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Kickin’ to Victory – An Akshan Lee Sin Deck Guide

Akshan Lee is the textbook definition of a combo deck - Leer shares the ins and outs of counting to twenty in a single round.

A famous treasure hunter enters the Blind Dragon bar.

"Give me one of your best. One that really knocks me over."

The bartender leaps into the air and kicks Akshan in the face.

"Gotcha. This one's on the roundhouse!"

Regions
Shurima
9 cards
Ionia
31 cards
Rarities
31 200
champion
6
epic
6
rare
16
common
12
Mana cost
0
0
11
1
17
2
2
3
4
4
6
5
0
6
0
7+
Champions
6
2
Akshan
3
Akshan
5
Lee Sin
3
Lee Sin
Followers
12
1
Forsaken Baccai
1
Forsaken Baccai
1
Vastayan Disciple
3
Vastayan Disciple
2
Eye of the Dragon
3
Eye of the Dragon
2
Ionian Hookmaster
3
Ionian Hookmaster
3
Vekauran Vagabond
2
Vekauran Vagabond
Spells
22
1
Ionian Tellstones
2
Ionian Tellstones
1
Momentous Choice
3
Momentous Choice
1
Wuju Style
2
Wuju Style
2
Nopeify!
2
Nopeify!
2
Sonic Wave
3
Sonic Wave
2
The Absolver
3
The Absolver
4
Concussive Palm
2
Concussive Palm
4
Deny
2
Deny
5
Deep Meditation
3
Deep Meditation
Open deck in builder

Counting To Twenty – A Lee Sin Akshan Overview

LoR Deck Lee Sin: Lee Sin, one of our Champions, and our main win condition

Akshan Lee is the textbook definition of a combo deck. The archetype aims to delay the game just long enough to set up a powerful combination of cards that wins the game in a single round.

In Akshan Lee, this combination of cards consists of Lee SinLee Sin, The AbsolverThe Absolver, and Shield of the SentinelsShield of the Sentinels. Together, they allow Lee Sin (level 2)Lee Sin (level 2) to Dragon's Rage the enemy blocker and Nexus for ten damage, and then normally attack the Nexus for ten damage again — last time I checked, 10+10=20, so that's a one-turn kill!

Let's go over the list card-by-card to get a better understanding.


Best LoR Deck: Lee Sin Akshan – Card Breakdown

As mentioned above, we run Lee SinLee Sin and The AbsolverThe Absolver for our one-turn kill (or rather, one-round kill, as a certain editor would sneer=). Of course, we don't need Shield of the SentinelsShield of the Sentinels to get Lee to ten Power, here are alternative ways:

Wuju Style Momentous Choice Resonating Strike

All of them come with the benefit of activating Flow while costing us a single card, making Eye of the DragonEye of the Dragon and Deep MeditationDeep Meditation a natural inclusion.

In return, Sonic WaveSonic Wave becomes even better by combining it with a DragonlingDragonling. This is a sort of chicken-or-egg situation. Can we include Sonic WaveSonic Wave because of Eye of the DragonEye of the Dragon, or Eye of the DragonEye of the Dragon because of Sonic WaveSonic Wave

Ionian HookmasterIonian Hookmaster is the other way to get Lee to ten Power. The weapon she Improvises also has the benefit of giving us a keyword — preferably Overwhelm with FishawhackFishawhack

The other premium weapon choice is Upcycled RakeUpcycled Rake. It allows us to threaten lethal without committing The AbsolverThe Absolver, but be aware – it provides the least amount of stats outright. Only pick it if you have enough time to play Upcycled RakeUpcycled Rake on a champion later, and don't need the front-up power.


Champs of Choice: Akshan and Lee Sin

Now that I got you invested in Akshan Lee with the fun and rewarding OTK combo, let's talk about the real MVP of this deck — AkshanAkshan.

Anyone that tells you Akshan Lee is a Lee SinLee Sin deck is lying. This archetype is all about AkshanAkshan and his landmarks.

