DetonatioN FocusMe made history on Day 3 of the Worlds 2021 Play-In Stage after they defeated North America’s third seed Cloud9 in the tiebreaker for first place to secure a spot in the Group Stage, the first ever for a League of Legends Japan League (LJL) team at an international event.
How they went about winning this crucial best-of-one is an even better story.
This clutch late game move by DetonatioN FocusMe is something all League of Legends players can learn from
It was late game, 33 minutes in. Both teams had downed four turrets each. DFM led in kills 14 to 11, but Cloud9 had secured four dragons and the Infernal Soul.
The gold was even between them. Elder Dragon was coming up in 17 seconds, and Baron in 48.
Whichever team took the next fight would secure the two biggest objectives in-game, and very likely, a win that would send them straight to the Worlds 2021 Group Stage.
Interestingly, though Cloud9 were on the red side and DFM on blue, the teams were positioned on opposite sides of the bottom river. Cloud9 had already gathered around the Elder Dragon pit more than 10 seconds before it spawned, and were in prime position to take it.
DetonatioN FocusMe on the other hand, opened the sequence with Shunsuke “Evi” Murase’s Sett teleporting from top lane to mid in anticipation of a full on 5v5.
The second Elder Dragon spawned, DFM members, instead of walking through the bush by mid lane and into the river, decided to take a long way around, weaving through the jungle.
On top of that, they deliberately chose not to take the shortcut via the choke point nearest to the Arcane banner. Only Evi’s Sett, one of three front line champions, did so.
In fact, you’ll even notice that Lee “Aria” Ga-eul’s Orianna and Yuta “Yutapon” Sugiura’s Ezreal did path towards this choke point at first, but decided to go around blue buff instead for better positioning.
Because Cloud9 were running a wombo combo AoE team composition comprising Miss Fortune, Amumu, and Zoe. By funneling into a tight space, there’s a higher chance that DFM would get caught out by Curse of the Sad Mummy or a lethal Trouble Bubble into Bullet Time, which would be devastating.
By looping around blue buff, DetonatioN FocusMe had more space to maneuver, with useful terrain that shielded their backline. From here on, their positioning in this destiny-changing team fight was perfectly executed.
Evi’s Sett and Yang “Gaeng” Gwang-woo’s Leona went forward to engage Cloud9 in the river. At the same time, Mun “Steal” Geon-yeong’s Xin Zhao zoned out Ibrahim “Fudge” Allami’s Jayce towards bot.
Together, DetonatioN FocusMe’s frontline baited out the Miss Fortune-Amumu ultimate combo, and were tanky enough to survive with half HP. With two key ultimates on cooldown, the threat to their carries were eliminated, and the Japanese squad was free to attack aggressively.
After securing Elder Dragon, DetonatioN FocusMe downed a free Baron, and with these two buffs, pushed into Cloud’s base for the historic victory.