CONNOR93: "We haven’t grinded like we did for the past month before"
Mission accomplished, you did what you came here to do and have made it back to ESL Pro League. How does it feel?
CONNOR93: It feels pretty good.
Wardell: It feels relieving.
CONNOR93: We put a lot of work in before we came here. For about a month we just grinded everyday. We sat in the server for hours going all over our mistakes, adding new things because we new every team would watch our demos. We felt really confident coming in here.
How chaotic has it been considering all the different lineups you have played with over the past couple months?
CONNOR93: The thing is even though we won, Phong “bee” Nguyen is still retiring. So it will just be the four of us. We’ve never wanted to be the team that always changes people, we live having five. It all started with Jason “neptune” Tran not being old enough. That really screwed us over. Then we had bee coaching, and playing, and coaching. We’re hoping to just find someone before the season starts, and that will be it, we’re sticking with it.
You mentioned four of you, does that mean that Dallas “Dallas” Micks will stay with the team?
CONNOR93: We don’t know what is happening with Dallas yet. We have the core, and we are just going to do what we feel is best for us. By the time the season starts we’ll have our roster locked down, and that will be it.
There’s one match left to play here between Rise Nation and Rogue, who do you think will come out on top?
CONNOR93: I would say Rise. I kind of want Rogue because it would be funny to see what will happen to Rise, but I think they are the better team. I think they’ll come out swinging and they’ll take it.
You also have to play ECS relegation to make it back into their main league. Think you can have the same result there?
CONNOR93: We got more wins this time around in ECS, so that does feel good. But again, we’re playing these matches and we’re not prepared. We haven’t grinded like we did for the past month before. We knew our five, everyone was getting along, we all had the same goal. We’re hoping for next season we can find that five, and we’re going to do the exact same thing we just did but for 3-4 months. We’re going to make sure we don’t get relegated, because we believe we are better than the bottom teams, and that we can become a mid-tier team. We just need stability and to put in hard work.
The rumor is that one of your old teammates Michael “MAiNLiNE” Jaber has been helping you guys out as a coach, is the plan for that to continue?
CONNOR93: Yeah, he 100% will be the coach next season.
Where do you think new guys SoaR will fit in in the Pro League next season?
CONNOR93: I think a lot of Premier teams don’t realize how hard Pro League realize it. The big thing we learned is that teams that don’t have a proper default, who just run off executes, when they go to the Pro League, you get shit on. Because the Pro teams will make info plays, and you’ll be on the other side of the map, and they’ll read you like a book. So it will be interesting how SoaR play, because after watching their demos, we knew we could make info plays on them.
You mentioned neptune earlier, what do you think about the fact that he seemingly won’t be able to play MDL next season?
CONNOR93: I think that guy has the worst luck ever. He had a pretty good gig with Ghost, and it is so sad to see such a talented player literally go backwards. He made Pro, then did well in Premier, and now he has to go back to Main. I don’t think it is going to stop him, I think he’ll just fool around in Main. He may come to a few LANs with us. But once he turns sixteen that is it, he has a career ahead of him.
How will you ensure you don’t have a repeat of the last seasons?
CONNOR93: The problem with last season is we didn’t agree to some of the players we were playing with, but we had it forced on us because of roster restrictions. A lot of the problems at the beginning were that some of us were working, so other players were mad we weren’t grinding, because we weren’t getting paid enough to quit.
Everyone wants to grind, we’re all full-time in it now. Once we find that five, it isn’t “Oh we won, let’s go home and relax” — this is just the motivation to show us we can be a good team. We beat teams who usually beat us because we put in the work. Everyone is hyped after this, we are going to go home and get back to playing right away.
There are some matches where you can see, like in our wins against SK and Renegades, that when we are together and play proper, we can be a good team. It’s just we never practice enough. And it isn’t because we didn’t want to, it’s because we didn’t have a proper coach, and we didn’t know what we were supposed to be doing. Now with MAiNLiNE and I working together, it is all coming together.
Speaking of proper, what happened to you in that 1v1 against Casper "cadiaN" Møller?
Wardell: Everyone was like “you have it, you have it”, and I thought he had it, so I just jumped out.
CONNOR93: I think everyone started yelling, so it just caused mass confusion. Everyone was screaming, it was just a panic play.
Wardell, you had a good performance here, especially against Rise, are you back?
Wardell: I never left!
CONNOR93: I think that it was lack of confidence and lack of practice. Wardell really shines when he knows what everyone else is doing. Our big downfall before was that no one knew exactly how our strats fully played out. Now everyone knows what to do, so Wardell doesn’t have to worry, no one has to worry. I just have to make sure I am calling the right strats and the right setups. Before it was like I call a strat, one person isn’t listening, one person doesn’t remember the strat, we’re throwing wrong nades.
Wardell, can you elaborate on how MAiNLiNE has been helping you, specifically?
Wardell: Basically he’s a god, because he played with Kenneth “koosta” Suen, he knows what to do, because koosta was so good when he was playing with him. So he uses the same techniques, I guess. He’s really good at hyping you up, so he makes you feel more confident, even though you know it is really corny. In-game, he just knows what to do, so he tells me and I I learn from it.
As of now, Ghost have a clear calendar until ESL Pro League Season 7 commences. In the intervening month, we can expect to see the team's roster solidified.