SK Telecom T1 is the undisputed best team in League of Legends history. No other organization has more prestige and major tournament wins. It’s very possible that may never change. But are SKT truly unbeatable? The simple answer is no they are not. Although they don’t lose often, there have been teams that have taken them down. Without further ado, here are 5 teams that have defeated SKT in a Best of Series.
MVP Ozone – OLYMPUS Champions Spring 2013
Ah the good old days of the Korean circuit system. Back then it wasn’t about winning the split to earn your points. Korean teams were able to gain circuit points at all sorts of events with OLYMPUS Champions being one of them. In the previous season of League although SKT was a great team, there were a lot of other good teams in Korea. Thus SKT was unable to win every single event like they do now. The first team in this list is none other than MVP Ozone, the former version of Samsung White. However at that event the roster of MVP looked a bit different. Dade was still the mid laner for Ozone while the top laner was none other than Homme. The former Korean Top Laner has moved to China since 2014 and has coached Vici Gaming in the past. Currently coaching Team WE, Homme’s legacy within the scene may not be as big as someone like Faker but everyone big fan of League should at least know who he was. In Champions Spring 2013, although SKT was able to make it far into the tournament they were ultimately taken down by MVP in a 1-3 defeat. You don’t really see SKT losing that much but it’s only fitting that they would lose to a team that would win Worlds within one year.
Samsung Galaxy Blue – 2013 WCG Korea Qualifiers
Not a very noteworthy defeat but also a defeat that goes largely unnoticed. SKT falling to Samsung Blue at that time was surprising because they had just won the Season 3 World Championship less than two weeks before the event. And even prior to Worlds they won the HOT6iX Champions Summer 2013 season as well as finishing 1st in the Korean Regionals. You would expect SKT to continue their dominance but their winning was stopped at the hands of the Samsung Blue roster with PawN instead of Dade in the mid lane. Certainly not a major loss for SKT in the eyes of many but for an organization like SKT that strives for perfection, any loss is going to hurt.
NaJin White Shield – 2014 Korea Regional Finals
This is possibly the toughest loss ever dealt to SKT simply because of the implications behind it. Near the end of the 2014 Season, SKT was stumbling hard. It was clear former support PoohManDu was having issues performing at a high level and even Impact had a rough time against the likes of Save, Looper and Acorn. Wasn’t a good time for SKT and it lead to their eventual defeat at the hands of NaJin White Shield which also meant they would not be able to attend the 2014 World Championship. Ouch! That one must have stung quite a bit for an organization with so much pride.
ESC Ever – 2015 LoL KeSPA Cup
Another very surprising loss, and not just because it was right after SKT won Worlds, but also because it was to a Korean Challenger team. ESC Ever went on to win the event and would later attend IEM Katowice in 2016. Certainly a big effort by the young squad, it definitely begs the question of whether SKT underperformed or Ever just overperformed. In a world where SKT doesn’t underperform, it’s hard to imagine a challenger team beating them no matter how much that team performs above their expectations. On the other hand an underperforming SKT still shouldn’t be losing to a challenger team. Looking at it from a more logical standpoint, it was probably both Ever doing much better than expected and SKT doing much worse than expected. A tough pill to swallow for SKT but it didn’t hurt them in the long run as they still won the 2016 World Championship.
EDward Gaming – 2015 Mid-Season Invitational
Perhaps the most memorable defeat that SKT suffered. While MSI is not exactly the most prestigious event, it’s still a pretty big deal as it is one of the three major international tournaments throughout the season. SKT losing to EDG in the finals marked the first time a Korean team had fallen to a non-Korean team in a Best of Five series. Not only did EDG earn the win but they also made the famous decision to leave Faker’s LeBlanc open. Prior to the series he had never lost on the champion but EDG was able to hand him his first loss on her. Although EDG’s victory never really lead to anything as SKT was still able to win the LCK and Worlds after that, it did show the entire world that the Korean teams are beatable with enough desire and preparation.