After almost seven years of competing competitively in Australasian League of Legends, one of the region's top veteran players, Jayke “Jayke” Paulsen, today officially announces his retirement from competitive play.
Talking to Jayke, he said “throughout the 2019 regular season in both Split one and two, it was pretty obvious that ORDER as a team were pretty disjointed when it came to the game. We all had our own ideas and couldn’t quite get on the same page consistently enough to finish the regular season in a good standing and make the most out of our practice.”
“This put a lot of stress on us all, especially after the split one gauntlet, because we knew that we were good enough. But for whatever reason, we couldn’t come together for the majority of the time. For me this led to a lot of dissatisfaction and frustration within the game which bled over into my personal life. I felt further and further disconnected from the one hundred or nothing drive that most people seem to think is required to be good at the game,” continued Jayke.
“After the season ended, I was tossing up whether or not I wanted to commit to playing or not, and said that I would only continue if I had an offer with the almost perfect circumstance of balance and dedication, which may honestly be impossible to provide at this stage. With a lot of young guys coming in this year, and all of the potential to play overseas that this off-season has brought up, that brings a lot more of that uncompromised drive and dedication needed to participate in the league - which I frankly don’t have at this point,” said Jayke.
“In 2020, I’ll be working while I undertake studies in Personal Training and I’ll be looking to start a career in supporting others in real life, helping them get stronger, move or look better,” concluded Jayke
Jayke has been competing locally since 2013, where he got his start by competing on old school rosters such as “Optic Snipers”, “Enzone” and “Best Players Ocean” - before the arrival of the Oceanic Pro League (OPL). Jayke created his legacy when he started competing on the starting roster of Avant Gaming in May of 2016, where he became the face of the brand, all the way through until his departure in December of 2018.
Although the history books curse Jayke with constant fifth place finishes on Avant, he was still titled as one of the regions best Support players throughout his duration with each iteration of Avant rosters. But despite those placements, Jayke moved on to ORDER at the end of the 2018 season, where he went on to place both second and third respectively in the 2019 season.
Outside of Jayke’s storied OPL career, he helped Victoria reign supreme in the 2017 League of Origin tournament and pushed them to a second place finish in the 2018 League of Origin tournament. Jayke was also on the Avant Gaming roster that placed second in the 2017 ESL ANZ Championship.
When straying away from the game, Jayke has been a staple role model for those within the OPL and around the wider Australasian League of Legends community - motivating those around him to keep fit and guiding them through the processes they need to take to do so. Jayke has also been one of the most level headed players in the league and there’s no doubt he will use that mindset to help others with his future endeavours.
Jayke provided us with a list of career highlights that he holds close to his heart:
Whilst many players that have competed alongside him in the past have retired, some have gone on to stick around the League of Legends community to partake in coaching or some form of talent work. With that being said, Jayke mentioned that he intends to stick around the game’s community, “It’s not that I don’t want to hang around the community, there’s just not really a place or need for me at the moment”.
“I haven’t touched League in a while after I made my decision, so I’m more or less just interacting with my friends. In the future I could see myself returning if there’s a requirement for my skill set; hopefully everyone is doing some sort of physical activity a few times a week to stay healthy and injury free,” he added.
Finally, Jayke went on to thank a special group of people for their impact on his career.
“Charlie (Pinch), you put so much work outside of ‘necessary’ hours to prepare reviews and study other aspects of coaching psychology to better yourself. Also for being such an idiot and a pleasure to live with.”
“Evan (Ceres), for being such a level headed teammate and friend, for helping me with my real life problems.”
“Rohan (Brucy), you were a huge part of our success in 2017 that can’t be undermined. Your ability to take a joke and make one at anyone’s expense provided so much necessary relief from the stresses we had.”
“Jake (Spawn), for all of your hard work being not only a GM but also helping out with our mental states and assisting with the coaching in 2019. And for once again giving me an opportunity to play with such esteemed teammates coming off a hard 2018 for me.”
“Jyles, for allowing everyone at Avant to express themselves and not just appear as another wave in the ocean. As with Charlie and Rohan, having you in the house was a huge part of our success as a team and friends.”
Jayke then added, “there’s a lot of other people behind the scenes, but I’d be writing forever. If we’ve worked together, I appreciate all of our good and bad interactions.”
Jayke leaves behind a strong legacy in both the OPL and League of Legends community throughout the region, from his rise in the league to his impactful guidance to the up and coming generation of competitors. Whilst Jayke is off to pursue his passion outside of esports, there is no doubt that we will see him around the community.
We wish Jayke nothing but the best for his future and we look forward to following his progress. If you wish to stay connected with Jayke, be sure to follow him on Twitter.