By Isaac Chandler
November 30, 2019
Dignitas has been quiet since the team announced the $2.3 million, two-year extension deal for Huni. It seems players began demanding significantly higher salaries to match what he got.
We discussed a short time after whether or not Huni was really worth the price Dignitas had paid for him, a piece that at the time led us to the conclusion, although a big risk, it could pay off with the right team.
The team has been struggling to pick-up more players due to blowing nearly a third of their yearly budget for the next two years on Huni’s salary, a decision that could see the team end up with a less than ideal roster.
So, once again, the question arises. Is Huni worth what Dignitas paid?
After digging deeper into the data and pouring over stats, we’ve concluded: Huni is worth the value he’s getting paid to stay on Dig.
Let’s start with the Spring Split this year. Huni’s team struggled hard in the Spring, going only 5-13 on the split due to a combination of factors, though none really at the fault of Huni himself.
Still, looking at his stats shows how well he performed as an individual despite the cards laid to him. Even as an individual Huni performed alright. Setting aside players who played a handful of games all split, Huni averaged 2.11 kills per game. He ranked fifth overall among the league’s top laners, while his deaths were the highest at 2.94 per game.
He did better in assists at 4.44 a game, fourth highest in top-lane. His overall KDA was the second-lowest behind Dhokla. He averaged the highest kill participation in his role at 64.8% of all his teams kills.
His CS per game is middle of the pack at 291.5 per game, while his CSPM (CS per minute) is the third-lowest of all tops. Overall, it was an average if not below-average split, but the LCS is a two-split system, so let’s look at how the Summer went for Huni.
Again not counting for players who only played a handful of games (at least six or a third of the split), Huni ranked third in kills this split for top laners at 2.72 per game, while his deaths were precisely in the middle of the pack at 2.33 per game.
He maintained his spot at number four in assists with 4.56 per game, and leap-frogged to the top-three in KDA with a 3.12 score per game.
His kill participation went up to 67.5%, earning him the number two spot for Summer behind V1per, and his CS and CSPM were both middle of the pack for top laners.
So from all of this, we can gather that Huni is an above-average top lane, arguably a top-three or four-player in his role.
His stats are surprisingly similar to what Impact had in 2017 before Team Liquid picked him up for a rumored $1 million a year. So, at $1.15 million a year for Huni that value isn’t bad. It shows that player salaries for top talent are climbing albeit slowly.
We can safely say Huni’s cost wasn’t overblown. The figure was about right for what a player of his stats should get.
That doesn’t mean, however, the deal was a smart one on. If you budget $3 million on player salaries for the year and pay a single player a third of that, of course, you’re going to struggle to attract good talent.
A lot of players Dignitas hoped to sign likely wouldn’t have salaries as high as Huni’s. These players would get between $500,000 – $750,000 a year, especially after Huni’s Dignitas offer was revealed.
Players are going to want more money when that sort of contract starts going around. Dignitas should have expected that they’d need to spend more on talent than what the budgeted initially.
Sure, they could sign a bunch of rookies or washed-up talent on the cheap. Why pay big for a single player if you aren’t going to contend for the title seriously?
Overall, it was a correct valuation of Huni’s worth, but terrible short-sightedness on Dignitas’ part in agreeing to that when their budget was so small for the team.
Hopefully, they can find good enough players to play with Huni and make some noise this split. Given the org’s history, I don’t have much hope for them.
Tags: League of Legends