Complexity, the newest team in the League Championship Series (LCS), won their first ever match yesterday, and they did it by doing something no other team has managed to in LCS history: hand Cloud 9 their second consecutive loss.
The LCS rookies had a rough initiation to the big leagues, losing their first three games of Super Week. And those games weren’t even close. Dignitas blasted Complexity in their first match, capping the win off with a pentakill. Fellow LCS newcomer LMQ showed that the two teams are on different levels, decimating Complexity while putting up a 4-0 record in their first week.
But Complexity managed to accomplish something neither of those teams has thus far—a victory against the defending champions.
It seemed a foregone conclusion that Complexity would lose against Cloud 9, who had never lost two matches in a row in LCS history, including the playoffs. But Complexity didn’t take that for granted, and showed they were not afraid of the champs early.
Lead by marksman Robert “ROBERTxLEE” Lee, the Complexity duo lane secured an advantageous trade in lane early against the enemy duo. That drew the attention of both team’s junglers, William “Meteos” Hartman and Ram “Brokenshard” Djemal.
When the moment was right, Complexity didn’t hesitate. Support Royce “Bubbadub” Newcomb tossed Djemal the Thresh lantern, allowing him to engage over the brush with Lee Sin, and Complexity made it count. Hartman responded instantly, but Complexity reacted just as fast, blowing up the jungler. Lee followed it up with two more kills, securing a triple kill in a three-for-one trade at the four minute mark.
Cloud 9 had only lost eight games in LCS history before this one, and most of those they suffered through a catastrophic early game that never saw them come back.
This was not one of those games.
It took 26 minutes, but Cloud 9 clawed their way back to an even gold game. It seemed inevitable the defending champions and late game masters would put the rookies in their place at that point. But Complexity managed to fight toe-to-toe with the best team in the league.
Despite falling a bit behind in gold due to Cloud 9’s objective control, Complexity’s team fight abilities proved enough to keep them in the game and pressure Cloud 9. At the 45 minute mark, Complexity saw their chance and took it. Top laner Jonathan “Westrice” Nguyen used his Shyvana ultimate to engage, transforming into a dragon that caught Hartman out. Lee was free on the flank to deal damage at will.
The team grabbed two kills while damaging the rest of Cloud 9, opening the way to the nexus. And the victory.
Complexity’s win shows that, despite their earlier losses, they deserve a place at the highest levels of American League of Legends play. They can play at an LCS level in the early game, and they can play at an LCS level in the late game.
Complexity has talent and playmakers, like Lee, who finished the match 8/1/3 on Lucian. Their laning is solid, as long as they avoid mistakes. Their late game has focus, even if it may lack execution, and that’s something some LCS teams lack.
Sure, many of their matches won’t be pretty, but part of that is just getting used to the intense level of competition.
Before the season, Complexity seemed slated for relegation considering how many strong incumbents improved their rosters. Their week one record of 1-3 won’t put them into the playoffs. But now there’s a glimmer of hope.