but don’t discount the capabilities of their sister team, T1 K, and a few other re-emerging upstarts like Samsung Galaxy Ozone and CJ Entus Frost.
This year’s Champions Winter final features a pair of starkly contrasting storylines featuring past winners of the prestigious Korean tournament. On one side, we have SK Telecom T1 K, who have been on a rampage since early 2013, only dropping sets to both Samsung Galaxy Ozone and Samsung Galaxy Blue in Champions Spring 2013 and the 2013 World Cyber Games Korean Qualifiers, respectively, en route to a 1st place finish in Champions Summer 2013 and the LCS Season 3 World Championship. On the other side, Samsung Galaxy Ozone has faced an up and down year since their victory in Champions Spring 2013, where they defeated an overwhelming favourite in CJ Entus Blaze, but has shown inconsistent finishes ranging from a respectable 3rd in Champions Summer 2013 to a paltry elimination from the group stage at Worlds.
The much-hyped semifinal matchup between SK Telecom T1 K and KT Rolster Bullets fell across a wide range of different outcomes ranging from heavily contested and exciting in game 1 to a yawner of a stomp in game 3 in favour of the Season 3 LCS champions. Despite much discussion and speculation as to whether or not the Bullets could make the next step or whether SKT would continue to be their gatekeeper to a 1st place Champions finish, there wasn’t any particular doubt that SKT would end up winning the series. What probably surprised most was the convincing extent in which they won, but regardless of the second and third games, the back-and-forth opening match proved to be the best window into both teams and the state of their play. As expected, the outcomes were decided by early lane dominance and failure on KT’s part to apply jungle pressure, as well as the two crucial fights over Baron, both of which could have ended up in either team’s favor.
There is truly nothing more exciting in League Legends right now than watching OGN’s PANDORA.TV Champions Winter 2013/2014. An unlikely playoff seeding putting SKT T1 K, SG Blue, KT Bullets, and CJ Blaze into the same half of the bracket resulted in a very crowded quarterfinals that has led to a semifinal meeting between two of the undeniably best teams in all of Korea, and perhaps the world. It’s quite remarkable that both organizations of such high stature in SKT and KT could possibly meet in non-finals contexts twice, the first of which eventually sent SKT to the Season 3 World Championships; had Bullets been able to best their foes in the regional qualifier, it may very well have been them hoisting the trophy at the Staples Center last September.