Luka ‘Perkz’ Perkovic promises Cloud9 fans he’ll be channeling past G2 Esports “heartaches” to make Worlds this year — anything less would be “disastrous” for the heavyweight LCS champs, the Croatian star tells Dexerto.
Cloud9 managed to bounce back from an 0–2 start in Summer with a crucial victory over Spring finals rivals Team Liquid on Sunday evening.
The game, which Perkz tipped as “one of the biggest of the split,” followed two shock losses to Golden Guardians and 100 Thieves. Cloud9 had just returned from representing the LCS in Iceland, but immediately lost their grasp on the top spot after the back-to-back defeats. It made the Liquid battle “must win.”
“It was very important for us to end the weekend with a win,” Perkz told Dexerto after clinching the team’s rocky 1–2 start to the split.
“I’d even say maybe the most important of the split. Of the year too.
“We’re playing with Calvin [new bot laner k1ng] and if we went 0–3 with him in his first week, that would really suck, and be sad for him. So it’s important for us to win. Because he did nothing wrong, but it will still hurt him to lose all three.”
Starting with just a single win in three is, of course, not exactly where Perkz and Cloud9 expected to be post-MSI. It’s not the biggest surprise though, the Croatian star tells Dexerto — they’re already playing catchup on the Summer meta.
“We only scrimmed two days, and I’ll be honest we don’t even really know what the meta is at the moment because the patch has changed,” he admitted.
“The team has so many ideas about what we want to try, but we didn’t have really any scrim days to put that to the test, and then stage games you want to win. So it’s been a bit of an awkward situation for us. I really liked what I saw from 100 Thieves; I want to explore that, now that we can settle into the split grind more.
“[That said], it’s not why we lost. You don’t really lose off one thing,” he added, before pausing to laugh. “Unless you go 0/7/0. That’s like, a pretty big reason!”
Perkz immediately pointed to a number of League of Legends champions that had seemingly slipped back into the pro meta since Cloud9’s departure to Reykjavík. Ezreal was the biggest one, he explained, as well as Kog’Maw, Lulu, and Karma. Then, of course, Riot also gave Viego and Gwen the green light for Summer.
The switch-up actually has Perkz really excited.
“Yeah, we didn’t know about champs and all the things teams were doing until we got onto stage, but that’s just because we haven’t had time to get a read,” he said.
“We have nine weeks, there’s no reason to panic.”
“It’s like a grind, especially in Summer; I really don’t expect us to win every game, and that’s okay. I’ve been in this spot with G2 plenty of times before, and had similar talks with [Cloud9] too. Right now it’s about getting up to pace, learning where we’re at. We take three or four weeks now, learn the meta, then we can synchro ahead of Worlds.
“That’s how I envision it. I’m actually excited for it, the grind. And I think what excites me most is the progress we can still get as a team, together.”
All of this assumes that Cloud9 will make it back to Worlds, after their shock Summer 2020 slump. Perkz told Dexerto he has a promise for the team’s worried fans; they’re doing everything they can to qualify for Worlds.
Anything less, he stated, would be “disastrous.”
“[Not making it to Worlds], that would just be straight-up failure, right? I don’t want to say we’ll 100% make it, because we’re losing to NA teams right now. But we’re taking it one step at a time. Worlds is the only goal that we’re focusing on.
“I can’t really speak for Cloud9 last year — I wasn’t there, of course — but I personally nearly missed out with G2 last year. We were one, maybe two games away from not making Summer playoffs, and that would mean no Worlds. That was a stressful time for the team, but also one that made us a lot closer too.
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“What I do think is tough times, last Summer, MSI, these heartaches in the beginning will make us at Cloud9 stronger for the rest of the Summer, and Worlds.”