The DetonatioN teams, FocusMe and RabbitFive, have managed to prove to their sponsor that they are truly the top teams in Japan right now. They win laning phase more often, coordinate cleaner, draft with more insight, and simply play better than anyone else. With the Grand Finals looming closer, so does the chance for the region to finally test its skills against the rest of the world at the International Wildcard Invitational.
RabbitFive and FocusMe, as a matchup, is an interesting case to look at. Since both teams already play at a crisp level, it's much easier to notice the distinctions between the two when compared side by side. More than just their star players (FocusMe’s Yuta "Yutapon" and RabbitFive’s Shotaro "Zerost" Ikeda), these AD Carry-centric teams have more to offer under the surface.
FocusMe are the kings of KDA. Kings. Plural. Every single one of them has the best KDA in each position. Bonzin and Yutapon even have two-digit KDAs each. If that's not impressive enough, Bonzin in particular is the only regular player who has less than ten deaths throughout the whole season. This is a top laner we're talking about, the one tasked to charging in to initiate and take the hits.
The highlight is of course, Yutapon, the undisputed AD Carry king of Japan and master duelist. Just looking at his stats won’t do him justice. Watching one of the recent games show why he has great potential to challenge the international elite. His confidence in his ability has evolved to such a point that one of FM's main strategies is to let his support Kazu roam away and pressure other lanes, forcing a one-on-one situation to Yutapon, who packs Exhaust over Heal as his special trick in winning that kind of matchup.
RabbitFive, on the other hand, carries a different trait. Four out of five members have assist scores that are past or near a hundred. Only Zerost, their AD Carry, missed the mark, although with 86 he’s pretty close. RF emphasizes on moving out as a team and relying on superior coordination to win games. The keys to this are Support 7kane and Jungler Awaker, who own the highest assist scores in the league.
Yutapon speaks highly of Zerost, considering him his rival in an article that dates back to their First Person Shooter (FPS) days. However, where Yutapon relishes in mortal kombat, Zerost believes in the power of friendship. As noticeable from his early season games in the season, going from exclusively using Tristana to making the transition of utilizing kiting and poking champions such as Ezreal, he performs well as a team player. Zerost is willing to share the spotlight with everybody as long as victory can be assured.
Solely based on the numbers from the regular season, FocusMe is the clear winner. RabbitFive hasn't won a game against FM, whose only two losses come from 7th heaven and Rascal Jester. Still, one can't count RF out. BonziN and Moyashi will just go through their motions as top laners, though the latter usually takes on a more active role as the former tend to powerfarm. The mid and jungler clash between RF's Estel/Awaker and FM's Ceros/Astarore would be very interesting to watch. Both junglers put a lot of emphasis in enabling the mid lane to get fed. Zooming in, Estel puts a bit more focus on roams and Ceros on pushes, but they both bring out huge impact when it's needed.
Of course, the highlight would be the duel of fates in the bot lane. As said before, FM tends to send their support elsewhere at some point to let Yutapon solo, so it's up to Zerost and 7kane to give enough reason to keep the bot lane a 2v2 affair. Whoever wins there could dictate the pace of the rest of the match.
If RabbitFive wins this, they can finally say that they have jumped over the last hurdle. If FocusMe takes it, it would just cement their spot further as The Japanese team, alongside Yutapon’s growing legacy.
Whatever the result may be, it will be an interesting and exciting Sunday for the League of Legends Japan League.
(Credits to LJL for images)