100 Thieves had a turbulence of emotions throughout the Summer Split. Getting swept in 3 games in the Spring Split grand finals and a controversial trade occurred with William “Meteos” Hartman are examples of the adversities they went through. Despite the hardships, 100 Thieves continue to play at a high level in the Summer Split. They are a game behind Team Liquid in the standings with one more week remaining. Top laner for 100 Thieves and Summer Split MVP candidate, Kim “Ssumday” Chan-ho chatted with me in this exclusive interview to talk about getting Andy “AnDa” Hoang acclimated into the team and what he thinks of the competition in the LCK.
What are your thoughts about franchising in the LCS this year? If you are able to change anything, is there anything you would like to change?
Ssumday: This year looks like a better environment to play. Everyone gets to focus on the game and not worry about relegations. It’s an improvement to the LCS. I think it’s closer to what traditional sports are rather than what esports has been all these years. I can’t wait to see how things will evolve.
I’m not sure what I would change because I like how things are right now.
There is a significant decline in viewership this year compared to previous years. Why do you think this is the case?
Ssumday: Other games like Overwatch are getting popular so people don’t play League of Legends anymore. Also, the game’s meta is changing a lot so older players cannot play more. Instead, they get better at other games. Also, fans who stuck around all these years are getting older. They are now working so it’s harder for them to keep up.
What do you think Riot needs to do to get viewership back to its roots?
Ssumday: Riot needs to organize more events for the fans and produce more fun things to watch.
As you know, the Overwatch World Cup is starting soon. If League of Legends had their own World Cup and you were the captain of the South Korea team, who would be in it?
Ssumday: Right now, I feel like LCK is the strongest region in the pro scene. There are strong teams like KT, Griffin, and Kingzone competing for first place. Then, you have the defending champions, Gen.G. It’s hard for me to decide who would be in my team. Like how the New York Excelsior was in the Overwatch League, I would put the first place team in LCK into my World Cup team.
People are recognizing you to be the MVP in this split. Do you agree with their thoughts?
Ssumday: I believe it.
During the Summer Split, 100 Thieves engaged a trade with William “Meteos” Hartman for Andy “AnDa” Hoang. Did you expect your team to continue performing well with the roster change in the middle of the split?
Ssumday: I thought it would be a problem at first because it’s the middle of the Summer Split. Changing members is a huge change for everyone. If it works, then it’s good for us and the results only matter.
Before the roster change, Meteos was the shotcaller along with Zaqueri “Aphromoo” Black. Now, everyone has a chance to call shots, but Aphromoo is the big shotcaller for the team.
In this game against Echo Fox, AnDa played a huge part in ganking lanes and feeding you kills in laning phase. Are you guys getting AnDa more involved in every game? How is his confidence since joining the team?
Ssumday: When he joined the team, he was pretty quiet at first. I’m not sure if he’s nervous or something because he doesn’t really talk like in the game.
I noticed he talked more in this game. He was calling shots and giving us vision everywhere. Since he joined the team, I can see his confidence is getting better and it’s starting to show on stage. I believe we can win this split and he is a big part of it.
You guys are the #2 team in the LCS behind Team Liquid. What things can you guys work on to get to win the split?
Ssumday: We just need to continue working hard and have fun.