T1 League of Legends star Faker discussed the removal of head coach Yang “Daeny” Dae-in and coach Lee “Zefa” Jae-min, who were fired yesterday as a result of T1’s middling campaign (6-5) in the 2021 LCK Summer Split, following their 2-0 victory over KT Rolster today.
“After we heard the news, I presumed that everyone would [be] upset, and they definitely still are,” Faker said in a post-match interview with Inven Global. “However, they kept their head in the game tonight, like pro players should do so, so I’m very grateful.”
Earlier today, it came to light that T1 didn’t inform the players about the coaching changes until the last minute, according to the organization’s general manager Choi “Polt” Seong-hun. Polt thought it wouldn’t have a “good impact” on the players, so he only revealed that Daeny and Zefa were fired one day prior to the announcement.
Faker said even though everyone on the team was confused, they tried their best to focus on the match against KT. He added that new interim head coach Son “Stardust” Seok-hee and coach Kim “Moment” Ji-hwan are working together with the roster to try to find a solution for their struggles.
“Daeny/Zefa were very knowledgeable about the game, so the team’s direction was mostly based on their in-game knowledge,” Faker said. “Now, the coaching staff and the players are acting more as a unit in finding our direction. Right now, everyone’s very confused and upset, but from the day before our match to tonight, we all tried to focus on nothing else but the match. Internally, we’re trying to set the right atmosphere to focus on what’s in front of us.”
Similar to how Daeny didn’t want to comment about his removal earlier today, Faker was just as subtle and wished Daeny and Zefa the best moving forward. The pair had only been working with T1 for eight months, having joined from DAMWON to assist T1 after they failed to qualify for Worlds last year.
“It’s not my place to speak on the team’s internal situation, but one thing that’s certain is that Daeny and Zefa definitely provided us with a lot of in-game knowledge,” Faker said. “There are a lot of reasons behind Daeny and Zefa’s departure, and I believe everyone has their perspective of the story, so I urge everyone to not make any wrong assumptions. Lastly, I want to thank Daeny and Zefa for all their hard work, and wish them the best.”
T1, who sit in fifth place in the 2021 LCK Summer Split, will return to the Rift on Saturday, July 17 to face DWG, who are in third place with a 7-3 record.
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