Remember how we talked about activating Flow with a single spell? Well, if said spell also targets allies, we advance Warlord's Palace and Warlord's Hoard twice. 

Recall how Sonic WaveSonic Wave was only playable because of DragonlingDragonlings? Turns out AkshanAkshan is just as good of a target.

And equipping AkshanAkshan with Upcycled RakeUpcycled Rake is straight up unfair, allowing us to strike twice with him.

This means that we turbo-level AkshanAkshan to find Lee SinLee Sin or The AbsolverThe Absolver with Relic of PowerRelic of Power (from Warlord's Palace). It also means that we quickly get to cast Shield of the SentinelsShield of the Sentinels (from Warlord's Hoard), protecting Lee SinLee Sin from the likes of MinimorphMinimorph and HomecomingHomecoming.

Sure, Lee delivers the final kick, but did he really win us the game? Or was it AkshanAkshan, tying Lee's bandages, and physically putting Lee’s fist into the enemy's face?

That’s why we even run two copies of Vekauran VagabondVekauran Vagabond in the deck – AkshanAkshan’s landmarks are integral to our game plan.

This also answers the question you had ever since we talked about Flow:

"But Leer-sama, if we activate Flow so easily, why don't we run Master YiMaster Yi?"

We simply don't have space for him. Akshan is not replaceable in this archetype, so Lee would have to make room for him – but Master Yi is slower and less powerful than Lee in this list. What we need is a champion that can end games the same round they come down. On the contrary, Master YiMaster Yi needs extra protection and resources that we don’t want to invest. Monk beats Master here.


Going with the Flow

Deep Meditation Vastayan Disciple

With this interlude out of the way, let’s look at our second Flow card in the deck – Deep MeditationDeep Meditation. With all the cheap spells we pack, we are in danger of running out of cards. While Relic of PowerRelic of Power is great at locating a specific finisher piece, Deep Med is amazing for refilling our hand.

Another way to cycle our hand is Vastayan DiscipleVastayan Disciple. When it strikes the Nexus, it transforms into Shimon WindShimon Wind. And it goes “SWOOOOOOOOOSH”. Do I need to say more?

Jokes aside, Vastayan DiscipleVastayan Disciple helps us activate Flow and see more cards from our deck. Which is nice because we really want to see Lee SinLee Sin at some point. 

And against aggro matchups like Pirates or Nasus Thresh, it can serve as a blocker and trade with a Legion SaboteurLegion Saboteur or Spirit Leech Spirit Leech . While Vastayan DiscipleVastayan Disciple is not the game-changer that Momentous ChoiceMomentous Choice is in our deck, he is as flexible as any other card in our list and a nice-to-have.

Ionian Tellstones Concussive Palm

Homecoming Health Potion

Just like Vastayan DiscipleVastayan Disciple can be a great anti-aggro blocker, we run Ionian TellstonesIonian Tellstones and Concussive PalmConcussive Palm to buy us more time to find and set up our combo pieces. 

Concussive PalmConcussive Palm is one of the most efficient anti-aggro cards in the game, stunning a unit while providing a 3|2 Fearsome blocker. It is effectively a two-for-one tempo play

More than 80% of the time, HomecomingHomecoming will be the spell we pick from Ionian TellstonesIonian Tellstones. It allows us to “shadow block” one attacker while recalling another. It can also serve as a disruption tool to prevent PoppyPoppy from attacking, or save us from AtrocityAtrocity.

Ionian TellstonesIonian Tellstones into Health PotionHealth Potion can be a cheap way to activate Flow for Eye of the DragonEye of the Dragon or heal for cheap.

The last thing we’re missing now is a way to protect our blind monk when he goes for the lethal roundhouse kick.

