Showing immense growth after a disappointing end to their previous campaign, Counter Logic Gaming mid laner Choi “HuHi” Jae-hyun has been one of the stand out performers of the Summer Split.
With a deep champion pool that continues to surprise both fans and his opponents, the list of target bans aimed towards HuHi was expanded even further during the second game of their week six series against Team Dignitas.
DIG dedicated five bans to suppress HuHi’s influence on the game, but it was not enough to eliminate the threat of the CLG mid laner.
HuHi is renowned for his ability to play a variety of champions in the mid lane with an unrivalled level of expertise. His most notorious “pocket pick” was showcased at the most recent World Championship, where HuHi surprised his competitors by dominating on the rarely picked Aurelion Sol.
HuHi’s mastery of Aurelion Sol still continues to make its presence known today, as he draws a ban for the champion in most of CLG’s games.
In their opening series of Week 6 against FlyQuest eSports, HuHi added to his list of unique picks by choosing Vel’koz as his mid lane champion in both games.
An immobile mage with high damage potential, FlyQuest failed to find a single kill on HuHi as he acquired an 11/0/19 scoreline, setting the table for future Vel’koz picks and drawing a champion ban from Team Dignitas the following day.
— lolesports (@lolesports) July 14, 2017
The choice of Vel’koz should not come as a surprise as the meta continues to shift towards tankier jungle champions and melee supports.
The void champion’s long range and high damage potential make the champion a strong pick to pair with a beefy front line or excellent peel.
It is unsurprising that HuHi was the first to take a chance on new pick in the mid lane. CLG has traditionally allowed HuHi greater flexibility in his champion picks and is willing to be a trailblazer when it comes to introducing new champions to the meta.
Earlier in the Summer Split, CLG shocked fans when they locked in a Fiora mid pick for HuHi and were able to secure the victory against Team SoloMid.
For HuHi, a number of bans thrown at his champion pool is not just a testament to his variety of picks, but also a sign of respect that shows how much HuHi has emerged as a threat for CLG this split.
Often considered to be one of the weak links on CLG heading into the split, Riot Games analyst Joshua “Jatt” Leesman recently gave HuHI an A+ rating on his tier list of mid laners and placed him fourth overall in the NA LCS.
This is a stark improvement from the beginning of the split, where few may have placed HuHi above the bottom three.
As the season continues, HuHi will likely unveil another unconventional or innovative pick in the mid lane. With thirteen different picks already played in only twelve series, HuHi continues to display the wealth of options he provides CLG in champion select.
If his strong play can continue until the end of the split, HuHi may provide the key to Counter Logic Gaming’s resurgence and path the way for a run towards an NA LCS crown.