The Rise Again of Faker — How The Esports Icon has Reinvented Himself
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Adam Neylan Writer
Tomas Roldan Video Editor
Ivan Cortez Graphic Designer
Samantha Jones Script Editor
Colin McNeil Supervising Producer

Arguably the greatest esports competitor that the world has ever seen, Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok helped build and define esports as we know it today. But even gods aren’t immune to the march of time.

After making history with his third League of Legends World Championship victory in 2016, the Unkillable Demon King has been slowly declining, failing to produce results on both international and domestic stages.

But in 2021, Faker transitioned from being the star player to a mentor of a team of rookie talent; a team he managed to lead straight to Worlds.

This is the Rise Again of Faker.

The Rise

Faker first came to prominence in 2013, creating a buzz before even going pro in League of Legends. In his first professional match, Faker staked his claim in the Korean scene, making Kang “Ambition” Chan-yong, one of the best mid laners in Korea at the time, look like an amateur.

In his rookie season, Faker and his team, then known as SK Telecom T1 K, demolished the competition. They took first place in Champions Summer 2013, the regional championships, and won the Season 3 World Championship, all without breaking a sweat.

This unprecedented success made Faker and the rest of T1 K instant stars. But, in the following 2014 season, the overall competition in Korea had leveled up significantly. In the end, Faker would be kept from Worlds by NaJin White Shield and the eventual champions Samsung White. But in 2015, any doubt about the team was quickly put to rest. Faker, along with Bae “Bang” Jun-sik, Lee “Wolf” Jae-wan, Bae “bengi” Seong-woong, and Jang “MaRin” Gyeong-hwan, formed the all star roster of the newly unified SK Telecom T1 and crushed both spring and summer splits of the League of Legends Champions Korea.

Experience The Rise Again of Faker by watching the video above or heading to Upcomer’s YouTube channel.

Watch more Rise and Fall:

The Rise Again of ScreaM — How VALORANT Saved CS:GO’s Fallen Legend

The Rise, Fall and Rise Again of dapr — The BM King of VALORANT

The Rise of Team Spirit — Dota’s $18 million Cinderella story

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