After a well-fought best-of-five League of Legends series, JD Gaming took down Top Esports 3-2 in China’s LPL Spring Split playoff finals today, winning their first championship title in the league.
The two teams battled for their first championship title after they both knocked out former world champions Invictus Gaming and FunPlus Phoenix in the semifinals.
The finals’ Most Valuable Player award went to JDG support
Zuo “LvMao” Ming-Hao after his extraordinary performance throughout the series on four different champions. His Bard ults in the final game of the series served as one of the core reasons JDG managed to win several teamfights and end the series with a win.
The series was a back-and-forth display of skill between the top talents of China. JDG opened up the series with a win but lost the next two games in a row. And although TES were heavily predicted to win an easy 3-1, JDG evened out the series to bring it to a game five.
The fifth game was close, but one crucial teamfight in the mid-game allowed JDG to secure a gold lead and better item advantages for the next skirmish.
With the Ocean Dragon up for grabs, both teams grouped with eyes on the objective. But JDG’s support LvMao landed a well-placed Bard ultimate to lock down two members of TES, which allowed JDG to engage on the other three players and win the teamfight.
JDG’s offseason acquisitions have worked out well after a poor showing last year, where they finished eighth in the Spring Split and 10th in the Summer Split. The organization acquired Korean ADC Lee “LoKeN” Dong-wook after former world champion Gu “imp” Seung-bin left the team. With their new ADC, they quickly found synergy and stomped bottom-tier teams, while also putting up good fights against top-tier squads.
While the first games of the season were suboptimal and JDG lost a couple of series with their substitute top laner, they came back once main top laner Zhang “Zoom” Xing-Ran returned to the roster.
This year’s LPL was more competitive than ever with former world champions Invictus Gaming and FunPlus Phoenix failing to reach the LPL Playoff finals. The LPL’s League of Legends infrastructure and endless pool of motivated rookie talents seems to have come to fruition, demonstrated by the recent LPL dominance on the international scene.
With this year’s Mid-Season Invitational canceled, League fans will have to wait until the World Championship to see how will the top LPL teams perform on the international stage this year.