The objective tomorrow is to beat Apeks comfortably

nitr0: "I don't see a world where [we start slow] with how we're playing right now"

Confidence is high in the Liquid camp heading into the Challengers Stage.

Coming into the Paris Major from the Americas RMR, NA's best team, Liquid, have been looking a bit shaky. With multiple losses to paiN in recent months, and a close match against Nouns to even make this Major, expectations and pressure are on Liquid to make the last CS:GO Major a success.

With those expectations in mind,' Ryan Friend sat down with Nick "nitr0" Cannella to set the stage for Liquid's run in the city of lights.

Despite many viewing NA as a region in the doldrums combined with Liquid's recent lackluster performance, nitr0 told Friend that he was in very good spirits ahead of their debut against Apeks and about the Major overall.

I don't feel any individual pressure because if I were to do that to myself I would put more pressure on my myself. I'm trying to treat it like any tournament and just do my best as usual. We're feeling really confident going into this event. We had a really productive bootcamp and worked on every single map in our pool. It's pretty good that we're in the Challengers Stage because we're going to warm up and when we face the bigger dogs we'll be warmed up. Overall, we're excited to play and get some dubs.

However, Liquid are still known for a slow start at events, as evidenced by their historic loss to Rare Atom at the start of ESL Pro League. As such there is always the looming threat that Liquid drop their opening BO1 at the Major, in this case against Apeks.

It would be better to start slow in this stage than in the next one right? I don't see a world where that happens with how we're playing right now. Compared to our practice before the RMR the bootcamp helped a lot. We really changed our game a lot and we're feeling a lot more confident than we were at the RMR.

These calm but forceful words summarize the veteran IGL's overall tone in this interview, as he has seen everything and done everything CS:GO has had to offer while still saving room for confidence in Liquid being able to evolve.

A large part of nitr0's confidence about Liquid's chances in Paris come down to his feelings about how Mareks "YEKIDNAR" Gaļinskis has evolved since joining Liquid nearly a year ago. nitr0 told Friend that this evolution comes down to how much YEKINDAR has grown as a player and as a person, noting that "Marek has a really good attitude towards the team" despite the culture clash for the young Latvian.

As part of being NA's most veteran IGL by a long shot, nitr0 has lived through, and in some cases aided, NA's decline as a major power in world Counter-Strike. While nitr0 eventually came back from VALORANT to return to his home on Liquid, he is quite conscious of NA's issues.

It's hard to say what's going on with the region. VALORANT took a big hit out of Counter-Strike and destroyed the tier two scene in NA. The region lacks leadership and organizational resources. If you really want to become a top team in CS you need a good leader and you need the resources to play in Europe consistently.

You can't just be an NA team practicing against other NA teams that also don't play against EU and expect to be a top 10 team in the world overnight. I don't have an answer right now.

With that in mind, while Liquid are carrying the torch for NA in Paris, Complexity also need to make a stand in Europe after struggling even more heavily in recent times and potentially peaking according to nitr0.

I hope they go as far as playoffs and go from there. I don't know what their current vibes are, but I don't know if they've hit a peak and they're going with how it goes. They didn't do that well in Melbourne which was their last tournament so hopefully they fix their mistakes from that tournament and turn it around.

North America's two representative teams will have a lot to prove tomorrow and while nitr0 feels very confident for both squad, these things have to be decided on the server. Liquid will be playing tomorrow at 08:30PM.

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#1(With 0 replies)
May 8, 2023 07:21PM
this aged well💀
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