Going into their matchup with TYLOO, Michael "Duck" Moriarty took the time to chat with MIBR's Jake "Stewie2k" Yip before the Major began it's second stage. The two were able to discuss how MIBR have been preparing for the Major, what it's like to have YNk as a coach, and how they feel about TYLOO being their first matchup.
Coming into this event, as a defending champion but on a different team, what is that like for you?
It means a lot more to me and Tarik, we wanna show a new face and that we can compete with the best in the world. I know we haven't been doing too well, but we've been progressing really well. We've been working really hard so hopefully we show how much we improved.
Your recent form has been mixed, so whereabouts are you guys as a team? Is it just growing pains or is it just a matter of figuring out tactics for the Major rather than other events?
First off, I'd like to say that I'd like to forget about the first few months I was on the team because we didn't really play as a team and we were just lying to ourselves that we were improving, but we were improving so slow we weren't getting anywhere. Once we picked YNk and Tarik it helped a lot more, we started getting more discipline and being more professional as a team. We progressed a lot, especially during our bootcamp in Madrid. We finally knew what we had to do to be on the same page. Losing to Astralis at DreamHack Stockholm we were okay with because we were still trying to improve and we knew we lost ourselves and they were able to capitilize on our mistakes. Now we can show how much hard work we've been putting in.
You're one of two Americans on this team, with Tarik being a fairly recent addition, what's it like playing with essentially a mixed language team? What's the communication like?
At the start it was pretty hard when it was just me. They can't really hide their native tongue so they'd eventually have to speak Portuguese during the day. They tried their best to speak but it's not as good as everyone thought it was and over time with me communication was the best improvement to the team when it was just me. Now with Tarik we're a lot more comfortable, I have a friend on the team and a teammate I've played with in the past many times and a player I've known my entire career. He gets along with the team as well, everyone is talking a lot more out of game so our English is improving naturally and it's starting to become the Brazilians first language in a sense.
Recently you brought in YNk as a coach. Is he bringing in more analysis or drills and structure to the team?
He contributes a little bit of everything. I think the biggest impact he has on the team is how we structure for practice and making sure people are being disciplined like showing up on time, and if you don't show up on time, he's going to have to enforce some rules and punishments if there has to be. We all know we're capable of being on time it's just a matter of doing it rather than being lazy and then makes sure we're having a productive practice.
Your first game of the Major is going to be against TYLOO, what do you expect they'll bring to you and how do you expect the game to go?
We know that TYLOO has been doing really well right now, they're not an easy team to beat. We're not going to take it easy on them either. We know their playstyle, we know how aggressive they can get, we know how individuals can win rounds for them, but we're expecting that and we're not gonna counter it too much, we're just gonna focus on our own game and practice what we've been practicing and if we do that, I'll think we'll be able to take the win.
What are your main goals with this Major? Just progressing to the playoffs or winning it?
For this tournament I think we have to take it step-by-step, just focus on the opponent in front of us, and not keep our expectations too high. We're gonna have to build stage by stage and hopefully get to the finals and defend the championship title.
MIBR have a few events to attend after the Major, BLAST Pro Series for a start, what sort of effect does going to another event the week after the Major have?
At the start with Tarik, we knew we had to start going to tournaments just so we can get the feel of it on LAN. We tried to attend as many tournaments as we can, but also know that we have to practice as much as we can in between those tournaments so expected these tournaments and having long road trips so there will be times when we're tired but we just gotta rejuvenate our energy on days off, on bootcamp or whenever we have time off and just try and restart.
You just came off a bootcamp at RFRSH alongside Cloud9 and FaZe, what was it like bootcamping in an environment beside those two teams in Copenhagen?
First of all I think RFRSH provided a lot of good hospitality and treated us well with their facility. Having Cloud9 and FaZe there made it a lot more competitive knowing that the biggest tournament is coming up and everyone is practicing hard. It motivated us even harder because we know that teams are out there going for the trophy for this tournament and we're just trying to be our best right now.
As Duck alluded to, MIBR's first matchup will be against the Chinese TYLOO, and that match is scheduled for 10 AM EDT on September 12th.