Yiliang “Doublelift” Peng’s return to TSM ended at a 1-1 score for his new “old” team at the end of the first week of 2020 LCS Summer. The storied AD Carry, who transferred from Team Liquid to TSM amidst much drama around the conflict of interest between him and his girlfriend, TSM president Leena Xu, was the center of attention this weekend, especially as he faced his former team.
The two rivals have been trading banter all week long leading up to their very anticipated face-off, literally and figuratively raising the question who would win the break-up. The pressure was on Doublelift most of all, as he not only faced his former team, but also his former lane partner Jo “CoreJJ” Yong-in and his bot lane replacement Edward “Tactical” Ra, who also stepped in for a benched Doublelift during the Spring Split. Team Liquid, on the other hand, needed a victory in this high-profile match badly, having finished 9th place in Spring after a four-in-a-row championship run — the worst nose-dive in LCS history.
For better or worse, the first encounter between the exes was short and one-sided. It took Team Liquid exactly 25 minutes to set TSM off to a disappointing start to the LCS.
Tactical put on an MVP performance on Aphelios for Liquid with 7/0/6 KDA, putting Doublelift’s 1/3/1 Kalista to shame, but the real performance discrepancy happened in the jungle. Mingyi “Spica” Lu’s Kayn remained form-less for 23 minutes, as TSM’s jungler failed to execute any sort of impact on the Rift. Meanwhile, Mads “Broxah” Pedersen’s Trundle brought 11 of the 13 kills of Team Liquid to secure the domination victory.
TSM did manage to get on the board this weekend, as they faced a visible weakened Dignitas on Sunday. Lacking Heo “Huni” Seung-hoon in the top lane, Dignitas had lost their largest star-power investment and the whole team felt even more unconvincing that it did in Spring. Losing to Golden Guardians on Saturday was already a bad start to the split, but their TSM game felt even worse. A recovered Spica roamed on Trundle so well that he was practically everywhere, securing kills or Summoner Spell advantages in all three lanes, while Matthew “Akaadian” Higginbotham’s Nidalee struggled to even catch up to Trundle’s farm, despite sacrificing ganks for jungle clears.
Both Team Liquid and TSM have some big matches to play this coming weekend. TL face Evil Geniuses with both teams at 2-0 and the Geniuses looking scary and dominant, while TSM go against FlyQuest on Saturday.