ALL IS SET for Blacklist Rivalry as the team has already finalized their roster for the upcoming DPC season. With a roster stacked with legends in the scene, longtime Dota fans applaud the vintage TNC nostalgia on display with the lineup.
But to move beyond feel-good flashbacks and make their mark on the game's current era, one major question remains: Who should be the team's head coach?
Until now, the team has yet to announce who will mentor this all-Filipino ensemble. However, two members of the team have expressed who they wish to see take over the helm.
Who does Blacklist Rivalry want?
Blacklist's carry player, Marc Polo "Raven" Fausto, hinted that the entire team had a discussion on who they want as their head coach.
The majority said that the Codebreakers prefer a Filipino mastermind.
"Sa totoo lang, ayaw kase namin ng international na coach. Yun lang yung masasabi ko kase yun nga limang Pinoy tapos kailangan namin mag-English ulit. So sa ngayon wala pa rin talaga," said Raven to Spin.ph.
While acquiring a Filipino coach would definitely ease the language barrier issue, there are only a handful of names who fit the description.
Paolo "KilltheMage" Bago comes to mind. He has served as the head coach for Sibol back in 2019 and a Dota 2 analyst for WomboXCombo and a performance coach for Fnatic.
However, it might be difficult to acquire him given his current role as Fnatic's team director.
Another option would be Kimuel "Kim0" Rodis, who captained Execration in their TI6 and TI7 campaign, and even had a brief coaching stint for the team in his latter years.
Prospect of an international coach
While a local coach would definitely solve some issues, team captain Timothy "TIMS" Randrup revealed that he prefers an international coach.
"Kung ako pagpipilian ng coach, gusto ko talaga international," he started. "Pero ang usapan namin together, na gusto namin na coach na Pinoy na hindi gaano ka-involve sa in-game. Kailangan namin ng coach in terms of drafting. Yun yung pinag-usapan namin so far, hindi ko alam kung magbabago pa."
As to why he prefers a foreign mentor? He discussed the importance of having fluidity in terms of ideas.
"Ang masasabi ko na maganda kumuha ng international coach kase may ibang idea kung papaano tingnan yung game e. Kumbaga kung dito meron tayong Pinoy ideas, tapos paghaluan mo ng international ideas, so mas maganda talaga siyang tingnan."
He added: "Kumbaga advantage din kayo sa ibang kalaban niyo kase yung ibang kalaban niyo, kunwari sa SEA, yung idea nila SEA lang kayo dalawa idea niyo, meron kayong international at Pinoy idea."
History has proven that Filipino teams have benefitted a lot from foreign talent. The Miracle of TI6 wouldn't happen without the guidance from American Jimmy "DeMoN" Ho.
Then, in TNC's TI9 campaign, Lee "Heen" Seung Gon took over the reins and helped the team diversify their gameplan.
Prior to his arrival, TNC's methods were traditional in terms of selecting core heroes, but Heen encouraged the team to utilize Leshrac and Bristleback as position 1 options.