The 2017 Mid-Season Invitational is, by design, stacked with the best League of Legends talent from across the globe. Put to a public poll ahead of the tournament, a list of ‘players to watch’ would undoubtedly feature the majority of the SK Telecom T1 roster, a handful of Flash Wolves stars and perhaps Team WE’s emerging prodigies; few would’ve shone the spotlight on G2 eSports AD Carry Jesper “Zven” Svenningsen. Following the conclusion of the MSI 2017 Group Stage however, Zven has established himself as the stand-out name in his role and one of the event’s most impactful players.
SK Telecom T1 and Flash Wolves junglers Han “Peanut” Wang-ho and Hung “Karsa” Hau-Hsuan may be flying across Summoners Rift killing opponents at will, Team WE’s Su “Xiye” Han-Wei may be repeatedly solo-killing the game’s best player in the mid lane, but none of these names can hold a candle to G2 Zven’s level of influence at the 2017 Mid-Season Invitational.
Instrumental in a number of critical G2 eSports victories, the Danish AD Carry has transitioned his dominant form from the EU LCS onto the international stage with aplomb. So often the figurehead around which the European champions have drafted their team compositions, Zven has returned the faith placed in his ability to carry with interest.
Statistically, Zven boasts the highest damage per minute (DPM) of any player at MSI 2017, perfectly maintaining the fragile equilibrium of safe positioning, whilst remaining in range to dish out the pain to any enemies in sight. G2 have invested heavily in Zven throughout the tournament, reflected by the ADC also possessing the highest creep score per minute (CSPM) of any MSI participant, earning on average 26.1% of G2 eSports’ total gold per game.
In an international tournament that features the South Korean talents of Bae “Bang” Jun-sik and Jin “Mystic” Sung-jun, it is remarkable to see a western AD carry heading the game’s most impactful statistics. In a detachment from the typical narrative: Zven is not playing catch up, he’s leading from the front.
Whilst the redeemed figure of Luka “PerkZ” Perković has enjoyed moments of glory at MSI 2017, without Zven’s remarkable performances, G2 eSports would not be preparing for the semi-finals, with a top-tier World Championship seed for the European region already in the bag.
Zven’s mastery of Caitlyn in particular, has been the definition of a ‘hard carry’. Untouchable as part of the backline yet capable of dealing obscene amounts of damage, the champion will likely be a target ban for Team WE ahead of the highly-anticipated MSI 2017 Semi-Final. Alongside his trusted support Alfonso “Mithy” Aguirre Rodriguez, G2 will be hoping Zven can establish his dominance over Mystic and Yoon “Zero” Kyung-sup.
Though G2 eSports are so far yet to defeat Team WE, in their first ever international best of five, the EU LCS champions will be looking to the tournament’s star AD carry to lead them to glory once more.