Kingzone DragonX put their losing streak from the first week of the LCK behind them, and claimed the team’s first 2019 Spring Split victory. On January 23rd, Kingzone defeated KT Rolster with a 2-0 match score, led by AD carry Deft’s performance on Ashe and Jinx.
After Kingzone’s victory, Ashley Kang interviewed Deft about his emotional turmoil as he defeated his previous team, his resolutions for the Spring Split and his desire to show a performance that is “worthy of [the fans] supporting us”.
Congratulations on your victory today, Deft, and making a comeback to the LCK. You started the Spring Split with two losses. What were your resolutions as you prepared for the match today?
I heard that we will be last place in the [LCK] if we were to lose this match, too. So I prepared for today driven with desperation. For our first match and second match [in week one], our stage performance was not as good as our practice results. So I went in with a mindset that I should reflect my performance during practices on stage. That’s what the coaching staff told me too…I did make some mistakes today, but there were improvements from previous matches. So I’m hopeful.
You also played against KT Rolster today. Your former teammates were playing against you, just a few feet away from you. I’d like to ask how that felt for you.
I visualized this. I visualized Smeb-hyung walking over to me if we were to lose, and me shaking hands with him. That made me really want to win. Then we actually won the match, and as I walked over to Smeb to shake his hand…it was…it didn’t feel exactly good.
You felt bittersweet, perhaps?
I did walk over with a smile. The hyungs [Smeb and Score], would have been feeling terrible themselves but met me with a smile as I went to shake their hands. To see that made me feel strange.
I have to talk about your Jinx pick in Game 2. Jinx has been your signature pocket pick for some time. However, she’s a risky pick due to her lack of escape methods. What was your decision making behind locking in Jinx?
It’s difficult for me to say what kind of games I decide to pick Jinx. During the pick and ban phase, as it was my turn to pick a champion, I thought that I could dominate the lane on Jinx. I also thought that if I were to pick Jinx and win the game, that will help with the team atmosphere and how other teams see us. So I pushed for Jinx in the in-game comm with confidence.
You are now playing with a new support, TusiN. How do you find the bot lane with TusiN, compared to your previous bot lane with Mata?
This might also be due to the difference in the team playstyle of KT Rolster and Kingzone…When I used to play with Mata-hyung, we would go safe and slowly poke the enemy down. Now, we are constantly looking for an opening, trying to make a play. I think I’ve turned more aggressive since starting to play with TusiN.
You speak of a “team playstyle”. Kingzone DragonX is formed of many different pieces from a variety of LCK teams. Now that you’ve come together as one team, what do you believe your “team playstyle” is?
It’s too early to tell you what the “team playstyle” we have is. We do try to go for winning lanes.
We do think we are suited for the current meta. However, in the last matches, we would fall behind in the lanes. If we can improve that issue, I think we can start showing good performance.
Kingzone did not have a clean start to the Spring Split. Looking onwards from now, what is your honest prediction on where Kingzone DragonX will be placed at the end of the split?
I think as long as we go to the Playoffs, even as the fifth-place team…If our performance is good by the time we get to the Playoffs, we will be capable of winning the LCK by then. Our goal is to get to the Playoffs and to get our performance up to a level where we can win the LCK.
In order to make that Playoffs climb, you’ll likely have to beat SK Telecom T1 and Griffin who are currently thought to be the two top teams in the LCK. Do you think you will be able to achieve this?
In our current state, we lack a lot, that is true. However, there are many more matches to come and we have room to learn and grow. We’ll have to keep playing matches and absorb the strengths of other teams.
Thank you. Do you have any final words for your fans?
We’ve shown some embarrassing performances in the last few matches. From now, we will try to show a performance that is worthy of you supporting us. We will work hard. Also, take care not to catch a cold.