When cdr wasn't so easily obtainable and a must or you'll get blown over by other 30-45% cdr champions. I remember back in the day if you saw a champion use an ability, you knew if you went in then it wouldn't be back up during a gank/teamfight unless they played well and lasted long during the fight.
I remember jungling and waiting a bit away from a lane, perhaps farming, and seeing a laner use a big key ability, like Vlad pool. You used to be able to run over and gank and kill them. Now you are forced to literally sit at the edge of a bush and go the instant they use that ability, so it's just rng at that point/a bit of guesswork which lessens skill.
It's just hilarious how for example in one of my games Fizz used ult to kill someone and a bit later my ally is fighting Fizz who showed up to the lane to cover. My ally says "he has no ult" and as soon as he types it the fizz ult comes out. It's like a joke honestly because he literally just used it and it's up already?
Masteries like ult hunter/presence of mind are just icing on the cake honestly.
Sometimes it just feels like CDR was just slapped on items just for the hell of it. I'd be ok with cdr and champions have 30-45% cdr if they had to sacrifice damage/HP/armor/mr for it instead of getting all the stats they want + cdr. This type of stuff limits item diversity. No one builds armor in this game yet everyone builds black cleaver... Why? Because it gives 20% CDR for 3k gold and has good stats. If the CDR didn't exist on cleaver, then you'd have a choice between steraks vs cleaver 1st as an item or other items.
For example, I play quite a bit of Aatrox and I noticed no one builds armor on the enemy team ever, so I decided to go steraks and then cleaver. But then I realized I was underperforming because champions are balanced around having 40-45% cdr instead of their base values so I just got slaughtered. Too bad steraks doesn't have 10-20% cdr slapped onto it for good measure like cleaver does. It just feels bad you can't build smart against enemies anymore due to this.
Sometimes I wonder if the game would be healthier if CDR was just removed from items and only made on items designed to give you CDR and little of other things you'd want, making diverse play styles/builds.
In Dota 2, cdr is such a luxery stat. You have to pay a boat load of money for it and last I saw there was only 1-2 items that gave CDR and they costed 5-6k gold (it's a top tier late game item). In dota 2, when you saw a champion use an ability, you knew it wasn't gonna be up for a while and that is there moment of weakness, while still making the champion feel impactful to play for when you use that big ability.
In Dota 2, mana costs are a huge deal, people min max and switch their style of boots on the fly (theres 3 different ones) just to save 2-5 mana at times, because every amount matters in that game. In League, you can have someones mana bar be 1/12th of an inch and they can cast 1, sometimes 2 abilities? Like where are the moments of weakness?
I just feel like a lot of skill from League has been taken away with so many changes, just like the trinket change which makes vision hard to obtain and ganks/counter ganks just being by chance per game instead of a calculated thing.