Griffin has been eliminated from the LCK after losing 2-0 to Sandbox Gaming today in the lower bracket of the league’s summer promotion series.
The Korean League of Legends team underwent a major roster reshuffle in the 2019 offseason, replacing two of its players along with its coaching staff. Top laner Sword, jungler Tarvan, and ADC Viper stood as the three remaining players on the lineup, while Doran, Chovy, and Lehends moved elsewhere.
Griffin finished dead last in this year’s LCK Spring Split with a 5-13 record. In the summer promotion tournament, they lost back-to-back best-of-three series to Korea Challenger team Seorabeol Gaming and LCK ninth-place team Sandbox.
In previous years, Griffin had consistently placed first and second in the league and were often considered one of the best teams in the world. But following the controversy at the end of last year involving coach Kim “cvMax” Dae-ho, and his eventual departure from the organization, the team plummeted in the standing. The controversy involved the former head coach reportedly verbally abusing some players and a situation with a contract proposal for former Griffin player Kanavi.
Another contributing factor to the team’s failure was mid laner Chovy’s move to DragonX. Griffin were best known for their dominant jungle and mid synergy, with Tarzan and Chovy often carrying the team. But Son “Ucal” Woo-hyeon, Chovy’s replacement, didn’t live up to expectations.
Chovy and former substitute playerx Doran and Kanavi, meanwhile, have seen success with their new teams. Chovy and Doran came in third in this year’s LCK playoffs, while Kanavi reached MVP status in the LPL.
In the end, today’s matchup between Griffin and Sandbox came down to mechanics. Griffin had a solid pick and draft phase, but they simply failed to execute.
With this win, Sandbox move on to play Seorabeol on Thursday, April 30 for a place in the LCK Summer Split.