Rekkles reveals why benching himself was his “proudest moment” on Fnatic - Dexerto
League of Legends

Rekkles reveals why benching himself was his “proudest moment” on Fnatic

Published: 14/Nov/2019 5:05

by Isaac McIntyre


Fnatic veteran Martin ‘Rekkles’ Larsson has explained why the choice to bench himself during the European Championship’s Summer season in 2018 was one of his “proudest moments” in his career, and why he made the choice.

After a 1-1 start to EU LCS 2018 Summer, Fnatic’s star bot laner made the call to hook himself from the playing roster, with Gabriel ‘Bwipo’ Rau stepping into the role alongside Zdravets ‘Hylissang’ Iliev Galabov in his place.

The reason was that marksman, which Rekkles had excelled at since he first joined the competitive League of Legends scene in 2012, had been nerfed into the ground by Riot. The picks weren’t unplayable, but they were a poor choice.

With the team’s substitute Bwipo waiting in the wings, Europe’s two-time MVP made the decision to bench himself “for the greater good,” giving his Belgian teammate the chance to flex his mage and bruiser picks in the new-look metagame.

Michal Konkol for Riot GamesRekkles spent seven weeks on the sideline in EU LCS 2018 Summer.

Although his tenure away lasted far longer than he expected — he missed all but one game between the league’s second and eighth weeks while Bwipo made 13 appearances — the Swedish star still believes it was the right choice.

“I know it sounds crazy, but one of my career highlights is the fact I stood up for myself and benched myself,” Rekkles revealed in Fnatic’s latest video series.

“In that moment, I could have been really selfish, which 99% of pros would have been. Not only did I lose money, but I lost branding opportunities, and chances to go further into the history books with kills, assists, and games played. I missed the chance to further solidify myself as the main star of Fnatic.

“It felt like I was giving up pretty much everything to bench myself, but it wasn’t really a question for me. I knew it was the right choice. After seeing what the meta was in the first week, it was really obvious we would be a better team with Bwipo.”

Shannon Cottrell for Riot GamesThe two-time LEC MVP admits he’ll never regret benching himself.

Larsson’s choice paid off big time. After topping the regular season in first in Spring and claiming Fnatic’s first championship title since 2015, the team went back-to-back in Summer with a 13-5 record, and a 3-1 victory over Schalke in the final.

As well as the fact that his decision led to the team’s domestic year being filled with silverware, Rekkles also said he learned a lot about himself when he was able to make the call to bench himself, knowing it would affect so much.

“For me, that was my proudest moment,” he repeated.

“I played really well in Spring, and I played really well when I came back in Summer for playoffs, and obviously I was smashing it at Worlds as well. Overall, I was playing really well, but that choice was the biggest moment of the year, for me.

“I’ve always had troubles standing up for myself, I’ve been a really neutral person my entire life, so the fact that I could learn to say yes or no was a good thing. Eventually, I’d have to learn that at some point, so to learn it then was great.”

Michal Konkol for Riot GamesBenching himself changed Rekkles’ mindset on standing up for himself, he said.

The Swedish superstar also laughed off the rumors that he had spent seven weeks on the bench because he had a physical altercation with jungler Mads ‘Broxah’ Brock-Pedersen, which caused Joey ‘YoungBuck’ Steltenpool to bench Rekkles.

“I honestly don’t know where that rumor came from, because of all the ones you could come up with that was the sh*ttest one that I’ve heard,” he said.

“I could understand if the rumor was like Tim [Tim ‘Nemesis’ Lipovsek] and someone because he’s the newest guy in the team, so that could potentially make sense, but I’ve been with Broxah for two and a half years. It’s just like “hell no”.”

Michal Konkol for Riot GamesRekkles and Broxah have been teammates on Fnatic since 2017.

Rekkles admitted that when he first saw the rumors swirling on social media sites like Twitter and Reddit, he showed Broxah and they had a laugh about it. After realizing it wasn’t a joke, however, the two were shocked.

“We thought it was just a joke, then saw that people were believing it,” the four-time LEC champion said of the multitude of altercation stories.

