After visa delays for both Mads "Broxah" Brock-Pedersen and Shern "Shernfire" Cherng Tai, Mike "MikeYeung" Yeung returned to Team Liquid and has rediscovered his passion for competition. He talks about the process of starting back with the team, as well as his hopes for his legacy and long term goals.
You can read the transcription below, or watch the video interview on our YouTube here (don't forget to like and subscribe please, it's a huge help).
I'm joined by MikeYeung, the substitute jungler for Team Liquid Academy. Obviously the team is still figuring everything out, but can you let me know what the mindset is and the plan moving forward?
Well, we're just going into every scrim day trying to learn something new. Even though we had a bad start, we're not too worried about the rest of the season, so we just move on to the next game.
So just keeping positive, looking forward, not too worried about it all?
Yeah, I mean of course it always sucks on match day to lose, but we're pros so we just have to think about how to get better after each loss.
So I know you got added in really late, from what TL publicized is that the original perception was Pobelter would probably jungle, and then Shernfire kind of slipped in. And from what I know, you got signed mid January, but when did you actually figure out you'd be playing for their Academy?
So I wasn't actually planning to come in this split, it was more of just that I got a message because of the visa situation with Broxah, and Shernfire's visa was late as well. And because I'm used to the TL training facility and being on the team, everybody really knew that I was going to be able to understand what to do in order to play for Academy in the scrims. So that's how I got into it this year.
And I know for them it seemed last minute because Shernfire got in just two or three days before LCS started. Were you already practicing thinking you'd be playing for Academy at that point?
Umm, no so I was back home kind of just taking a break from League. I wasn't even playing too much soloqueue. Only until I was told I had this opportunity to play and sub in for TL is when I played and started grinding again.
And correct me if I'm wrong, but originally you were supposed to be there for just a few weeks, but now they have you til the end of February, so what is your situation here? Obviously the team is in limbo, but what about you? Do you have a scenario for the perfect world and what will happen?
I'm kind of going with this in a day by day process. You know, just trying to do my best an use the most of my time in this experience because I wasn't actually planning on coming back to be a pro League player. I was kind of trying to move on from this career and go to school. But then when I started playing League again and started grinding again my passion came back for the game after a three month break after playing for Echo Fox. And now I want to make the best out of it, it's kind of like my last chance where I just want to see what I can do before I leave.
Ah, so what's your thought then? Are you just hoping to land a spot for the Summer? Just see what happens here and maybe you can come back again? Or are you thinking longer term than that?
I'm kind of thinking longer term... Even though we had a bad start at the beginning of the split because of me coming into the team late - and the fact that we just have a completely new team with Johnson "Cao" Cao that recently role swapped from adc to support, and then we have a new mid laner and adc - the only player I have synergy with from my old team is Thomas "Jenkins" Tran, our top laner.
So we are still learning a lot everyday, and it's fun going through the process of that. That's one of the things that I love about being a pro. I don't really like playing soloqueue when it comes to playing with randoms, but playing on a professional team is just so much fun. So I'm glad I'm able to do that for the next few weeks.
Makes sense why the passion returns when you're in that environment. What's different then about Team Liquid? You were there before obviously, now you're back. What I've heard from others around is that they are putting more emphasis on Academy this year. Has it felt different at all?
It just feels like home kind of. Everything is really... I'm used to it. Like in 2019, waking up in the same apartment I was living in then. I'm going to the same facility I was practicing in then. It feels nice to be on Team Liquid, it's definitely the one team that I would choose to play on over any other if I had the choice.
Lastly, I'm curious about your thoughts on your legacy and what you want your career to be. It's nice to see you're excited about where this opportunity takes you. Are you hoping to have a big return? What is your thought on your longterm legacy when people think of MikeYeung - other than memeing your name?
I used to care a lot about my legacy and all that stuff, like what people think about me and how good I am. But after playing for so long, it's more about what I think. And right now, I'm pretty passionate about the game and pretty happy, and it doesn't really matter what other people think. It doesn't really matter if someone doesn't like how I play. As long as I'm doing well and learning every day and I still have passion for the game, I'm going to keep playing.
Anything you want to say to the fans before we go?
Thank you for watching. It's kind of weird to think I'm going to be playing again this split when I didn't necessarily plan on it, but I'm really glad to have this opportunity.