With a strong performance to obtain 1st place in the North American Challenger Series Summer Playoffs, Gold Coin United attempts once again to get into the NA League Champion Series for Spring 2018. In a similar fashion to last year, Gold Coin United defeated the 1st place team eUnited in a 3-1 series to obtain the advantage of facing the 10th place NA LCS team: Phoenix1.
Gold Coin United was very close to obtaining a spot in the NA LCS tournament last time. They were victorious against their first opponent, Team EnVyUs, and only needed one more victory in order to get into the LCS. However, Gold Coin United played against Team Liquid and lost in a 2-3 nail biter series. Having one more shot in order to get in, they fought against Team EnVyUs once more, only to come short 2-3 once again. Although they did not qualify for the Summer 2017 season, Gold Coin United decided to make one more attempt to get into the LCS.
GCU huddled up after defeating Team EnVyUs in the 2017 Summer Promotion Tournament
After their losses, Gold Coin United made a few roster swaps. ADC Brandon “Mash” Phan signed to Echo Fox with Richard “Rikara” Samuel Oh moving back to starter position, and Kim “FeniX” Jae-hun moved to substitute position while Song “Fly” Yong-jun switched to the starting position. With this new and powerful roster, Gold Coin United went 8-2 in the 2017 Summer Season in the Challenger Series, with their two losses being in the first week.
However, the match ahead is not going to be any easier for Gold Coin United. Each team in the upcoming match has a mid laner who has played in the undisputed toughest region. “Fly” has played for KT Rolster and Longzhu Gaming in the past year, “GBM” from eUnited played for CJ Entus Frost and Jin Air Greenwings until Season 6, “Ryu” from Phoenix1 had played for KT Rolster Bullets until Season 4, and “Mickey” from Team Liquid had played for Afreeca Freecs and ROX Tigers in the past year.
Not only that, but “Fly” has to play against his old teammate from KT Rolster, Noh “Arrow” Dong-hyeon, who is one of the best AD Carries in the NA LCS at the moment, and the Team Liquid AD Carry Chae “Piglet” Gwang-jin who won Worlds back in Season 3.
With this tournament being so stacked, how does Gold Coin United stand a chance? Here’s how:
Gold Coin United celebrating over their victory over eUnited
- Every member in the Gold Coin United roster is a veteran at the game, including the coach Choi “Locodoco” Yoon-seop. “Locodoco” played League of Legends since the very beginning and is one of the founding members of Team Solomid, one of the biggest and strongest NA LCS teams in almost every single season. “Locodoco” has coached on Team Solomid and Team Liquid, played with Hong “MadLife” Min-gi during their peak performances, and can talk in both English and Korean for all of the members.
- Colin “Solo” Earnest has been playing in the Challenger series since Season 5, but his champion pool is wide and consists of both tanks, fighters and mages. “Solo” has a great record on tank champions, which allows his jungler to be free to play other aggressive champions..
- Lucas “Santorin” Tao Kilmer Larsen had played for Team Solomid back in Season 5, and his time playing against the top teams while at Season 5 Worlds allows him to easily keep track where the enemy jungler is and find the best possible ganks at the right time. “Santorin” was coached by “Locodoco” in the past, and their work ethics allow them to easily work together.
- Song “Fly” Yong-jun had played in the LCK, so his champion pool had to be wide and diverse in order to get victories for KT Rolster against big name players like “Faker” and “Kuro”. With his veteran experiences, game knowledge and ability to apply pressure on the enemy mid laner very easily, Gold Coin United will have no problem last picking the mid lane champion in order to have give the carry over to “Fly”.
- Richard “Rikara” Samuel Oh is the least experienced member in Gold Coin United for the LCS stage, but his ability to play champions like Kalista and Tristana at a high caliber allows him to continuously put out major damage in teamfights. While “Rikara” hasn’t played against top AD Carries like “Piglet” and “Arrow” before, his teamfight instincts will go much farther than his laning phase.
- Hong “MadLife” Min-gi is one of the legendary support players that has touched League of Legends. “Madlife” has a deep champion pool with both playmaking champions and mage champions at his disposal and doesn’t possess any champion weaknesses at all. His knowledge of when to roam and engage allows him to be a top-notch defensive player for the less experienced player “Rikara”.
Gold Coin United has a very good chance of making it into the 2018 Spring Season in the NA LCS, but they will have to put in way more effort and have as much determination than last time in order to get in. Their bot lane may be the weakest out of all the lanes, but they make it up with great teamfight knowledge and good roaming from Santorin. Although GCU were one single victory away in both games from obtaining a spot, they are back at the tournament and even hungrier than before. Their hopes and dreams aren’t dusty or shattered, it is a single united and golden coin for everyone to share.
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