zonic: "[The event schedule] is getting out of hand"

After winning their first two matches of ECS Season 5 Finals and securing a spot in the playoffs, we talked to Astralis coach Danny "zonic" Sørensen about their rough start against Cloud9 and the team's policy of skipping certain events to boost performance.

Astralis had somewhat of a shocking start against Major winners Cloud9, but managed the comeback after an extremely well played CT-side on Inferno. Their next game was an easier task against the other North American team in their group, Liquid.

Going into the playoffs, the Danes seem to have benefited from the break they took by declining their invite to the recently concluded StarSeries i-League Season 5.

Astralis will cut down on certain events in the future

Read on to learn more about coach zonic's thoughts about the team's start to the ECS Season 5 Finals and why Astralis might not attend events far away from home going forward.

So, let's start with your first match earlier today, an epic comeback against Cloud9 after being behind 3-12 at halftime. Did you expect that matchup to be so difficult?

No, to be honest, I didn't. Obviously, Cloud9 is a very tough opponent, but after the recent news about them putting Pujan "FNS" Mehta on the transfer list, I expected them to play carelessly, which they did, and that kind of bit us in the ass. They were playing quite fearlessly and we sometimes struggle against teams who are playing extremely offensively against us. It made it quite difficult for us, but we kind of love our CT-side on Inferno at the moment, and that helped us out this time.

Talking about teams that play carelessly against you. You have a pretty tight setup and are pretty strict organizationally, so shouldn't you be able to take care of these things pretty easily?

Definitely. We try to play structured and, how can I say it, in the most logical sense of playing Counter-Strike, where the right move is always the right play. But in fact it's not, to be honest. I think it's a work in progress, and I do believe we've become better at handling these teams, but sometimes, when they are extremely offensive, it still catches us off guard. So we need to be aware of it and this was just proof that we still need to keep working on that aspect of the game.

So, you skipped the latest big event, Starseries, which was last week, to have some time off. How do you think that helps you, taking breaks like that?

After the Cloud9 game I was actually thinking we should have maybe gone to Starseries, because we seemed a bit rusty. But I think it's good for the team, and we talk from experience, with device being sick and all that, so I think it's good to take a break now and then. We had a run with three events in a row with Marseille, Sydney and then Dallas, so we travel quite a lot and that's why it's important that we rest. People say that we're riding on a wave right now, that we beat everyone, and that we could have probably won Starseries, but in the end it's not going to be good for you if you just attend every event. You need to give your players a rest at some point.

You're not going to ESL Belo Horizonte either, is skipping events to gain strength something you're going to utilize more in the future?

Yeah, definitely. Like I said, it's important to get a break now and then, and obviously, we are also looking at locations regarding that. Not that we have anything against Brazil, it's actually still my favorite country and I was there as a player in 2005, but to travel these 15-16 plus hours to get to events is quite difficult for us. I probably shouldn't reveal anything, but I think it will be very difficult for you guys to see Astralis in Sydney from now on, because it really hurts the players, especially device, when we travel so much.

You're just saying that because you lost the final this year...

Yes, of course. laughs

We're looking at a very busy schedule right now and you obviously have an organization behind you who's also pushing the agenda of making things easier on the viewers. Do you believe it's the future for Counter-Strike?

I hope it's the future. I think it's really important if we want to maintain the hype and if we want to build a larger viewer base. I think it's extremely important that we schedule it into seasons, and tournament organizers will at some point need to find out how not to battle each other. I also think there should be a governing body taking control. I think it's getting a bit out of hand and I'm also getting some complaints from the family at home that I'm traveling way too much. It needs to fixed at some point, and maybe Valve can interfere here.

