zews: "I haven’t played CS in three years so I’m really just filling the gaps"
Updated: Sep 4, 2019
At Chicago you managed two very different wins on Train and you managed to win your map pick a few times, including versus ENCE before you got blown out. So overall, do you consider the event a step forward for the team?
Definitely a step forward. We had zero expectations coming into this because we are realists. We are playing with a coach, I am having to fill in, in very adverse situations. I haven’t played CS in three years so I’m really just filling the gaps with no expectations. More of rebuilding the chemistry and rebuilding the vibe, trying to get the direction moving forward with how we are going to go so yeah - G2 is an amazing team. With Envy, some people are like, ‘oh they’re not good’ that’s not how it works, everyone is good nowadays in CS and you have to take every round, every kill, everything not at face value. You have to fight for it because if you don't someone is going to take it away from you so it doesn't really matter for us, if it was a comeback or a 16-0 we really needed that win. As for G2 I think it was overcoming, especially against ENCE. Against G2 everyone was like, ‘oh it’s a fluke’ and things like that but against ENCE we took a map off them. Yeah we got run over the second and third maps but we saw situations where our mistakes were and we saw that it was good.
How has that transition been from a coach to a player? How has your mentality changed?
Unfortunately, because of the rules and because of how our circuit works I have to play the Major because I was the player that was signed up to be a player/reserve. I don’t understand why both are the same. It would be nice to have a coach and maybe have a sixth player but since we saw that with our long term plan moving forward to the Major, we figured we might as well play these events with me and get some practice going. The transition has been crazy. Besides a few stand-ins, when I am doing my job I don’t have time to play, not even a competitive or fun match because I am trying to focus everything in-game I can to help so transitioning has been crazy. I have to try to deathmatch I have to play and fill-in the gaps for the player. It is crazy because just like every sport it’s about rhythm, it’s about - to be good you have to be playing constantly which I don’t do, so we are in a really crazy situation. I don’t think it’s supposed to be like this.
Are there parts you’ve enjoyed in the transition?
Oh definitely, I think we are all enjoying it a lot. The thing about me standing in - yeah there are the negative sides in the professional side and the competitive but it's been so much fun for the rebuilding of the team chemistry. We just got LUCAS1 as a player so he's bringing the hype and for me this is an opportunity and just a fun experience so me and him I think are bringing the team hype and vibe so much. That’s one of the fun things. The second thing is with the low expectations, everything that happens, we are happy about it. Everything is an accomplishment and I think that is something that we lost in ourselves because we had been two time Major champions, best in the world two times. It’s easy to say, ‘oh you won a match 16-14 against Envy’, for example, and then it’s like ,‘you barely scraped by’, but no, it's a win so you have to think like that. The way you push forward to the next day, that changes so much of your mentality of how you approach the game. I think that’s the biggest positive for us right now, every small victory is a big win and it’s just a really good sensation. When you're having fun, things are going well and you have that kind of mentality, the next day becomes so much easier because you're just having fun and you're enjoying what you're doing. It isn’t an obligation, it’s a pleasure, it's a privilege.
Since you’ve stepped into the server, Fallen and Fer have been playing particularly well. What have you done in server to give them more room? Have you been taking some of the IGL role?
I try to help when I can but Fallen has been so on point. I have to give him a lot of credit, he has been insane. I think the reason for that is because they know they are playing with a coach so they know they have to step up. It's like, ‘I know I have to fight for him, I have to do it for him’ so they handle the pressure. With the style we played with Cold, it’s just the style we were used to playing. It was a lot more team play and now since we are able to be more scrimmy and not relying on pure teamplay, players like Fallen and Fer, they can just go forward and try to take those fights and get picks. It works amazingly most of the time.
This is the lineup that will at least be attending the Major, is this the lineup that MiBR fans can look forward to rooting for in the future or is it subject to change?
This is more on Dead and me as far as the direction of the team. We obviously get feedback from the players on how we are going to move forward, but no I don’t think this will be the lineup. It’s crazy, like I said, I’m not - this is not my job, I’m the coach for the team. But we are not going to do anything overnight or anything like that. We are going to try to analyze the situation because we took a step in the right direction. This is the mentality we have to bring and I’m trying to look at the gaps in the team, the roles I need to fill, what I do well, and I need to find someone who does that exact same thing but better than I can do it because they have the playing ability. Until the Major, that is what we are going to try to look for. We have to analyze our weak links, our areas that we need to improve in, and find who is the best player that can fill those areas. After the Major then we can look at making a decision on hitting the hammer on someone.
So when you do step back into a coaching role, what do you think the rest of the core can take from this experience?
I think the biggest thing that they took, and this is by no means a stab at Cold or anything like that, but we got back to knowing we have to play everyone for each other. Even with me filling in, not playing much and everything like that. If I want them to do something, they’ll do it for me, they’ll try to cover it and that feeling is like - with every moment and every situation is playing for each other and do the best to put him in a good position, not me. That to me is the biggest lesson moving forward, whoever comes in, they need to be the biggest team player possible because our team chemistry is so much bigger than any individual round like Fer, Fallen, or Cold can have. One player can change a round but a team can win matches consistently and that is important.
Are you exclusively looking domestically for a fifth or are you looking internationally as well?
We keep all doors open, there is a misconception that because we went back to all Brazilian lineup doesn’t mean we will always be full Brazilian. Our core is going to be Brazilian because we think this Brazilian core is amazing. But I can say that more than like 95% it’s going to be domestic just because of communication it makes more sense. If it was the case like before with Stewie and Tarik - it’s just really hard to put one international player to an all Brazilian core in terms of how their life is going to be outside of the country, we speak Portugese in the house so if someone is there that can’t listen to us talk - it’s just that we don’t want to put someone in a position that doesn’t make that much sense.
Touching back on the systems in place with coaches, I want to ask you about the timeout format. I wrote in an article before that I think coaches should be able to have more freedom with timeouts. Do you think coaches should get more freedoms in the game?
I’ve had enough of CS:GO experience to have experienced both. I think before we were very overpowered because it wasn’t only buy time we were talking, or even freeze time. We were allowed to talk 100% of the game and sometimes on stage you hear a stage rumbling, you hear the crowd, you have things going on. It’s too much. But I do feel now we are castrated because it’s too little. I do believe that freeze times would be a nice addon because we can give some insight and help. We wouldn't be able to alter how the middle of the round plays out and I also think that having another pause if you’re in overtime or something like that because those thirty seconds goes by so fast when you’re trying to explain an idea. I understand from the commercial side of things you want the breaks for ads and things like that, so maybe don’t extend the length of it but maybe add another one.