Worlds 2020 Play-In Team Preview: Breaking Down Legacy Esports

League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games.
League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games. /

We look at Legacy Esports, their path to Worlds 2020, and how they might fare in the play-in stage.

The 2020 World Championship starts THIS WEEK with a bunch of play-in teams set to battle it out for the remaining four places in the main event. One of those play-in teams is Legacy Esports, the champions of the Oceanic Pro League (OPL) and Oceania’s first and only seed at Worlds 2020.

Consisting of five Australians and one South Korean, the Legacy roster have impressed both regional and international viewers with their complete dominance of the OPL throughout Season 10. Now, they’re gearing up for the huge challenge of becoming the first Oceanic representative to reach the World Championship group stages.

The Season

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Legacy Esports moved five players on and signed five new players between the second split of 2019 and the first split of 2020 in one of the biggest rebuilds of the OPL preseason. While it may have raised some eyebrows at the time, the decision to change the entire roster has been incredibly successful as Legacy have been transformed from an eighth-place team to a back-to-back OPL champion in just one year.

It was clear that Legacy were going to be title contenders from the start as they convincingly topped the Split 1 regular season with an 18-3 record, concluding the triple round robin with an eight-game win streak. Legacy secured their first-ever OPL title by taking down Chiefs Esports Club and Dire Wolves during the playoffs in consecutive 3-1 series.

James “Halo” Giacoumakis joined the roster in the mid-season break and has become an integral member of the team, swapping with James “Tally” Shute when there’s an advantage to be gained. Despite a minor roster shake-up, Legacy had no trouble repeating their Split 1 success in Split 2.

Legacy finished the regular season with a 17-4 record and went on to face ORDER twice in the playoffs, winning 3-1 on both occasions, and cementing their place as the first back-to-back OPL champions since Dire Wolves achieved the feat in 2018.

The Roster

Top Lane – Kim “Topoon” Ji-hoon

Topoon became just the third South Korean to win the Oceanic Pro League after Legacy dominated the competition in Split 1. The top laner was signed from 2019 champions MAMMOTH as he was an unused substitute during their run through the playoffs, something the Legacy staff obviously judged to be a waste of talent.

Legacy are a triple carry team with Topoon being arguably the second biggest carry on the roster as he boasted 25.9% of his team’s damage during the Split 2 regular season on a number of different champions.

With 15 solo kills and an average +1156 gold difference at 15 minutes, the top laner had complete control over his lane opponents in the OPL as well as unmatched teamfight damage (530 damage per minute).

Jungle – Leo “Babip” Romer

Babip is the heartbeat of the Legacy roster and is directly responsible for the team’s ability to dictate the early game tempo and control neutral objectives. The OPL champions had an average +2069 gold difference at 15 minutes during the Split 1 regular season, illustrating how influential Babip was on the Rift throughout the opening stages of the game.

On an individual level, the Legacy jungler also topped the charts in his role from a stats point of view. Babip had a 6 KDA and 6.2 CS per minute in the Split 2 regular season, the highest of any player in his role in the OPL.

Mid – James “Tally” Shute

Legacy Esports are yet another League of Legends team to operate with two rotating mid laners in order to take advantage of differing champion pools and individual mechanics to create a gold lead in the most important lane on the map.

The two mid laners split time on the starting roster but Tally is definitely regarded as first-choice as he was selected in seven of Legacy’s eight playoff games.

Mid – James “Halo” Giacounamkis

While Tally offers a variety of picks from tanks to mages to carries, Halo is brought into the team for his proficiency on control mages. The main difference between the two champion pools is Orianna, a champion that Halo has proven his ability on but Tally is yet to bring out on the OPL stage.

ADC – Quin “Raes” Korebrits

More often than not, Raes is Legacy’s win condition and the main carry threat of the team. In the Split 2 regular season, the marksman played nine unique champions and boasted the second-highest KDA (7.1) of any player in the OPL, only behind his bot lane partner Isles (7.9).

Even with a huge helping hand from Legacy’s OPL dominance, Raes’ stats stand out above the rest in his role. Averaging 1.4 deaths per game, 10.1 CS per minute, and 582 damage per minute, it’s clear why Legacy had a successful season with such a reliable and consistent AD carry.

Support – Jonah “Isles” Rosario

Isles’ debut season has been one of the most successful starts to an OPL career ever as the support showcased his ability on over fifteen unique picks, netted the highest KDA in the league, and received the OPL Rookie of the Year award.

Although he may not be the best support in play-in group A, he’s certainly the most promising and could be set for an illustrious career in League of Legends after an incredible first season.

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90/50/10 Predictions

90% odds that…Legacy win a game. Regardless of the relative power levels between the regions and the difficult group Legacy have been handed, their excellent season has proved that they’re ready for international competition. Whether it’s against INTZ, SuperMassive, or an upset against Liquid, Legacy have what it takes to win at least one game during the play-in stages.

50% odds that…Topoon is voted Player of the Game after carrying from the top lane on a late game damage dealer like Gangplank or Kayle. What will follow is a day of community overhyping the South Korean, comparing him to the likes of Impact and Orome, and an inevitable disappointing performance one day later.

10% odds that…Legacy reach the World Championship group stages. In fact, 10% is probably too generous considering no Oceanic team has ever made it through the play-in stage. Stranger things have happened, though!