They may not do as much damage as their carry counterparts, but supports are decidedly the ones that set up the plays that turn games around. It’s time to delve into the 2014 World Championship supports and spotlight some of the best playmakers in the game doing what they do best - kickin’ butt and droppin’ wards.
THE GOD - MATA - SAMSUNG GALAXY WHITE
Though Imp is impeccable in his team fight mechanics and unbridled aggression, Mata is the man with the plan throughout the laning phase. Setting up huge plays left and right while Imp just has to focus on farming and following up.
Did you see it? Imp was clearly an inch from death with Kha’zix right on his heels. However, Mata saved him with an impeccably positioned Janna ult that threw the entire enemy team out of position. Once safe, Imp was set up for the clean pentakill. The five slayings may go to Imp, but it was Mata who saved the day and made it happen.
Imp is well known for his aggressive nature, and it’s Mata’s job channel that aggression into huge plays. Not only was the counterplay perfect versus AHQ, but the positioning and use of Thresh’s lantern ensured that Imp got away with a clean double kill -- while looking super cool in the process.
Mata isn’t just there to babysit Imp, he has to be there to make sure all his children on Samsung White are taken care of equally! Dandy may have gotten got himself into some trouble jumping in on Dark Passage, but Mata was ready to pick him up off the ground. One shield and a dab of healing was enough to ensure he survived the initial barrage. The icing on the cake was the exhaust used by Mata to keep Lee Sin out of range. The peel is real.
ZERO TO HERO - ZERO - STAR HORN ROYAL CLUB
No one would bat an eye if Zero changed his name to something less self-depricating. He may not be quite as flashy as Mata, but he’s no less amazing at what he does.
With one Monsoon Janna can thwart an entire engage and make the enemy easy pickings. Here, just his position at the back end of the baron pit was enough of a mindgame to make TSM rethink diving headfirst into the fray. Instead of jumping in to try to steal and having a two pronged assault, they had to go the long way around and let Royal Club engage them head on. You can see how well that worked out for TSM.
Word to the wise, never touch Zero’s ward unless you’re willing to have an angry Nami up in your face. He wasn’t even level six yet when Fzzf and Clearlove started attacking his wards on dragon. Zero gets his revenge by landing a bubble on Orianna, hitting six, dropping a perfect Tidal Wave, and even nabbiung himself a kill. Scoring an ace at 12 minutes? No big deal, just one of the best support plays in the Quarterfinals.
THE HERO OF CHINA - CLOUD - OMG
OMG is a completely different team with Cloud. The unstoppable OMG we saw back at the beginning of LPL seems to be coming back -- and all it took was a simple support swap. Though not the most mechanically sound player, Cloud plays support in a completely unique way that may just shock the rest of the world.
Cloud’s style is highlighted throughout his entire series against Najin White Shield. He’s not attached to San at all, and will frequently roam across the map and leave his ADC to his own devices in the middle of a fight. Though incredibly risky, it allows for him to position Janna in more favorable positions instead of babysitting constantly.
Cloud has been known to build relatively tanky as the game progresses, allowing him to use normally squishy champions like Janna as bait in order to force the enemy into a greedy engage while the rest of OMG collapses. We’ll definitely see a lot more out Cloud in the upcoming matches, as he’s already had a huge impact on turning OMG around!