“We don’t even have verbal disagreements, he’s the nicest guy ever. Even if you wanted to fight him verbally, he wouldn’t fight you back, and physically is even crazier. This was like, ‘Why is anyone thinking I’m fighting Broxah IRL?’”

The rumored brawl may have never occurred, but Rekkles did add that he thought there would be one winner in that hypothetical matchup: “Obviously, Broxah would win obviously, that guy is f*cking huge.”

For mobile readers, the related segment begins at 4:31.

While it’s doubtful Rekkles is on the move from the organization where he’s played 11 of his 12 domestic splits this offseason, the transfer rumors have already rolled into full effect following the conclusion of the 2019 World Championship.

Chief among them for Fnatic fans are the whispers that Broxah may be making the hop across the Atlantic to join four-time LCS champions Team Liquid, with the team’s current jungler Jake ‘Xmithie’ Puchero off-contract in less than a week.

That rumored move would require TL owner Steve Arhancet to trigger Broxah’s contract buyout, however, with the Danish jungler still signed with his LEC team until November 2020.

Keep track of all of League of Legends’ ongoing transfer rumors with Dexerto’s dedicated offseason roster tracker.

League of Legends

T1 & LS respond to League of Legends coach controversy

Published: 24/Nov/2020 14:02 Updated: 24/Nov/2020 14:05

by Lauren Bergin


Both Nick ‘LS’ De Cesare and T1 have responded to the mass backlash against the iconic Korean organization seemingly ignoring LoL fan toxicity.

When Korean League of Legends behemoths T1 by mistake leaked that Nick ‘LS’ De Cesare would be the organization’s new coach, T1 fans went wild.

In a story that has gone viral, die-hard T1 fans have been seen giving LS racial and homophobic abuse online, as well as doxxing his grandmother and sending mysterious packages to her address. For many, T1’s lack of substantial response up until this point has been considered as them condoning the abuse, and the controversy has caused many a fan to stray away from the T1 fold.

So while it’s taken some time, both parties have finally spoken out on the situation in an attempt to clarify what has been happening behind the scenes.

One of the most famous pictures from this event is of a T1 fan’s van being parked outside T1’s HQ demanding LS’ removal.

T1 apologizes

A lengthy apology was released via Twitlonger from CEO Joe Marsh regarding the LS situation on November 24. The document is largely an apology towards the T1 fanbase for not speaking out quicker, and in turn, allowing the fans to be slandered and attacked by the press.

Marsh claims that T1 fans and South Koreans, in general, have been made victims of “unfair generalizations about their cultures, moral, and character” due to being “accused of harassing LS.” Additionally, the apology covers the unacceptable abuse towards LS that had been left on the organization’s discord, apologizing to the fans for any upset these may have caused.

T1 player Lee ‘Effort’ Sang-ho also receives T1’s condolences, as T1 did not come to his defense after the LS news was leaked accidentally on his stream.

However, most League of Legends fans were concerned with LS, who only gets mentioned at the end of the Twitlonger in a paragraph that reads as more interested in appeasing the fans than addressing any abuse and doxxing. While Marsh confirms that a “police report” has been filed regarding the package sent to LS’ mother, there seems to be very little apology directed only to LS.

LS’ video response

In a 14-minute long YouTube video, LS addresses the T1 situation and his future with the organization. While he had initially been chosen to join the T1 content creation team, questions were asked whether or not he would like to move up to the role as a coach.

While expressing that it would be a dream come true, LS clarifies that he was happier with the content role.

He expresses his apologies for any previous support of bbq Olivers’ Sebastian ‘Malice’ Edholm’s racist remarks, noting that he had not seen the messages containing the offensive comments before he endorsed the player. As a man living in South Korea who calls it home, it’s clear LS would never knowingly have participated in defending racism despite T1 fans claiming otherwise.

As for the future, LS has chosen to remain in Korea. He states that “for all the years that teams wanted me to leave Korea and go coach elsewhere or join a different org, or join different teams; one thing’s always remained true and that’s that I love Korea and I don’t want to leave here. T1 is going to enable me to be able to do everything I’ve always wanted to do and more.”

So while this may not be the dramatic response that many fans were hoping for, LS seems prepared for a bright future regardless.