s0m: "Android told me I should be calling. and I said 'Yeah, I’m down.'"
This was your first big event as a professional, how would you describe your first experience overall?
It was good for sure. I can’t compare it to anything else since it was my first one, but overall for me it was a good experience.
Were you nervous?
No, not really.
The first draw was Liquid which was rough, but against MiBR you played very well. You led the team in performance while calling. Given the circumstances, how were you able to pull out that performance?
Going to the MiBR match, we had no idea that Nifty couldn’t play until the last minute. Eley had like five minutes to set up his PC, we were very short on time. But I knew that going into the match that someone had to pick up the calling. We know that Eley knows our strats, he watched our dry runs and he knows who does what so we were able to fit him into most of our strats. We also knew that this was not the match to make mistakes. I knew that someone had to pick up the calling to bring down the chances of us making mistakes, so I stepped up. I don’t have much experience calling outside of PUGs and things like that. I called a lot first map, second map was rough for me because I didn’t get to call that much before on that map so it was hard for me to think of things on the fly. By the third map, I had the confidence I needed. All I was thinking about was winning and I knew what I had to do, which was call and frag to boost our chances of winning. I did my best.
Would you consider the event a success or a failure?
Every event is good. No matter if its tier one or tier two, it doesn't matter. It's always good because it means more experience for the team. Right now, every event we go to, we don't care what standing we get, we don't care how well we do. We are out there to do our best. Obviously we were hit with some unfortunate circumstances, but again, it is a good experience for all of us.
So you called for the team, were you elected into that role or did you step up and do it yourself?
When we found out initially we knew that nifty our secondary AWPer would be out, so we needed a secondary AWPer instantly because our CT side would be messed up with no coordination. It wasn't an elected thing, but it kind of was. Android told me I should be calling, pretty much everyone agreed and I said “Yeah, I’m down.”
So it was organic?
Yes and if I ran out of ideas I could ask our analyst Taylor because we used him as a coach. Obviously, I asked the players what they wanted to do. I did what I could.
Is in-game leading a one-and-done thing or is calling something you’re interested in doing full-time?
Probably not full-time, but it was definitely fun for me and was a learning experience for me. I really enjoyed it. I would probably mid-round call, and help feed information.
Could you feel the difference between being a regular rifler and an IGL?
Yes. I had full focus on being IGL’ing. Mid game I would be learning their patterns, what they want to do, and call on the fly instantly.
How did that change how you play?
For me, I completely give up on myself and just help my team win. Whether that be throwing flashes or going in first for them. Whatever it takes.
Are young players like yourself and oBo who are making it out of FPL to a pro team the start of something new or are you guys the outliers?
I think this will be a lot more common. Even before us there was Stewie who became a very big success. But ever since then there have only been a few players like oBo and me. I definitely think it will happen more in the future. There is a time for everyone to stop playing, and that's when the “new-gen” players come in, and I think there's going to be a lot more.