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Mar 19, 2018
Mar 19, 2018

February’s eSports Player of the Month: Faker

Introduction to Faker

Learn more about Faker’s LoL History

What are Faker's major achievements?

Breaking down Faker’s stats

February’s eSports Player of the Month: Faker

Pinnacle’s Player of the Month for February is Lee ‘Faker’ Sang-Hyeok. He was crowned eSports player of the year for 2017 but has begun 2018 disappointingly, having his worst ever start to a season in the LCK. What is so special about Faker? Read on to find out more.

Introduction to Faker

Lee ‘Faker’ Sang-Hyeok is potentially one of our generations greatest eSports players, not just in League of Legends (LoL), but in eSports in general. Despite still only being 21, he has already managed to win three World Championships and be a runner-up in a fourth.

His three victories become even more impressive when you consider there has only been seven World Championships so far and he did not even start playing League of Legends until Season 3.

Faker’s LoL History

Lee stumbled across LoL by chance in late 2011 when he was bored and looking for a game to play online. Originally only playing casual games, he soon became frustrated with the lack of competition and began playing ranked matches.

Under the nickname of GoJeonPa at the time, he gained notoriety due to his impressive performances which led to other players speculating his real identity. Many presumed he was a pro player smurfing (where you play on another account to hide your identity in order to play against players of a lesser skill) or a foreign player. When GoJoenPa was finally revealed to be a 17-year-old student, many were shocked.

The Korean organisation SK Telecom T1 contacted Lee regarding creating a professional team around him in 2012. Lee decided to become a professional player and the team made their debut at the OGN Champions Spring 2013. Although they lost in the semi-finals to the eventual winners MVP Ozone 3-1, it was an impressive performance for a side few knew.

In October 2013, Faker went into his first World Championship with SK Telecom with a hope of showing their potential. His team performed well throughout, narrowly beating their Korean rivals NaJin Black Sword in the semi-final before recording the first ever clean sweep in a World Championship final.

Faker had won his first World Championship less than two years after beginning to play LoL and had cemented his place as the best in the world. During the HOT6iX Champions Summer later in 2013, Faker made one of the most iconic plays in the history of LoL, where he perfectly outplayed KT Rolster Bullets mid laner, Ryu Sang-Wook.

Major achievements

The biggest events in League of Legends are the World Championships and in Korea, the LCK split. Below are Faker’s biggest achievements in his career to date.

Faker's major achievements

Finishing Position

Tournament

Prize money ($)

1

Mid Season Invitational 2017

676,000

1

LCK Spring 2017

89,571

1

2016 World Championship

2,028,000

1

Mid Season Invitational 2016

250,000

1

LCK Spring 2016

87,800

1

2015 World Championship

1,000,000

1

LCK Spring 2015

92,649

1

Season 3 World Championship

1,000,000

2

2017 World Championship

620,539

2

LCK Summer 2017

53,152 

As well as the awards he managed to win with his team, he has also won a number of individual awards including the 2017 World Championship Most Valuable Player.

Breaking down Faker’s stats

Lee also has incredible statistics and has played a total of 48 different champions in professional matches, which is almost unheard of for a mid laner.

Faker's career stats

Faker's career stats

Wins

348

Lose

153

Win Ratio %

69.6

Kills

2175

Deaths

1101

Assists

2729

Kills Deaths Assists (KDA)

4.45

CS Per Game

323.42

KPAR %

70.6

Faker's 2017 stats

Faker's 2017 stats

Wins

102

Lose

48

Win Ratio %

68

Kills

533

Deaths

320

Assists

705

Kills Deaths Assists (KDA)

3.87

CS Per Game

332.92

KPAR %

65.6 

All stats sourced from lol.gamepedia.com

Skills and weaknesses

The main strengths of Faker are his mechanical skills (how good someone is at handling mechanical aspects of the game such as last hitting, juking and in general a good understanding of how to play the game) and his champion pool.

Most players will perfect a few champions to a high level but this is where he separates himself from the others. He can play an extensive list of champions to a level higher than most, making it incredibly hard to ban against him in the pick and ban phase and incredibly difficult to prepare as you don’t know who he will bring out.

Faker had won his first World Championship less than two years after beginning to play LoL and had cemented his place as the best in the world.

Using his mechanical skills he can pull off plays that nobody else can make. Going into situations where he is not favoured to win the fight, but using his skills to turn it into a victory are things Faker has done on numerous occasions. Turning a game on a moment of individual brilliance is what makes him the greatest.

He does have some weaknesses though that have been highlighted lately due to the poor performances of his team. The champions he has decided to play are not the best suited for a struggling team. Picking heroes that rely on your team composition when your team is not playing that well, means it is harder for him to carry a match as he used to before.

He can be a little too aggressive in the wrong moments, roaming around the map when his teammates are perhaps not in the best positions to trade with him. Overall though these are tiny weaknesses compared to other professional players and they are really only used to prove that he is in fact human.

Reason for player of the month

Lee has been picked for player of the month for a few reasons. Firstly, being awarded the eSports player of the year is an impressive achievement to go along with his other awards and he deserves recognition for another year of high-level performances.

Secondly, the start his team has had in this seasons LCK is something he has never experienced before. SK Telecom have had poor results in the past just after new patches have been released but never as extreme as this. Seeing how he will come back from this adversity and turn things around for his team will be intriguing – there are already signs of this happening with some improved performances the last few weeks.

Highlighting one of the greatest players to grace an eSports game in our generation is a fitting tribute to someone blessed with immense talent. We will be back next month with another player profile and if you have any suggestions, please let us know!

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Pinnacle

"Pinnacle" is a catch-all category for internally authored eSports betting articles drawing on the huge wealth of eSports knowledge within our content and trading teams.

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