It was a long day for MVP and Kongdoo Monsters fans, watching at OGN eStadium and back at home. The final Promotions match was held on 22nd of April, where MVP and KDM fought in a bo5 match for the final spot in LCK. It was a close 3-2 result where MVP came out weary but victorious. After the match, OGN interviewed MVP about their grueling experience going through LCK Promotions, the team’s vacation plans and resolutions going into LCK Summer Split – Hoping to never return to Promotions stage again.
MVP, you’ve secured your spot in LCK with that last victory. A big clap for the MVP! Coach Kwon Jae Hwan, you’re finally smiling!
Kwon Jae Hwan: It was so, so difficult. Promotions is a stage I’d never want to come back again. When it was confirmed that we are going to Promotion it was a toll on all of us, an immense pressure. Entering into Promotions as someone being promoted from Challenger to someone being relegated from LCK is a whole different story. Every time we stepped into this stage, even the very air in the booth seemed heavy.
What kind of feedback or request did you have for the players coming into today’s match?
Kwon Jae Hwan: I didn’t have a lot of criticisms for the players today. Coming into today’s match, I promised myself not to give the players any aggressive feedback between the games. All I could do was to tell the players to stay strong. If I was to tell my players anything more, it’d do nothing but stress them.
How much vacation are you planning to give your team?
Kwon Jae Hwan: It’s Summer Split soon…If we don’t practice we’ll end up right back on Promotions…But realistically, maybe we’ll be looking at a 3-day break?
That sounds a bit harsh; you’re going back on your promise on a vacation. We’ll hear from the players on what they think about this.
ADD: If I take a break for too long, I’d lose my touch. I also rather take shorter breaks, more frequently.
That’s a refreshing take on it. ADD, you were especially memorable on your performance on Gangplank today, going 1v5 and 1v4 against Kongdoo. Are you satisfied with your performance today?
ADD: Except for Game 3, I think I did ok. I think there’s still a room to push myself even further. When I was playing on Ornn, specifically, there were some moments I lost focus and I got caught out. In-game stamina is another thing that I could improve on.
Beyond, you could have been a little teary-eyed there.
Beyond: The Promotion matches themselves have been so difficult. The pressure on the team has been immense. After it all ended, I thought “Ah, I survived this” and I may have gotten a little teary-eyed.
You shaved your hair coming into Promotions. Could you tell us a little more about this?
Beyond: First of all…I shaved my hair because I wanted to. Coming into Promotions, I started having a lot of negative thoughts, depressing thoughts. I thought that I could do with a change of mood so I decided to shave my hair off.
Ian, again, you would have been under immense pressure today. After that last win, you seemed pretty proud of yourself.
Ian: It was a difficult day, but I was happy for today’s victory. It wasn’t due to my good performance, but neitherless, it’s a win.
When did you become certain that you’ll win today’s bo5?
Ian: In the 5th and final game, I took a kill in mid lane. I became certain of the victory then. If a Velkoz takes an early kill but you lose that game, it’s Velkoz’s fault.
Pilot – you look lost in thought.
Pilot: It’s been so stressful, practicing for today and coming this far; but I’m happy for today’s victory.
There must have been an extra pressure between ADCs as they fight to be subbed in for the next game.
Pilot: I had confidence in myself. For all the games, I played trusting myself to carry in the late game. In Game 4, I slipped and allowed myself to be caught out and be killed, and that put a dent in my mental state. But I was able to fall back into my self-confidence, get back into Game 5 and win it.
Any word to fans, hoping for a better look in Summer Split?
Pilot: It was to be Promoted or die for me. In Summer Split, we’ll improve as a team and never go through another Promotions again.
Now we have to talk with Max. Max, you did it; you survived.
Max: We survived…The performance we’ve displayed today wasn’t too satisfactory, mine included. It’s something that we’ll look to improve at Summer Split.
MVP is usually known as a bubbly, happy team. During the Promotions, was there any particular player that tried to keep the team’s mood up?
Max: Ian, at least, was in a lighter mood and trying to cheer other players up.
The coach said earlier that he didn’t try to criticize you guys much.
Max: Our coach is always the kind who doesn’t criticize us excessively. Today, we were under more pressure than ever, so I think the coach was extra careful in the way he gave feedback to us.
Anything that you’d like to do now that Promotions is over?
ADD: I bought a can of beer and left it in the fridge when we headed out; when we go back to the team house, the first thing I’ll do is open it and drink it.
It was a bloody fight that lasted into Game 5. This was a first Promotions match that lasted into Game 5. Coach, we’ll end the interview with you. Do you have any word of thanks or resolutions for fans, as you begin preparations for Summer Split?
Kwon Jae Hwan: It would have been an extremely difficult period for the fans, watching all of this. For me, it was also grueling watching all this in the waiting room; every Game a close one, the final score a close 3-2. It’s not like Promotions is a wonderful stage to play for, to begin with, either. We’ll try our absolute best so you may never have to support us going through such a difficult situation again. We’d like to do well in Summer Split and play for you in a happier stage. Thank you for coming today.