NAF: "There's a lot that we need to learn and practice"
We had a quick chat with Keith "NAF" Markovic at IEM Katowice and found out more about his first month with Liquid, during which they won a smaller title and made semi-finals at two big events.
After winning cs_summit and placing third at StarSeries, Liquid ended their first month with Keith "NAF" Markovic with a semi-finals finish at IEM Katowice, losing to fnatic at the end of their journey in Poland.
We talked to Liquid's newest addition about what makes him and the new lineup tick so well with barely any practice behind them.
Your first month in Liquid has obviously been very successful, a title at summit, third place at StarSeries, and semi-finals here in Poland - what is it that makes you guys tick this quickly?
Honestly, I'm not entirely sure, I think so far we're just playing really well. I mentioned in my previous interview that Twistzz and EliGE are both of the greatest NA players, so I think we just have a really high skill ceiling. Liquid removed jdm for me, so right now we're doing a full rifle lineup, so I think that brings a lot of firepower. You don't have to save for an AWP, everyone can just force, so overall I think our team just has a lot firepower. We don't really have a lot of practice right now, so I think just having the five-man rifle lineup is just really strong for us.
What about yourself personally? You're clearly very comfortable, putting up great stats, why is that?
I don't know, I feel like I'm really comfortable with plugging in and out of teams. I can play any spot or any role. When I joined Liquid I just told Nick I can play anything he wants me to, on Renegades I was the third or second guy in, but Liquid told me to just lurk. On CT side I can play any spot, I can just do anything that they want me to do and I'm pretty good at adapting to what they want me to do. That's my strong suit, I'm really good at adapting to anything.
The results have been great, but of course there's always room for improvement, especially for a young team like you - is there something in particular that you need to work on, perhaps adding a bit more structure?
Yeah, like I said we haven't had that much practice, we've been playing Overpass and we've been beating teams on it, we've NEVER practiced the map, the only practice we have on that map is just the officials we've been playing. Obviously there's a lot that we need to learn and practice, and I think there are no events for at least a month or so, so we should be able to come back really strong into our next events when we have legit practice. But yeah, even for myself, I'm just going to improve myself as a teammate and everything overall.
What do you think you guys were missing here to take it a step further, particularly in that series against fnatic where especially Mirage went badly?
Going into the semi-final against fnatic we were fairly confident, they gave us CT side on both maps, even on their pick they gave us the CT side, which is usually our strong side, but fnatic's feeling really good this event, I know KRIMZ is playing really well individually.
Overall on Inferno they won a few rounds, I don't want to say it was luck or anything, but they won a few rounds by spamming some people through smokes and that won them the round. Going into Mirage, every time we won a round we got reset instantly, we didn't have a chance in anything, overall they just outplayed us, they played really well. I don't think this best-of-five will be a one-sided affair for FaZe, I think it should be a close best-of-five between them both.