The 2021 LCS Summer Split has finally gone underway! North America’s 10 teams formally began the long road towards the World Championship with an anticipated rematch of the Mid-Season Showdown semifinals between Team Liquid and Team SoloMid as both wanted to step on the right foot for a new season. But after a riveting 45-minute match, which was anchored by a 4/3/10 showing from mid laner Dennis “PowerOfEvil” Schrage on a debuting Viego, it was the seven-time LCS champions that came out on top to take partial possession of the second place in the overall standings.
With a strong start to summer firmly in place, TSM’s top laner Heo “Huni” Seung-hoon spoke to the media in a scrum interview to discuss the result via his perspective as Nocturne, what fans will expect to see from the team for the rest of the split, and how he’ll tackle the all the other top laners in the league.
Below the video is the transcript, which was edited out of brevity.
Your best-performing picks during spring were Nocturne and Gnar. Most of them are able to play the weak side while having a strong impact in team fights. What’s the strategy behind choosing top lane champions for TSM?
Huni: Yeah absolutely. That’s the point. It has been those kinds of champions that I’ve been playing. This is my first game in the summer split. Obviously, as you guys know, it’s not going be a really strong lane [from me] but there are five people in our team who knows that playing team fights [is better].
Who’s the best Gwen player in the LCS right now in your opinion?
Huni: The question is kind of tough to say but playing her is pretty exciting because she’s a new champion. I think we’ll have to see more. I don’t think it’s going to be easy to say who’s the best. I think I would say that I’m one of the best players right now for Gwen, but I think it’s going to depend on her performs well with her on stage. That’s going to depend on the draft, the day, who you’re playing–those kinds of stuff matter. I would say, for now, it’s me. I don’t know who else plays better than me right now.
Everybody seems to think that TSM will be placing 4th at the end of the split, so this win against TL was definitely a shock so congrats on that. In your honest opinion, do you think this was an expected win by the team or did TL underperform?
Huni: I wouldn’t say they underperformed. I think it’s like–I don’t know. I wouldn’t think it was unexpected. Seeing the last [series] in the playoffs with whoever playing better on the day [coming out on top], I think that’s what happened today too. It’s not like we’re far and away better than them. It’s not like we beat them so easily. I think it was more about the team fights. Even before in the playoffs, it was about whoever played better in the team fight [would win]. That’s how they won, and even today, we played better there which mattered. I feel like that’s how we won.
With the recent additions of the 100 Thieves via Reapered and Abbedagge coming in, are you nervous that you may miss Top 3 and Worlds?
Huni: Not really. It’s going to be about how we play [the game] and focus on ourselves. I don’t even think they’re going to be way better. As long as we just focus on ourselves, we’re going to have pretty good games against them.
Obviously, that was a better performance from TSM compared with what we saw from the Mid-Season Showdown. What exactly did the team focus against TL which ultimately gave them the win?
Huni: As I said before, we focused more on team fighting and playing around our objectives. Those kinds of factors mattered a lot on how we won and how they lost. That was the main goal in how we played better as a team.
Do any teams stand out to you that have drastically improved from spring based on scrims?
Hunt: It’s kind of hard to say because we haven’t scrimmed against all of them yet. I think it’s definitely hard to say. I think we’ll have to wait until Week 2 or 3 where we have more chances to play them to give an answer. For now, there are not that many teams that have impressed me.