LGS Season 6 Finals : Triumphant KG ends RVL domination!
If you are a diehard Revival fans, ctrl+w.
This is the story of Kanaya Gaming, recently crowned LGS 6 champions. For majority of these guys, this is their 3rd LGS title in a row, an impressive feat. Even more impressive is the last couple seasons, where they turn a 15–3 season into a 5-game win streak at Playoffs time.
Looking back at LGS Season 6 itself, KG performance is lackluster at best in the opening week of LGS. There is glaring issue with chemistry on their first week of LGS6, rubeN tries too hard to make play from support position, while Phoenix needs more time to gel with Banana. They have problem closing out games versus J2G in W1, and again failing the lategame teamfight vs RVL in W2.
Most teams will falter after a weak start, but KG finds their way to solve their issue. Just like how they won LGS Season 5, KG once again, managing to solve their issue and hit their peak right before Playoffs.
Before LGS Season 6 begin, it seems nothing but trouble in KG’s camp. They make space in the jungle for new addition, Phoenix, but at same time, they have to rotate rubeN to support position. Both has its own issues with their new position/team. While Phoenix might only need time to gel with others and solve the issue, rubeN looking so out of place at support position.
However, they do find a blessing with Andre leaving TSR and joining them as a sub. Andre is a natural support player, and its a no question that he will perform better than rubeN in support position. Even when KG starts LGS miserably, they knew they will always have a plan B with Andre ready to start in support position.
Starting Andre means benching rubeN, which arguably one of KG’s biggest performer in LGS Season 5 finals. This issue solved quickly with Oceans going to jungle position and rubeN will start as toplaner. Unlike any other team in LGS, KG is the only team that utilizes their sub on every game in the season. Both Oceans and Phoenix always rotates between G1 and G2 for every week, a feat that no other team does in LGS.
With everyone comfortable on their position, KG just need to find their groove before the machine starts rolling. Fixing things does matters, and KG does it the best out of any other LGS teams.
Yet, they still have lots of things to do. KG shows exceptional showing on the LGS Semifinal, they execute all their plays vs Zero Latitude, even with rough showing from rubeN’s Jax in G2 Semi, they play their teamfight comp perfectly, punishing ZL’s inability to hard engage, especially with a very efficient Gragas pick and grab the final spot with convincing 2–0 victory.
Before the Final started, Revival has majority of the votes. 18–0 season is a hard feat to accomplish, being so consistent throughout the 9 weeks of league. However, it turns out that KG prepared very well versus Revival, and executes every plays correctly.
There is one interesting decision where Oceans benched himself to let Phoenix play the Finals, huge decision from the captain, who struggle with the intensity of his studies lately, therefore not playing as much as others in Kanaya.
Game 1 : Curtain Arrow Piercing Call
KG ban strategy on the blue side is to deny OPM 2 of the strongest toplaner in the meta, and secure a really strong Nautilus as first pick. RVL really confuses me with the Kog’Maw ban. The champion is so nerfed at patch 6.5, its winrate is only 48%, 8% less than its winrate from patch 6.3, where Kog’Maw actually becomes a shredding machine.
Another thing that confuses me here is the Gangplank pick. Despite still a strong scaling champion, Gangplank is not a match to 6.5 Nautilus. He cant farm with Nautilus in his face, and Nautilus is just too tanky and annoying for gangplank to face with.
KG did surprise RVL with the Jhin pick, its a really strong pick vs team with no hard engage, and with Gangplank pick, KG could also opt for Kindred, which mobility and early game damage can shreds Gangplank with little help from Nautilus CC. RVL need to engage to at least make space for GP pick, so Ahri last pick in theory works well and also quite strong vs Varus.
However, going with 3ADC, 1 Tank and 1 Janna, KG got the comp they wanted, having Janna and Kindred as backup plan if their comp fail to have early game lead.
After slow start in G1, Kindred starts to have some items and confident enough to dive Gangplank at his turret. With cruzher opt for Skirmisher Sabre instead of Trackers Knife, KG has better vision overall and with no teleport on apple’s Ahri, the dive for FB is very easily done. OPM, despite his strong laning vs Nautilus, is so uncharacteristic, overstayed at his turret, while cruzher is away at midlane.
TheChupper have a really nice showing on Jhin, after forcing whynuts to recall, he immediately rotates to midlane and roots apple in place to help Banana get a easy kill. The rotation here is impressive, KG’s botlane force recall, shoves wave to turret, and rotates to other lane to assist a kill.
