MANILA - Blacklist International defended its Mobile Legends: Bang Bang Professional League crown after defeating Onic PH in a 4-1 Season 8 Grand Finals showdown, Sunday.
After sinking to the lower bracket, Blacklist climbed all the way up to the Grand Finals after defeating Smart Omega, 3-1 in an earlier matchup.
It was also sweet revenge for a Blacklist squad that was swept by Onic late in the regular season. This is the second year in a row that Blacklist will be taking the crown.
Blacklist banked on late-game exploits, thanks to Danerie James "Wise" Del Rosario's season 7 championship-winning Aldous to draw the first game for Blacklist. Regular season MVP Salic "Hadji" Imam's Yve took the MVP recognition with a 100 percent kill participation.
It was a back and forth for both teams in Game 2. But Game 2 Markyyyyy's Natan led the charge in a crucial teamfight down the bottom lane 20 minutes in, taking down three players en route to the base annihilation to level the series, 1-1.
Captain Johnmar "OhMyV33nus" Villaluna's Mathilda went ham to start Game 3, building up a mega kill for his own to start the set and set the tempo, helping Blacklist regain the lead, 2-1. Wise took the MVP recognition with his Bane for Game 3, behind his massive damage output and a 7/2/6 kill-death-assist (KDA) record.
With Hadji's Chou in control, Blacklist banked on a clean game in Game 4, coming out unscathed and keeping Onic without a kill for a dominant route to match point. Hadji took another MVP recognition in Game 4 with 9 assists, as his Chou proved vital in ganks throughout the set.
Blacklist banked on another dominant game in Game 4 to secure the title defense.
Blacklist held the best record in MPL history in the regular season behind a 13-1 win-loss record, only falling behind Onic Philippines through a 2-0 sweep. They have only dropped two matches in the regular seasons of Season 7 and Season 8.
Starting the playoffs in round 2 of the upper bracket, they fell to Smart Omega, 3-1, amid missing the services of OHEB, who faced a two-game suspension.
Starting with the best record in Season 8, Onic PH ran riot with Kairi "Kairi" Rayosdesol's growth as a player, and the return of Allan "Baloyskie" Baloy as its captain.
They were the only team which defeated Blacklist in the regular season, behind a 2-0 sweep.
COACH: Kristoffer Ed "BON CHAN" Ricaplaza
- Johnmar "OhMyV33nus" Villaluna (captain)
- Danerie James "Wise" Del Rosario
- Kiel Calvin "OHEB" Soriano
- Salic A "Hadji" Imam
- Edward "EDWARD" Jay Dapadap
- Mark Jayson "ESON" Gerardo
- Dexter Louise "DEX STAR" Alaba
ONIC PH roster
COACH: Paul Denver "Coach Yeb" Miranda
- Allen Jedric "Baloyskie" Baloy (captain)
- Kairi "Kairi" Rayosdelsol
- Gerald "Dlarskie" Trinchera
- Karl Mico "Micophobia" Tarala
- Mark Christian "Markyyyyy" Etcobañez
- Jaylord "Hatred" Gonzales
- Paul Ian "Beemo" Sergio
- Nowee "Ryota" Cabailo