A chance for BOSS to impress internationally

Axed: "We're just a bunch of kids playing the game that we love"

BOSS' boss had some nice words about the team ahead of EPL.

BOSS made their Pro League debut earlier this week, facing the German powerhouse of BIG. While the series did fall in BIG's favor 2-0, BOSS put up one hell of a fight, pushing map one to overtime, making a great impression of the orgless squad in Malta. Before the team's debut, Dust2.us' Ryan Friend spoke with Tommy "Axed" Ryan, coach of BOSS, about the team's preparation, unfortunate illnesses, and goals for the event.

FaNg has tweeted out that he's not feeling so well. What's going on with the team?

freshie and FaNg ate something on their plane and ended up with food poisoning. About an hour after breakfast today, they both starting puking. We don't think it was breakfast because they ate different things, so that wouldn't make sense. The common thing between the two was that they flew together all the way through and ate the meals on the planes. It was something bad somewhere along the line I guess. Luckily the Liquid guys are here, we're familiar with them because of the RMR, and they have Edward, MindBodyEsports, and he's helping us a lot. We really appreciate him. He's got a medkit and everything to help us. We've got two days to recover, hopefully all goes well. We made some runs to get them water and Gatorade. Doing our part.

For you guys, this is a huge step. You're the second unsigned organization here at Pro League. What's it like being an unsigned organization among some of the world's best? Is it intimidating?

No. Not for me at least. Maybe for d4rty, freshie, and Cryptic since this is their first tier one LAN they've ever been to. They see ZywOo or device in the hallway and get a little nerdy or fangirly, but I've pretty much learned through my time with EG and everything that everyone is human and it's just competition. Everybody's here for the love of the game. I'm not intimidated by any of it. I will say, I miss having the per diem. I miss having my meals paid for by EG for sure. You're definitely pinching your pockets a little bit more not having money coming in consistently while you're here, but overall, it's the same experience. Prac room, ESL helps us, gives us water and snacks that we request, we have full access to the player lounge and everything, so it's not too different.

How are you guys preparing for this game against BIG? What's the game plan heading in?

I'm not gonna give anything away at the moment, but we do have an absolute read on what we think the three maps are most likely going to be. So far, all through ECL and RMR we were right with all of our reads so we're just gonna keep trusting our gut. At the moment, it's kind of impossible for us to scrim with two people having food poisoning, so we had to cancel our whole day of practice here. Instead, we have people doing work on noesis and demos. Because we're not actually able to scrim, Pwn, Cryptic and d4rty were pugging earlier. Just doing what they can, going through the motions. We're still going through game planning and anti-stratting and stuff like that of course, but it's a lot harder to play our game if we're not actually able to play our game before the match. We're just going with the flow because it's the hand that we were dealt and we have to play it.

For a couple of your players, this is the biggest LAN they've been a part of. freshie, Cryptic, and d4rty don't have as much massive experience here, what's it like for them?

I think all the learning I was able to go through on EG by having autimatic, RUSH, maLeK, even valens, having all those resourcing all the way through helped me understand how tier one was really formatted and played.How to structure yourselves and everything. Bringing Justin [FaNg] into the team, he's quite an experienced player. He's a vocal leader for us in the team, he's a huge part of everything that we're doing. We're kind of replying of the experience of Justin and myself and also Josh, being a very flexible AWPer, he's able to do anything the team needs him to do, as well as in crunch time, he has a huge voice. I think for the rest of them, they're kid of going through the same process of preparing for the RMR where it's just kind of continuing to add details to everything that we do so things aren't random and we're able to play more to a plan. I think they're prepared, but not as prepared as they could be. Not having a bootcamp to come to these events and stuff like that is definitely a huge blow. Having a 15+ hour travel day and then everyone wants to sleep when they get here because it's just jet lag and very natural. We have to battle nature when we're here, I guess. That's one of the biggest challenges, fighting jet lag and then fight some type of stomach bug. We just can't panic. We can't panic out of game, we can't panic in game, cause then we just lose control of everything.

Being one of the lower ranked teams, giving an honest assessment, what would be a win for you in Pro League?

To start, we're not intimidated by BIG at all. We've already beaten a top twenty team. That was the first time these guys ever beat a top twenty team in their careers and we did it at the RMR, arguably the most important tournament in all of Counter-Strike. I think they have the capability to live up to the pressure. I think success for us would be knowing we made every match as competitive as possible. We want to come out with a win every single time. As a lower ranked team, we're underdogs. Every win we get is gonna be seen as an upset. In that sense, there actually isn't that much pressure on the players because they don't have an org. They're not playing for anyone's Louvre Agreement spot, they're playing for each other. There's not really that much pressure. It's not like we have a million fans. We're just a bunch of kids playing the game that we love and that's what we have to do. We have to play the game with and for each other. Ultimately, just being competitive and as competitive as we can be is a win in our book. This is a first time experience for half the team.

With the hand we've been dealt already, we just have to be competitive and make everything look good. Obviously in these type of settings, one thing that is a little bit different is the way we're able to plan and prepare just all being in the same room, being able to speak to each other- it's better. Everyone all being in the same room, being able to prep with each other, tap someone on the shoulder, drag them over, show them a nade lineup or what the team does in a demo or something like that, it's very easy to get information across. I think planning and prepping is much easier, and that's something we can take away from these kind of events moving forward, going into playing online and stuff like that.

And after Pro League, coming back to NA, how are you going to use this as a good learning process and keep up those lessons?

Obviously every single match we play here will be reviewed extensively. We'll have game plans as well and I think it's very important for us to identify the tempo that we want to play. On LAN, you can get away with a lot because there is a lot of pressure and the pressure is so thick you can feel it in the air when matches are live. Nobody wants to make a mistake on LAN, but that's impossible. Everybody is going to make some. I think that's a huge part of it, understanding that pressure is in every game, trying to not let the nerves take over and just trusting the practice and the hard work that's been done before. I also think that after a tournament like this, you're able to see what teams are able to do to completely exploit you. You're able to patch it. You're also able to steal a lot of things, like a lot. Just because you see it and it's better. It's different from watching a demo and just trying to learn as compared to six people are looking at how they do this, why do they do it, when do they do it, and it's like you truly try to understand it. We can very easily try to implement and mimic their system, whoever it is.

BOSS gave BIG a massive run for their money earlier this morning and were just a few rounds away from taking it to a third map or even taking the series entirely. They are scheduled to play against FlyQuest tomorrow.

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#1(With 0 replies)
May 1, 2024 06:22PM
me too bro... me too
#2(With 0 replies)
May 5, 2024 04:50PM
Edward/MindBodyEsports is such a gem to the scene.
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