Slow but sure, despite lack of CS advantage, KG shove the wave very well, and acquire quick lead from 2 turret advantage. With GP always facing Nautilus, and Ahri unable to hard engage toward Varus, RVL just unable to get close to KG’s turrets, and really need to force a teamfight. However, Nidalee isnt the best pick to force things up in this situation, and RVL option is to make Braum roams, with the risk of losing botlane turret.
RVL’s choice is to force teamfight at botlane. One thing about KG Phoenix, is his ability to spot enemy jungler position and make counter gank, he shows it over and over again on semifinal vs ZL, and this time, he make a really timely counter gank when RVL try to force things up. Even with GP ultimate, the damage is still very low from RVL, and OPM somehow decided to TP with Nautilus, instead of shoving toplane. Apple’s Ahri is locked to his lane due to Banana’s Varus waveclear, and at this fight he is again cant rotate because he needs to hold minion wave at midlane. This lead to 4–0 fight for KG, and they able to push for inhibitor off a countergank at botlane.
TheChupper again and again showing his prowess at Jhin, assisting crucial kills, rooting people from far away, and finishing things off. Ultimately, 8k gold lead is too much for Revival, their core cant stand Nautilus’ CC with 3 ADC damage. Ahri getting blown within seconds, GP cant do much with relatively low damage, while Corki also unable to dish out damage for RVL. Game 1 goes to Kanaya. Impressive showing, as they show that they could draft and play their comp very well.
Game 2 : Teleport Bait
Game 2, again, RVL still afraid of Kog’Maw, and ban it away. Varus and Nautilus, which is the key to early turret advantage and really efficient at shoving wave, become their target to ban. KG still sticks to their book, banning 3 same champion as the first game.
Viktor, is a contested pick between apple and Banana, RVL took it away immediately. Bard and Sivir makes RVL flexible at engage and disengage, and the interesting pick here is OPM’s choice of toplaner. With Trundle and Poppy banned and KG have toplane for last pick, OPM went back to Irelia. This is a sign of confidence that he could win any lane with Irelia, he did bully BM QTV1 with Irelia back on their KING OF SEA matchup. KG respond well with Fiora, that has 54% winrate on this toplane matchup.
rubeN’s Fiora got a huge CS differential in the early stage of the game. Cruzher, knowing that Fiora pushed the wave too far, able to assist OPM for first and second blood, yet, Fiora still have good amount of CS, and Irelia cant bully Fiora especially with well timed Riposte. On the other side of the map, KG is winning the botlane, establishing good amount of CS difference between Sivir and Jhin.
OPM, RVL’s MVP during the season, might feel a bit of cold feet playing in front of huge crowd. He tried to dive rubeN when there is huge wave of minion, but he misplay the turret aggro, and it went horribly wrong for him. rubeN secured the kill, and also able to clear the huge minion wave. Despite this error, OPM played well for the rest of the laning phase, winning the trades, killing rubeN, and getting the turret in the toplane.
Disaster finally comes for RVL, trying to take the first dragon of the game, KG responds immediately and getting a 4–1 exchange, with only Sivir survives on RVL’s side. RVL looks like a side with a little too many miss coordination, because the fights starts with cruzher’s Elise decided not to take a magical journey and dies immediately to Phoenix’s Nidalee. Not only that, when whynuts’ Sivir decides to disengage because of low mana, OPM and apple try to fight back and it went horribly wrong.
Despite the 4–1 exchange at dragon fight, RVL already has OPM machine started. Reminiscence to his showing vs Boba Marines, OPM’s Irelia starts to bully Fiora on a 1v1 matchup, buying his team a lot of space in the process. Still, RVL’s botlane cant handle TheChupper’s Jhin, and with cruzher spent most of his time at top side of the map, this allow KG’s botlane to press more and nullified the threat of Sivir and Bard from Revival.
Feeling very confident with OPM’s Irelia, Revival starts a teamfight at mid. Quick work from apple force Jhin to flash, and Kanaya starts to backtrack until rubeN shows up. Amazing bait from 4 members of Kanaya, forcing RVL into a dire situation, where rubeN’s Fiora able to teleport in and immediately secures a kill into cvMax’s Bard. The positional disadvantage led to an ace, where RVL just cant handle the mobility of Fiora and Nidalee, in addition to long range CC from Jhin. With the fight, KG secures a 18 minute inhibitor, and 5k gold swing to their favor.
This fight nullified OPM’s advantage over rubeN, and the inhibitor disadvantage cost them the map pressure. RVL once again in the backfoot, and have to turn things around to take game 2 from Kanaya. Yet, Kanaya plays everything correctly despite a questionable baron call that led to rubeN’s death.
