Blind pick games have been a staple of OGN tournaments. Both teams end up throwing all their researchs on picks and bans, and simply "go at it". If it wasn't for them we would have missed a few key moments in the history of League of Legends as a whole, moments that have transformed players into legends of the scene. This article is my personal opinion on who are the most important figures in the history of said games.
Note: Before Winter 2012-2013, best-of-three sets had game three as blind pick. Only best-of-five series will be taken into account for this article and all the statistics related to it.
To better understand the next article, we should go over a few things first:
- inSec's CJ Entus will be considered as one team.
- Anything with Blaze on its name will be considered as one team.
- Current CJ Entus, Masters' CJ Entus, and anything with Frost on its name will be considered as one team.
- Masters' KT Rolster and KT Bullets will be considered as one team.
- Masters' MVP and Samsung/MVP Ozone will be considered as one team.
- Current SKT T1 and SKT T1 S will be considered as one team. SKT T1 K will be considered a different team.
These few rules have been made so every different organization that shares at least three players is considered as one team. Off we go:
#10: SKT T1 K
When the name "SKT T1" and the words "Blind Pick" are written, or said, in the same sentence, it usually has something to do with the legendary Zed versus Zed outplay that everybody keeps mentioning over and over and ov... oh there it is, I've done it again! Seriously though, focusing solely on statistics, SKT T1 K is the only team that has played only one blind pick game and ended up winning. As boring as it sounds, it might not seem like an achievement, but when you consider there are other five teams (CJ Entus, CLG.EU, IM, NaJin Black Sword and Samsung Blue) that have played just one game and lost, it becomes noteworthy from a statistical point of view (or maybe I just wanted to mention the Zed versus Zed play... HA!).
The two-time OGN winner holds yet another record: he's the only player to have played blind pick games with three different organizations (CJ Entus, MVP Ozone and Samsung Blue). Having a blind pick career of 1-2, perhaps this feat seems not as rewarding as the many others Dade has managed to accomplish, but it still deserves to be mentioned when discussing best-of-five deciders throughout the history of OGN.
One of the most beloved western teams in the history of League of Legends, CLG.EU was invited to OGN Summer 2012, reaching the finals against Azubu Frost and almost managing to be the only foreign team to have won an OGN title. The match went to a game five, making CLG.EU members the only non-korean players to have participated in a professional blind pick game. Even if other regions add blind pick to their tournaments in the near future, CLG.EU will go down history as the first non-korean team to have ever played this game mode professionally.
#7: KT Arrows
After winning a war against the SKT T1 organization, KaKAO's huge grin and uncontrollable laughter led the Arrows to a surprising OGN title. Facing NaJin White Shield in the quarterfinals, SKT T1 S in the semifinals, and previous winner Samsung Blue in the finals, the Arrows had a legendary playoffs run in Summer 2014. What made it so special though? They went to five games on every single playoffs match, managing to win three consecutive blind pick games that led to their only championship title. It is worth mentioning that Rookie, Arrow and Hachani have a 3-0 record in blind pick games thanks to this tournament, which is clearly more important than the OGN title it provided.
#6: DanDy, imp and Mata
The MVP and Samsung trio, alongside the previously mentioned trio from KT Arrows, are the only undefeated players with 3 or more blind pick games, netting a 4-0 record across three different tournaments. They were joined by Acorn and Easyhoon as the "MVP Masters", winning the OGN Masters 2013 where they went 2-0 in blind pick games. They also played with the likes of Homme, Dade, Looper and PawN, so it can be said that they were in very good company during all of those games.
Spoiler alert: Frost and Blaze's members completely dominate in terms of blind pick appearances, but in between these two teams KaKAO manages to shine through with a total of six games under his belt. He's the only non-Frost/Blaze player with five or more appearances in blind pick matches, obtaining a record of 4-2 in his career, with both of his losses happening in two different tournaments against the later-to-be winners MVP (Masters 2013) and SKT T1 (Summer 2013). KaKAO is also the only player besides CloudTemplar to have three or more wins with one champion without dropping a single game, going 3-0 with Lee Sin during Summer 2014.
Blaze can be considered the worst team in blind pick games thanks to an overall record of 1-6. It may seem like something terrible, but Blaze sure has provided a huge amount of close and entertaining games, especially those that were against their sister team Frost, giving birth to the "wtf 2 shens" phenomenom that happened during Winter 2012-2013 (special thanks to Flame and CloudTemplar). Their only win also happened in this tournament against IM, which was Flame, Helios, Ambition, Cpt Jack and Lustboy's only win in their entire blind pick careers (1-6 is always better than 0-6).
Embodying the essence of Blaze, Ambition holds a blind pick record of 1-7, making him the player with the most losses in the history of blind pick games. Ambition has also managed to achieve the biggest negative gap between wins and losses of any player (-6), with the two next players being Flame and Lustboy (-4), and the next two Cpt Jack and Helios (-3), which makes up the main Blaze roster. Ambition is also the player with the most amount of champions used in blind pick games (7), having at least one loss on every single one.
Frost is without a doubt the most influential team in the history of blind pick games with an overall record of 6-3. After winning their first game five as MiG Frost (with Locodoco) during Spring 2012, the legendary Azubu Frost roster from the Season Two Worlds Final would achieve five consecutive blind pick wins, in which three of them would be against their sister team Azubu Blaze. After switching to CJ Entus they finally lost a blind pick game in Masters 2013, and then two more games in Summer 2013 and Spring 2015... perhaps switching organizations wasn't such a good idea (if you don't mind a little bit of money laundering here and there of course). Frost members have some very interesting records on their own as well:
- MadLife has the most appearances in blind pick games of any player (9). He's also the only player to have played a blind pick game in at least six different tournaments (shared with Frost as a whole).
- Woong, Shy and Ambition are the only players with more than five different champions used in their blind pick careers (seven for Ambition, six for the other two).
- RapidStar is the only player to have played at least four different champions and have a positive record on all of them (2-1 as Ryze, 2-0 as Evelynn, 1-0 as Diana and 1-0 as Karthus).
- Both Woong and RapidStar hold a 6-1 record, which is the biggest positive win/loss difference in any blind pick statistic (+5).
- Wait... aren't we forgetting someone?
The winning half of the "wtf 2 shens" brawl, the current OGN caster is one of the most succesful blind pick players, holding a 6-2 record. What made this guy top this ranking though? Well, if you didn't watch OGN back in 2012-2013, CT was always very eager to play tanks like Maokai, Amumu and specially Shen in the jungle. You might have guessed where this is going: CloudTemplar retired with a whopping 5-0 record as Shen, record that will stay unbeatable for quite a while unless something very drastic happens (KaKAO goes back to Korea, wins two or three more blind pick games as Lee Sin and ends it up with the all-chat classic: "worth").
I would like to say, once again, that this ranking is just my personal opinion.
May the nostalgia be with you...