T1 has been, at times, a controversial team. The expectations placed on them based on both the legacy of the team and their flawless Spring 2022 record can be crushing. We asked Gumayusi about Worlds, as well as the weight of those expectations.
Gumayusi has managed to stay calm and collected through all the criticism thrown his way through 2022. T1 has seen its fair share of controversy, and and he’s more than ready to hit the ground running at Worlds 2022.
Through our time with him, it seemed like Guma has a very clear read on the Worlds meta and is ready to adapt to any situation.
On top of questions about his experience in NA so far and his thoughts on the meta, we also asked him about how he’s dealt with the pressure, as well as his long and uncertain path to becoming the starting ADC for T1.
T1 Gumayusi has a clear and confident read on the Worlds meta
T1 have been in the US for a while now. They started training from the Red Bull Gaming facility in Santa Monica, a place that Gumayusi enjoyed. “This is my first time coming to America, and I really liked Santa Monica. It’s very beautiful.”
Where adjusting to a 13 hour time difference between South Korea and New York is something the team has been preparing for, Gumayusi’s confidence in the developing meta was clear.
He claimed that, “I don’t think we’ll see a lot of Zeri and Sivir anymore. The meta has shifted away from them.” in regards to popular ADC picks in Summer, and felt that “we’ll see a lot less enchanters” going through Worlds 2022. And, though we’ve seen Sivir and enchanters here or there, the meta has certainly seens its fair share of shake-ups.
Gumayusi kept T1’s strategies going into Worlds under wraps (understandably so), but he gave us reason to be excited about what he and Keria are experimenting with.
“At this point, there’s nothing we haven’t tried. So, I don’t think there are a lot of options that could be considered surprising for us. However, having said that, you guys might be in for a surprise.”
With Keria pulling out champs like Zac and Lee Sin in support, it’s not hard to believe that T1 have truly tried everything in bot lane. Gumayusi isn’t afraid to try new things if it means taking home a win.
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Warding off the trucks one game at a time
Gumayusi’s path to T1 wasn’t easy, and they had a period of uncertainty through 2021. Their revolving door roster had players like Zeus, Oner, and even Faker on the bench for a little bit while the team was trying to figure out what works.
Though decisions like starting Faker over Clozer and Zeus over Canna were clear-cut improvements for the most part, the rivalry between Gumayusi and Teddy was a bit more complicated.
Teddy as a pop-off player that would sometimes carry games, but would sometimes have some muted moments and silent games in sets that were crucial for T1. Meanwhile, Gumayusi was consistent. Reliable. A strong win condition. But he didn’t have Teddy’s pop-off potential. At least, not in 2021.
We finally had the opportunity to ask him about his path to being T1’s starting ADC and, while he didn’t want to bash his former teammates, Gumayusi certainly thinks he was the right choice looking back.
“At the end of the day, there may have been a skill gap in regards to our differences in playstyles. There could be multiple factors and reasons behind why I was selected to play, but I do think I had the advantage.”
While Gumayusi thinks he was the right pick and had the advantage over others vying for that starting spot on T1, the fans certainly haven’t given T1 an easy time.
Fleets of trucks have been bought out with fans plastering their disapproval with T1’s management, roster choices, and play through the years. It can’t be easy to see giant mobile billboards with fans directly attacking your organization circling LoL Park when you’re trying to compete.
But Gumayusi’s answer when it comes to this was very metered, and shows that these players have steeled themselves going into this international competition.
“Me and the fans all think alike in the fact that all they want at the end of the day is for the team to find success and win. Having said that, despite the criticism, I’ll do everything I can so that T1 can have a good result at Worlds.”