At this point, TheChupper is just showing off his Jhin skills. Landing a root from far, with Andre’s help he manage to pick off OPM just under RVL’s inner turret and opens up the deathball push to RVL’s inhibitor.
Over 10k gold lead, KG doesnt force things up, they know their win is in the bag. KG splits things up, with Fiora pushing botlane, TF pushing midlane, and the other 3 members push toplane. RVL is pinned to their base and in dire needs of miracle.
RVL’s final hope is to get baron and comeback off it. However, their baron attempt is quickly answered by Kanaya. No one able to run away from charging Fiora and Nidalee. OPM, who manage to teleport away, is last man standing, and he also taken down by Phoenix, as Kanaya close out Game number 2. 2–0, and RVL played unlike the regular season RVL, they are under big pressure and need to step up their games to have a miraculous comeback.
Game 3 : How to Train Your Dragon
Game 3 draft, KG in blue side has first pick advantage, they take out Lulu from their usual banlist and manage to secure it as first pick. RVL, yet again, showing respect to TheChupper’s Kog’Maw and adding Jhin to their respect list. TheChupper wide champion pool allows him to pick Tristana in this game, after a really weird Jinx first pick from RVL. Matchup wise, Tristana destroys Jinx in laning phase and also lategame, whynuts has midgame advantange on his hand, but only if he could survive the laning phase.
Cruzher, leashed out Nocturne from his pocket, aiming to dive straight to KG’s backline, while OPM, goes with Darius as a counterpick to Nautilus. The matchup is quite risky, because he needs to be fully aggressive to win his lane, or Nautilus will hit a point where Darius can’t no longer bully him out of the lane.
Doesnt take long for KG’s botlane to start rolling. cvMax, losing his patient, playing overly aggressive on a unfavorable lane matchup. He tries to go for all in play, and gave away double kill to TheChupper’s Tristana. Andre’s Braum also doing his best here to proc Braum’s passive on both cvMax and whynuts, while also blocking incoming projectile from Jinx.
The Darius pick, while in theory a counterpick to Nautilus, is in all sort of trouble. Banana and Phoenix somehow managed to sneak their way behind OPM, and secured a kill for rubeN. KG once again showing their rotation prowess, with cruzher all over the place trying to cover up his team losing lanes.
RVL did their best to fight back. Apple got couple kills into his Vel’Koz, and cruzher also secured couple kills with his ultimate. Slowly, they try to get close in gold to KG, and try to fight their way back to force Game 4 of LGS Finals.
It never happened. Phoenix sneaked his way into another gank to toplane, and while cruzher trying to cover top, KG forces a teamfight at midlane that led to cvMax’s and apple’s death. At this point, TheChupper already racks in 4 kills, and as Tristana, he will get even more scary on the late game.
TheChupper indeed become even more scary. Most often that not, he is the one engaging with rocket jump and sending dragon breath to RVL’s champion. Critical hits from TheChupper led to RVL’s misery, and he capped off a really well played Tristana game with a triple kill to end the game. 14 KDA for TheChupper to close the final game of LGS Season 6.
Kanaya Gaming, once again, perform in a really different level compared to their regular season showing. They fixed their problems in time, and somehow Oceans managed to even benched himself for The Finals. They also prepared their drafting very well to face Revival for The Finals, where Revival can do nothing but only able to respect ban both Varus and Jhin. In the end, they also execute their plans really well, every player has their part of this victory.
- rubeN, showing that he could comeback from early disadvantage on Game 2.
- Banana, very accurate with his piercing arrow, and secured himself a respect ban on Varus.
- Phoenix, mastermind of numerous counter ganks and initiation from Kanaya, while in the same time helping Andre to establish vision with his Trackers Knife.
- TheChupper, this talented young player, always shines on big game, and at very young age already established himself as a big game player who thrives with huge crowd in front of him. Having Kog’Maw always target banned at him on patch 6.5 speaks for itself.
- Andre, excellent on support, and showing wide champion pool, playing Janna, Alistar, and Braum, 3 different support champion in this series.
- Last but not least, Oceans, being a great captain, able to solve the chemistry issue early in the season, and once again lead his team to triumph on League of Legends Garuda Series.
Their next step will be GPL Spring 2016, as this will be KG’s first LAN experience outside Indonesia. It will be very interesting to see what they could bring out in GPL, and most important, is how far they could improve from the GPL experience.
Congratulations Kanaya, you guys are the best team of LGS Season 6!