Another year hasn’t slowed down Kim “Deft” Hyuk-kyu.
On April 18, the opening match of the 2023 LCK Spring saw a new-look DePlus Kia. ‘Deft‘, who joined the team this year, played as Lucian-Sibir and contributed to the team’s victory with his non-stop deals. In addition to his laning kill in Game 2, he was able to boldly open up engagements in the Game 2 dragon battle, leading to a one-hit victory. The reigning LoL World Championship champion showed no signs of slowing down.
Q. You opened the 2023 LCK with a win. How did it feel to win?
It’s great to win the first game of the opening day. It’s even better that we played as well as we wanted to.
Q. A lot of good things have been said about your new team, DePlus Kia. How does it feel to join them?
I’ve been on a lot of teams, and it usually takes a while at the beginning to get our LoL concepts in sync, but this time, my concepts and the team’s concepts were pretty much the same, so we were able to prepare quickly.
Q. I heard that Kim “Canyon” Gun-boo sent you a love letter. How did you get to know him and how does it feel to be on the same team?
We had a training camp for the Asian Games before. We practiced with the same team and exchanged contacts, and that’s how we became a team. From a distance, I thought he was a quiet player who would just play the game. When I joined the team, I realized that he plays a lot of games, but he’s surprisingly talkative and friendly. We’re having fun and getting along.
Q. How do you feel about looking strong in scrim and being picked as a strong favorite?
Actually, at the LCK Media Day, it wasn’t a meaningful win, it wasn’t a solid win. It often ended in the laning phase. But recently, I feel like our team has solidified. I think we can be a strong enough team.
Q. You played against Kim “Beryl” Jung-hee, who you played with last year. How did it feel?
I think it’s too early to judge Gun-hee’s overall performance from one match. We did show a more complete game this time around.
Q. In the second set, Lulu of “Beryl” went for the kill first, but you managed to get it back. Did you have any insight into her psychology or habits?
We were outmatched in the second game, but we weren’t in a position to lose that easily. In the first set, we played a game that suffocated her, and I think that carried over into the second set. I think we came in with a lot of pressure because we felt like we were going to lose if we took it easy.
Q. Kim “Rascal” Kwang-hee’s jax in the second set was just all out and only caught Sibir.
I don’t think it was an emotional play (laughs). I think Kwanghee did a good job. I thought Shibir’s Boomerang Sword (Q) had one second left on its cooldown, and I thought it was going to come back, but in the meantime, Kwanghee dug in, and that’s where I made a mistake.
Q. You didn’t utilize Lucian-Nami much last year. Today you chose to take it right out in the first set.
Lucian himself is a champion I’ve played against a lot in my professional career. As a team, if I think I’m losing by sticking with Lucian, I’m willing to give it up. Right now, it’s right for us to play Lucian-Nami. The team needed it. I didn’t take him out because of his skill level.
Q. This was a matchup where both teams switched their long-range dealers. In a way, it was like a trade.
You go into every matchup with the mindset of winning, but this is one of those matchups where if you lose, you’re going to have more bad stories to tell. In hindsight, I think I wanted to win more.
Q. How do you feel about 2023? Do you feel confident that you can do as well this year as you did last year?
It’s a chance to see if what I’ve been saying for the team is really helping the team get stronger. It’s been a long time since I’ve been with such a proven team. It’s going to be a fun year to test my words against good teammates.
Q. Lee “Faker” Sang-hyuk said that passion is the driving force behind his long career, what do you think is the driving force behind Deft?
I think it’s basically the same. Gaming is my number one priority in life, just like it was when I debuted. If you keep that in mind, you’ll be able to continue your professional gaming career.
Q. When you were setting up your gear in the arena, you seemed to have a lot of space. After winning the LoL World Championship, you seemed more relaxed. Has anything changed?
Originally, my goal was to live like a machine. Recently, I realized that I don’t have to live like that. I wasn’t such a quiet kid when I was younger. I don’t know when I turned into a machine, but now I feel like I’m back to my old self.
Q. Where did you find the space in your life as a professional gamer?
I realized that I didn’t have a long time left to play professionally, so I decided to enjoy the time I had left. It was a strange feeling to accomplish something I’d been aiming for for so long. There are many reasons.
Q. Finally, what would you like to say to your new fans?
When I said I was joining the team, some fans were worried. 토토사이트 I will do my best to perform well in the remaining matches to meet the expectations of the fans.