In his first vlog as a member of Team SoloMid, Yiliang "Doublelift" Peng reflected on his career with Counter Logic Gaming, clarified some of the statements he made during a particularly emotional streaming session and also revealed that Zaqueri "Aphromoo" Black was a primary reason for his departure.
The Doublelift and Aphromoo lane duo was well-known and respected in the LCS, affectionately nick-named Rush Hour, but Doublelift feels that people misunderstood the situation.
"We had a really great working relationship, we had a lot of fun playing together and we were friends," Doublelift said. "And maybe we are still friends, I'm not saying it's all over, but the reason why I said were weren't friends [on stream]... The truth is, Aphro went to the org and said, 'It's either me or him, I'm not playing with [Doublelift] next year.'"
Doublelift has stated that this is something that wasn't just hearsay, he confirmed it with Aphromoo himself.
"When I heard about that, I didn't think that we were friends; that is a very unfriendly thing to do," Doublelift said.
According to the vlog, Aphromoo gave his ultimatum despite Doublelift's attempts to improve the situation.
"I was trying really hard and I was trying to work through our problems. I went to Mylixia and I said 'I know Aphro and I have a lot of problems, but I'm willing to work through them and I want to get better, I want Aphro to get better. We're in this together.'"
Ultimately, Doublelift was released from the team.
"I felt like [Aphromoo] gave up on me, as a friend and as a teammate," he said.
Doublelift admitted that he had a negative attitude during his four-year stay with CLG and he didn't react in the best way regarding his former teammate's performance or apparent lack of dedication. He's realized that, regardless of that, he should have still trusted in his team.
"I could justify it at the time because their performance was really bad and they were getting distracted by girls, partying or other games and not trying as hard," Doublelift said. "But when you're on a team, there's no excuse; you need to trust in your teammates regardless of how much effort they put in.
"No body's perfect. I messed up a lot."
Doublelift gave an example of his negative behavior when Jake "Xmithie" Puchero ran into visa issues before the 2015 World Championship. He blamed CLG for failing to resolve a "fixable" problem and did not support the team's replacement Jungler, Choi "HuHi" Jae-hyun. Doublelift came to regret this.
"[Xmithie] is a person I was really close with on the team and we had been working for an entire year to finally make it to Worlds, it was like our dream come true and then he couldn't play," Doublelift said. "I was super upset about the situation, I felt like the organization had messed up because it was a visa problem that was fixable. I caused a lot of stress for the organization and I didn't support HuHi playing as well as I could have...and that was unacceptable."
Doublelift talked about his first offer from TSM. Andy "Reginald" Dinh, TSM's owner and founder, made him an offer that, according to Doublelift, "CLG could never match." But Doublelift turned down the offer wanting to stay committed to CLG, but he realized later that his commitment was not reciprocated.
"I turned it down because I was loyal to the team, because I've been sticking with the team for four years. This is a team that I grew with and was committed to grow with forever, but the sad thing is that they weren't committed back."
Reginald has commented on the Reddit thread for the vlog, clarifying that he approached Doublelift only after going through CLG's CEO, Devin "Mylixia" Nash. Mylixia commented the Doublelift situation over TwitLonger on Nov. 3.
Doublelift had a lot to say about Mylixia and how CLG was ran. Mylixia trusted the word of his managers and employees, but at the same time, he doesn't blame him for this, not does he think Mylixia should get any ill feelings from the community for it.
"Speaking of Mylixia, I don't think anyone should have any ill feelings towards him, because he facilitated everything," Doublelift said. "A lot of the things that he says, after talking to him last night, I realized that he just trusts in his management and his management told him a lot of things. They had talked to me over the years, they told him all this information and he took the word of his management and they told him how this has happened. But from my perspective, that's not how it happened, I tell you 100% honestly, that is not how it happened from my point of view. Mylixia just trusts his employees, so I can't really blame him for that and I think we both agree that there is a lot of misinformation and miscommunication. That's just the nature of things, that's just how CLG was ran."
Doublelift believes that in the end, this was the best situation for all parties, but he regrets how it came about.
"I think it's a win all-round and the only shame is that this had to go public," Doublelift said. "I think it's unfortunate because it's doesn't make anyone look good, and it just feels really bad to be part of this.
Dennis Gonzales is a Toronto eSports writer who enjoys whiskey, Dungeon & Dragons and first-picking
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