TSM Academy just won a playoff game with a Sona-Taric bot lane

The heals, shields, and stuns worked for TSMA but we wouldn't suggest this for solo queue.

Image via Riot Games | Remix by Xing Li

Remember the Ardent Censer meta? When supports with healing in their kits ran the show and were basically unkillable in lane and teamfights? Well, TSM Academy’s Erik “Treatz” Wessén and Edward “Tactical” Ra just brought their version of that back with a Sona-Taric bot lane.

Yup, that’s two supports in a lane that traditionally features a high damage carry. And the craziest part? They actually came out with a win vs. Echo Fox in the LCS Academy playoffs.

The theory behind the picks was simple: They’d lose lane hard, but because of the infinite sustain, it was hard to fully shove them away. Later on, it became impossible for Echo Fox to beat them in a straight five-vs-five. There were just too many heals, shields, and stuns, and that doesn’t even get to Taric’s potential five-person invulnerability.

Neither player actually built Ardent Censer: The Sona went with GLP into Lich Bane to become an AP burst champion while the Taric declined to pair his early Redemption with the Censer.

So, should you try this in solo queue? The answer is a resounding “no.” TSM’s comp was well-practiced and they had a plan for how to survive lane phase. It’s a strategy that requires all five players to be on the same page, and TSM had great damage contributions from their top lane Jayce and mid lane Irelia to make up for the relative lack of DPS from the bot lane.

In essence, this was a troll pick, but one that worked at the highest levels of Academy play. We hated the Ardent Censer meta because of how boring it was, but this is an innovation we liked to see.