At least one League of Legends team is looking to find a new edge over the competition this offseason.
Team Liquid is hiring position coaches for League of Legends, a potentially huge expansion of its coaching staff.
That’s something no other team does in League right now, but it’s an obvious evolution for a coaching staff as the game continues to grow more competitive. For a franchise on the cutting edge of competition like Team Liquid, with plenty of resources and a talented roster that would be be difficult to upgrade even with further investment, it makes tons of sense.
Breaking coaching down to the positional level has obvious benefits. Current coaches take more of a big picture approach, concerning themselves with macro strategy, figuring out team compositions, planning picks and bans, and deciding how best to utilize the weapons on their roster. But there’s more to League of Legends than strategy, and coaching can clearly help improve a player on a micro level.
Of course, given that players are spending hundreds of hours honing their craft in solo queue, they’re often able to figure things out for themselves. But imagine if they had a helping hand?
A positional coach can analyze specific lane matchups and give a pro player more information on how to play and win certain matchups, especially ones that they may not often see on the ladder or in pro matches. Assuming the coach is a quality player himself, he can practice one-on-one matchups with the player to enforce new details or learn new tactics. The coach can use statistics and reports provided by analysts to tailor strategies for the player, who needs to spend so much time keeping up mechanics it’s often difficult to do research.
It’s a natural extension of coaching in League of Legends, an obvious next step for staff expansion, should organizations have the resources to make it work. It also mirrors sports like football, which feature coaches for every position on the field that train players in specific technique.
The requirements Team Liquid expects for the positions are certainly high, though for a role like this that’s perhaps a necessity. The team is looking for players of at least master level and requires the coach to speak both Korean and English if applying for mid lane or AD carry, two positions where the team fields native Korean speakers in Kim “FeniX” Jae-hun and Chae “Piglet” Gwang-jin.
It’s a remote and part-time position, though the team will let you work in its Santa Monica office if you’re in the area.
It’s also not the only coaching position Team Liquid is looking to fill. After the departure of head coach Peter Zhang, following Team Liquid’s disappointing elimination in the regional qualifiers, the squad has a head coaching spot open.
In many ways, it’s surprising that more teams haven’t added positional coaches, but perhaps that’s simply because franchises don’t have the resources to support such a huge staff. Team Liquid is certainly one of the exceptions right now, and they’re doing whatever it takes to make its team the top in League of Legends after another season where it fell agonizingly short of accomplishing their goals.
Photo via Riot Games/Flickr
While Liquid expands, SK Gaming’s situation is looking grim. Watch the story below.