Road To Worlds: Counter Logic Gaming
Whether you've just started watching the North American League Championship Series (NA LCS) or have been a long time viewer, you probably know and love the team Counter Logic Gaming (CLG.)
Since competitive League of Legends first began, CLG has been a fan favorite. Whether it was Yiliang "Doublelift" Peng being a cocky superstar with a hilarious personality or the fact that everyone loves the underdog, CLG has consistently shown that they are a team who loves making the fans happy. As the team progressed through the years, their charisma only grew until they were recognized as one of the more fun teams, which is a label that they hold with pride.
At the beginning of CLG as a team, they were headed by someone who was a lead force in the beginning of LoL eSports, George "HotshotGG" Georgallidis. HotshotGG became the face of LoL eSports through his streams on several different platforms and his outstanding play in the early days of the scene. Backed by well-known faces of today such as Sam "Kobe" Hartman-Kensler and Michael "bigfatjiji" Tang, CLG took off with most of the LoL eSports fans. This being the beginning of the CLG brand, you could only think that the team would go downhill, but they proved us wrong.
Progressing past Season One, CLG picked up their most talked about player of all time, Doublelift. Doublelift was a nobody who quickly rose to the top with impeccable plays on the AD Carry role. His popularity grew even more when he started trash talking everyone else who stepped in his way, purely to generate hype for the scene. No one took Doublelift's words to heart, but it was always great hearing him say his famous quote, "everyone else is trash." Doublelift still plays for CLG and remains one of the greatest AD Carries to play in the LoL eSports scene.
The next few years brought about CLG's famous Rush Hour bot lane. Doublelift's best friend and support Zacqueri "Aphromoo" Black joined the team and quickly proved to the world that he and Doublelift were a force to be reckoned with. This spawned CLG's strategy of "protect the Doublelift" where their sole purpose was to get Doublelift as many kills as possible, and let him win from there. As good as the strategy was, it never resulted in CLG winning the first place spot and the trophy, so the team knew some changes had to be made.
At this point in the scene, the team had gone through many well recognized faces, including Joedat "Voyboy" Esfahani, Choi "Locodoco" Yoon-sub and Brandon "Saintvicious" DiMarco, looking for the best possible line-up. Shuffling players from position to position and constantly bringing in new players, CLG finally landed on a line-up that worked for the most part. HotshotGG top, Steve "Chauster" Chau jungle, Austin "LiNk" Shin mid, Doublelift ADC and Aphromoo support seemed to be the strongest team CLG has ever had up to that point. When the team seemed unstoppable, they still didn't manage to win a top spot in the LCS.
The next few years seemed to put CLG in a lull, continuing with the constant subs and drops of players. The hype for CLG seemed to finally be dying down... that is, until Season 5.
With a semi brand new line-up, CLG was ready to take the LCS by storm. Picking up powerhouses like Darshan "ZionSpartan" Upadhyaha and Eugene "Pobelter," CLG was hungry to finally win the top spot. Immediately, the team showed that they were in top form, holding the first place position for a few weeks before finally coming to a halt towards the end of the season, coming in second place per usual.
The moment of truth was finally here for the team to show everything they had, playoffs. CLG had to prove that they came to win. Putting up rather impressive numbers, the team fought their way straight to the finals against the team who consistently crushed their dreams season after season, Team Solo Mid (TSM.) Everyone thought that this would be the game of the century, a 5 year rivalry that would finally be settled with each team in peak form. However, CLG put TSM in their place and shut them out three games to none in a best of five set.
This was the dream. This is what CLG fans had waited five years to celebrate. CLG finally pulled through and took first place overall in a LCS split. Not only were fans and onlookers alike all excited for CLG, but the team themselves exploded with delight when TSM's nexus exploded for the third time. They finally did it. CLG, the people's team, finally proved that they were a top tier team worthy of representing North America. The constant tweets containing #CLGWIN were finally satisfied and it seemed that it was all over.
However, this isn't the end of CLG's reign. Now comes the world stage, which is something that CLG isn't used to seeing, let alone playing on. We can only assume that the coming weeks are going to include intense practicing and training on the side of CLG in hopes of making fans worldwide proud of what the team has become.