Heading into the Mobile Legends: Bang Bang Professional League-Philippines Season Seven, Bren Esports was a clear cut above the rest.
After winning the first MPL championship of the franchise by topping the entire Season Six, Bren Esports – who was formed from the ashes of the Philippine national team that won the gold medal in the 30th Southeast Asian Games– defied all odds and took down the best of the best in the M2 World Championships to be crowned as the first Filipino world champions.
The squad was celebrated with cheers as soon as they landed on Philippine soil. In fact, representative Lucy Torres-Gomez even filed a resolution in the House of Representatives to commend Bren Esports’ feat.
Aside from Torres-Gomez, a handful of politicians and personalities also went out of their way to congratulate the reigning MPL champions – an act you rarely see before especially for an esports team.
It was indeed cloud nine for Bren.
But as the great Michael Jordan once said, winning has a price. And Bren Esports paid its dues to the place where it all started – on the MPL stage.
After playing non-stop Mobile Legends from August 2020 to January 2021, the grind finally took its toll on Bren Esports, who won three championships and a silver medal during that span, when the league opened its seventh installment last March.
The fatigue definitely showed as the squad who was once the title-favorites came down losing its first three games of the season.
Bren Esports eventually bounced back from the loss, even tarnishing Blacklist International’s immaculate regular season record. In fact, the team even made a last-ditch attempt to snag one of upper bracket slots in Group A through 23 points built on a respectable 8-5 standing.
“Nakakuha kami ng sunod sunod na championship e. Sabihin na nating ngayong pagpasok ng MPL Season Seven, parang nawala kasi yung passion namin sa umpisa e,” said Bren Esports team captain Angelo “Pheww” Arcangel after Bren Esports’ tough 2-3 loss to Execration last Saturday.
“Tapos nawala yung disiplina ganon, late na siya bumalik sa amin kaya parang kinarma na rin kami kasi hindi tulad nung MPL Season Six na buo yung passion namin pati yung disiplina.”
The team, despite a roller-coaster regular season, still showed up in the playoffs, dragging the league-leading Blacklist International to a five-game series only to drop the final game of their upper bracket bout.
Down the lower bracket, Bren Esports showed signs of hope after booting out Work Auster Force via a 3-1 victory before completely bowing out of the tournament against their good friends in Execration.
“Yung mga nakaraang tournaments namin puro champion, tapos M2 world champion kami e. Lahat ng mga nag e-ML gusto nilang makuha yung mga ganung title, e nakuha namin,” shared Bren Esports lifer CJ “Ribo” Ribo.
“Kaya nung pag pasok ng Season Seven parang nawalan kami ng gigil. Parang nilaro lang namin kasi parang nakuha na rin namin lahat ng title dito sa Pilipinas at buong mundo.”
There is no denying that this Bren Esports squad has already cemented its legacy as one of the best Mobile Legends teams in history.
But with the botched title-retention bid, one question looms large: Have we seen the last of Allan “Lusty” Castromayor, CJ “Ribo” Ribo, Angelo “Pheww” Arcangel, Charles “FlapTzy” Canon, and Karl “KarlTzy” Nepomuceno together? No one knows.
But if there’s one thing we can all be certain about, it’s that the legacy of this batch of Bren Esports will live on forever.