Talon Esports, an organization that hasn’t competed in League of Legends before this year, upset Machi Esports in a grueling best-of-five series to become the Spring Champions of the Pacific Championship Series.
Originally from Hong Kong, the Taiwanese-located organization assembled what many pundits considered to be an exciting mishmash of top talent from across the world. But no one could have imagined the roller coaster of a split this team would end up having.
Plagued by inconsistency, the team managed to have the raw talent to end in third after the regular split. During the playoffs, they won five series, four of them being full five-game sets and most of them having to be won from behind. This team never looked comfortable on the rift until the moment they were crowned as champions.
Talon had one very clear objective in the grand final series: draft a team composition with enough engage and crowd control tools to lock down Machi’s mid laner Chen “M1ssion” Hsiao-Hsien. Talon was hit-and-miss in ensuring this win condition was met, and so when M1ssion could carry Machi, he did.
The opening game of the series was the only one that could be described as completely one-sided. M1ssion had free reign over the rift, and the damage output from his Corki was unmatched. But for the remainder of the series, Talon was wise enough to ban Corki away from Machi.
In games two and three, Talon drafted the kind of composition they were looking for. In a similar fashion to their semi-finals games, Kim “Candy” Seung-ju and Kim “River” Dong-woo drafted heavy CC with the Galio and Graves combo and bullied their opposition in the mid lane. With a Renekton in the top lane, Talon had the many tools needed to easily access the backline of Machi, who, without their mid laner looked a little lost in team fight situations.
Despite pushing the series to a game five, when Machi couldn’t get their way in draft, it looked like Talon were the more proactive and aggressive of the two teams.
In the final game, it was again the Pantheon in the mid lane that scored an early lead for Talon. With three kills early and an easy way into Machi’s backline, Candy capitalized on the team’s great draft by scoring a triple kill in the final fight over mountain drake, to secure his team the game and the PCS title.
Despite being the newbies on the block, Talon have undoubtedly built a formidable team that must have their focus set for a possible Worlds Championship berth later this year.