Updated on October 26, 12:30 p.m. (GMT+8): Improved relevancy.

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Three-time World Champion Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok is undoubtedly the greatest League of Legends player of all time.

Clocking in over 10 years of pro play, the T1 player continues to dominate the competition as a veteran.

Faker’s full list of podium finishes throughout his 10-year League of Legends career

While Faker remains the biggest name in LoL esports, he’s had his fair share of rivalries throughout the years. There have been a few standout players who dared to take down the Unkillable Demon King.

Here’s our list of the seven biggest rivals of T1 Faker so far.

7 top pro players who were memorable opponents and rivals of T1 Faker

  • Ryu
  • PawN
  • Coco
  • Crown
  • Chovy
  • Deft
  • Caps

Ryu and the unforgettable Zed mirror match

100 Thieves Ryu as T1 Faker rival
Credit: LCS

When you hear the name Ryu “Ryu” Sang-wook, you’ll probably remember it from T1 Faker’s impressive Zed solo kill during the 2013 Champions Korea Summer final.

That specific match was a big moment for Ryu. During that time, the KT Rolster Bullets’ mid laner was considered the best in Korea. Their team aimed to qualify for Worlds 2013, but Faker and SKT T1 bested them 3-2 to win the Summer Championship.

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Credit: Funko
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Two years later at Worlds 2015, the rivalry was still alive and well. The two mid laners shared their thoughts on the fated rematch in the Group Stage. Ryu looked forward to meeting Faker again while the T1 player said that both of them had changed since the 2013 outplay.

PawN was the kryptonite of Faker’s early years

Kingzone DragonX Pawn during 2019 LCK Spring
Credit: LCK

World Champion Heo “PawN” Won-seok has an impressive track record against the T1 mainstay.

In the 2014 Champions Korea Summer playoffs, PawN and Samsung White sent Faker and SKT T1 K home in the quarterfinals. What’s more, Samsung White also swept SKT T1 S 3-0 in the third-place match, further cementing his reputation as T1’s worst nightmare.

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The two would eventually meet again at MSI 2015, but this time, PawN was playing for LPL’s Edward Gaming. EDG and PawN would prove victorious in the final, making history as the first LPL team to win an international tournament, ending Faker’s 12-0 win streak on LeBlanc.

T1 Faker crushed Coco’s Spring Championship dream

CJ Entus Coco during 2015 Champions Korea Spring playoffs
Screenshot by Joseph Asuncion/ONE Esports

A deep cut on the list, Shin “Coco” Jin-yeong was an up-and-coming mid laner from CJ Entus who made a splash in 2015 LCK Spring, wowing the crowds with quadrakills on Diana and snipes with Jayce.

The final test for the rising team was the Spring playoffs, where they faced SKT T1 in Round 2. The match was looking to be an upset with CJ Entus taking the first two games, but then T1 Faker and the boys pulled through with a surprising reverse sweep.

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Coco went on to play for more teams in South Korea and other regions, but nothing will beat the time when he almost took down SKT T1 in a best-of-five match.

Crown faced the Unkillable Demon King on the Worlds stage and won

Samsung Galaxy Crown at Worlds 2017 Final
Credit: LoL Esports

Is there anything more legendary than beating a reigning World Champion on the Worlds stage?

In 2017, T1 was at the top of their game with two World Championships under their belt, and all eyes were on the team to achieve a three-peat at Worlds 2017, but one team stood in their way — Samsung Galaxy.

Before Heartsteel Ezreal, Baekhyun was first a T1 Faker fanboy

SSG’s Lee “Crown” Min-ho makes it on this list as one of T1 Faker’s most prominent rivals. The mid laner took the all-LCK Worlds 2017 final by storm on Malzahar, and assisted teammates Park “Ruler Jae-hyuk and Lee “CuVee” Seong-jin in crucial plays.

What’s more, Crown and Samsung Galaxy not only denied the three-peat but swept SKT T1 3-0 to take home the Summoner’s Cup at the Beijing National Stadium.

Chovy faces Faker like a true rival

Gen.G Chovy during 2022 LCK Summer Split
Credit: LCK

Over the years, Jeong “Chovy” Ji-hoon of Gen.G has established himself as a notable rival to Faker in the LCK.

Chovy is renowned for his exceptional laning skills, achieving a consistent creep score per minute. Often referred to by fans as the “Church of Chovy,” his remarkable plays have propelled him into the spotlight as a star who rivals Faker.

These two mid laners have faced off on numerous occasions in the LCK, with notable encounters during the 2023 season when Gen.G outperformed T1 in both the LCK Spring and Summer finals.

Deft and Faker have a rivalry that dates back to their high school days

Faker and Deft during the LCK Spring 2023 video shoot
Credit: LCK

Faker and Kim “Deft” Hyuk-kyu went to Mapo High School in Seoul, South Korea, and began their professional careers around 2013. Fast forward almost a decade, Faker has secured three world championships, while Deft only clinched his first at Worlds 2022.

In a hard-fought series between DRX and T1, Deft ultimately triumphed against T1 with a score of 3-2, fulfilling his lifelong dream of winning his first-ever world championship.

DRX wins Worlds 2022 after hard fought series, risked it all on Bard, Hecarim

“There was never a chance for me to catch up and close the gap, but this final was a great opportunity to get my revenge on Faker,” said Deft during the tournament’s Media Day.

Caps aspires to eventually surpass his idol, Faker

G2 caPs dreams of beating T1 Faker's Ahri
Credit: Riot Games/Getty Images, ONE Esports

Faker’s competition stretches across the EMEA region, with one of his notable rivals being Rasmus “Caps” Winther, the LEC’s most decorated player.

According to Caps, Faker has been a significant source of inspiration for him. He was particularly impressed by Faker’s performance on Ahri during the Season 3 World Championship in 2013.

“I’ve always dreamed of defeating Faker’s Ahri. Beating him, especially on champions he’s known for has always been a goal of mine,” he once said during the MSI 2022 press conference.

“I’ve watched numerous games of his, both on stage and in solo queue, where he excels with champions like Ahri and LeBlanc. Taking him down with those champs would be a major achievement for me.”

These two players have a history of facing each other in international tournaments, consistently meeting on the main stage of Worlds and MSI each year.

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