Nopeify! Deny

Nopeify!Nopeify! and DenyDeny should be no surprise for you. Akshan Lee is an Ionia deck that needs protection, so of course we run those cards. The ratio between DenyDeny and Nopeify!Nopeify! is a meta call, and currently Nopeify!Nopeify! stocks are high – we can stop Glimpse BeyondGlimpse Beyond, Noxian FervorNoxian Fervor, and Concurrent TimelinesConcurrent Timelines.

That being said, do not run more than four copies of these interruption spells. Akshan Lee is an aggressive combo deck that wants to cycle their cards, not collect them in hand and stay reactive.


Tips and Kicks Tricks

You can cast Concussive PalmConcussive Palm on the blocker of your The AbsolverThe Absolver target (which is not Lee Sin (level 2)Lee Sin (level 2)) to push lethal damage.

Lee SinLee Sin’s Dragon's Rage counts toward Flow activation since it is a skill.

Health PotionHealth Potion from Ionian TellstonesIonian Tellstones can cheaply advance Warlord's Palace and Warlord's Hoard. This might sound wasteful, but sometimes all you need is that one extra tick on AkshanAkshan’s landmark to cast Shield of the SentinelsShield of the Sentinels and set up lethal. Trust me, it happens.

Playing Equipment advances AkshanAkshan’s landmarks. If you have two Weapons, you can cycle them on one unit to tick down the landmark without using card resources. Of course, don’t be a dummy – only do this if you have enough mana and tempo to survive.


Tech Choices

Early on, a lot of lists ran Fireth, Reaper of the SandsFireth, Reaper of the Sands, just like the #1-ranked EMEA player at that time. The problem with Fireth, I think, is that she is only good in a combination with very specific cards. 

For example, she's an amazing target for Rite of CallingRite of Calling, also providing our called champion with a weapon. Or she works well with Sonic WaveSonic Wave and Entrancing LureEntrancing Lure for efficient trading. 

But if we don’t have these cards (which is even more likely due to the fact that we want to cycle Sonic WaveSonic Wave and Entrancing LureEntrancing Lure ASAP), Fireth is an underwhelming draw. That’s why I don’t like to play her after some tests.

Still, if you want to go for a more aggressive list that is better at locating champions and advancing AkshanAkshan, at the price of being less reactive, this is the list that World Champion Alanzq has been piloting in recent days:

Regions
Shurima
16 cards
Ionia
24 cards
Rarities
30 400
champion
6
epic
6
rare
12
common
16
Mana cost
0
0
15
1
15
2
3
3
3
4
4
5
0
6
0
7+
Champions
6
2
Akshan
3
Akshan
5
Lee Sin
3
Lee Sin
Equipments
3
1
The Darkin Bloodletters
3
The Darkin Bloodletters
Followers
12
1
Forsaken Baccai
3
Forsaken Baccai
2
Eye of the Dragon
3
Eye of the Dragon
2
Ionian Hookmaster
3
Ionian Hookmaster
3
Vekauran Vagabond
3
Vekauran Vagabond
Spells
19
1
Ionian Tellstones
1
Ionian Tellstones
1
Momentous Choice
3
Momentous Choice
1
Rite of Calling
2
Rite of Calling
1
Wuju Style
3
Wuju Style
2
Nopeify!
1
Nopeify!
2
Sonic Wave
3
Sonic Wave
2
The Absolver
2
The Absolver
4
Concussive Palm
1
Concussive Palm
4
Deny
2
Deny
5
Deep Meditation
1
Deep Meditation
Open deck in builder

With this list, we run three Forsaken BaccaiForsaken Baccai, as well as three The Darkin BloodlettersThe Darkin Bloodletters that summon a DarkinthrallDarkinthrall, as targets for our two Rite of CallingRite of Calling. Another upside of Bloodletters is that we can much easier cycle weapons on a unit to advance AkshanAkshan’s landmarks.

Once we are ready, we can also play XolaaniXolaani as an additional Overwhelm threat to end the game. And even when she dies, XolaaniXolaani returns to hand as Bloodletters and continues to provide value.

