Knowing what’s at stake, ONIC PH head coach Kevin “Bluffzy” Reyes gathered his team the night before their crucial match-up against TNC.
Bluffzy reminded his wards that they have yet to win a game against the streaking TNC. They lost both of their games in the MPL Philippines Season 10, before falling via sweep in their first round match-up in Season 11.
That served as their main motivation heading into the all-important match against a motivated TNC side, who are fighting for tournament life, that was coming off huge victories over the league-leading Bren Esports and defending champion ECHO.
He also told the team to not put emphasis on TNC’s hot streak and instead focus on what they are going to do in-game.
“Sinabi ko lang din sa mga bata na tinalo ng TNC yung Bren, tinalo ng TNC yung ECHO so bago kami pumunta dito sa venue,” said Bluffzy after the crucial win on Saturday night.
“Actually kagabi pa habang naguusap kami pagkatapos ng scrim namin, ang sinasabi ko lang sa kanila is kung naka-momentum yung TNC, tingin ko naman naka-momentum tayo.
“Mag-focus tayo sa laro natin and at the same time, ang i-mindset lang natin isa na ‘to sa mga pinakamahalagang laro natin sa buhay natin, actually sa career natin, and yun tingin ko gumana e kasi nabanggit ko rin sa kanila na wayback Season 10 and then ngayon Season 11 pangapat na beses na naming maghaharap and never pa kami nanalo sa kanila ng series,” he continued.
Bluffzy’s pep talk lit a fire inside ONIC PH as they managed to fend off a tough TNC stand in Game Two to complete a 2-0 sweep that catapulted them to the fifth spot with a 5-8 record.
The win boosted ONIC PH’s playoff bid in Season 11 and gave them a slight edge over Omega Esports and Nexplay EVOS. But more importantly, their victory over their long-time tormentor finally removed the monkey off their backs.
“Siguro sobrang gaan lang din sa pakiramdam, sobrang saya sa pakiramdam lalo na doon sa mga bata na na-overcome nila yung bagay na parang laging pumipigil sa kanila which is yung TNC.”