G2 Esports had a fun day at Rift Rivals: NA vs EU.
First, the European team faced Team Liquid and lost. But they lost in style. G2 had drafted a never before seen composition, including an assassin in the bottom lane. According to head coach Fabian “Grabbz” Lohmann, they did it out of boredom after dominating the previous day.
He still noted that the team most likely had less than a 50 percent chance of winning with the draft.
Despite the outcome, G2 decided to try another questionable composition in their next match versus Team SoloMid. And it was all to get Marcin “Jankos” Jankowski to play Pyke. Luckily, this match went in G2’s favor.
WIN.gg sat down with Mihael “Mikyx” Mehle to discuss their surprising team compositions and what, if anything, could shake their confidence.
Why did you pick this unexpected draft against TSM?
Mikyx: We mostly wanted to get a Pyke game for Jankos. He’s the only who hasn’t played him. And I wanted to play Bard. He’s a really fun champion and one of my favorites. Wunder wanted to play Olaf top. We just kind of picked what we wanted to play, I guess.
Were you expecting to win?
For bot lane, I thought it would be harder. It was hard at first, but they just messed up once and we snowballed from there. But I thought it was going to be closer going into it. But when bot lane went the way it did, they didn’t have much hope.
When did you know TSM was doomed?
I think the first blood, when Lux and Jarvan IV died. Pretty much from there, their bot lane was already over. They tried to gank us again. By then it was really over.
Did you do anything ahead of time to prepare for this match?
Not really. We scrimmed them one day. We knew they like to play Sona but we think it’s too strong. And boring to play against it. So might as well ban it. It’s going to be nerfed next patch anyway.
And looking back at your first match of the day. What was the strategy behind the draft against Team Liquid?
I picked Yuumi. We played a lot of Yuumi and Zed in solo queue, and it seemed really strong. But we didn’t expect them to go Sona with Taric. I mean, why would they want to play it? It’s not that fun. I guess they wanted to get a win for North America. So that’s nice.
We had also picked Twisted Fate for mid lane. It’s kind of good with Yuumi’s ultimate. We thought maybe Evelynn could be good. Her ultimate could make me invisible as Yuumi if I’m attached to her. But it didn’t work out that well. They had a superior five-mid composition.
How do you feel about that loss? Before Rift Rivals, you said your team wasn’t going to drop a single game this weekend.
I don’t really mind it. It sucks a bit because it would have been fun to win with that comp. It would have been really funny. But I’m glad they got one so they’re not too upset. I think if we banned Sona every game we wouldn’t have lost a game. But it is what it is.
What are the differences between the two regions’ play styles?
I think North American teams just like to group more and play 5v5 comps. They just wait for late game and scale. They don’t do many proactive plays. In Europe, we’re always looking for something to do in the game.
So who’s better?
Well, EU. I think, in general, whatever team we play in NA, they’re not doing much in the game. They’re just kind of waiting for us to screw something up. They just like to group as five and hope for the best.
Do you think they’ll learn anything from this weekend’s matches?
I mean, I hope so. They should have learned at MSI already. But it seems like the same story. I think it’s also a problem with their solo queue. It’s not best learning experience in NA.
But it could also be player mentality. They just don’t try hard enough. They just think they can’t win anyway or something. I’m not sure.
How long have you been playing League of Legends now?
Since Season 1, back in 2010. Professionally, I started in 2016 in the summer with Splyce. I was with them for one and a half years. Then I was with Misfits for one year. Then G2.
I’m hoping to be with G2 for many more years.
What had drawn you to League of Legends when you first started playing?
It was recommended to me by a friend. I just felt like I was pretty good at the game. I was watching the Season 1 World Championship and I thought it’d be cool to play professionally. Since then, it was my goal to go pro. After five season, I made it. That was nice.
That must have felt awesome.
It was really nice. I really hated going to school. It was boring.
I’m not sure what I would be doing if I wasn’t a pro. Probably trying to go pro in another game.
Why do you enjoy being a part of G2 specifically?
I just think everyone on the team meshes really well togther. I don’t think any other team has that kind of chemistry. It just kinda clicked. Even after one or two weeks, I felt like I knew them my entire life. It was a weird feeling, but it was really cool. We’re good individually and we’re good as a team. There’s no downsides, except maybe getting overconfident.
Do you feel you guys are overconfident right now?
Yeah, I think we’re pretty cocky. But we just need someone to beat us. Multiple times. Not just a best of one. But I guess we’ll see if that ever happens.
So losing to Team Liquid didn’t humble you guys?
No, not at all. The first best-of-five loss, that’s when we’ll get humbled. But right now we feel we’re good at best-of-fives. We’re good at adapting. We have huge champion pools. We can take those matches a lot more serious. But until then, the confidence will be there, and the overconfidence will be there too.
Do you think you’ll be utilizing your Rift Rivals strategies and drafts in any other tournaments?
We’re trying to see if it works, then we’ll think about it. I played some Bard today and it seemed really good. We might pull it off another time in a more serious tournament, but we’ll see.
What have you enjoyed so far during Rift Rivals?
I actually enjoyed all of our stage games. Fun champs like Gragas, Yuumi, and Bard. That was a really fun game. The LCS studio is really cool and the food is good. It’s been a nice experience, apart from the traveling.
How long was the flight?
Where you gone to eat so far in Los Angeles?
We usually eat catering. I tried hotel food, too. We did go out with TSM for Korean BBQ, which was pretty good. We also ate at Team Liquid’s facility. They had good food as well. Yesterday we went to MJ’s Grill. And I’m excited to try In-And-Out because I heard it’s good.
I also tried two different pizzas and they were okay. One was at the airport. That one was actually kind of good!
How’s your pizza at home?
In my country, Slovenia, there is a lot of pizza. It’s the best pizza I’ve had. I tried it in Korea, Berlin, America… our pizzas are superior. Foods there are just superior in general, and I don’t know how.