Translator: Nomyummi Editor: Nomyummi
The Challenger League had finally reached its last stages.
Two days after the match against Team Jade Dynasty, the media began to harass Team Happy, all wanting to interview Ye Xiu. The finals of the Challenger League. The showdown between Team Excellent Era's ex-captain and Team Excellent Era for the right to return to the Pro League. For such a spectacular topic, even the Pro League matches could be pushed to the side.
And within this topic, the most exciting aspect was Team Happy's exceptional performance. This built up anticipation for the possibility of a task once thought impossible. Happy's strength wasn't nearly as bad as people had thought. If you took a look at the victories they had scored in the Challenger League all the way until now; almost all of them were one-sided victories. Among these defeated opponents, there was Everlasting, Mysterious Fantasy and Jade Dynasty, these three pro-level teams.
Even though these three were all very weak pro teams, they hadn't been a threat to Team Happy at all. In other words, Happy's strength was far above theirs. Them challenging Excellent Era wasn't arrogant or absurd.
The winds were changing.
At the beginning, everyone thought that Happy was just looking for death, wanting attention, shameless, but now more and more people began to become interested in Happy, eager and expectant for what they would do next.
This sort of enthusiasm was real and not just people who wanted to see Excellent Era fall and therefore supported Happy, like it was in the beginning.
Back then, their support of Happy was just to embarrass Excellent Era. Truthfully, they didn't believe Happy could threaten Excellent Era. However, now their support was more and more real because they began to acknowledge Happy's strength. This would, without doubt, make them even more anticipatory, because now there was an even bigger chance of seeing Excellent Era get humiliated.
Some reporters went ingame and randomly interviewed random Glory players, asking them about their thoughts on this match. After asking several hundred people, they compiled their results and surprisingly found that the number of players supporting Happy exceeded the number of players supporting Excellent Era, a whole 68% percent...
And when the reporters asked for their reason in supporting Happy, the gist of it was a single sentence: it's fun to watch the drama unfold.
From this point of view, a newly brought up army, a team that came from an Internet cafe, defeating the Glory powerhouse Excellent Era was evidently more unexpected and more interesting than Excellent Era winning.
An upset was very attractive to many people.
However, this was only a hope. Another media outlet also went around interviewing random players and didn't ask for hopes, but estimations. In this round of questioning, Excellent Era was far in the lead. 91% of players estimated that Excellent Era would win the match, even though many of them had said they hoped Happy would win.
On the Monday issue of Esports Home's weekly, these two interesting results were discussed together. At the same time, Esports Home also had what each thought of the upcoming match. This was something other media outlets didn't have. On the weekend, both teams were harassed by many different reporters from different media outlets, but both teams rejected interviews. After that, they went to the reporter they were familiar with to have a chat.
Excellent Era had Cao Guangcheng, while Happy hadChang Xian. The two reporters that had practically been silenced because of Excellent Era being relegated, now had monopoly of all the best resources.
Edports Home had resolutely expressed that the final match of the Challenger League had to be fully and comprehensively reported on, even if that meant giving it a portion of the sections reserved for the Pro League, which was just finishing up and in its most crucial moments. As for the Alliance, they also placed great importance on this Challenger League match that was the most popular one yet. On the weekend, they had been extremely busy. After talking things over among themselves and contacting the necessary outside parties, they made a last-minute change to the location of this final battle. To better present this match that had captured so much attention, the Alliance decided to move the finals to the Liulisong Sports Arena in the north sector of the city.
The largest difference between this stadium and the last was that it was fully equipped with holographic projectors. The Alliance had decided that the finals of the Challenger League would receive the same treatment as Pro League matches and that meant displaying it through the holographic projection technology to the audience.
This aspect was added mostly for the audience. There wasn't any difference for the two competing teams. The holographic projectors just changed the way the match was shown. For the participants, they were still in the player booths, sitting and competing in front of their computer screens. They couldn't see the holographic projections; that was an omniscient view....
However, the media to the Alliance to the passion of the normal players clearly showed that the amount of attention this Challenger League match was receiving was unprecedented. It wasn't just because there was a powerhouse superstar team like Excellent Era present. To be honest, the reason it could attract so much attention was mostly because of the drama Happy had created.
As the match approached, how did each side see things? This was what the media was looking for and what the players were curious about.
