Athlete

KarlTzy Promised Jaypee: We Will Bring You to MSC

Team Liquid Philippines was having lunch before heading to the first day of the playoffs in MPL-PH Season 13 when they realized something: Jaypee is the only veteran member of the squad who hasn’t gone to the MSC. 

“We were about to leave for day 1 of the playoffs of Season 13. While they were eating, someone said that Jaypee hasn’t experienced playing in the MSC. Sanji approached me and said, ‘Te, hindi pa pala nakakapag MSC si Dad (Jaypee) no?’ And then KarlTzy said, ‘Iangat natin sa MSC iyan!’” Mitch Liwanag, country manager of Team Liquid, told ALL-STAR

Karl “KarlTzy” Nepomuceno, jungler of Team Liquid Philippines, was true to his word that they would bring Jaypee to the MSC. 

Although ECHO (former of Team Liquid Philippines) competed in the 2023 MSC,  Team Liquid Philippines roamer Jaypee Dela Cruz was not part of the lineup of players at that time because he was part of the team’s MDL roster.

But Jaypee would have been the first member of the team to experience the MSC stage. He was part of Sunsparks, the squad that won back-to-back championships in MPL-PH Season 4 and Season 5. The Season 5 win was the qualifier for the MSC but that year in 2020, the international tournament was cancelled because of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Jaypee had a stellar performance in Season 13 of the MPL, placing second in the number of assists with an average assist of 7.5. He also has one of the widest hero pools in the league, using 13 heroes, the second-highest tied with Hadji and Super Frince. 

Despite these accomplishments, Jaypee received some of the worst bashings throughout Season 12 and Season 13 from fans who accused him and his wife Mitch of favoritism because Jaypee replaced Yawi, who was benched. But it turned out that it was not Mitch who decided to bench Yawi, it was the players and the coaches’ decision.

It was in these difficult times for Jaypee when KarlTzy and the rest of the boys banded together strongly for their veteran roamer. 

“Kapag naaalala ko iyon, alam na alam ko sa mga players na mas lalo silang nagutom para manalo. Nakikita ko naman na kahit hirap na hirap sila sa mga bashings, sa mga below-the-belt comments, they took those as motivation. They did not take it as a struggle but as a challenge they had to overcome to become champions again,” said Mitch Liwanag. 

(“Whenever I remember that, I know how the players were motivated to win. I saw how they struggled hard because of the bashing and below-the-belt comments, but they used those as motivation.”)

“Lalo na kay Karl! His leadership, kakaiba sa team, and how he led the team. He’s very strong-minded and strong-willed, he always lifts up his teammates. He would always say ‘Malalagpasan natin lahat ito’” said Mitch. 

(“Especially with Karl! His leadership was unique in the team, and how he led the team…. He would always say, ‘We will overcome this.'”)

“It’s not just Karl who is cheering for Jaypee. Because everyone knows Jaypee is the most hated player we have in MLBB, but that’s what’s beautiful about it—although many people gave up on Jaypee, the people on the team are the ones who didn’t give up on him. Benny, Outplayed, Zaida, Sanford, Sanji, Karl, and our two coaches Tictac and CJ, they never stopped believing in Jaypee,” she added. 

The Group Stage of the MSC 2024 will open on July 3, 2024 with Falcons AP BREN facing off against the newly minted team from China, Xianyou Gaming at 4 p.m. Philippine time. Meanwhile, Team Liquid Philippines will face off against Saudi Arabian team Twisted Minds at 7 p.m. Philippine time. 

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