TSM Huni projects team to ‘struggle’ during spring split, yet harvest success in summer
The League of Legends Championship Series began on Saturday with Evil Geniuses vs. TSM — the second-place Lock In squad and a lineup that didn’t even get to play in the tournament due to numerous immigration and travel hurdles.
TSM’s season started in a defeat as EG triumphed, however despite the outcome, TSM’s first match may have been beneficial to the team.
Zhu “Keaiduo” Xiong, Edward “Tactical” Ra, and Wei “Shenyi” Zi-Jie are the sole new members, joining Heo “Huni” Seung-hoon and Mingyi “Spica” Lu, the only two returning TSM members from 2021. With several adjustments, the team requires time to settle, which they have not yet obtained. The team is also made up of players from different regions who speak three different languages.
Despite their defeat, they indicated promise. “We only had 10 days to practice,” Huni revealed in an interview after the game. The top laner was likewise a little late in arriving in Los Angeles.
“It sounds like an excuse,” he laughed, but he views their performance despite the loss as an advantage. “EG should be one of the strongest teams… In terms of our [limited] practice, I think how we performed on stage is not too bad.”
Huni went on to say that TSM is still figuring out their strengths and weaknesses, as well as how to work around each other. “Honestly, I don’t think we’ve figured ourselves out,” he admitted.
Huni believes the significant offseason moves will benefit TSM in the short term. Many other lineups in the league face similar challenges and have unusual, difficult-to-predict playstyles, such as Cloud9, which has many members who have only recently arrived in Los Angeles. “There are a lot of monkey rosters this year,” Huni said. “I’m excited to see it.”
Major setbacks within TSM
TSM is dealing with not only a lack of preparation, but also language difficulties and various degrees of game knowledge. TSM’s two imports are young stars from the League of Legends Development League, which is essentially China’s Academy League. Both Kaeiduo and Shenyi are technically skilled, which is required to survive the LDL.
Despite this, TSM’s early game is already quite powerful, given the competence of the other three members of the team and the reduced requirement for general cooperation.
Huni has always been known as a strong laner, but now he has allies who will match his ferocity. Huni, on the other hand, isn’t unfamiliar with the situation.
He started his career for Fnatic in Europe in 2015. Fnatic, according to Huni, struggled mightily that spring, depending on Kim “Reignover” Yeu-jin to communicate for Huni, who spoke limited English when he arrived. That summer, though, they won the first-ever 18-0 split and qualified for the League of Legends World Championships as the European top seed.
Huni stated that TSM will strive on communication and devise an approach that works so that they could level up sufficiently for an amazing summer split. Of course, he’s optimistic about the spring, but he’s careful about setting expectations and is open about how long it may take to put things together.
“I agree that for spring split, we just have to use the time. We need to use the time really efficiently — be able to speak English, be able to communicate, be able to play a team game — those things are required. It’s not an option, we just have to do it,” he stated.