Dplus KIA’s top laner, Kim “Canna” Chang-dong entered the professional League of Legends scene in 2020 as part of T1‘s roster experimental 10 man roster.

His esports journey has been marked by notable highlights. He won LCK Spring 2020 in his debut year and competed at Worlds 2021, where T1 were eliminated by Damwon KIA in a close 3-2 quarterfinals series.

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Now a member of Dplus KIA, he qualified for Worlds again. In an exclusive interview with ONE Esports, Canna shares how it was like during his early days in gaming, his unexpected path to pro, and hobbies that helps him unwind when he takes a break.

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Dplus KIA celebrating after qualifying for Worlds 2023 at the LCK Regional Finals 2023
Credit: Riot Games

Canna’s entrance into professional gaming was anything but predictable.

His first encounter with gaming was in kindergarten when he played Crazy Arcade, a popular online multiplayer video game from South Korea. It is a fast-paced, top-down, multiplayer action game where players plant bombs to eliminate their opponents while avoiding being caught in the blast radius themselves.

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During middle school, he remembers playing Sudden Attack. “Many of us were into it. Then, everyone started shifting to League of Legends,” he recounted. Despite making a pact with a friend to stick with Sudden Attack, curiosity got the best of him.

“I did dream of becoming a professional esports player, but it felt more like a fantasy than a reachable reality,” he said.

League of Legends Dplus KIA Canna with a V sign during a 2023 Worlds match
Credit: Riot Games

His natural talent didn’t go unnoticed, and quite unexpectedly, he found himself fielding offers from Academy teams, paving a way into the pro scene that he had never thought was possible.

In the end, it was his older sister who nudged him forward. He chuckled, describing her as the family’s “boss.” His parents on the other hand, were neutral about his professional gaming prospects and did not object. Ultimately, it was his sister’s encouragement that made the difference, particularly when he hit Challengers.

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His professional journey has been a mix of highs and lows. After joining T1 and then Nongshim RedForce, he eventually signed with Dplus KIA in 2023. The road was not smooth throughout the season — the team scraped through to Worlds by clinching a hard-fought victory against Hanwha Life Esports 3-1 in the LCK Regional Finals to qualify.

Everyone needs to unwind, and for Canna it’s fishing videos

Kim "Canna" Chang-dong of Dplus poses at the League of Legends World Championship 2023 Swiss Stage on October 26, 2023 in Seoul, South Korea
Credit: Riot Games

All pro players have their own way dealing with pressure. Canna has an unusual method of relaxing after intense day of competitive gaming: he is captivated by traveling videos, and most recently fishing videos.

“I don’t have any big dreams about traveling, but for some reason, it’s pretty fun watching other people travel, like going on fishing trips,” he told ONE Esports . These videos, often featuring tranquil scenes of nature and the simple joy of catching fish, a stark contrast to his high-pressure esports career.

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He is particularly intrigued by the self-sustainability in these adventures. “I saw a YouTuber going on a trip with nothing but fishing equipment, and he would take care of his meals through the fish that he caught. That seemed a lot of fun,” he shared. He himself has only fished once and caught nothing, yet the peace he experienced during the activity was memorable.

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His teammate, Dplus KIA’s bot laner, Kim “Deft” Hyuk-kyu, also mentioned his passion for nature during an interview with ONE Esports, where he is seriously considering a future as a nature documentary filmmaker.

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