device: "There have been a lot of great teams, we're just grateful to be considered one of them"

Nicolai "device" Reedtz has hit double digits in his MVP medal count after Astralis won IEM Chicago. We caught up with the Danish AWPer after the final against Liquid to talk about the team's successes.

Astralis pulled off a clean win in Chicago, closing the event out 3-0 against Liquid in the final despite early struggles on Mirage. The MVP award was given to device, who beat the likes of Russel "Twistzz" Van Dulken and Peter "dupreeh" Rasmussen in the race for the medal, making this his tenth most valuable player accolade won.

Astralis will have a shot at the Intel Grand Slam on home turf, at the ESL Pro League Finals in Odense

The Dane gave HLTV.org some time after the final to discuss the two comebacks in the playoffs against fnatic and Liquid, some of the team's routines during events, how they keep pushing boundaries as the best team in the world, and what they hope to achieve until the end of the season.

Let's start the interview off with the match today. It was fairly in your favor the whole time, with the exception of Mirage, which you had to make a big comeback on. You did the same against fnatic yesterday, as well. How did the team live that on the inside?

Yeah, the comebacks against fnatic and Liquid were built a bit on momentum, but also on preparation, I would say. We knew a lot of the tells Liquid had, and when they were going to do different tactics and so on, so as you saw, we were doing several stacks on different sites and we were almost always three guys on whichever site they hit.

The philosophy against fnatic was that we have the best Inferno T-side, so we just believed in that. We've won many practices 15-0 on T-side and we knew that we could just grind rounds out, even if we were just doing defaults. We played the percentages and that gave us a big chance of winning.

What has it been that has allowed you to keep the fortitude necessary to make these comebacks, to be able to have the discipline to stay in it and pull it off?

I think the discipline comes a bit from practice. We're one of the teams that practices the least, I think, because what we work on is being as effective as possible and playing our practices as close to the way we play official games as possible. It's a mental state you're in, knowing every second of every round matters. Knowing that every little decision you make, peeking or shoulder peeking, or whatever it is, it all matters in the big picture. The amount of focus required to win a lot of rounds in a row is an art, and we've practiced it a lot. That and the experience that Xyp9x, dupreeh, and I have with the previous mental blocks we've had and how we've worked through them. We know what it takes and we know we have what it takes.

That was a bit of the micro-scale, when things aren't going well on a map. What about the bigger picture, straightening out between maps in a series, or mid-tournament?

When we're at a tournament there's not much we change. We have our schedules, our preparation, and we tend to practice a fair bit. We really like to watch our games and look at our mistakes, but we also like to go out and do some fun stuff instead of always having our mind on the game. Relieving some of the stress and pressure that can build up just doing fun things together, like having a great dinner together or going out to see the city, that helps us a lot. Overall, we do the changing when we're at home and we have time, not mid-tournament. When we go home is the time to think about the meta, how to change the meta, and so on.

Talking about being at home and the meta changing... Do you feel like teams are starting to read and understand you a little bit better? Is that making it harder on you or do you still feel pretty far ahead?

I think our in-game philosophy hasn't been completely read, but it has been understood better throughout the last tournaments, maybe. You can also see it for instance in the grenade damage, we're not getting the same utility damage as before. We're still up there as the highest or second highest, but people now know that it was one of our big advantages in the beginning. I still feel like our philosophy about how we prepare and how we do things together as a team is something that a lot of teams don't know, or they're not adapting, or doing it the same way as us. It's really easy to copy in-game stuff, but the outside part is what's hard, the preparation and the general mindset, and I think we have a slight advantage there. The other teams will always catch up, though, it's always the hardest to be #1 and to continue to stay at the top.

To follow that thought up, how hard is it for you to constantly be pushing the boundaries?

It's really hard as an individual to keep pushing yourself, being at all of these tournaments. You're neglecting a lot of parts of your life that you get interested in when you start winning. When you start to get the success you always wanted, other parts of life become more interesting because you fulfilled the winning part, but it's just... it's a mental thing, believing we are the best team and that we have to demand excellence from each other. Otherwise, we won't be able to continue, but we all want to be here, and we want to be here in three months or even a year.