That being said, we run fewer answers like Ionian TellstonesIonian Tellstones and Concussive PalmConcussive Palm, making us more vulnerable against decks like Katarina Gwen where we rely on disrupting enemy units.


Other tech choices include Entrancing LureEntrancing Lure, Will of IoniaWill of Ionia, and Shuriman TellstonesShuriman Tellstones.

Entrancing Lure Will of Ionia Shuriman Tellstones

Even with The Darkin BloodlettersThe Darkin Bloodletters, Entrancing LureEntrancing Lure oftentimes felt like an awkward draw. If we don’t have the right weapon on the right target (Akshan), it is a dead card in hand. And even if we draw a card with Lure, it still doesn’t activate Flow. Sonic WaveSonic Wave simply does more on its own.

When you want to run more than three copies of Sonic WaveSonic Wave, you can run Shuriman TellstonesShuriman Tellstones into Ruthless PredatorRuthless Predator. Why not run a copy of Ruthless PredatorRuthless Predator instead? Because we don’t activate Flow then, silly!

Will of IoniaWill of Ionia is at max a one-of. Sometimes, recalling an enemy unit like NasusNasus, without having to worry about the targeted ally of HomecomingHomecoming getting removed, is nice. But overall, we want to have the flexibility of Ionian TellstonesIonian Tellstones, so never replace this card fully!


LoR Deck Akshan Lee Sin: Mulligan

LoR Deck Akshan Lee Sin: Always keep Vekauran Vagabond in your opening hand

Some general mulligan advice:

90% of the time, I kick my whole hand if I don't see AkshanAkshan or Vekauran VagabondVekauran Vagabond. In reverse, I never kick the first AkshanAkshan or Vekauran VagabondVekauran Vagabond I see.

The 10% of times I keep a card without seeing AkshanAkshan/Vagabond is when that card tremendously improves our winning chances, e.g. Eye of the DragonEye of the Dragon versus Pirates or Ionian HookmasterIonian Hookmaster versus Ezreal Kennen.

Once we see AkshanAkshan and other cards, we can think about keeping spells. Momentous ChoiceMomentous Choice is a good keep with AkshanAkshan to protect him, or threaten to kill a three-Health blocker for AkshanAkshan.

Sonic WaveSonic Wave is our best spell, keep it when you see AkshanAkshan or Eye of the DragonEye of the Dragon.


LoR Deck Akshan Lee Sin: Matchups

Ezreal Kennen – unfavored (25% winrate)

Mulligan: AkshanAkshan/Vekauran VagabondVekauran Vagabond, Ionian HookmasterIonian Hookmaster

Do not keep Lee SinLee Sin in the mulligan, he’s a liability that easily gets answered by Concussive PalmConcussive Palm and HomecomingHomecoming. If you happen to draw him anyways, play him early as a removal/pressure tool rather than for the OTK.

Ionian HookmasterIonian Hookmaster is key to apply pressure early on. Especially if we can find FishawhackFishawhack – we can then push Nexus damage when they Recall their blocker. Upcycled RakeUpcycled Rake on AkshanAkshan is another wincon.

Nopeify!Nopeify! can stop Kennen’s Lightning RushLightning Rush and hence the extra copy of KennenKennen for Kinkou WayfinderKinkou Wayfinder


Pirates – slightly unfavored (45% winrate)

Mulligan: AkshanAkshan/Vekauran VagabondVekauran Vagabond, Eye of the DragonEye of the Dragon

While they are an aggro deck, try to out-race them with AkshanAkshan. If they give you easy Eye of the DragonEye of the Dragon activations by developing/attacking before we cast spells, this matchup is very winnable.

Once they have six mana available keep DenyDeny mana open to counter Riptide SermonRiptide Sermon. Nopeify!Nopeify! can stop Noxian FervorNoxian Fervor, especially after they play Zap SprayfinZap Sprayfin to fetch one.

