Los Angeles Gladiators had a solid press conference on Media Day. Our own Brandon Padilla has been on hand all day getting us all the coverage.
Rob Moore was on the stage, representing the Kroenke group, owners of the Los Angeles Gladiators (GLA), to answer questions from the media. Moore spoke much upon the rise of eSports, and how GLA plans to create a burgeoning culture around their players and organization, as well as cultivate a fan base. Moore, the Kroenke group, and GLA recognize that esports are constantly evolving and quickly becoming part of our culture, hopefully for a long time to come.
Talk quickly moved to the competition, as Moore mentioned GLA’s victory over London Spitfire during the Preseason. The announcers were “touting London as one of the likely champions” spoke Moore, and spoke of how the victory exemplified just how quality an organization they were building.
Team synergy was a huge part of building the GLA. “We put together a team that felt [like it] had a real nucleus and a great chemistry, who our coach ‘David [Pei]’ could build us into a quality franchise” mentioned Moore, with a nod towards David. The team was put together with members from a plethora of regions.
When presented with the question of “Why the GLA was built from different regions”, coach David ‘DPei’ Pei responded that the players came together without concern for their nationality. “Just happened that way”. DPei also mentioned that the team did have two citizens of the Americas in both Hydration and iRemix (Brazilian and Puerto Rico respectively). Moore also joked about being the [self-proclaimed] “unofficial Canadian team” referring to the GLA’s DPS player Surefour.
Surefour, Hydration, and iRemix got a chance to talk about the pressure of each representing their home countries in the OWL. Surefour mentioned “Canadians [in OW] are spread out…puts a lot of pressure on me”, bringing up how close American and Canadian fans of OW were during the World Cup. “Lot(s) of fans follow me on twitter and reach out to me…I want to make those fans from LA and Puerto Rico proud…I’m here representing them”, responded iRemix to the question of pressure. Hydration mostly agreed with iRemix as “…being the only Brazilian player in the league puts a lot of pressure on me, I basically represent all of Brazil”.
The rest of the questions were mostly aimed at how fan cultivation and creation of a culture around the team would be tackled by the GLA. The benefit of being the only team with the colour purple came up as Ron Moore threw a little “whatever that colour green is” shade at their cross-town rivals the Valiant. Performance Coach Blake mentioned that the mental health of players, and “creating better people, not just better players”, was key to the GLA way of life. Shaz and BigGoose (GLA’s resident Finns) mentioned the key to GLA success would be a “systematic approach to the game, [we] plan for everything”.
David Pei finished his questions off talking about how much of an advantage the LA fans had over most of the rest of the world. The advantage of the LA audience is that it “has unique ability to avoid spoilers and watch matches online…much more of the OWL viewing is after the fact…when you can”. Having most of the games in LA should allow for the Gladiators to cultivate a rabid following this season.
It sounds like the GLA are prepping for a fight this season. They know they aren’t the favorites to win it, but after beating London in the preseason, they fully believe they are capable of taking down the big dogs during the season. Look for more coverage of Media Day coming, as Brandon was able to get coverage from every team today.