At the Major, you were asked if you'd consider yourself the best team in history. You didn't quite want to say yes then. Would you say so now?

I still feel the same way. It's like the Ronaldo and Messi generation vs. Pele and Maradona, it's so hard to look at different periods of time and look at the dominant teams and compare them. I can't claim that we're the best team of all time, I know NIP were completely unstoppable and we're nowhere even close to their map wins on LAN. We may catch up on Nuke at some point if I don't jinx it now, but it'll take years because we don't play it that much anymore (laughs). There have been a lot of great teams, and we're just grateful to be considered one of them.

To round out the interview, we're heading into the end of the season, how are you feeling ahead of tournaments like ECS and the Pro League Finals?

We're feeling fairly confident going into the rest of the season. We know that we have a lot of things in place that we want to use, tactics wise. We just need to get the individual level up a bit, and then we'll feel really good.

Our main focus is the event in Odense. We want to win in Denmark and now the Grand Slam is at stake, so that matters a lot to us. Being the first team to win that would also be remembered, and we're not here for the money and the fame, we're here to create our own legacy, and it's amazing to be a part of it.

Denmark Peter 'dupreeh' Rasmussen
Peter 'dupreeh' Rasmussen
Age:
26
Team:
Rating 1.0:
1.10
Maps played:
1476
KPR:
0.75
DPR:
0.65
APR:
0.14
Denmark Nicolai 'device' Reedtz
Nicolai 'device' Reedtz
Age:
24
Team:
Rating 1.0:
1.17
Maps played:
1356
KPR:
0.78
DPR:
0.62
APR:
0.13
Canada Russel 'Twistzz' Van Dulken
Russel 'Twistzz' Van Dulken
Age:
19
Team:
Rating 1.0:
1.14
Maps played:
895
KPR:
0.76
DPR:
0.62
APR:
0.12
wow
2018-11-12 01:51
ok
2018-11-12 01:51
#3
 | 
Finland G0Dteukkab 
rofl
2018-11-12 01:52
#4
 | 
Europe furNOPE 
cool
2018-11-12 01:54
#5
 | 
Germany hyd33 
ez4Device
2018-11-12 01:54
astralis top 5 team of all time
2018-11-12 01:55
top 5 all time??? They are clearly the best playing counter strike team ever seen. Anny top 5 team today would beat NiP/Fnatic/sk at their best. Cs today is way better team based and the old teams would get shut down like top 20 teams against anny top 5 today. Just saying that when their era's were on it was all about aim and slick plays. Not as tactical as today. No doubt they were insane back in the day really good players individually but the teamplay back then nah not near today.
2018-11-12 03:09
#30
 | 
United Kingdom de_bait 
Hell no, nip for sure, but no fnatic and sk.
2018-11-12 03:47
Astralis is the GOAT
2018-11-12 03:57
#35
 | 
Sweden samjerxD 
you cant compare nip and fnatic :)
2018-11-12 04:24
87-0 just saying. Astralis is nowhere near yet
2018-11-12 06:43
87-0 in a time when no one understood how to play is obviously better than destroying everyone in the most competitive era of cs right??
2018-11-12 07:18
#59
 | 
Russia Mah_one_des 
NiP aslo nowhere nearly since actual teams started playing the game lmaoo
2018-11-12 07:38
#62
Jame | 
CIS ZILTOID 
nobody cares about your opinion, a great player like device pays respect where respect is due, as he has just done so in this interview, if the current best considers nip’s run unparalleled, so should others
2018-11-12 07:52
#69
 | 
Russia Mah_one_des 
As the guy before I was "Just saying" Do not wanna adress your broken logic tho, hf
2018-11-12 08:46
#75
Jame | 
CIS ZILTOID 
nothing broken in it, it’s just a reaction to the typical edgy and ungrateful little shits that cs:go’s fanbase consists of in general
2018-11-12 09:06
what a toxic fagg
2018-11-12 09:13
#65
 | 
Netherlands Funtobedavid 
