ShahZaM: "IEM would be a big deal"
After Echo Fox managed to eliminate FlipSid3, we caught up with Shahzeb "ShahZaM" Khan to get his thoughts on the team's failure at ELEAGUE and their matches at iBUYPOWER Masters so far.
ShahZaM preferred the rematch with TyLoo
We have to address the failure at ELEAGUE at first, you barely got any rounds there, what happened in Atlanta?
Honestly, it's hard to describe, I think it was just a total breakdown or failure. I don't think any of us have had a more embarassing event. To be honest, going into the first game, we all felt pretty confident. Going into both games, even before G2, the atmosphere was pretty good, we did quite a lot of preparation and it just all fell apart. There's really no way to describe it when you lose that bad, just... failure.
Going over to this event, was the ambition any other than getting out from the group, since it's mostly a qualifier?
Well, unfortunately by losing to TyLoo - we threw away that game - we can't play in the final, but the goal was just to get to Oakland, I think that's something everyone has their eyes set on regardless of what's been going on with the team recently. Playing at that event would be a big deal for us.
You touched on the TyLoo match, 16-13 in the end there on Mirage, talk me through that, why do you think you threw it away?
We threw away a lot of the rounds, we gave them a lot of rounds and they took full advantage of them. Props to them, they played pretty well. Honestly, it felt like we were in full control of the game, up until that T side where we started losing 2v3s, even that 2v3 in the pistol, a lot of rounds where they just had a guy push through halls and ruin us because we couldn't account for so many angles. It was sloppy play, we lost like two ecos on T side, it's unfortunate we gave it to them but it didn't shoot our confidence down, because it was our mistakes that made us lose. Going to FlipSid3 it didn't affect our confidence.
You haven't played TyLoo before, what do you make of them and their playstyle?
They seem pretty execute based, that's like the impression of them we had before, they have that five-man execute on A site and they ran the B execute... They seem pretty coordinated. I imagine that a team from a region like that, they probably don't have a lot of practice partners to play against, but they can sit in the server and theorystrike with each other and it showed.
Going over to FlipSid3, they attended with a stand-in so they weren't in full force, what did you expect from them and how did the match go?
The veto went pretty much exactly how we expected it to, we knew we'd pick either Nuke or Dust2, depending on what the options were. We beat them on Nuke at ELEAGUE pretty convincingly as well, we knew that's not a map they're not comfortable on, and especially with a stand-in they missed some smokes a lot of the times. They just weren't prepared. We knew whatever we vetoed between Cobble and Train they would pick. There was a little discussion like "do we try Cobble?", but we took Train. It didn't seem they were as coordinated with a stand-in as before, when we played them last time they beat us and WorldEdit had that big game. They had really good fakes, screwed our rotations. When we played them today, we were on point for sure, but it was pretty obvious what they were doing.
For the last game you'll face either Cloud9 or TyLoo, it seems it'll be the latter as it's about 9-0 as of now, but is there a preference?
I think we should've beat TyLoo and we'd love to have that rematch against them. I believe it's a best-of-three, we're really confident playing against TyLoo and we'd rather play them.
What do you think would happen against Cloud9? Would you stand a chance?
Actually yeah, for some reason in practice, you know, I think we're the only team who beat Cloud9 in the regular season online for ESL Pro League, we just match up well against them. I don't know if it's familiarity...
... maybe Sean a little bit?
Yeah, definitely. When we play against them, they seem to give us a lot of respect that you don't see when they play other teams. I don't know what the case is for that, but we wouldn't be scared to play against them.