Jin Air Struggle to Take Flight
With Jin Air coming into their final match of the preseason it was hard to believe that they hadn’t pick up a single win in any of their games. Before the start of the preseason most people expected Jin Air to be a contender, with a majority of the Korean talent being lost to China as well as Jin Air keeping a large portion of their roster. The Jin Air Greenwings Stealths roster ended on an upswing in the summer and with the positive impact and growing synergy between top laner TrAce and jungler Chaser the new roster was full of positive momentum coming into the preseason. With minimal roster swaps and feeding off momentum from the previous season Jin Air was primed for a standout performance especially among the changing rosters and completely new faces that filled the rosters of other teams. The stability of the new lineup with the combination of the old Stealths and Falcons roster could have led to a dominate performance by the Greenwings.
Unfortunately the first game of the preseason showed signs of communication problems when a failed tower dive by Jin Air led to an unofficial penta kill and 4 minute Morellonomicon for Ggoong. Jin Air showed signs of hope with good layering of crowd control by Sion and Rengar, along with a few good team fights thanks to the engage by GBM’s Lissandra. However, Jin Air was never able to stop NaJin’s increasing Dragon count that eventually led to five dragons and a baron to end the game. The second game was the same story with NaJin controlling the Dragon and Ggoong’s Zed leading the charge.
The remaining question is whether the Greenwings first win came from better play by them or an underperforming CJ team. In the first game against Jin Air, CJ fielded their new support Max switching out MadLife and the roster swaps continued in game two by subbing out Ambition and Space for new comers Trick and Roar. An early Leona pick in game one for Max, allowed Jin Air to smartly adapt to the incoming engage composition with mobility in Tristana and Kassadin as well as a top lane Morgana to provide the crucial black shield against Leona. Although Jin Air showed slow rotations that allowed CJ to get free towers, they were able to itemize correctly with two Zhonya’s Hourglasses and a QSS on Tristana greatly reduced the effectiveness of CJ’s composition. Clutch bindings and a Penta Kill for Pilot led to the first Jin Air win and a chance to step out of last place. Game two continued CJ’s poor pick/ban phase with mid laner CoCo picking the immobile Xerath into GBM’s Ahri. Although the decision making was still a little sloppy in game two, GBM, TrAcer, and Chaser were able to take dragons and play well together allowing Jin Air to take a 2-0 sweep over CJ.
Although the preseason doesn’t solidify the standings of these teams, the first matches for Jin Air are not what they hoped for, but there is still time to improve and flashes of brilliance in Jin Air’s play may show what the future holds for this team. Likewise, Jin Air has always been a team who draws from their potential and finds room to improve.