Ahead of EU Masters, one of the teams in the spotlight to win the tournament is Team BDS Academy, who lost the 2022 Summer Finals against LDLC OL, but with sensations that the title could’ve won either way, as BDS defeated LDLC just one week before. One of the most significant differences that came to the team is their toplaner Adam "Adam" Maanane, one of the unique players in ERL, thanks to his specific champion pool and a big fanbase that has given him an intense story since his debut on the big scene in 2021.
Because of this, I decided to talk with him to dig into what's behind BDS's increase in performance, his feelings about his time in LEC, and his expectations about EU Masters.
“I came back to LFL with a feeling of conquering.”
Adam "Adam" Maanane
LEC Gliscor, BLIX.GG: Of course, you and your team did a fantastic streak run from the regular season starting from Week 5. What do you think were the key factors to this improvement? I also saw that the streak started almost at the same time patch 12.12 came out. Did that matter?
Adam: I think the key factors to this improvement came from the hard work that we had during the first weeks of LFL. We made sure that the most important point, which was the trust between everyone, was present in order to be able to play as a team. We really managed to work on it, and thanks to that, we suddenly became a really strong team.
Also, regarding the patch, I think that this new patch allowed us to have a pretty clear vision about how the meta was supposed to be, which did lead us to an insane meta read compared to other teams, which resulted in us having really optimal drafts.
BLIX: How did you adapt to coming back to LFL? Of course, coming after an unfortunate split in LEC must have felt hard in the beginning, but your fans seem to have welcomed you with open arms
Adam: I came back to LFL with a feeling of conquering. I know that I was disappointed during the Spring Split with BDS in LEC, and I wanted to show everyone that it was just a bad split. I know what I'm capable of, and I wanted to make sure that everyone does too.
BLIX: Your Champion pool seems to not have altered much besides the meta changes. In fact, sticking to your carry picks has worked better than tanks and off-meta picks. For example, you are the only toplaner in LFL not to have played Gwen or Gangplank, 2 of the most played champions this split. Do you feel more comfortable now, and do you think it has impacted the team's performance?
Adam: I'm a toplaner with its particularities. I adapt to my team with my picks, and my team adapts to the picks I'm capable of playing competitively. Every time I've been in a team, the team was never forced to tell me to practice a specific champion because I think that strong meta picks can be countered by insane knowledge with your own picks. This is where I'm particular.
BLIX: What's your objective for 2023? Do you think you are ready to come back to LEC, whether with BDS or another team?
Adam: My personal and main objective is obviously to reach LEC next year. I know I'm worth that league, and I would like to prove it again to everyone watching me. Obviously, doing it with BDS is something I want because BDS gave me a lot, and I'd like them to give it back by performing in LEC.
BLIX: What’s your opinion on the LFL’s current level? Do you think it has improved compared to Spring? Did any team surprise you for better or worse? Any predictions for the playoffs?
Adam: Since I wasn't in LFL this spring, I cannot tell if the level got higher or not. But compared to when I was in KC back in Spring 2021, the level has really increased a lot, and the competitiveness of the league as well. This league really became kind of a tier 2 LEC, so it's insane that I got to play in this league while demoting from LEC; it kept my mood in the right place. Because I would have probably been mentally hit if I had to play in a lower-tier ERL. No one surprised me specifically, though.
BLIX: Have you started thinking about EU Masters yet? Do you think you can keep your 100% EUM win rate? Do you think any team outside of LFL has any chance?
Adam: Now, regarding EUM, I would really like personally to get this title again; I want to be a guy that got 2 EUM while being on two different teams would be awesome. I think we got our chances; we just keep scaling😀.
The ambition Adam shows surprised me quite a bit. If he manages to win with BDS, he would indeed be the first player to win EU Masters with two different teams. He and his teammates look in great shape, and I’m sure they will deliver a lot of excitement to this competition.