Faker the only esports player on Forbes 2019 Asia 30 Under 30 list

By Olivia Richman


Apr 4, 2019

Reading time: 1 min

Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok was recently named 30 Under 30 in Forbes Asia 2019 list. 

Named among athletes, musicians, and artists, Faker was the only esports player on Forbes “entertainment and sports” category. 

“Nicknamed god of computer game ‘League of Legends,’ Faker is generally regarded in the gaming community as the greatest LoL player of all time,” reads the official description. 

The listing goes on to list the 22-year-old gamer’s accomplishments, which include leading SK Telecom T1 to three World Championships and receiving the 2018 David Yan award for “most beloved gamer.” 

Faker’s name was first popularized in 2012, when Riot released League of Legends in Korea. He entertained League fans when he dominated with Syndra, a champion who had a win-rate lower than 30 percent in those earlier days. In fact, he was winning so many games at such a fast pace that matchmaking began to take too long for him. That’s when Faker moved to ranked games. 

SK Telecom T1 soon approached Faker, asking him to join their sister team SK T1 K. Playing with three-time World Champion Bae “Bengi” Seong-woong and Cloud9’s Jung “Impact” Eon-yeong, the team soon came to dominate the scene. 

Their first opponent at OLYMPUS Champions Spring 2013 was CJ Entus Blaze. They were known as the strongest team in the LCK at the time, but Faker easily shattered people’s predictions for the match. Faker’s team continued to win throughout the year, going on to win the World Championship title. 

Faker has continued to be popular throughout his seven-year career thanks to consistently positive results and skilled gameplay. There have been a few ups and downs along the way, but nothing big enough to affect Faker’s confidence or his popularity. 

Faker’s estimated net worth is $4 million. Faker’s most recent contract with SK Telecom T1 was rumored to be worth $2.5 million. He also has earned more than $1 million in prize winnings throughout his programming career.