As the 2022 Worlds are about to begin, La Liga Latinoamérica’s Isurus are one of 24 teams around the world heading into the biggest event of the year. Every team entering the League of Legends World Championship has the same goal; to stand at the top, unchallenged, and hoist the Season 12 Summoner’s Cup high.
After a three-year absence from the international scene, Isurus are back at Worlds with a completely different roster to their 2019 campaign – minus their legendary mid-laner – and having been on the positive side of a heartbreaking thriller from The Game. 5 in the LLA final.
Isurus (LLA) 2022 Worlds Start List Breakdown
- Top: Kang “ADD” Geon-mo | Signed in December 2021, former member of Team Aze.
- Jungle: Jesus Alberto “Grell” Loya Trujillo | Signed in May 2022, former member of Estral Esports.
- Middle: Edgar Ali “Seiya” Bracamontes Munguía | Signed in November 2018, former member of Rainbow7.
- Robot: Omar André “Gavoto” Gavotto | Signed in December 2021, former member of Team Aze.
- Support: Son “Jelly” Ho-gyeong | Signed in April 2021, former member of Afreeca Freecs.
how they got here
After a fourth-place finish in the 2021 LLA Summer Playoffs, Isurus viewed the offseason as an opportunity to revamp and rebuild their roster around their two star players; mid-laner Seiya, who has been the heart and soul of the team for years, and their brilliant new Korean support player Jelly, who arrived in 2021 after spending time with Afreeca Freecs in the Champions League from Korea. The team added another Korean import with ADD who spent time in the Pro League as a substitute with Bilibili Gaming and Suning and filled out the rest of their initial 2022 roster with bot laner Gavotto who spent the majority of 2021 in the second division LLA alongside ADD. And finally, they took a flyer about veteran Lucas Antonio “Froststrike” Espíndola Valverde.
The 2022 LLA opening season was a tough one for the revamped Isurus squad. With six of the eight teams in the playoffs, getting to postseason play wasn’t terribly difficult, especially with the last two teams being exceptionally bad. However, Isurus was the sixth and final team to qualify for the playoffs with just a 5-9 record that has won four of its five wins over the last two teams. However, the team had a small spark in them as they picked up two best of five wins from the bottom bracket, including a 3-0 sweep against third-seeded Infinity Esports. Their run came to an end in the third round as they lost a heartbreaking five game streak to the number one seeded Rainbow7. With the season ending on good terms and the team significantly outperforming their seed, they entered the closing season with expectations. Isurus however brought in a new jungler with Grell, who in the 2021 LLA closing season was one of the top performing junglers in the league according to the game’s player awards.
IT DOESN’T GET CLOSER THAN THIS:
— LoL Esports (@lolesports) August 28, 2022
With the team seemingly on the same page, the 2022 LLA closing season was a whopping 180. The team went 9-5 with wins over every team in the league en route to a second seed in the LLA’s closing season playoffs. In the first round of the top bracket, Isurus exacted revenge on R7 as they were on the winning side of a five-game thriller to push themselves through to the top bracket final. However, they were defeated by top-seeded Estral Esports and sent to the bottom bracket finals. After making quick work of Team Aze, Isurus set up a rematch against Estral Esports for the title and a trip to Worlds 2022. In that final, the two teams traded blow for blow and game for game to put set up a money scraping situation between these clearly. equal teams. The region’s top two teams put on a show in Game 5 as the game itself broke the 40-minute mark and even went gold. Estral Esports beat Isurus and attempted a winning push. With only Seiya and Jelly alive, Isurus did his best to prevent Estral Esports from getting the final blows on the link and with a brilliant defense, Isurus did just that. From what was a winning push from Estral Esports, Isurus lost the game as they simply walked the mid lane, ended the streak and pushed themselves to Worlds 2022 as a representative of the ALL.
Players to watch
In terms of stats, Isurus doesn’t have any players that stand out, especially among their LLA peers, but all of them are in the top three in every role. But the player people should watch out for is their mid-laner Seiya.
Seiya has been playing League of Legends for a very long time, and in his nearly 10-year professional career, he has also made a few international appearances. 2017 Worlds, 2010 Worlds, 2018 Mid-Season Invitational, and 2019 MSI. Even at the age of 26, Seiya is still playing at an elite level as evidenced by his performance in the 2022 LLA Closing Qualifiers. Seiya has Led all players in the game’s player rewards and was the base defense MVP for Worlds of Isurus. The regular season stats don’t do Seiya justice, but the playoff stats do. According to Oracleselixer.com, Seiya led all KDA players throughout the playoffs and in the Finals he put up an unreal 24/8/59 stat over four different champions in the five-game series.
How Isurus can succeed at Worlds 2022
Just getting to Worlds 2022 is good enough for Isurus, but with three of Mexico’s five-man squad and the play-in stage taking place in Mexico City, this team has a real home-court advantage. For the team to succeed, they must make their country proud, which they can do by causing a surprise or two. Unfortunately for them, they shot the tougher of the two groups, but in a best-of-ones round robin, it’s not impossible for Isurus to land some hay against the tougher competition. A knockout stage birth is the likely ceiling and they can reach it if Seiya and the team play their best. If not, at least it’s not a long trip home.