Topson with OG at the Epicenter 2019 [left] , MATUMBAMAN with Team Liquid at the Epicenter 2018 [right[


Topson Remembers That Playing Against MATUMBAMAN Was “Scary”

Rakshak Kathuria
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Former two-time TI champion Topias Miikka "Topson" Taavitsainen said in a recent livestream that playing against Lasse Aukusti "MATUMBAMAN" Urpalainen was "scary" during the latter’s tenure with Team Liquid in 2018 and 2019.
As Topson noted, MATUMBAMAN's wide array of heroes allowed Liquid to counter many of Topson's heroes. This, he said, made it difficult for OG to draft and play against MATUMBAMAN and Liquid back then.
Nevertheless, when MATUMBAMAN was kicked from Liquid in June 2019, Topson and OG sighed with relief that the team's "star player" was gone.

With an impressive skill set and versatility, Lasse Aukusti "MATUMBAMAN" Urpalainen managed to excel both in the midlane and the safelane during his tenure with Team Liquid from 2015 to 2019, when he also won The International 7 (TI7). Topias Miikka "Topson" Taavitsainen, former two-time TI champion, in praise of MATUMBAMAN’s versatility, said that it was one of the very few times that he felt scared when drafting and playing against someone. Topson explained that he and OG were not clear on what to draft against MATUMBAMAN when he played for Liquid, as he could play any hero that countered Topson’s hero in the midlane. But when Team Liquid (now Nigma Galaxy) kicked him out of the team in 2019, Topson and OG breathed a sigh of relief.

Topson says playing against MATUMBAMAN in the past was a difficult experience

In a recent livestream, Topson said he was afraid of playing against MATUMBAMAN for two years after joining OG just weeks before TI8 in 2018. OG was always in a tough situation because Liquid had the answer to many of Topson’s mid heroes with MATUMBAMAN’s signature picks, such as Lone Druid, Broodmother, and Venomancer.

As a result, Topson stated that he had to mostly play strong laners against MATUMBAMAN. “There was always something that he could do to ruin me so I just played heroes like Troll, and Pango - strong laners.”

In 2019, however, when MATUMBAMAN was released just a few weeks before TI9, Topson said that they were glad to see Liquid's "star player" leaving the team. “But then they kicked Matu and we were like - Okay, they lost their star player - the one who makes them scary. And then playing into them was so fun and easy,” Topson said.

Although MATUMBAMAN has been playing only as a safelaner since 2019, notably for Team Secret and currently for Team Liquid, he would often switch lanes with Amer "Miracle-" Al-Barkawi when playing for Liquid from 2015 to 2019. In late 2019. this Team Liquid roster, which had seen the replacement of MATUMBAMAN with Aliwi "w33" Omar, formed its own organization, Team Nigma (rebranded as Nigma Galaxy in September 2021).

Former Team Liquid midlaner Max "qojqva" Bröcker had also recently appreciated Nigma Galaxy's performance when they had MATUMBAMAN on the roster. Seeing Nigma Galaxy's current failures in the Western Europe (WEU) Dota Pro Circuit (DPC) 2021-22 Tour 2: Division 1 led qojqva to say that the team's decision to kick MATUMBAMAN in 2019 was wrong. Qojqva pointed out that the strategic edge that MATUMBAMAN gave Nigma then has not been possible with his replacements - w33 and currently Igor "iLTW" Filatov.

Currently, Nigma Galaxy has lost five series in a row in Tour 2 and finds itself on the verge of relegation. On the other hand, MATUMBAMAN, playing for Team Liquid, sits in the middle of the pack with three wins and two losses. Liquid and Nigma will next face off on 12th April.

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Rakshak is an undergrad, an inquisitive person who likes to acquire information and knowledge of varied sectors in esports. However, his current focus is specifically on Dota 2.