JJ Lin’s Team Still Moving Under Gunfire (SMG) has released their roster for the new first-person-shoot game, Valorant by Riot Games. The list of players comprises of an all-Singaporean team, consisting of veteran professional players of Counter-Strike: Global Offensive.
Mandopop megastar singer JJ Lin founded the esports team, along with veteran Dota 2 player turned coach, Kenchi Yap. Team SMG won first place in TheGym MY/SG Final Countdown: Causeway Cup, CSGO2Asia Grassroots Cup and GeForce Cup Pacific Singapore Qualifier.
Born out of his love for Dota and esports, JJ Lin brought his passion and love for gaming to a professional level, with various teams playing competitively under his belt. Team SMG was established in 2017 and is a premier esports organisation in Asia, with teams in China and Southeast Asia. Mandopop megastar singer JJ Lin founded the team, along with veteran Dota 2 player turned coach, Kenchi Yap. JJ Lin has provided support to official Dota 2 events such as the Shanghai Major and DAC Major as a guest performer and is currently heavily involved in the development of his esports teams. His aim is to bring esports to greater heights, utilising his influence in pop culture as leverage.
Team SMG gained popularity after its big win at the Arena of Valor International Championship with their Taiwan based team. In 2018, the esports company moved into Player Unknown’s Battleground (PUBG) with a Shanghai-based partnership team. In 2020, team SMG announced that they had signed on ‘Makan Cendol’ to compete in Mobile Legends Bang Bang, an online mobile battle arena multiplayer game. The acquisition of ‘Makan Cendol’ is part of Team SMG’s strategic venture into Southeast Asia’s competitive esports scene.
Armed with teams competing in Mobile Legends Bang Bang (MLBB), PUBG, and PUBG Mobile, Team SMG’s new foray into Valorant territory is not unfounded; with the addition expanding Team SMG’s esports presence in SEA, with now teams in Shanghai, Malaysia, and Singapore.
Valorant was only recently officially released at the beginning of June 2020 but has already grasped the attention of several esports organisations, unveiling rosters consisting of former CS:GO professionals. Lin’s team consists of:
- Captain Sha ‘ZesBeeW’ Mohtar;
- Coach/Manager Kenneth ‘Colbat’ Ho;
- Danyal ‘Kama’ Heng;
- Alex ‘falfalfal’ Cheng;
- Xavier ‘LEXY’ Lee;
- Chun Ting ‘Divine’ Yeoh; and
- Syafiq ‘Aeozora’ Anuar.
Before Valorant, several team members were former CS:GO pro players, with Captain ZesBeeW being a previous CS:GO e-athlete for Malaysia’s Team XCN and JYP Gaming. ZesBeeW also captained the Resurgence CS:GO team, and played with falfalfa, LEXY, and Divine, before its disbandment.
Previously a professional PUBG player, Aeozora had played the battle royale game for four years and competed in the PUBG SEA Series 2020, alongside the Aerowolf Pro Team. Aeozora has since retired from PUBG and now focuses on Valorant.
Moving into Valorant territory, the team has already dominated the community tournaments, such as BRSG Valorant Community Series and the Stay Home Challenge Breaker. They will make their competitive debut in the Lenovo’s Rise of Legion: Valorant July 2020 tournament, running from 27 July to 1 August, when the finals take place. More information on the competition can be found on the Lenovo Legion website.
Lin has called the Valorant squad a ‘milestone in my esports journey, one that is very close to my heart’ in an Instagram post announcing the team.
The Valorant team is the first Singaporean team of SMG.
SMG has rosters that compete in other games, such as Mobile Legends, PUBG, and PUBG Mobile, based in Malaysia and China.
In his Instagram post, Lin also mentioned his vision for esports in Southeast Asia.
“Like these boys, I started gaming as a past time. But this past time evolved into my passion and global vision in esports, and I strive to nurture home-grown talent in this burgeoning esport scene.”