Fnatic era was way bigger than astralis half of an era
2018-11-12 08:08
#66
 | 
Sweden Lil187 
Your should rename yourself to Joke
2018-11-12 08:22
#73
 | 
Netherlands Funtobedavid 
Still less than a joke than your name
2018-11-12 08:53
#72
 | 
Finland Raffe_ 
Are you saying that the current MIBR is better than nip or fnatic OR SK at their best XDDDD U mad lol
2018-11-12 08:52
#7
 | 
Finland Smoonah 
best team in the world rip
2018-11-12 01:56
well deserved Astralis top1 Lulquid ALWAYS top2 or 3/4
2018-11-12 02:11
Liguid and loosing to astralis in finals lmao
2018-11-12 13:26
GOAT of teams for sure
2018-11-12 02:22
Bad bait, try again
2018-11-12 07:13
The era is real
2018-11-12 07:22
Why are u baiting again?
2018-11-12 07:57
No bait. Only truth
2018-11-12 13:37
Lets see in upcoming months what they can do. :-)
2018-11-12 15:01
It'll be sweet, oh so sweet
2018-11-12 17:13
That's way too much power - Valve should commence a handicap against Astralis to shake things up +1 major +6 big tournaments +1 Intel grand slam (probably) +Rover +Entire team at HLTV top 20
2018-11-12 02:29
#74
 | 
Norway Easy_for_FaZe 
+755470891232556767899087654789
2018-11-12 08:57
hahah
2018-11-12 02:49
#19
 | 
Indonesia Exodd 
Humblevice the MVP
2018-11-12 02:49
Humblevice the cuckold lol
2018-11-12 04:35
+1
2018-11-12 07:21
#20
 | 
United States johnjay 
gg astralis
2018-11-12 02:52
ez for tom cruise omegalul
2018-11-12 03:04
Great teams like this youtu.be/UAtspT3NeB0
2018-11-12 03:05
AHAHAHHAHAHAH
2018-11-12 17:58
gg
2018-11-12 03:26
#28
 | 
Slovakia Freddie28 
- We are not here for the money - Pick Fnatic for the money
2018-11-12 03:31
what?
2018-11-12 04:50
#47
 | 
Denmark DanishDelight 
what?
2018-11-12 06:38
Did you mean Cloud9, at the Blast Copenhagen?
2018-11-12 07:35
#60
 | 
India |sKy| 
Umm maybe your autocorrect changed it it's was cloud 9
2018-11-12 07:50
#86
 | 
Slovakia Freddie28 
Oh my false, yeah I mean cloud9 xD
2018-11-12 12:51
#32
 | 
Brazil cadik 
Device >>>>>>>>>>>> s1mple
2018-11-12 03:58
good interview
2018-11-12 04:05
#34
 | 
Australia MatthewJKS 
Astralis era. Will become best era if they win in Odense and the next major.
2018-11-12 04:15
Experts said it would be called a era if they won the latest major in London which they did now its a era no need to keep pushing it, while I do hope they win the next major and definitely the intel grand slam I do see this as a era and a good one considering cs go is hard to dominate today
2018-11-12 16:17
#108
 | 
Australia MatthewJKS 
Look at what I said. Now look at what you said. It's an era for sure, I was saying it will beat FNATIC's and NIP's eras if they win the Intel Grand Slam and the Katowice Major.
2018-11-12 23:35
well said, the edge astralis have against other teams is the mental part. while stress on their excelent teamplay, many will keep overrating niko or simple, like they are much superior to device, dupreeh, magisk, actually its such really naive thought. they are all super skilled invidual player just like niko simple, but all five of them have the dicipline to move like a military unit and playing as a team. they dont build around certain player, but each player has the skill to do the impossible when pushed to limit. they are just playing the percentage so we dont see it often, and talk about pure mechincal skill, twistzz, and shroud if he stay, for me are the real gods, those guys play official lan games like mm, and had solo destroyed simple, niko co. on lan. but long term competative cs and trophy is more about team play. atm astralis the only team with structure of all five players have the roles and dicipline to execute this baisc idea
2018-11-12 04:43
#61
 | 
India |sKy| 
+11111111111
2018-11-12 07:51
