Unicorns of Love are heading into the 2017 EU LCS Spring Playoffs as a second seed and are set to face off against Misfits in their upcoming semifinal match.
theScore esports spoke with UoL's manager Romain Bigeard ahead of his team's semifinal match about the playoffs so far and where EU ranks internationally.
The EU LCS playoffs have been chaotic to this point — we’ve seen a reverse sweep as well as a sweep by a team that wasn't expected to win. What have you taken from what you've watched so far?
We have been closely following playoffs, and it’s been a rollercoaster of emotions so far. Surprises, drama, crazy games and lot of emotions. Absolutely loving it.
The dream would be a final 100 percent EU, with FNC vs. UoL. A man can dream!
How do you maintain a positive mindset and stay practiced with so much time between your playoff series and your last regular season match, which was played on April 1?
The time feels super long (15 days without an official game) and at the same time super short.
Super long as all days are the same: wake-up, gym, eat, play, practice, eat, play, sleep, repeat.
Super short as we had the chance to witness a lot of really good League of Legends (quarterfinals were awesome) and we had some super interesting scrims (versus G2 and FNC). We see ourselves improving on a daily basis. It’s exhausting and challenging but so rewarding. The tension is slowly building up with the semi-final weekend getting closer…. It’s like “GIVE US MORE TIME TO GET READY” but also “FFS LETS GET DONE WITH IT LETS GO ON STAGE.”
It feels like Samux stepped into his role on short notice without skipping a beat — what has it been like to play with him this season, and what has he brought to this roster?
Samux is clever, chill, nice and has a super efficient deadpan sense of humor. He is a really nice teammate outside of the game, which I do believe helps a lot to integrate into our working environment.
In-game? More than checking our game results, my main tool to know if an ADC is good or bad is to check if our support is happy and has fun playing with him. And guess what, Hylissang is happy and has fun. A lot of fun.
Overall, we have been incredibly lucky to find such a nice [player] in order to complete our roster. I guess Samux is kind of a miracle.
What has been the most important thing you’ve learned over this regular season?
We are slowly learning our jobs, and it starts to show results. There is currently no book or guide to become a successful LoL team. We have barely no perspective on how to efficiently create an esport org and train pro-players so we had to improvise a lot using our common sense and social skills, both unified towards a common will. Winning.
With an experienced coach, an experienced manager, two veteran players, one experienced player and two “rookies with experience,” I believe we have a super solid roster this year. I learned everything takes time!
Outside of your own roster, who would be your overall MVP from EU this split?
Rekkles. The guy is a genuinely nice person, I’m so happy his hard work is finally paying off.
You could end up at MSI if you take playoffs. How do you think that experience might compare to what you experienced at IEM Katowice?
That would be an incredible adventure. Nothing you can compare with what we had the chance to experience so far. By allowing only the No.1 team of each region to attend, Riot is creating an awesome tournament. There is some “Hunger Games” feeling there: you are representing your region in a fearsome battle versus Korea [and] the World. On top of the amazing opportunity to face some of the best LoL orgs of the planet, I think it’s a great chance to travel as a team. Such kind of experience is always an adventure, full of encounters and new situations, perfect to reinforce the team atmosphere.
How would you rank Europe as a region against the rest of the world right now?
Before IEM and facing Flash Wolves: KR > EU > NA.
After IEM and facing Flash Wolves: KR > FW > EU > NA.
How badly will love hurt on when you face off against Misfits?
This is the beauty and doom of any kind of highly competitive job. You wake up in the morning with your heart full of stress, not knowing if by the time you go to bed again, you will be ecstatic or devastated. And it will be 100 percent one of those two emotions. No middle ground allowed.
One good aspect of it is you have an insane amount of control over those two opposite outcomes. League of Legends is a fair game. If we lose on Sunday, it means they were better.
This interview has been lightly edited and condensed for clarity.
Jsh "Gauntlet" Bury is a news editor for theScore esports. You can find him on Twitter.