So, on the Monday issue of Esports Home, they found their answer. In the interview with Excellent Era, Happy hadn't been mentioned even once. What Excellent Era was so fixated on discussing was just one name, Ye Qiu.
"Ye Qiu is a good captain." When Excellent Era's boss, Tao Xuan, spoke of this, his expression was tinged with complicated emotions. He asked the journalist for a cigarette and from what the journalist knows, Boss Tao had already quit for a while now.
That's what the reporter, Cao Guangcheng, had written in the interview with Excellent Era.
"Ye Qiu is a good captain, very impressive. He's brought an honor onto Excellent Era that no one has managed to surpass. This is something that we can't deny. If possible, I really hope that Ye Qiu and Excellent Era could be frozen in that perfect moment in time and continue that way forever. Unfortunately, nothing in this world stays the same. The Alliance develops, Glory moves forwards, we also have to keep moving forward. If we stand still and isolate ourselves, then I feel that we would have trouble keeping our competitiveness. Excellent Era is actually a very good example of this. After getting our three consecutive championships, we couldn't keep surpassing our limits, only hoping to keep our current pace. Yet that led to us watching as the other teams caught up one by one, snatching the championship from our hands."
"So in these years, Excellent Era has always been pursuing change. I hope we can find a way to survive that better suits the current situation of the Alliance; that's the only way to allow Excellent Era's continued and stable development. This sort of change, naturally, requires a cost. I had mentally prepared myself for this, but to be honest, I hadn't thought Excellent Era would be relegated. Being relegated was an accident, but what I say is that everything has its pros and cons. The year of rest we got after being relegated might just be the relaxed atmosphere we need to turn things back around for ourselves."
"Excellent Era might not be in the Alliance anymore, but if you ask me, I think Excellent Era is always looking forwards, positive, never giving up, no matter where we are, we only have one goal: the championship. We will never give up on working towards the championship. However, the road to this goal is longer than usual this time. We have to start from the Challenger League, and here, we met the greatest player we at Excellent Era have ever had, Ye Qiu. Yet now he's our opponent. To be honest, this is more surprising to me than Excellent Era being relegated."
"Recently I've heard people from other teams say, and of course, our reporter friends ask me, saying everyone is very curious, wondering if Ye Qiu had a spat with Excellent Era. Otherwise, why would he suddenly come back after retiring and go against Excellent Era in the Challenger League?"
"Heh, why Ye Qiu suddenly retired and suddenly came back, I think you should ask Ye Qiu this question! Though I'm close with him, I'm not a part of his mind. Of course, I understand everyone's troubles. Ye Qiu never accepts interviews from the media, so getting an answer from him is practically impossible."
"How he thinks about this exactly, I can't really guess, but I believe that I can tell everyone for certain that Excellent Era and Ye Qiu have no bad blood between them."
"Whenever there's a fluctuation in performance or rumors of transfering in the teams today, it'll always come with guesses like that. But in reality? It's baseless rumors. Excellent Era and Ye Qiu have no bad blood between them, but if you want to say we have some differences in opinion, that's true. Like if I say snails are delicious and you say pork is delicious. Can these differences in opinion be called bad blood?"
"These differences in opinion exist wherever people exist, so I won't go on about it. Now Ye Qiu is our opponent, and to be truthful I'm still not very used to this situation. How did Ye Qiu become our opponent? But this is alright, I respect his decisions. This time, let's battle it out as opponents. Of course, if he okay with it, I wouldn't mind going out for a drink together after the match."
Excellent Era's interview was attended personally by their boss. This was extremely rare. And in the interview, Excellent Era's boss seemed to have completely opened himself up, confidently, eagerly, and directly answering many of the questions everyone had about Excellent Era and Ye Qiu.
The only question he avoided was why Ye Qiu came to the Challenger League to face off against Excellent Era. He kicked that question to Ye Qiu for him to answer.
Those who were kept in the dark naturally would come after Ye Qiu for questions, but those who knew wanted to flip the table in rage. For example, Chen Guo.
"Shameless!!" Chen Guo slapped the newspaper onto the desk harshly, as if she was hitting Tao Xuan with this slap.
Tao Xuan had answered all the nice things and thrown the one trapped question right to Ye Xiu. That was such a sly move.