Echo Fox had a roller coaster opening to the season, dropping their first game to Golden Guardians before bouncing back from a large deficit to close out reigning champions Team Liquid. The team announced right before the start of the LCS that Academy players Lawrence “Lost” Hui and David "Yusui" Bloomquist would be starting, breaking up the longest-standing bot lane duo in the LCS.
Following the team’s upset over Liquid during week one, we caught up with Lost to discuss the team’s win, how it feels to be back in the LCS, and what he thinks the team needs to improve on over the course of the split.
Lost: It felt pretty random. Hella random. The whole game was so hard. At least from mid-bot side, it felt really hard to play because they were just pushing us on repeat and hitting us under turret. It got to the teamfight phase, and they had so many QSS’s, so we were chilling at that phase of the game.
I think, for the most part, [Echo Fox top laner Colin “Solo” Earnest] was doing really well the whole game. He was either even or ahead the whole game, so there was always going to be that one point of power for us. Because of that, we never felt like the game was lost. On top of that, they had to build so many QSS’s, so their gold lead wasn’t as large as it had seemed because they had to spend five thousand or so gold on the QSS. Honestly the whole game didn’t feel like it wasn’t winnable.
I think the Rageblade nerf was not great for Kai’Sa, but I still think she’s decent in the meta because Kai’Sa-Galio is a pretty strong combo. This game we had a blunder in the early game so things went really really poorly, but I don’t think the matchup is meant to look that bad. She’s alright, she has her place in the meta, but she’s definitely not a very contested pick. I think Xayah-Rakan is really really strong, and that’s the standout bot duo so far.
I kind of feel like the Mamamune build is a little overhyped, but I think if you’re going the AP build the Manamune build is super good. I just think delaying your E evolve -- you get your Q evolve really quick, but your E evolve is delayed quite a lot so I don’t think it’s that great compared to the Stormrazor build where you get your Q evolve and your E evolve so quickly. I think it’s definitely a strong build if you know you’re going AP. I just think, as a general build, Stormrazor is better.
Not so much, to be honest. I think the one thing I would feel like is I’m more comfortable playing on stage. I don’t have as many nerves as when I had first played LCS last year, so that’s a big upside for me. Hopefully I won’t be running it down because of nerves or really screwing up in the clutch moments of the game, and that’s feeling much better on stage.
I think I’ve been playing more in general because I played playoffs for Academy last split and last year I had some gameplay time in LCS as well. Now I’m just pretty comfortable on stage and that helps a lot.
I knew Doublelift was really good, and he pressures on every single minion. He’s just a really established, really well-rounded player in general. It’s pretty nuts. On top of that, after we had failed the bot gank using both Galio Flash and I think Skarner Flash as well, we had no kill pressure on them. After that the laning phase was so difficult because they could just pressure us on repeat under turret because we had no kill pressure on them. It felt really really bad for most of the early game because we had made that blunder.
I wasn’t nervous because of the player. I like to see the game as like, it’s their champions versus our champions and our champions do this and their champions do that. I wasn’t intimidated or nervous or anything.
I think that’s more of a draft thing for teams, where you plan your drafts depending on the team you’re playing against. Certain teams obviously have playstyles and which side they want to play for, which players they want to play for, which champions they prioritize, stuff like that. That’s mostly what you do when it comes to preparation for versing your enemy or your opponent for the week.
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I think playstyle-wise the best you do is you refine your own team’s playstyle and you do the best you can with your five players. You trim out all the mistakes and whatnot that your team is making in a general basis and I think that’s the best you do. You don’t really change your playstyle to best fit or match the enemy, at least in my opinion.
We didn’t really put up a fight yesterday, so the least we could do was keep trying to put up a fight today. Let’s say we’re super behind, at least we should try and contest objectives or fight for vision. Even if we die for it at least try and be contesting for the most part of the game, and against Golden Guardians we didn’t really do that well. That’s the least we could do today and I think we did that.
Honestly, I don’t really know a good reason for that. Maybe it was nerves. We don’t really have a system in place on stage yet, stuff like that. Stage is completely different from scrims so it was pretty unexpected to kind of just roll over and die against Golden Guardians. That wasn’t great, but luckily we won today so it’s 1-1.
I’m just going to say that I had no intentions of breaking the [ADC Apollo Price] and [support Nickolas "Hakuho" Surgent] duo. I love Apollo Price, he’s the sweetest guy ever, but this was the fielded roster that our coaching staff saw best fit for the week. Honestly I don’t know a lot of the reasons why me and Yusui are playing. Maybe it’s for growth, to spice things up for two Academy players who had played decently in the Academy split before, or they believed that this was the best roster heading into the first week for the meta, et cetera et cetera. I’m not sure the reasons why but we’re going to take it as it is.
We were playing LCS scrims for two weeks beforehand, before coming into LCS, because we were coming in for the first week. So me and [Yusui] were more prepared just to play on stage in general in the LCS. Whereas for other players, maybe it’s like they’re subbed in randomly for the week heading into the LCS as an Academy player, so that would probably feel more uncomfortable because you have less practice time in scrims against LCS players and with your LCS teams. Luckily for me and him, we got a smoother ride into the LCS where we were eased into it instead of thrown in, just like that, as an Academy player. It was better for us, but maybe it’s a little rougher on other Academy players heading into LCS.
Somewhat. Yeah. It was kind of like, thrown into the LCS, now I’m playing, first time on stage, stuff like that. I don’t think we did too poorly. We did not [live] up to expectations but it wasn’t like a straight flop and die. We brought TSM to game five in playoffs, so we did what we could. It wasn’t the greatest split, but I wouldn’t say it was the worst.
We need to clean up our early game. To us, we count it as a win. It wasn’t an easy win, it wasn’t a complete stomp. I wouldn’t say it was an easy win, and ideally it would be an easy win if you wanted to be a really good team so we have a lot to work on.
It’s hard to say at the start of the split because we’ve only been scrimming for two or so weeks. The teams you’re going to play you don’t scrim, obviously, heading into the week, so it’s really hard to tell. I think it’s always hard to tell at the start of the season who’s going to be really strong. Honestly I have no clue. I guess we’ll find out the next couple of weeks.
For us, since me and Yusui were playing, it was more figuring out how we function as our five players compared to Apollo and [mid laner Kim "Fenix" Jae-hun] playing. It was more of us getting used to each other, seeing our style, how we fit, our communication chain, stuff like that. That was more of what we were working on heading into the split. I think that's about it.
It was really weird because on the Academy team, we had everything established over a split. Because we had already played a split together, we all knew our strengths and weaknesses as players and our teammates’, so we covered for them et cetera et cetera. When you’re playing with a new roster or different players you’ve never played with before, it’s like you have to figure out their strengths and weaknesses over practice time and either make up for it or use their strength.
For us, we need to transfer our scrim practice onto stage much better because our communication I don’t think is as good on stage, and that’s definitely important where we need to work on when it comes to playing on stage. I think it’s something we’re going to do better.