MSI 2019 is going to be a must-watch event for so many reasons, chief of which is the return of Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok, and with Invictus Gaming still playing like the gods that they are, one of the key storylines heading into the event will be what the outcome will be when these two powerhouses clash.
But, that’s not all.
MSI 2019 is also rich with other storylines as well. For G2 Esports, the MSI 2019 will serve as their first real challenge after basically going uncontested throughout the LEC 2019. Meanwhile, Team Liquid will look to prove that their style of play works against better opponents — that they’re not just a big fish in the proverbial pond.
With that said, we rounded up five players who have the most to prove at the MSI 2019.
1. Kang “TheShy” Seung-lok – Invictus Gaming
TheShy had a wonderful season in 2018. He dominated the top lane in every single way, but at the beginning of the year, he was sidelined by a hand injury that eventually cost Invictus Gaming a playoffs final appearance last Spring.
It wasn’t all for naught, however.
When TheShy returned, he was arguably a more mature and composed player. This evolution played a key role in his performance at the 2018 World Championships, where he was one of the biggest factors in Invictus Gaming’s win. Yet, for all of the accolades he’s won since, TheShy has yet to win an MSI, something that he’ll look to solve at the MSI 2019, where he’ll also want to prove that his performance at the 2018 Worlds Championship was not a one-time thing.
2. Marcin “Jankos” Jankowski – G2
Jankos’s career has been steadily improving ever since he joined G2. Winning the LCS and now LEC titles have helped him grow as a player and also become a very reliable Jungler. However, he has yet to win anything internationally, and you can sense the frustration growing within the G2 organization.
G2 Esports have a star-studded line up that is helping them smash the competition at home, but internationally they always come up short despite having some of the best players that Europe has to offer. The addition of Rasmus “Caps” Winther in the mid lane has further enhanced the talent that G2 has. This has made Jankos’s job easier since he knows that by slightly helping Caps, he can snowball the lane and in some cases, he will win the game from a small advantage that was given to him.
But, still, the real test lies ahead at the MSI 2019, and Janko will have to bring his A game if G2 Esports are to win it all.
3. Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok – SK Telecom T1
Before you start thinking of crucifying me of putting Faker on this list, hear me out.
It is true that he undisputedly the best player that the League of Legends professional scene has had so far and probably will ever have. However, you’ll have to take into account the fact that he hasn’t really had it good over the past two years. Sure, it’s not because of his own doing and mostly because of his teammates, but we don’t really hold Faker to such lower standards and we kind of expect more from him.
Things aren’t the same this year though. Faker has led SK Telecom T1 to the Spring Split championship, beating Team Griffin in style. As a result, Faker now has a change to lead his team to international glory once again.
4. Yiliang “Doublelift” Peng – Team Liquid
The jokes about North America failing internationally, and more specifically, Doublelift deciding to save his Flash on Kog’Maw have been haunting him for a very long time now.
Team Liquid has been doing everything to increase their chances of international success. Part of the changes that they have made, is the addition of Jo “CoreJJ” Yong-in and Nicolaj “Jensen” Jensen. CoreJJ, in particular, is a noteworthy addition. He has where Doublelift wants to go. He’s won a World Championship and is a lot more accomplished in general.
With CoreJJ’s help, the MSI 2019 might finally be where Doublelift finally proves that he isn’t just some trash talker — that he’s actually a top tier ADC.
Of course, this is assuming that Team Liquid can get over the proverbial hump. Remember, there’s a reason why NA teams are famous for choking, and no team exemplifies that more than North America.
5. Cho “Mata” Se-hyeong, SK Telecom T1
The legendary Support has decided to join SKT T1 before the Spring split after two disappointing seasons with the KT Rolster. Despite being part of a team that had many superstars, they never managed to reach their full potential. When He joined SKT, he knew that by joining forces with Faker would be the best chance that he had at reaching international success again. The addition of three hungry players, in the SKT line up, while they are lead by Faker and Mata is a scary sight for every other team on this tournament. Mata has everything that SKT need in a Support, he is reliable, rarely makes mistakes, and is the ultimate leader, that everyone can count on.
This is just a small list of players who are looking to prove to everyone that they have what it takes to win the MSI. We must also not forget that the top regions are stacked with phenomenal players and that will only increase the quality of gameplay that we will see. GG and WP!
Click here for our preview for the MSI 2019.
Which of these players do you think will have the best showing at the MSI 2019? Do you think Faker will lead SK Telecom T1 to the promised land once again? Or will Doublelift finally prove that he’s a much better player than he is at trash talking? Be sure to let us know your thoughts in the comments down below.