Team BDS overcome lack of motivation for online play to win RLCS Fall Major
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Team BDS settled the debate about whether they can perform on LAN by winning the RLCS Fall Major for the 2021-2022 season on Sunday.

After a season-long online reign throughout RLCS season X in 2020 and 2021, the only lingering question was whether Team BDS could do it in person and against the other regions. In the first RLCS LAN event in two years’ time, Team BDS proved the doubters wrong by taking down North American titans NRG in the grand final in overwhelming fashion.

“It feels good to finally prove to mostly the NA people that we actually play good in every aspect of the game — online and on LAN,” Alex “Extra” Paoli said during the winners’ interview.

Team BDS measure up on LAN

While Team BDS won several regionals and all majors in RLCS Season X, they failed to take the gold medal in the 2021-2022 season in the regionals leading up to the Fall Major. According to Extra, that had to do with the shortcomings of their communication. At the Fall Major, that struggle seemed to have disappeared like frost under the morning sun.

“I think there was a lack of motivation when we played online,” Extra said. “And being on LAN at a major since two years really motivated us to play good. I think that helps a lot.”

Team BDS had strong performances throughout the RLCS Fall Major. Meeting Complexity, NRG, FaZe Clan and Team Endpoint in the Swiss stage, they only found themselves on the losing side once, against FaZe Clan. After that trial by fire, they fought their way through Complexity once more in the knock-out phase, followed by SMPR Esports for an NRG rematch in the final.

They faced some of the strongest teams at the tournament. And, not only did they face them in-game, they sat across from them on stage for the first time as well. Especially in the grand final against NRG, that started affecting Team BDS.

As the win slipped from NRG’s fingers, the players were visibly smiling and laughing on the player cams. In return, their gameplay took a steady rise. So while Team BDS demolished RLCS veterans and defending World Champions NRG in the first best-of-seven with a 4-1 victory, the second was much more hard-fought. And, having forced a game seven, NRG threatened a third best-of-seven.

“Against NRG, it was kind of weird because they started laughing,” Extra said. “It was kind of disturbing us, so that’s why it went to 4-3 in the last best-of-seven.”

At the end of the day, Team BDS closed out the set 2-0 in the grand final in order to claim the first RLCS Major victory of the season. They managed to remain focused and collected, partially due to Marc “MaRc_By_8.” Domingo’s mother. The Spanish superstar said that before almost every match, he called his mother to calm his nerves. Those calls, according to MaRc_By_8. and translated by Gonzalo Cardona from Ginx TV, eased the pressure, reminded him not to only focus on the win and kept him at ease.

Team BDS can now look forward to starting their RLCS LAN win collection, adding to their already impressive online trophy cabinet. They had to wait a year to prove themselves on the stage, but with only the first LAN of the season finished, there is a lot more on the line going forward. While the danger is complacency after finally getting their first LAN victory, Extra said they now know they need to be motivated for every game, whether it’s Swiss stage or the quarter-final.

Michael Kloos is a Dutch esports journalist and enthusiast with a particular like of Rocket League and VALORANT. He is also an avid fantasy/sci-fi reader and writer. He spends most of his time trying not to be in the real world.
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