That was RSG PH’s regular season record against ONIC PH prior to MPL Philippines Season 10 playoffs.
But instead of avoiding the rookie-laden squad, the third-ranked RSG PH took it as a challenge and picked ONIC PH as their first-round opponent in their bid to capture back-to-back MPL titles.
And on Thursday night, the reigning MPL Philippines champion defied the odds by sweeping ONIC PH, 3-0, to advance to the upper bracket semifinals.
Head coach Brian “Panda” Lim, later on revealed to Tiebreaker Times the reason why they picked ONIC PH, instead of Omega Esports, despite their bad record against the team.
Panda said that the players really wanted to get back at ONIC PH and there’s no better place to do it than the biggest stage of the MPL Philippines. He also noted the mid-season banter between Dylan “Light” Catipon and Ralph “Rapidoot” Adrales as one of the reasons.
“I just felt like we want to overcome a trauma instead of running away from it but if I choose to fight it, I must have a plan, and then I already made plans on how to fight ONIC PH before we chose ONIC PH,” Panda said in an exclusive interview.
“Of course, the players really, really wanted to make bawi talaga. Syempre they were coming from the amateurs (ONIC PH) tapos there were some drama, a story between them so magandang story if we fight ONIC PH and we overcome them,” added Panda.
Moreover, the two-time MPL Philippines champion coach also explained that going up against Omega Esports in the first round means that they would have to go all out early in the playoffs.
That, according to him, is definitely not a good thing if they want to make a deep run into the postseason.
“Also, the thing about Omega… Omega is really lason sa playoffs. It’s a team that I do not wish to go all in. Of course, we can win against each other but the fact that we go all in, it just exposes a lot of strategy.
“Kaya I said let’s go with ONIC PH then after that we tried to use the momentum to proceed to the upper bracket,” he added.
For their part, Nathanael “Nathzz” Estrologo and Arvie “Aqua” Calderon were just glad to finally come out on top against the young ONIC PH squad.
Nathzz said that he felt pressured early in the series but managed to shake it off after their Game One win. Meanwhile, Aqua bared that the rest of the team was very eager from the get-go as they look to avenge their regular season losses.
“Nung 0-4 kami medyo pressured e pero nung Game One nung nanalo kami feeling ko makakaya naming 3-0 e. Yun lang,” said Nathzz during the post-match interview.
“Nung na 0-4 kami nung ONIC tapos nung nakatapat namin sila sa playoffs, sobrang gigil kami makabawi. Gusto namin silang talunin kasi nung regular season wala kaming panalo sa kanila kaya nag-focus talaga kami nang mabuti para talunin sila,” added Aqua.
Next up for RSG PH is ECHO in the best-of-five upper bracket semifinals tomorrow, Friday at 1:00 PM.