League of Legends

Fnatic's Nemesis explains why Faker is better than Rookie

by Joe O'Brien

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Fnatic mid-laner Tim ‘Nemesis’ Lipovšekhas weighed in on the debate over whether Lee ‘Faker’ Sang-hyeok or Song ‘Rookie’ Eui-jin is the better player.

Faker may be considered the greatest League of Legends player of all time, but that doesn’t mean he’s without rivals. Over his career, several have challenged him, particularly for the right to be called the best mid-laner in the world, and Invictus Gaming’s Rookie is the most prominent of those challengers.

In recent years especially, Rookie has been hailed as one of if not the best mid-laner in the world, while Faker himself has seen his claim to that title slip. Though he may not match Faker’s accolades, on an individual performance level many would likely tip Rookie as the superior player, especially in 2018 when his performance helped take Invictus Gaming all the way to the Summoner’s Cup.

With the two competing in separate regions and rarely meeting internationally, however, opportunities for the pair to face off head-to-head have been limited.

Riot Games
Riot Games
Rookie was a key factor in Invictus Gaming's 2018 Worlds win.

For Fnatic’s mid-laner, however, it seems the choice between the pair is clear. During a recent stream, Nemesis refuted the claim that Rookie was the stronger mechanical player, instead giving a massive edge to Faker in that category.

“Rookie does not have better mechanics than Faker. All you need to do is just watch Pro View for five minutes, and after five minutes you will realize that Rookie is not even close to Faker mechanically.”

It’s still possible that Faker and Rookie may meet at this year’s World Championship, but being on opposite sides of the bracket, they’ll have to do so in the final. Faker’s SKT first has to go through G2 Esports, while Invictus Gaming will need to beat FunPlus Phoenix to advance.

If the pair do win their respective semi-finals, however, it would set the perfect stage for a duel between them, with Faker looking to reclaim his throne with a fourth Worlds title, and Rookie looking to defend the title and lead Invictus Gaming to become only the second team ever – after SKT themselves – to win in consecutive years.