Dignitas eXyu sat down with Esports.gg for an exclusive interview following his official LCS debut.
Dignitas made some changes to their lineup for the remainder of the 2022 LCS summer split regular season. The most exciting change is the introduction of rookie jungler eXyu. The North American player has a bright future ahead of him and could set the foundations for the 2023 Dignitas roster.
DIG eXyu featured for the organization in the 2022 Lock-In tournament, but his games last weekend would be his first official games. Following his debut, eXyu spoke to Esports.gg for an exclusive.
Pira: Thank you for taking the time you've just stepped off the LCS stage for the first time but unfortunately it did not end in a win. But the atmosphere out there was pretty electric. I think the crowd was giving some good chants and cheers for you guys. How does it feel to have played a game on the LCS stage?
DIG eXyu: I mean it was kind of surreal but once we actually started the game it was definitely just like any other game I've ever played. But leading up to actually starting when we were setting up and like seeing everyone out there hearing all the noise, it was kind of overwhelming. Not in a bad way. But just like almost in like a dream come true way. So I was really excited to play. And then once you put the headset on the white noise kicked in, like the crowd muffles, and then it's just go time. So it's really cool to experience.
Pira: Absolutely and the team trusted you with the last pickup as well, you got to play Hecarim. This is a champion that I think you've gotten more comfortable with when you were playing in Academy, do you want to talk to me a little bit about the pick ban process you went through today?
DIG eXyu: We definitely planned a lot of draft scenarios, but honestly, they kind of threw a little bit of a curveball. So we originally had planned on going jungle fifth pick but it didn't exactly play out the way we wanted to. I think the Hecarim pick was really strong. And it is like one of my pocket picks the split, but yeah, it didn't get the result we wanted, unfortunately.
Pira: Yeah, there were some nice attempts though, and you did manage to pull off a dragon steal. I know this is kind of an eXyu special. How did it feel to actually pull that off out on the big stage?
DIG eXyu: I mean, honestly, I knew I was gonna get that dragon. I said in the game. I was like, I got the drag. It's fine. To be honest, I'm like a little bit disappointed cause I know I'm very confident in my smite ability and if I didn't die after that second Dragon, I probably would have stolen Baron this game too.
Pira: Okay, well, you're gonna get a few chances. I think there are still a few weeks left in LCS. Before we move on too I do want to ask you about another cheeky hover. I know Katarina came up again. And I feel like I know the story but not everybody does. Do you want to tell me why you hover Kat every game?
DIG eXyu: Yeah, so the Katarina hover is just a shout-out to my girlfriend who's been really really supportive ever since I even was just dreaming about playing professionally back in college. I was just like a diamond player. And I kind of had these dreams of playing pro. And we've been together for a long time. And today she was actually in the crowd. So it was really cool to be able to hover it for her.
Pira: That's super cool I love when players do stuff like that, moving back into making your debut, what was it like when you knew you were getting the call-up?
DIG eXyu: We've definitely been running some internals for the last few weeks. And I felt like I was performing really well against River. And obviously, River didn't get demoted, he got traded. So it just felt like the opportunity was mine to take and I just have to make the most of it.
Pira: With a couple of weeks left, you know, Dignitas obviously aren't currently in playoff contention but there's still an opportunity to do that. What is your goal as a player and your goal as a now Dignitas starter to move your team forward for the next couple of weeks of the regular split?
DIG eXyu: think this weekend, maybe we can get a win against CLG. That'd be a really good start. Once we start getting scrim games in I think our team has the potential to win. The goal is just make sure we get into playoffs. And once playoffs start, that's when the lights are the brightest and I think we will shine.
Pira: Now I know you generally have a lot of fairly strong opinions, not just about yourself, but also against a lot of the other players, you've gone up against them. Looking at a lot of the LCS starters, and now have a game against 100 thieves. What is your assessment of the skill level? How confident do you feel you can get those wins, especially against some of the bottom half teams?
DIG eXyu: Against the bottom half teams, I'm extremely confident to be honest, even today against 100 Thieves, I went in confident. Obviously, it was a really slow game just like all the LCS games. And maybe that's not my comfort zone. But I'm definitely working on it. And I want to bring that aggression that I had in academy to the LCS stage. So once I get a little more comfortable, and our team gets a little more practice, I'm confident that we'll be all the bottom teams.
Pira: Absolutely. You know, I know like you as a player, you've had this year of experience, especially in Academy and you were known always as this incredibly aggressive player. But a lot of the talent on Academy have talked about how you've gotten a lot more measured. Rafa, in particular at a tweet today talking about your development and why the Hecarim is so good for you. Do you feel like you're especially well-rounded? Or is there a lot more room to grow?
"I think my growth in one year has been pretty remarkable. I think. At the beginning of the split, everyone was putting me 10th or ninth as an academy jungler and by the end, I think everyone had me the top three"
DIG eXyu: I think there's definitely room to grow. I mean, obviously, if I can't even win domestically, there's no chance internationally. So obviously, I'm not good enough to win yet. But I think my growth in one year has been pretty remarkable. I think. At the beginning of the split, everyone was putting me tenth or ninth as an academy jungler and by the end, I think everyone had me in the top three. So I'm just hoping to do the same thing with the LCS. I'm sure everyone has me around ninth or 10th Right now, but by the end of the year, hopefully, I'll be around the top three too.
Pira: That's awesome man, moving back onto Dignitas, right now they are not favored against most opponents just yet, do you feel there is more or less pressure for you to perform for not only yourself but for the team?
DIG eXyu: There's no pressure from anyone else. I mean, to be honest, like the coaches, the staff, everyone is like, hey, guys no pressure like just go out there and get experience. But all the pressure comes from within, right? Like, I don't want to go out there and lose every time I go on the stage. So for me, it's really important that we get these wins, and there's pressure so, but I really liked that pressure. That's what makes players really play their best I think is when they're under pressure. So it's good to have that pressure.