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Tryndamere in the midlane? If you were watching this game without name tags, you would think that it was a random Challengers solo queue game. Instead, it was LCS’s match of the week between top teams, Evil Geniuses and Cloud9, as this match would paint a better picture of where the top teams stood.

For Evil Geniuses, a win would have meant them moving into a tie with Cloud9 for second place in the LCS 2023 Spring Split standings. Meanwhile, a win for Cloud9 would put them in a tie with FlyQuest for first place in the LCS 2023 Spring Split. With a lot at stake, Cloud9 pulled out their secret Tryndamere pick as LCS viewers were witness to a fun game.

Immediately, the tempo shifted in favor of Cloud9 as midlaner Jang “EMENES” Min-soo’s Tryndamere was unstoppable on the map. He soared to an early gold lead following a solo kill onto Evil Geniuses midlaner Joseph “Jojopyun” Pyun as Evil Geniuses quickly found themselves trying to keep up. While they were able to make a couple of impressive base defenses, EMENES’ Tryndamere was way too much for them to handle as Cloud9 bolstered their record to 11-3.

C9 EMENES playing with confidence

Following their victory over Evil Geniuses, the first question that everybody was wondering was how exactly the Tryndamere pick made its way to the LCS stage, to which he revealed a shockingly high win rate on the champion.

“To be honest, like last year when I was in Korea when I tried to rank up in Korea, my Tryndamere was at 80 percent in 20 games. So I had confidence in Tryndamere. In scrim, I just asked, ‘can I play this?’ then they said yeah, sure.”

Since his initial loss to Golden Guardians back in week five of the LCS 2023 Spring Split, EMENES has been undefeated on the LCS stage, playing unique champion picks. From specialty picks like LeBlanc and Yone to unthinkable picks like Tryndamere, EMENES has been able to play to the level that LCS viewers knew he was capable of playing at. When asked about these unique champion picks, he gave credit to teammate Robert “Blaber” Huang and head coach Alfonso "Mithy" Aguirre Rodriguez for instilling confidence in him.

“At first, Blaber and Mithy made me confident,” EMENES said. “Even when I got behind in scrims, they just kept saying we believe in you, you have a really good talent, so keep playing what you want so I can trust myself in scrims. This made me have good performances.”

When asked about his goals moving forward into 2023 with Cloud9, EMENES stated that his goal was to “make worlds” in Korea.

“I really want to make Worlds because this year will be in Korea, so this year is literally important to me,” EMENES said. “I want to make the semifinals or the grand finals. I want to make this time useful.”

Cloud9 has put themselves in a strong position to be one of the LCS representatives on the international stage in 2023 and is now tied with FlyQuest at the top of the LCS 2023 Spring Standings.

They will look to acquire their 12th win of the LCS 2023 Spring Split as they take on Team Liquid, who will be entering that series following their major upset over FlyQuest in week 7.

With just four games left in the LCS 2023 Spring Split, the race for playoffs continues to grow in intensity.