Team Liquid APA Interview After Loss to NRG

TL APA Interview

Team Liquid APA (TL APA) Interview After Loss to NRG

The LCS 2023 Summer Split Playoffs are finally in the record book. After a wild and chaotic weekend, the underdog team NRG took down the reigning champions Cloud 9. Before NRG could face off against Cloud 9 in the finals, they would have to take down long-term rival Team Liquid in the last match of the lower bracket finals. The winner of the match would go on to face the winner of the upper bracket Cloud 9.

Early on, NRG knocked Team Liquid down to the lower bracket despite TL being ranked slightly higher than NRG. Knocked down to the lower bracket early on, Team Liquid would go on to beat and eliminate 100 Thieves, Evil Geniuses, and Golden Guardians. Although the Golden Guardians series is still contested and talked about, Team Liquid was out to get revenge on the team that knocked them down to the lower bracket. With NRG, they wanted to prove that the 3 to 1 victory in the first round was not a fluke. After a devastating loss to Cloud 9 in the upper bracket finals, NRG was determined to beat Team Liquid so that they could get their revenge on Cloud 9 for the 3 to 0 sweep.

LCS Finals Weekend

Rather than watching the finals online, we decided to head out to Newark, New Jersey to watch the final two series in person. The finals took place at the Prudential Center where LCS and League of Legends fans could celebrate their favorite teams at the fan meet and greet. Every team in the LCS was represented, even TSM who plans to leave the LCS this upcoming year. At the fan fest, guests could race through the jungle to try and get the ultimate clear. Throw rings at bottles to win prizes or they could head to the Red Bull arena to compete in the Aram tournament, get free Red Bull, and win prizes; select fans would get statues and upgraded seats.

For the event, Riot Games invited us up to the press box which was centered for the best view of the stage. For the weekend, Thutmose (Ekko – True Damage) was set to perform Run Wild. The performance would be to kick off the finals, but the theme song for the Summer Split was played continuously throughout the weekend. At the end of the weekend, only one team would be the Summer Split 2023 LCS champions.

Since you can easily look up the results of the final series, we will focus more on the interviews that took place after the Team Liquid vs. NRG series. NRG would go on to beat Team Liquid but not without TL putting up a fight. The TL vs. NRG series went to game 5; despite being down 7K gold to NRG, Team Liquid put up a fight until the last seconds of the game.

With any match, there is always a winner and a loser. During the press conference after the series, you could feel the disappointment that Team Liquid felt. Despite feeling down, Team Liquid was kind enough to let us interview their support and mid-laner, Team Liquid APA (TL APA) and Team Liquid CoreJJ (TL CoreJJ). Below is the interview with Team Liquid’s mid-laner TL APA.

Team Liquid APA (Eain Stearns) Interview

Why do you think American teams fail when they reach the semi-finals at Worlds?

TL APA – Honest answer. I don’t actually know. The closest experience I’ve had is when I faced them in NA last year. I want to say that there are some really good players that I’ve played against that are really good at team fighting and all that stuff. I have yet to face the international teams yet.

From observing, do you feel like there is a change of pace or something else?

TL APA – From an outside perspective, not only is every player/almost every player solid. Not just solid but actually really really good. It is hard to get a beat on them. Most teams have two to three really good players, so in my head that is kind of where it falls apart. Superstar Chinese ADCs or Superstar Korean mids; they just pick teams apart slowly.

In the press conference, you were saying that there is a bit of a language barrier between you and your teammates. How do you communicate with them, do you just ping their ult to get them to ult?

TL APA – an example from today’s games, when I am playing Neeko or other champions that have super big flashy combo plays we call that Special Attack. So when Neeko has her Ulti, Flash, and Rocket Belt, we say Special Attack. We kind of just have built the trust where we see the angle. We say that we are going and we just go and hope for the best.

Get to Know TL APA!

If you want to learn more about TL APA, watch the video below. A special thank you to Riot Games for having us out to the LCS 2023 Summer Split Finals. 

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Hardcore gaming enthusiast, cosplayer, streamer, Tall Anime lover (6ft 9), and a die-hard competitor. I have been a Pop-Culture Journalist since 2011 specializing in shooters, Pokemon, and RPGs.

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