LoL Worlds 2016: SKT Defeats SSG in a Marathon Series

By Aaron Albertson
on Oct 30, 2016

SK Telecom T1 defeated Samsung Galaxy in the first ever five-game World Championship Finals in the history of competitive League of Legends.  

Games one and two, and the first half of three, went just as everyone predicted them to go. SKT systematically smashed Samsung Galaxy, grabbing a 2-0 series lead and a 9,100 gold lead in game three.  

SKT looked methodical in their victories. They used the Faker and Bengi synergy that had earned them their previous two titles to win the first two matches of the set. Bengi only had two deaths in SKT's first two wins. Ryze, for whatever reason, wasn't banned against Faker in game 2, and the mid-lane maestro took his best champion for a 6/0/5 ride in the second set.  

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All signs pointed to SKT closing the series out in the third game, but the defending champs seemed to get over-confident.  

Samsung was able to persevere through their poor, early showing and battle back in a crazy, 71-minute game three. Samsung was able to eventually close it out after Ambition stole an Elder Dragon away from SK Telecom at the 66-minute mark, snowballing the buff to grab Baron and end the game. SKT garnished such an early-game lead that even after Samsung destroyed the Nexus, they still were at a gold disadvantage.  

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Samsung used their momentum from the previous game's marathon, and a vintage Viktor performance from Crown, to take game 4. Along with Crown getting one of his best champions, Ruler was able to grab Jhin. The combination of the pocket picks snowballed an early-advantage, and, just as SSG did throughout the group and knockout stages, they never let their foot off the gas.  

Game 5 was one of the most competitive games of Worlds 2016. Each team's gold was constantly within 500 of their opponents up until the 35-minute mark. After 15 minutes of constant vision wars around Baron, Samsung would make the first mistake.  

Ruler, who showed constant over-aggression throughout the series, decided to pop his Ghostblade and run into four of SKT's team. CoreJJ, who was playing Tahm Kench, was forced to expend all of his lifebar in an attempt to save the rookie Ruler. After SKT removed CoreJJ from the map, they grabbed a Baron and closed the game out meticulously, leaving SSG no real chance to come back into the game.  

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SK Telecom would end the series by becoming the first team ever win back-to-back championships. Faker, who took Crown's Viktor away in the final game and went 6/0/2, would be selected as the Final's MVP. 

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