The LA Shockwaves have had high expectations for themselves heading into every season of League of Legends City Champs. With LCS happening so close to home, LA players want a taste of that glory more than most. While one might assume that this drive for success would have pushed LA to victory at least once in the past three seasons, our team has failed to make that dream a reality. The potential for greatness is there, but with three losses under our belts the possibility of winning the championship sometimes feels out of reach. 

Leading up to City Champs Season 3, I was confident that my team and I would be able to win the tournament for LA. The fact that I had played semi-pro and coached at high levels in the past led me to believe that I could help lead the LA team to victory. 

However, as we’ve seen, things for the LA Shockwaves never go as planned. While I did make Team A for the LA Shockwaves, our team didn’t perform well together when it came to crunch time. Communication—the most important part of team synergy—was our team’s greatest weakness, and this was our fatal flaw. Playing as a team outside of set practice times would have worked wonders for us—but, as they say, hindsight is always 20/20. 

Despite our lack of communication and team synergy, we knew it was important to support players in the other LA teams if we wanted to advance in the tournament. If Team A won but the rest of the LA teams lost, it all would have been for nothing. Early in the competition, we set up a room on Discord for players to ask Team A questions; however, very few players took advantage of the opportunity—I can only assume due to overconfidence, or fear of appearing inexperienced. While the Discord was a great idea in theory, it probably didn’t accomplish much in practice.  

Still, lending support to all our city’s players was one of our biggest goals—and it should be heading into Season 4. With even fewer teams than last year, every point we can get for our city is going to be that much more important. The Shockwaves have the skills to succeed if they’d only commit to the prep work, I one hundred percent believe it. Our pride is the only thing in the way of our success. Look at the Chicago Force. They grind hard year after year, working tirelessly for every single victory, and they’ve come out on top three seasons in a row. 

We can’t let them win again. 

LA has been beaten down every season, and our own hubris and lack of teamwork is to blame. It’s time to buckle down and realize we’re playing for something bigger than any one player’s personal victory. Every team should go into their match with a game plan, prepared for picks and bans and ready for the fight of their lives. 

I’ll say it again: things for the LA Shockwaves never go as planned. No one thinks we’ll win this season of City Champs. Why would they? LA losses have become the norm.  

But if we play hard, work together, and help our fellow players, LA is going to make the biggest underdog comeback in Super League history. Season 4 is ours.


-Edward “Wappa” Hamada

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