TSM’s mid laner Maple talked to Gamelevate after their win against Immortals about arriving in North America, his time in the LPL and PCS before joining the LCS, and his favorite food so far in North America.
TSM had the worst split of their LCS careers going 4-14 in the 2022 LCS Spring Split. During the offseason, they made a stunning announcement about bringing on World’s favorite PCS and LPL mid laner Huang “Maple” Yi-tang. With several international appearances under his belt, Maple looks to bring similar success to North America.
The following interview has been edited for length and clarity. We’d like to thank TSM’s Kristi who provided translations.
Maple, thank you so much for speaking with us! Welcome to North America! How have you been enjoying it so far?
I just arrived in Los Angeles. We all ate. But I was really bad at English so it was hard for me to communicate with my teammates. But after two weeks we have more communication and even we can chat outside again.
So last time you and I spoke, we spoke in at the 2021 MSI. So I want to know since your times in the LMS, LPL, and the PCS, what has really changed for you as a player?
I think each region has its own playstyle and I’m enjoying changing regions from one to another. I feel that it is very interesting for me to go and play there.
We’ve been seeing a lot of Corki throughout North America I know it’s been both good and bad in certain situations with several nerfs. Why is Corki all of a sudden becoming such a dominant tech and professional play?
I communicate with some LCK and LPL players. I also like to watch else LCK and LPL play their matches. And I found that Corki is really a good champion when we face a team without really great engage skills.
What about joining TSM? I did watch your introductory video when you got signed and you talked about how you want to think you can bring something different to TSM. I still want to hear a little bit from you. What ultimately made you decide to hop over from the LPL to the LCS?
I think because LCS is also one of the major regions here and because I also want to learn English here. Also, I think it’s really good to try to go to LPL and PCS to come to LCS.
I want to ask a little bit about this weekend. TSM went 1-2 after picking up your first win today. Can you talk to me about how you feel overall you played as an individual throughout these three games?
Actually, after the 1-2, the result I think it’s not a really good result for us but honestly, I think we are improving now. In the first two matches, I and Spica got very big advantages against the enemy team but we still lose the games. So I think if we can improve, then we will get better in the future.
You talked about Spica and jungle-mid synergy is very important. How have you two been getting along?
I’m a player like mid-jungle synergy I really liked this. So I will share some of my experience with Spica and my thoughts. And because Spica can speak a little Chinese sometimes, you know, we cannot communicate in English, but we can talk in Chinese.
What are your goals going to be for the Summer Split?
My goal is that we can get fourth in the summer split and win all the matches. I hope I can get a player of the match because I want the MVP for every match.
You have been in North America for a few weeks. Has there been one food place that you’ve really enjoyed?
I like Korean cuisine and going to Chinatown because Huni will drive us all there.
Finally, is there anything you’d like to say to the fans?
We will get better and better in the following weeks and hoping you can support us, support me and TSM.