BREN Esports mainstay Mico “Coco” Sampang has been chasing that elusive second title for a long-time now.
After winning the inaugural championship, Coco had the chance to win it once again in Seasons Two and Three but was denied by rivals Cignal Ultra and ArkAngel, respectively.
Unfazed by the consecutive heart-breaking losses, Coco still continued the chase even with the continued revamp on BREN Esports’ rosters.
He was there when the team suffered its lowest point in Season Four where they ended with a franchise-worst fourth-to-sixth place finish. Coco was still there when the team, despite a jam-packed lineup composed of Southeast Asian Games gold medalists, failed to reach expectations in Season Five.
At that moment, Coco and the team knew that something had to change. And he made the ultimate sacrifice, taking a step back from the team to finally get his hands on that elusive second trophy.
“Tinanong naman nila ako kung gusto ko mag laro o mag stream, so mas pinili ko muna rin mag stream. Parang ang hirap din kasi pag sabayin e, kailangan mo talagang pumili ng isa,” revealed Coco in Tiebreaker Vodcasts’ Beyond The Meta, presented by SMART Sports.
BREN Esports coach Francis “Duckey” Glindro even lauded Coco for his maturity and for putting the team’s best interest ahead of everything.
“Coco was mature enough na probably there’s someone better than him or probably, this is not just his season,” said Glindro.
“I honestly believe na talagang merong season na mahina yung player which is because walang motivation, a lot of factors and I’m leaning more on the latter which is hindi lang talaga siguro ito yung panahon na medyo focused si Coco doon sa professional scene because nagkaroon din siya ng ibang responsibilidad and that’s fair because that’s money.”
Coco, who was one of the last two remnants of the Aether Main squad, transitioned as the team’s analyst while his role was filled in by rookie David Charles “FlapTzy” Canon.
And FlapTzy definitely did not disappoint his senior. In his first season, the 16-year-old was already regarded as one of the best offlaners in the league.
He proved his worth in the biggest stage of all, stepping up for the struggling KarlTzy in Game Six of the MPL-PH Season Six Grand Finals to finally give the franchise its first official championship under its banner.
“Ang dami na ring time na nag slip sa kamay namin yun e, tatlo o apat na beses na kaming nag champion dapat tapos ngayon lang talaga na-fulfill,” said Coco.
“Para rin kay Flap talaga, give chance to others, ‘di ba? At hindi naman niya kami binigo.”
Coco’s sacrifice proved to be worth it as it finally ended his chase for that elusive second title.