Do not be afraid to take damage, you can DenyDeny their burn later. Casting The AbsolverThe Absolver on a DragonlingDragonling will protect your Lifersteal unit from getting shadow-blocked with Noxian FervorNoxian Fervor.


Timelines – favored (65% winrate)

Mulligan: AkshanAkshan/Vekauran VagabondVekauran Vagabond, then Eye of the DragonEye of the Dragon

Although Lee SinLee Sin would be a solid keep in this matchup, I had to learn that he oftentimes gets discarded by Aloof TravelersAloof Travelers. Don’t keep Lee in the mulligan.

Once we see Akshan/Vagabond, Eye of the DragonEye of the Dragon is an amazing unit because our opponent can’t deal well with chump-blockers until round eight when they level TrundleTrundle.

In this matchup, we’re mostly on the defensive against their insane tempo plays, until we OTK them with Lee SinLee Sin. Apart from Three SistersThree Sisters into Flash FreezeFlash Freeze, they don’t have a way to prevent Lee's spin to win, and a well-timed Shield of the SentinelsShield of the Sentinels can prevent that as well.


Akshan Lee – Mirror Match (favored, after reading this guide)

Mulligan: AkshanAkshan/Vekauran VagabondVekauran Vagabond

AkshanAkshan is the key to winning the mirror. If one player draws AkshanAkshan and the other doesn’t, the game is over. Level AkshanAkshan ASAP to get Warlord's Hoard and protect your champs with Shield of the SentinelsShield of the Sentinels.

Akshan Lee lacks cheap spells to pop Spellshield, so once you get Spellshield on Lee and have DenyDeny mana up, they won't be able to prevent the OTK.

One sneaky way to prevent the OTK, though, is to only have Spellshield units on the board. This way, the opposing Lee SinLee Sin has to challenge a Spellshield unit that blocks Dragon's Rage. Keep this in mind when setting up your own OTK, and keep one non-champion enemy unit on board if possible.


Nami TF Ionia

Mulligan: AkshanAkshan/Vekauran VagabondVekauran Vagabond, then Lee SinLee Sin, Ionian HookmasterIonian Hookmaster

Nami TF Ionia can’t deal well with Lee SinLee Sin since they lack hard removal such as VengeanceVengeance. The only way they can interact with him is through HomecomingHomecoming, so don’t fret to play Lee early as a control tool.

Since we can’t stop all of their Elusive units, we are the aggressor (aka the beatdown) in this matchup. Try to push damage early with Akshan/Hookmaster and race them down.

Be aware of nasty lethal combos like two Elusives + Nami + Deny for your Stuns/Recalls. Always keep enough mana open on defensive turns.


Katarina Gwen – even (50% winrate)

Mulligan: AkshanAkshan/Vekauran VagabondVekauran Vagabond, Eye of the DragonEye of the Dragon, Concussive PalmConcussive Palm

Concussive PalmConcussive Palm can stun GwenGwen or KatarinaKatarina while providing a blocker. Shadow blocking KatarinaKatarina with HomecomingHomecoming prevents her from leveling while also Recalling a different enemy for tempo.

Katarina Gwen can’t deal with your Overwhelm damage well, but it’s difficult to get there for Akshan Lee. If it’s later than round six, don’t attack before you have lethal or they have tapped out of Eternal DancersEternal Dancers mana.


Wrapping Up

"That sure kicked like a mule," says the treasure hunter, massaging his chin.

"Why, you smell like a mule yourself, stranger," says the blind bartender.

"That was a compliment, my short-tempered friend."

"Oh. Then mine was, ah…"

"A compliment to mules, I'm sure," smiles the hunter.

"Mules do kick hard…" nods the barkeep. "You do take kicks like a champ, stranger." He smiles faintly. "Another round?"

The hunter smiles too. "Yeah." He slaps a gold coin on the counter. "Not on the house this time, though!"



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