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Tryke Gutierrez explains 'friendly deal' with RSG that led to Blacklist joining DPC Division 1

Blacklist is going all in too with its DOTA 2 team, but the club insisted it can balance its focus with the more popular ML team. Ivan Saldajeno
By Ivan Saldajeno

QUEZON CITY—Tier One chief executive officer Tryke Gutierrez admitted to Dugout Philippines that the esports company's newly formed DOTA 2 team under the Blacklist International banner took the shortcut to earn a Division 1 spot in the upcoming DOTA Pro Circuit.

Gutierrez revealed that Blacklist bought the berth that originally belonged to Resurgence Esports, paving the way for his "Redeem Team" of Tims Randrup, Carlo Palad, Nico Barcelon, Marc Fausto, and Karl Baldovino to quickly enter the top tier and become eligible to compete for a major.

"We bought the slot straight-up. It was a monetary deal. Fortunately, Jayf (Soh, RSG's CEO) is a friend of mine, so it was a friendly deal," Gutierrez said during the Blacklist DOTA 2 team's formal launch on Sunday at the Gallery Miranila here.

He then believes that Blacklist would have not been able to sign the aforementioned esports stars to the squad had they decided to begin their journey from the ground up, that is, competing in the second division.

Blacklist would have needed to secure a top-two finish in the second division to be promoted to the top tier, but instead, the squad will have a direct chance to rack up DPC points for a shot at making The International 2023 outright.

"It's something that was necessary for all of these to have happened. To be brutally honest, if wala siguro sa amin yung Division 1 slot, I'm not sure if we have the players as well," Gutierrez added.

He further said, "We're all in on this. It's putting your money where your mouth is. If you want to say you want to win, you need to be in a position to win. If we're gonna get a team of this caliber and not get a Division 1 slot, that will also mean they're gonna lose on the first major."

Tier One now has another esports team to worry about aside from the reigning world-champion Mobile Legends squad, which is currently in Bali for the IESF World Championships, but according to Gutierrez, they already know how to balance the focus between the two.

"I think we were able to practice balance in talent management," Gutierrez further said, citing how Tier One handles about 1,000 content creators within its umbrella, which includes his fellow co-founder, Alodia Gosiengfiao.

"If you've seen, most of them have stayed with us since Day 1. I think that just shows how well-balanced we look at things in terms of making sure that they're all satisfied individually, and we are bringing that same thinking and values to the esports side," Gutierrez added.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno

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