Canada Pujan 'FNS' Mehta
Pujan 'FNS' Mehta
Age:
27
Team:
No team
Rating 1.0:
0.89
Maps played:
794
KPR:
0.61
DPR:
0.68
APR:
0.14
Denmark Danny 'zonic' Sørensen
Danny 'zonic' Sørensen
Age:
32
Team:
No team
Rating 1.0:
0.75
Maps played:
20
KPR:
0.49
DPR:
0.68
APR:
0.11
Yes, thats true! On the other hand, nobody is forcing them to attend every event.
2018-06-08 19:54
#3
 | 
Germany hazy_ 
Whats up guys? :)
2018-06-08 19:54
#7
 | 
Palestine zwe 
expected
2018-06-08 19:55
Expected
2018-06-08 19:59
#20
 | 
Netherlands Removed 
EXpected
2018-06-08 20:04
#25
 | 
Austria shaakeh 
Expected
2018-06-08 20:15
Unexpected
2018-06-09 10:17
#50
 | 
Poland Ryunar 
You got on your alt account
2018-06-09 00:06
#24
 | 
United Kingdom jMz86 
Well...there org probably are lol!
2018-06-08 20:14
#48
bardi | 
Denmark b-mejsel 
Player owned
2018-06-08 23:07
#57
 | 
United Kingdom jMz86 
Then sponsors and investors.
2018-06-09 14:05
Again second :(
2018-06-08 19:54
The NiKo curse
2018-06-08 20:51
#45
 | 
Brazil theluksabm 
+1
2018-06-08 21:41
sure
2018-06-08 19:54
#5
fer | 
Brazil _Awper 
best coach in the world right now and also Major winner as player in 1.6, Legend.
2018-06-08 19:54
Plus one
2018-06-08 23:42
I completly agree. I would love to have either 3 off seasons or way less events.
2018-06-08 19:54
#8
 | 
Nepal hpbaxx 
"the team's new policy of skipping certain events to boost performance" >2017 >new
2018-06-08 19:55
i cant recall them skipping anything other than cologne though
2018-06-08 19:59
#35
 | 
Nepal hpbaxx 
I definitely remember hearing about their skipping last year though
2018-06-08 20:35
Didn't they have an entire month off in 2017 and the first tourney after the vacation they bombed horribly?
2018-06-08 20:48
#9
kissmyass | 
Denmark raaVz 
nice
2018-06-08 19:55
#11
 | 
United Kingdom trtr098 
#ToTheStarts
2018-06-08 19:56
#12
 | 
Armenia 1915 
Who tf said you need to go to every event
2018-06-08 19:56
they have fans all over the world and when there is finally an event in their home country they want the best teams to attend those. and obviously the players, or atleast astralis in that regard, don´t want to disappoint their fans, because they actually care about them. it kinda makes sense but i completely understand zonic
2018-06-08 20:03
#29
 | 
Switzerland BottomFragger 
+1
2018-06-08 20:23
+1
2018-06-08 21:06
#59
zonic | 
Denmark KrynexCS 
+1
2018-06-09 14:35
#15
Xyp9x | 
Denmark megz 
As always an awesome read from zonic. Really informative. I think we have to get used to events where not all teams attend. DPC works wonders in dota, and while it ain't perfect, it still allow the best teams to take events off and prepare for TI after they qualified. This could be great in CS:GO. Will it happen? I don't think so. If valve wanted a TI like format, it would have happend years ago.
2018-06-08 20:01
#16
 | 
Serbia Removekebab13 
What is the point of [this]
2018-06-08 20:00
#27
Xeno | 
Netherlands Xenoo 
Things are said in context, this title is taken out of context, the writer inserts his own words to make it clear for the reader. The writer puts these [] around the words to indicate the writer inserted them than rather than putting words in the interviewee's mouth. It's the standard way of indicating that the writer added their own words to a quote.
2018-06-08 20:15
#58
zonic | 
Denmark KrynexCS 
+1
2018-06-09 14:35
Valve just needs to step in and sanction events/offtime and schedule things accordingly.
2018-06-08 20:03
#19
 | 
Brazil davidzor 
Every Now and then we see players (in this case a coach) talking about events schedule. The thing is they have to aim for their goal. You can't and you shouldn't attend to every event.
2018-06-08 20:04
facts its becoming oversaturated: events like katowice, cologne, and now majors are becoming overshadowed by a bunch of shittly ran events with large prize pools
2018-06-08 20:05
noone is forcing them to play every event /close
2018-06-08 20:08
> Skipping events is good for the team > I'm also getting some complaints from the family at home that I'm traveling way too much Pick one
2018-06-08 20:11
#26
 | 
France StickyRice 
zonic complaining that there is too many tourneys and too many opportunities for his team to take 100.000$+ per week, what a fucking douchebag.
2018-06-08 20:15
That's what I said LOL :)
2018-06-08 20:29
oof
2018-06-08 20:31
#34
 | 
France StickyRice 
I wasn't polite and i felt bad for it, but seriously pro players complain when they don't play (or get invited because hey "we deserve invites") enough events, and now they complain because there are too many of them. Firstly, they aren't forced to play every single of them, and secondly i know he would rather have bigger prizepools but you can't complain, just play and with his team's current form he will be rich anyway.
2018-06-08 20:33
#28
 | 
United States BGS 
There is way too much CS:GO going on. Please cut it down.
2018-06-08 20:15
C9 could learn from this.
2018-06-08 20:29
#32
 | 
United Kingdom Jonty04l32 
You should be extremely proud of how stupidly consistent your team is, zonic. xD It's so refreshing to see a truly dominant team in this current meta of CS:GO.
2018-06-08 20:31
Yeah please give us a gouverning body like Riot or Blizzard, who cuck the entire scene, kill new teams and give massive power to established and rich orgs, while also being able to force push bullshit rules and teamkilling moves. And reduce the amount of games to watch by 75% kill all independent tournament organisations. Screw this buzz phrase oversaturation, CS:GO is the best esport to watch, everyone has a chance to get up, from TOs to Teams to individual players. Nobody is forced to watch everything, choose the event of you want and watch it, while people in Asia dont have to stay up all night to watch or in NA to get up at 4am.
2018-06-08 20:44
amen +1. We decide what event we watch. Teams and TOs and Commissioning bodies can go fuck off. Community built CS as an esport. We won't let any TOs or teams dictate terms
2018-06-08 20:51
#37
 | 
China yry666233 
the nade criminal
2018-06-08 20:46
No need to shorten number of events. Don't wanna play, don't attend it
2018-06-08 20:50
#42
 | 
Denmark LarzeNizzle 
zonic 4 prez
2018-06-08 20:52
Zonic is right. I think the amount of events these days is one of the reasons why there are so many upsets, small teams temporarily winning and no consistency. I think the community should let their favourite teams prepare as best as possible, even if they miss a few events, just to make the tournament they do play in actually count, so the hype pays off.
2018-06-08 20:56
i travelled all the way from norway to sydney, and i can agree with him: I was only a viewer, but holy heck i was ruined after a week in Sydney lol
2018-06-08 22:45
How many days were you in Sydney?
2018-06-09 00:14
a whole week XD
2018-06-09 23:04
“...but after the recent news about them putting Pujan "FNS" Mehta on the transfer list, I expected them to play carelessly, which they did...” Damn my boy zonic got no respect for FNS lol
2018-06-09 00:13
His point is probably true but its funny that he needs to mention it since astralis is playing not that much events compared to FaZe or mouz.
2018-06-09 06:24
...now there's two of them!
2018-06-09 07:20
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