Friday's matches in the LCK Summer Split have potential to shake up the standings, with DAMWON Gaming looking to bounce back from a pair of momentum-halting defeats when they take on KT Rolster.
The second game is the match of the week, as T1 and DRX do battle towards the top of the standings. The winner of that pivotal contest will top the split as we exit the day's play.
LCK Summer Split
South Korea (online/offline)
15th June - 14th August 2022
|How to watch|
Twitch LCK channel
KT Rolster 12/5 vs DWG KIA 3/10: T1 4/11 vs DRX 2/1
KT Rolster have struggled to build momentum to start the Summer Split and things will not get easier when they face DAMWON Gaming in Friday’s opening match.
DAMWON are well-known on the world stage and enjoyed a fantastic 2021, finishing 2nd at both the Mid-Season Invitational and the year-ending World Championship.
Domestically, they won the Spring and Summer Splits last year and finishing 3rd in this year's Spring Split was a fair way to kick off the year. Winning their opening two Summer matches against Brion Esports and SANDBOX Gaming, subsequent defeats to GEN.G and T1 have left them at 2-2 after four matches.
It is perhaps disappointing that they could not put up more of a fight against those rivals and they come into this match without the benefit of momentum, but KT Rolster are struggling and this could be a confidence-boosting victory for ShowMaker's side.
KT Rolster failed to qualify for anything outside of their region last year after finishing 7th in both the Spring and Summer Splits and perhaps fittingly, they started 2022 with another 7th-place Spring finish.
They started the Summer Split with losses to GEN.G and T1, before notching their first victory over BRION Gaming. SANDBOX handed them a 1-3 record heading into this match and their head to head against DAMWON does not read pleasantly.
DAMWON completed a double over Friday's opponents in the Spring Split and, although neither team has any momentum heading into this match, DAMWON have the class advantage.
KT Rolster will be hoping their opponents will be vulnerable after some tough losses, but they will need big performances across the board and their form in the split thus far makes that doubtful.
DRX's Jungler Canyon is likely to be the key to this match and if he can perform to the level we know he is capable of, KT Rolster are unlikely to come away with anything from this match.
On paper, Friday's clash between T1 and DRX should be the game of the week. Both sides sit at 4-1 in the split and the winner will move to the top of the standings, albeit momentarily.
T1 are riding high after victory in the Spring Split, defeating GEN.G 3-1 in the final, and they put up a bold showing against International opposition in the Mid Season Invitational.
Their Summer Split began in strong fashion, recording a statement victory over DAMWON to go 4-0 to start the split. That momentum was halted, however, when they suffered a surprise 2-1 defeat to Freecs.
T1 will need to bounce back quickly if they are to keep pace with GEN.G and the same comments apply to DRX, who are attempting to aface the memory of a disappointing 2021 and start to 2022.
Having reached the 2020 World Championship, placing 5-8th, they could only manage 5th and 10th in the Spring and Summer splits respectively in 2021. 2022 started in a similar vein, managing just 5th in Spring.
On paper, their fortunes have turned around with a 4-1 start to Summer, but those victories have come against the likes of BRION, Hanwha Life and Nongshim RedForce. They lost their unbeaten record against SANDBOX last time and things get even tougher against T1 here.
As the odds suggest, T1 have to be considered heavy favourites to take this contest. Led by the incredible Faker, they recorded a pair of 2-0 victories against DRX in Spring and the last time DRX recorded a rift victory was back in Spring 2021, where they still lost the match 3-1.
Although Faker will always be the talking point, Toplaner Zeus has been the man to watch for T1 and currently leads the Player of the Game Standings with 400 points.
Perhaps interestingly, both Kingen and Zeka are tied for second in the same standings and it will be that duo that DRX will need to perform if they are to have any chance of coming away with victory.