ImAPet #bleedingblue

ImAPet: "We've let [CeRq] off the leash"

We caught up with the Evil Geniuses coach fresh off his team taking down Astralis 2-0.

Immediately after Evil Geniuses took down Astralis 2-0 to advance to the ESL One New York 2019 playoffs, Joe "tolkienfanatic" Cardali grabbed coach Chet "ImAPet" Singh to discuss the tournament so far, switching organizations, player representation, and more.

You guys just took a pretty solid 2-0 victory over Astralis, can you tell me your initial thoughts?

My initial thoughts are we changed our veto and it worked, it definitely paid off and I think that is probably the biggest reason why we won. We just changed our approach and it definitely helped us.

That has been a bit of a hallmark of your teams, is that something you think you'll be able to continue to rely upon?

Yeah, I mean - I think the next time we face Astralis the vetoes won't even be the same. You never know. We've been practicing a lot and we're feeling really comfortable on a lot of maps. We're kind of just going to flip the script a little and try to catch people off guard.

Obviously you just made the switch from NRG to Evil Geniuses, can you talk about how that came to be?

We had been looking for a new home for a little while, trying to figure out where to go. NRG contacted EG and they came to a deal for us to get bought out. We had a couple of offers on the table, and we decided - with the help of our agent, of course - that EG was the best, most professional, most experienced organization, and that they would treat us the best.

So far, its looking like it, they gave us merch right away, the treatment has been fantastic. Not to say that NRG didn't give us good treatment, but this just feels like these guys know what they are doing, and they are ready to help bring our brands to better places. They seem super professional all the time.

You mentioned an agent, does everyone on the team share the same agent?

Right now our agent is actually tarik's brother, Tom. He's been doing great work, and I'd recommend him to any player looking for an agent. Just hit him up, or hit me up and I'll give you his info. I think he did a super good job on getting us great contracts, and he could do that for a lot of players. He's the right representation, he knows his way with words, so I'd definitely recommend him.

Do you know what sort of perks/benefits Evil Geniuses will be setting you guys up with, team house, anything like that?

Don't know if I can say all of that, but definitely we have a chance to get a team house if we want to. But I think only a few people would move into a house in Seattle, where [Evil Geniuses] are located. Yeah, that's pretty much it. People have the options, if EG want to bring us in for content, they can.

This is the latest team where daps has laid the groundwork and then stanislaw has come in and taken things to the next level. Can you talk about the differences between those two, and where the team was now versus three months ago?

I think with daps, it was a lot more of an aggressive playstyle. I think it wasn't leading to more consistent results, even though we had great results and he called great. The style which we were playing, when we introduced tarik, it wasn't fitting his style as well. We needed to find a balance between the two. Since we couldn't agree on anything, we obviously moved to stanislaw.

With stanislaw, I think he still has the same great stuff from daps, but now he also has the great stuff from himself as well. He calls amazing, crazy, random ideas all the time. We have 100% faith in him, even if it sounds ridiculous, which I think is the biggest key factor for our team. We have full trust, and if we have these ideas from stanislaw on top of the aggressiveness we already have, then our team is pretty complete.

Can you give any examples of some ridiculous stuff stanislaw has called?

Just basic stuff like popping through smokes, or sitting through smokes with five guys and waiting for them to dissipate. Stuff like that, that will catch people off guard. Off meta things.

Another factor in the team's rise in fortunes has been CeRq being a lot more consistent on LAN. Has anything actually changed with him?

I think we're just refining our game a lot. We kind of let CeRq have a lot of freedom these days, and we've let him off the leash. Even if he overpeeks and dies and loses us the round, we know he's doing what he thinks is good, and trying to make space for us. We just trust him fully, he can do whatever we wants.

Do you have any thoughts looking towards the ongoing season of ECS and upcoming season of EPL?

Honestly, I think these seasons are really badly scheduled. They are kind of worthless seasons, because it doesn't seem like they care about scheduling around the teams or figuring out what is the best possible schedule. They change things last minute, maybe not EPL, but ECS for sure. EPL is more understanding, they kind of laid it out for us. But ECS, the week we won is kind of pointless. I don't think our team cares about it that much, obviously we want to qualify for everything, but if we miss out on one thing it isn't the end of the world. We have plenty of LANs.

Right now in North America, there is you guys and Liquid, and then everyone else. It seems like there isn't a lot of acceleration at the bottom. Any thoughts on why that might be or how to fix that?

I just think that at the lower tiers, they have either way too many inexperienced players, or they have experienced players who haven't done too much. They are kind of relying on these experienced players who haven't had big results to guide them, which I think is a big mistake. They kind of need someone who has had results and who has won a LAN to help lead them, because those guys are going to know what to do and what they'll face.

They need to get that leadership, even if it is from the coaching staff, they just need someone to help guide them. You can't have a bunch of inexperienced players running around, you'll never improve.

With the win over Astralis you are through to the playoffs, and Liquid made it there yesterday. Are you confident enough to call an all-North America grand final?

Honestly, yeah. I'm feeling really good, and I think whoever comes second in Group A is in for a ride.

The next match ImAPet and Evil Geniuses will play will be inside the Barclays Center, against the second place team from Group A.

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