Dignitas’ time within the LCS this yr has been bittersweet. Like these 99.99% darkish chocolate bars that quickly uncovered your style buds to solely sorrow and ache. After turning heads all through the area with their impressive results with a no-imports team, they shriveled away to nothing because the Mid-Season Showdown (MSS) got here. As Summer season rolled in, Dignitas was hyped for having a battle-tested and well-bled lineup — presumably essentially the most cohesive within the league. However quickly after, a collection of roster adjustments and inner issues rotted the group from the within.
Although they haven’t reached the depths of other teams, it’s been a disappointing journey. After being so embittered although, it makes the sweetness of that darkish chocolate stand out that rather more. That’s what it’s been like watching Toàn “Neo” Trần — the shining way forward for Dignitas and in my thoughts the true Rookie of the 12 months.
Of their greatest instances, Neo was one of many principal brokers of Dignitas’ success, and of their worst, he nonetheless managed to sneak a couple of wins. All through it, he has made a greater case for Rookie of the 12 months than some other participant within the league, together with the participant that’s most talked about: EG’s Kyle “Danny” Sakamaki.
Don’t get me unsuitable: Danny already appears to be like like one of many future stars of the league and the race between him and Neo for Rookie of the 12 months is nail-bitingly shut. However in my eyes, Neo beats Danny (and the remaining) for a couple of causes, primary being:
1. Spring Cut up does matter
Maybe it’s my historical past in basketball, however the Rookie of the 12 months must be judged on what a participant achieved for the total interval. Danny being unable to play in Spring doesn’t matter. Simply as Ja Morant and Malcolm Brogdon have gained Rookie of the 12 months within the NBA over Zion Williams and Joel Embiid, Neo has a stronger case over Danny by having a complete cut up benefit.
The Spring Cut up ought to particularly be factored in due to how rattling good Neo was. Due to Dignitas’ meltdown in MSS, most followers have appeared to neglect that Neo was a high three AD carry in Spring. He not solely made the third LCS All-Pro Crew however stuffed a stat sheet simply in addition to Danny did. Not solely that, he did so with a weaker group and with adversaries like Jesper “Zven” Svenningsen not on the bench. Neo additionally pulled “loads of bans on stage for us more often than not — a minimum of two per group”, Dignitas help Aphromoo informed Inven.
2. Bot lane was Dignitas’ one redeeming high quality in Summer season
Dignitas’ collapse in Summer season in comparison with their Spring kind put them far under EG so far as the recency bias is anxious, which does favor Danny in Rookie of the 12 months dialog. However even with how unstable and mediocre Dignitas may very well be, their backside lane stood out. They dominated first blood percentages over some other duo within the league and have been one of many strongest aggressive combos round. When Dignitas faltered, Neo didn’t.
“Neo is simply excellent at with the ability to react to what’s on his display,” head coach Jimmy Harrison informed Inven. “Most individuals will acknowledge this mechanic, which I believe is true. And with time when loads of the sport data begins coming in, or the communication continues to enhance, I believe you possibly can anticipate him to get higher and higher.”
3. Statistical excellence inside a faltering group
Neo stats in Summer season are similar to these in Spring, regardless of an general drop within the group’s kind. There’s an enormous soar in harm dealt and kill participation. The truth is, Neo has the best kill participation of any AD carry within the league, and one of many highest within the complete LCS. This reveals not simply his regular enchancment, but in addition how a lot burden Dignitas has thrown on him. Whereas Danny can have an off-game and nonetheless depend on Jung “Affect” Eon-yeong or Daniele “Jiizuke” di Mauro to hold, Neo has had to enter each sport with a carry-or-die state of affairs.
“Regardless of all of the forwards and backwards with a number of the roster strikes that we have made, I believe it’s totally clear that our bot lane has been a robust level for us. Within the majority of our victories, it is as a result of our bot lane is performing very effectively,” Harrison added.
Greater than that, Neo’s already proven robust versatility and willingness to adapt to the meta. Whereas in Spring he appeared locked in on Kai’Sa and Kalista, he expanded his pool in Summer season from 6 champions to 10 — a necessity, born out of groups’ tendencies to blind choose or ban Kalista to push Neo out of his consolation.
Neo is a younger man that’s actually particular. He has the enjoying time, the success, and the ability to win Rookie of the 12 months. He’s a monster in lane, a robust team-fighting risk, and another person keen and able to carrying video games. Not like Ablazeolive, he wasn’t held again an excessive amount of by his teammates, and we had a great take a look at how robust he was. Not like Danny, he wasn’t held up by his teammates an excessive amount of, and we obtained to see him succeed regardless of all of the challenges his group confronted.
All Dignitas members I talked to spoke of how Neo had an actual killer intuition for the sport. A fearlessness and work ethic to attempt to be the perfect. “I completely agree when it comes right down to killer intuition,” Jimmy stated. “It reveals in a number of the champions he likes to play, whether or not that is Kalista or Draven for instance, and he is had some actually good Kai’Sa performances as effectively. He has an excellent understanding of how the lane ought to play out however extra importantly, simply what he’s able to. […]
I positively assume the killer intuition is there. There are some AD carries which are going to play extra passive, I’d say. However if you watch him, he is by no means afraid to get in the midst of a group battle if it is the correct play.
However concerning his robust will to succeed, Neo stated it best himself: “I might be higher, however I believe I am higher than everybody else.”
For the rookies this yr, I agree with him.
https://www.invenglobal.com/articles/14794/the-argument-of-neo-danny-for-lcs-rookie-of-the-year | The argument of Neo > Danny for LCS Rookie of the 12 months