Forming a good VALORANT roster this time can be quite a challenge. You can find loads of aspiring VALORANT pros in Tier 2 and 3 teams looking to grab the chance to prove themselves on a big stage, or perhaps you can acquire the services of an FPS pro from another title that is currently looking to transition to Riot’s FPS darling. There are also a lot of free agents this time thanks to the offseason moves that changed the VALORANT landscape. So what happens if you build your team out of the choices we mentioned above? You get Lionne Esports — a Philippine-based team made up of FPS veterans.
A few weeks ago, Lionne’s roster was inadvertently leaked when they joined the BLEED Summer Open. As it turns out, the roster was final and their player announcements ramped up after we reported the entire roster. Their roster includes:
- George “Georggyyy” Lachica (former Action PH)
- Philip “Aryu” Vergara (former Action PH)
- Keith “FireSaiyajin” Madarang (former Zeal Esports)
- Abdul “Rababz” Permites (former PUBG pro, Collegiate VALORANT player for USJ-R Jaguars Esports)
- Daryl Jay “Asia” Teves (former Counter-Strike 1.6 pro)
Thanks to their manager Andrew “Shycodelix” Raphael, we were able to ask Lionne’s owner Marionne “Trunks” Alfeche, who is now known as Boss M, a few questions about this budding new VALORANT roster from Cebu, Philippines. Here’s what we found out.
The Birth of Lionne
A lot of people in the esports industry were on it thanks to their passion for the game. and it so happens to be that one of those people turned out to be Lionne’s big boss. After all, Boss M once competed as a player back then (in multiple titles in fact) and once procured a pro gamer license in the Philippines back in 2018.
With that said, it was Boss M’s lifelong dream to establish his own esports team and for him, with the unprecedented rise of VALORANT, this year was the perfect time to do so.
”It has been my lifelong dream to make my very own team. I am very passionate about esports and it just so happens that I now have the resources to make all of this happen,” Boss M told us.
According to him, it inspires him so much that there are a lot of esports talents that are “hidden and ready to be nourished” and that he’s willing to support them and the community that will follow.
“It fires me up to know that we have many promising talents hidden and ready to be nourished. I just want to show my support and encourage not just my fellow esports enthusiast but everyone in this community as well.”
Naturally, Boss M had to scour the vast VALORANT scene for players to pick up. What was his method of scouting? Simple. Post on Facebook and make it viral.
Boss M’s viral post garnered at least 2K reactions, 2.1K comments, and 3.5K shares. So when asked if his viral post helped in forming the team the answer was simply yes.
“It really helped us reach players who were looking for a team, even those who were considering signing with another organization or had offers elsewhere,” Boss M disclosed.
From there, he only had one more question: what do you name the team? Boss M then mentioned the heartwarming reason behind his organization’s name.
“The name “Lionne” came up simply because it’s the name that we plan to give to our baby in the future,
With all the pieces now set into motion, Boss M then had to pick his Lionne cubs.
Picking Lionne Cubs
As mentioned before, Boss M had his own pro esports experience. As it turns out, that was how he met two of his new players in Georgyyy and Rababz.
“I was also an esports player before. I played PUBG competitively and got to know a lot of people who share and enjoy FPS games. This is where I first met Georggyyy and Rababz.”
With his prior connection to Georggyyy and Rababz, and with the help of his viral post, here’s what Boss M had in mind when he chose Lionne’s respective players:
“Georggyyy has already experienced being on the top since he previously achieved rank 1 in SEA. Now, who doesn’t want to have the rank 1 player on his team, right? He was also the one who recommended Aryu to be part of the team. “
“Aryu has a very gracious personality so I don’t think he will have a hard adjusting to this team. Don’t get me wrong, he also got the skills to play. I just don’t see him becoming a problem for the team but who am I to say.”
“I got to know FireSaiyajiN when I searched for the best players in SEA. He was one of the top 10 Radiant in the SEA region so I tried reaching out to him in order to recruit him and as you can see, it was a success.”
“Rababz was recommended by my brother. He was also my teammate in PUBG before where I learned about his prowess in FPS games. His performance, as what I’ve witnessed with my own two eyes, is consistent. He top frags almost every game.”
“Asia is a veteran who has a vast experience and knowledge about FPS games. He was a part of MOTV where my older brother (HEERO) [came from]. Asia [also happened to be part of the winning team that] won the first VALORANT tournament which was hosted by Mineski.”
Boss M also emphasized the quality of the players in terms of tournament experiences and personal achievements.
“It’s safe to say that their future is limitless. I firmly believe that they can compete with the top players around the world. And there you have it, that is how I picked the players to represent my team, Lionne Esports.”
As Lionne was formed during the technical off-season for teams that haven’t qualified for the VALORANT Masters, LCQ, or Champions, Lionne has the time to get to know each other and tackle the concerns about the team’s chemistry.
“I’m confident about the team’s chemistry and performance heading onto the 2023 VCT season,” Boss M assured Lionne’s doubters. “We have a lot of time to prepare and we have the infrastructure and coaching staff built around the team to get them what they want and need to be able to work on their individual and team strengths, and countless opportunities for improvement.”
For now, the team is keen on entering as many tournaments as possible in order to prepare for next year’s VCT competitive circuit.
“We plan to take our time and get a lot of experience around third-party tournaments while the VCT competitive circuit is still out of the picture. This will help us prepare for the season.”
With a less-than-stellar debut on the BLEED Summer Open, only time will tell if Lionne Esports will find their groove. However, with the team composed of a jigsaw of seasoned FPS pros, each with their own tournament and personal accolades, it is without a doubt that Lionne will be roaring its way into the VALORANT ecosystem soon enough.