In a rematch of this year’s LCS Lock In Finals, Team Liquid and Evil Geniuses took each other on for the first time in the regular season earlier today, with Liquid claiming victory in just 27 minutes.
When the two teams met in a best-of-five earlier in the season, Liquid found three quick victories to secure a sweep. The major difference between their Lock In meeting and today’s game was the addition of two-time LCS MVP CoreJJ into Liquid’s starting lineup.
For the first month of the season, import restrictions prevented CoreJJ, a native Korean, from participating in LCS games alongside Liquid’s other imported stars, top laner Bwipo and AD carry Hans Sama. However, after CoreJJ received his U.S. Permanent Resident Card (green card) earlier this week, he earned Resident status in the LCS, allowing him and Liquid to play with their intended starting lineup.
In today’s contest, CoreJJ hit the ground running in his return to the stage, posting a final scoreline of 0/3/12 while participating in 85 percent of Team Liquid’s kills on the day. Alongside him, his AD carry Hans Sama had a monstrous game, accounting for over 30 percent of Liquid’s total damage, according to League stats site Oracle’s Elixir.
“We just started practicing as a team a week ago, but I feel already really good,” CoreJJ said in an interview on the LCS broadcast following today’s game. “Past years, when I was thinking about my team, we always had the potential to be a really good team. I don’t feel like that anymore, I feel like we’re already a really good team, and it’s not [about] potential anymore.”
CoreJJ played three games in the Lock In, winning two, with his only loss in that tournament coming at the hands of EG during that event’s group stage. Liquid played their other 14 games of the season with substitute support Eyla in CoreJJ’s stead. Regardless of what starting lineup they’ve used thus far, Team Liquid posted a record of 15-3 (including Lock In games) to start the season.
With this win, Liquid improved their winning streak to four games, while EG have fallen below the .500 mark for the first time this season. Tomorrow, EG will look to even out their week with a game against Immortals, while Liquid will close out this week’s slate of games with a contest against the winless CLG.
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