Tactical Warfare: How will new coaches affect the meta in North America?
As the NA LCS season gets set to kick off in a few weeks time, many teams are taking a new approach to building team infrastructure with major personnel upgrades at the coaching position.
Team Solo Mid
Team Solo Mid once again find themselves at the cutting edge of talent adoption in an attempt to improve on past failures this year. After a revolving door of personnel changes involving Weldon and former Head Coach Parth, TSM have found their new man at the controls with former Immortals coach SSONG joining the fold. The Korean mastermind played in seasons 3 and 4 as the Support of Najin Black Sword before going on to coach a variety of teams such as the KOO Tigers, ROX Tigers (2017) and Longzhu Gaming before making his way to NA.
The addition of LustBoy as strategic coach with KonKwon joining as a translator leaves much of the coaching holes seen last season plugged up for the time being. For what it’s worth, TSM were at their best in International Tournaments when LustBoy was bestowing his wisdom onto the team and helping them understand the game at a higher level when it came to macro play. With a team full of young, hungry talented players ready to prove themselves, SSONG has been given the keys to a revved up TSM squad looking to make good on their changes.
On top of reforming Team Liquid with a stacked roster, TL have made serious strides in their coaching personnel with the acquisitions of Cain and Dodo in the Head Coach and Assistant Coach roles. Cain is another product of the Najin Black Sword 2014 squad that has since gone on to coach CJ Entus, Cloud9 and now TL since Summer Split of last season.
Dodo’s entrance to this roster is integral to all parties as he is a Korean international that can speak fluid English as well. His ability to pass on information from Cain to the NA players on the team will be indispensable to their success as the split continues. Cain had a decent run coaching a roster that was heavily dissatisfied and ready to quit. Now that he has a team with legitimate World Championship aspirations, all systems are ready to go for this newly reformed roster.
100 Thieves and the Golden Guardians
All three ‘NBALCS’ teams in this league have made significant coaching changes to satisfy some core roster moves that will pan out well or end up horribly wrong in the following weeks. To mitigate some of that ‘unknown factor’ CG, 100T and GG have all made serious coaching acquisitions in order to better prepare their talent.
Locodoco is already one of the more prominent names on this list, while his time with Team Liquid in 2016 was less than memorable, his tenure with Gold Coin United proved fruitful even with a fairly limited roster that was relying on two rookies. Now, Locodoco is at the helm of a competent roster with no palpable ego issues and a solid shot caller at his disposal. There will be an emphasis on his team to get going as the year progresses with Contractz looking not to fall into a Sophomore slump.
100 Thieves picking up pr0lly and Reinfcmnt as a performance coach will be an interesting dynamic to monitor as the season progresses. Ryu, Meteos and Aphromoo have been veteran players with a capacity to dip in form at random moments throughout the year. With pr0lly putting the pieces in place to develop sound team comps that require minimal effort, time will tell if his no nonsense approach to team building with rosters that may run into language barriers will pay off as he returns to North America to continue his rather successful coaching career.