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In a Weibo message, top laner Lee “Duke” Ho-seong of the League of Legends 2018 World Champions, Invictus Gaming, revealed he would be leaving the team. Duke joined the Chinese esports organization in 2016, and he departs after having spent most of the previous season on the bench.
Duke announcing on his weibo that he’s leaving iG this off-season. pic.twitter.com/J4F0jSoCdI
— Ran (@ran_lpl) November 7, 2019
Leaving Invictus Gaming
In a statement on Weibo, Duke describes that he will be leaving mostly because of the team’s results during the past season. In addition, Duke has spent the past season on the bench, with Kang “TheShy” Seung-lok on the main roster instead. He thanks fans for their support, because even if he isn’t good at Chinese, the encouragement from fans motivates him to “continue playing professionally.”
Invictus seemed to be on top of their game after defeating LCK team Griffin in the 2019 World Championship Quarterfinals. However, the team later fell to fellow League of Legends Pro League (LPL) team FunPlus Phoenix in the Semifinals. While any North American team would be beyond ecstatic at a result like this, the team did not live up to its own expectations. This is because the Chinese team finished in first place at the previous 2018 World Championships.
2019 LPL Regular Season
In the 2019 Regular Season, the team placed 2nd during the Spring Split and 6th during the Summer Split. They were unable to qualify through the 2019 LPL Summer Playoffs and had to rely on the Regional Finals to obtain a Worlds slot. Invictus Gaming also suffered a 3 – 4th place finish at the 2019 Mid-Season Invitational after a loss against North American esports organization Team Liquid.
Duke, a former SK Telecom T1 player, joined Invictus Gaming in December of 2016. He is the only player in League of Legends to have won 2 World Championships with 2 separate organizations in different regions. Will he continue playing professionally and win his third on another team? Others have also brought up that it may be likely the 24-year-old is up for his mandatory South Korean military service. As such, we’ll have to wait and see how things turn out. In the meantime, let us know what you think, and keep up with Daily Esports for all of your League of Legends coverage.
Ethan Chen is a writer with over 3 years of experience covering esports, gaming, and business.