We sat down with MIBR's coach, Janko "YNk" Paunović, to quiz him about the team's journey at the Major, where they lost their first match to TYLOO and grabbed a confident win against mousesports thus far.
In our interview, the analyst-turned-coach walked us through MIBR's mistakes against TYLOO, in which the Chinese-Indonesian side came back from a 4-11 deficit on the CT side of Inferno, and explained how the team changed their approach to preparation for their second match versus mousesports.
YNk also gave us his thoughts on Dust2 as a map in general and whether he believes it's as random as it is portrayed to be by some of the recent results, before closing out with his view of G2 as MIBR's next opponent.
Let's go back to the TYLOO upset on Inferno and their comeback on the CT side. What happened on the T side from your point of view?
I think for us, we weren't our real selves. You look at some of the situations and some of the mistakes we made, we made a mistake in every important round on the T side, in every buy round we made some sort of a mistake, whether individual or strategical, pistol round or forcebuy, we made mistakes. A 5v4 situation for us with a bomb plant, we're really strong in those with our fundamentals, but people overpeeked, we made some mistakes.
I can't take anything away from TYLOO, they played a really good game, if we played them again in the same situations, they wouldn't punish us for all those mistakes, but this time they punished us for everything, they had a perfect flash for somebody with a UMP at the bottom of banana, BnTeT had a great timing to come library when we just traded and want to plant the bomb with little time left. They were making really good plays.
But we just feel like, at the end of the day, it's down to us. When we are playing our A game and we are on point and we're doing our own stuff, against any team or any map, we feel like we have the upper hand. The other side of the coin is, if we don't play our own game for whatever reason, then it's going to be difficult against any team, as well, so I think the first and the second game were a testament to that.
Speaking of the second game, you share a few maps that were possible in the veto, what kind of expectations did you have regarding the map pool?
Yeah, we do. Obviously, we beat them on Mirage and Inferno. We knew in a best-of-one they would remove Inferno, we weren't so sure about Mirage, we thought it might happen because it wasn't just against us, they lost to NiP, they lost to some other teams, as well.
So we knew that if we didn't veto Dust2 ourselves, that was going to be the map because it's going to come down to Dust2 and Train. And Train, if you pick it, the opponent gets to pick the side, and we thought we were the higher seed. We thought the team that placed higher at the last Major automatically gets the higher seed, but here it's apparently random. That's new, so we surprised when we started the thing, the process, but it didn't really matter much.
Between Dust2 and Train, we went for Dust2, they picked the side and that isn't really as relevant as on Train, so we prepared for Dust2. Not initially, we were kind of thinking about Mirage and Train, but then we looked at a couple of their Dust2 games and we thought we stood a good chance with the way we play.
It just looked confident from you, how did it go in the end?
After the game versus TYLOO, we approached it a bit differently, me and FalleN sat down, talked about what style we want to use, maybe some of the strategies we had, which one we'd like to use in the first gunround, second gunround, things like that. Then we played two maps of practice, one Train, one Dust, and on Dust we went through it.
So, for the players, they don't need to think much about what it is it they're supposed to do, they kind of know already, at least for that very start. And I think it was important because we lost the pistol and the forcebuy, so we were 3-0 down and they have a lot of economy, we didn't get a lot of kills, so that really meant a lot for us to get ourselves into the game early on.
This game was just so hard, the first half... We played really well, but it was so hard because they saved so much, we won 10 rounds and I think nine of them were gunrounds of some sort. It was the same on Mirage, actually, when we played in Stockholm. The guys just executed really well after those preset rounds, we were going off of feel, FalleN with the calls was reading the game, everyone was just playing really well, doing their job, and that was the end result.
Considering some of the results we've seen recently on Dust2, it just seems like such a volatile map, what do you make of the map as a team?
Well, for us, it's difficult. Because we haven't had that many official games against really good teams, for us, the maps that we play, we think they're all pretty good, it's just about which ones are more consistent for us. Dust2...
Can you be consistent on it?
I think you can if you do things the right way. I don't think it's fully random, the thing is that sometimes it's difficult for the CTs when you don't have good economy, in that way I think it's a bit similar to Cobblestone. When you're CT on Dust2, what is it that you can do in terms of early aggression? There's not really that much unless you boost cat or maybe go for something towards B, if you want to go lower it's going to be obvious, right.
In that sense it's hard and feel like CTs nowadays feel like they have to take more gambles, maybe fake that you're going for long control but actually be cat to bait out a reaction or go for some stacks. And then if you gamble wrong, you just save. So, I think that's why maybe it can be a little bit random at times, but I don't think it's fully random, I think the good Dust2 teams separate themselves and I think they're going to win the majority of the games compared to the teams that are not that good on the map.
What do you think about G2 as your next opponent?
I think they're a pretty good team. Maybe they're still in a phase of trying to figure out exactly how they would like to play or maybe don't have things done on as many maps as they'd like, but I think they're definitely a strong team, a lot of experienced players, you have the likes of shox and kennyS playing really well.
We practiced against them a lot, I feel like, so we feel pretty confident coming into the matchup, I don't there will be many surprises there, even in terms of the map veto or anything like that. As I said, as long as we play our own game, we have no reason to not feel like we're the better team in the server and we're coming to the game against G2 with the same approach like we did against mousesports.
In Stockholm you only lost to Astralis as the best team in the world, here you've had a couple of very different matches, how confident are you going into the rest of the tournament?
Our confidence is very high. I would have wished that we met Astralis maybe later in Stockholm, not because I didn't want to face them, but so that we could get an extra game on stage. An extra series with a different veto so we can really test some of the maps that we have. For me, I think some map is strong and then we get into a game and things don't go as we're used to in pracc, and then it gets a bit harder.
In that way, it's just taking it one step at a time, playing our own game, sticking to what we've practiced, and going on from there. We can't do anything more than that, really, so I think this win is going to mean a lot to us, people will get a bit relaxed. It's the Major in the end, there's a lot of pressure on everyone to perform, there are so many good teams, we're aware of that, we didn't underestimate TYLOO or anything. It's just a lot of really good teams. It's just about staying focused and playing our own game and I'm confident we can make it really far at this tournament.
More interviews from the New Legends stage:
Edward: "If you feel calm during the whole game, the comeback is real, always"
nitr0: "I'm hoping we get Astralis, we can definitely put up a good show and a good fight"
Xizt: "Every loss is going to take a toll on your confidence, we had to slowly build it up again"
LEGIJA: "Before the Major, we said 'We will not practice to make Legends, we're here to f****** win'"
JW: "We considered twist after the early StarLadder exit; he wasn’t really interested"
jmqa: "After the last Major, our practice wasn't great, we didn't have good conditions"
flamie: "We still want to play Dust2 because no one is playing it well"
SmithZz: "We aren't completely ready at the moment, but we are getting there"
RUSH: "Hopefully, after the Major, our ranking will reflect how we actually are as a team"