Goodbye GorillA: Legendary Korean Support Retires From LoL

Former ROX Tigers and Misfits Gaming Support Kang “GorillA” Beom-hyun has retired from professional League of Legends after seven years as a professional.

In his statement on Twitter, GorillA gave his goodbyes to his fans as he looked back on an illustrious pro career that saw him play in his native South Korea where he won six domestic titles as a member of Najin White Shield, HUYA Tigers (later GE, KOO and ROX Tigers) and most recently with Kingzone DragonX in 2018.

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Remembering GorillA

GorillA has been a household name within the LCK for more than half a decade now. Since his early days as an up-and-coming talent in Najin’s sister organization, his impressive performances garnered respect and adoration from support mains across the world.

GorillA would soon achieve mainstream success as a member of ROX Tigers as he made his first successful Worlds appearance on a star-studded roster featuring Smeb, PraY, and Peanut. His innovation on the Worlds stage was second to none, as he pulled out support Miss Fortune for the first time ever, playing her against a fiery SKT T1. His ability with the English language became apparent during his Worlds interviews of 2016, and soon his domestic popularity would blossom into international recognition for a new era in his career.

While his spell in Europe didn’t conjure similar levels of success, GorillA’s stamp on the international LoL scene had already been etched into the history books. His elite playmaking and kiting ability on champions like Alistar and Tahm Kench made him one of the most elite defensive support players of his era. His fruitful partnerships with Hans Sama, Ggoong, and most notably PraY will forever be known as one of the most fearsome bot duos in the history of the sport.

Gorilla and Pray

Image Credits | Riot Games

On an individual level, GorillA seemed to have reached his peak in 2015-16 where he received praise as the most powerful support coming into Worlds that year. His persistence and vigor within Korea would continue upon his return to LCK in 2020. On June 16 of this year during LCK Summer, GorillA became the first player in LCK history to reach 4,000 assists. Another testament to the longevity and ability of one of the greatest supports to ever touch the mouse and keyboard.

In his final statement to fans, GorillA used his address as a “final moment as a professional gamer, and [my] first moment as a man” which could not be more fitting for a generation of players slowly seeing their way out the door after great levels of success.

GorillA will always be lauded for his professionalism and humbleness whether in victory or defeat and is a true example of what every pro player should aspire to be on and off the rift.

GorillA joins Bjergsen, Doublelift, Crown, UZI, and Beyond on the list of pro players who have officially announced retirement this year.

Nick Vera

About

Nick's passion for League of Legends started as he got his shot as a shoutcaster at amateur tournaments. Nowadays, he covers a variety of esports titles while pursuing a B.A. in English at Rollins College.

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