well said good to see someone truly understand this game on hltv
2018-11-12 12:17
-and talk about pure mechincal skill -shroud lmao nt
2018-11-12 18:37
If you can fin another team that is as lucky as Astralis, you are in Denmark or working for HLTV.org
2018-11-12 05:57
At some point, when these things keeps happening, you cannot call it luck anymore. Thats basic knowledge. Was it lucky that fnatic got to 15-9 on inferno due to a defuse, that should never have happened, or was it pure skill?
2018-11-12 06:17
I don't call their gameplay lucky, because i know it's good. I call everything around them for luck.
2018-11-12 06:27
but again, is it really luck? Or is it hard work, getting to the point where you're at? I believe in the second option.
2018-11-12 06:23
it's luck, faze beats them, faze fucks up with liquid and again another easy final against a team they can easily beat.
2018-11-12 06:25
so far you didn't come up, with one single argument, backing your statement...
2018-11-12 06:37
i just did
2018-11-12 06:42
#67
 | 
Sweden Lil187 
Idiaht
2018-11-12 08:24
You did not at all.
2018-11-12 12:46
#109
 | 
Australia MatthewJKS 
+1 this one, it's not luck, watch their CT side on any map and see their amazing structure and counter-strats. They've put in a lot of effort.
2018-11-12 23:39
#78
 | 
Australia t0rrent 
autism at its finest
2018-11-12 09:20
skill is when luck becomes a habit
2018-11-12 13:32
Dev1ce is a smart guy , he acknowledges what NiP did was no ordinary feat.
2018-11-12 06:03
#41
 | 
Europe T3sto$ami 
Still EZ4ENCE
2018-11-12 06:04
One more major, and People need to look at the fact that you are the best team in History. Until then, fnatic remain that team
2018-11-12 07:06
Fnatic...? Really..?
2018-11-12 08:50
Yes fnatic stomped everyone for a long period of time (almost 2 entire years). If Astralis keeps this up for at least 6 more months you can clearly say they are the best team of all time on csgo.
2018-11-12 09:21
One major more and they are the best team in History
2018-11-12 10:52
#84
 | 
Bulgaria Grezko 
What fnatic did was NOT stomping, the amount to close games and lost bo3s they had during that period is not comparable.
2018-11-12 12:45
#103
NiKo | 
Poland Jaruzel 
Yeah they had a lot of close games, but they almost always made a comeback when they were down, it was insane.
2018-11-12 16:56
#110
 | 
Bulgaria Grezko 
if Half is "almost always" - ok ... The "Fnatic era" got a bit artificially extended for some extra 3-4 months due to them winning the Cologne Major that year(that win was surprising, VP had them dead to rights in the semi).
2018-11-13 12:30
Yes they are the only team with 3 majors, and majors is the event that count
2018-11-12 10:51
Yes and this Chicago event doesn’t count
2018-11-12 15:30
in the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king
2018-11-12 07:24
astralis not so good, just the other teams so bad. Not the best cs I 've ever seen, I find it boring and not sexy at all, kinda cold and with erectile dysfunction.. 1.19 rating mvp says it all
2018-11-12 07:34
#87
forsaken | 
Denmark abbqb 
Your understanding of the game is abysmal if you think it hasn't evolved.
2018-11-12 13:02
silver spotted
2018-11-12 13:29
flair checks out
2018-11-12 13:30
it does, but doesn't change anything
2018-11-12 13:32
the only thing that has been changed here is your gender.
2018-11-12 13:39
#63
method | 
United States f0xes` 
Been following CSGO since the beginning and Astralis is without a doubt top 3 all-time in CSGO.
2018-11-12 07:54
Do you mean top 1?
2018-11-12 09:17
#96
 | 
United Arab Emirates pigeoN1 
SK ERA NUMBER 1
2018-11-12 13:38
This might be your favorite, but Astralis reached a level on CS that has never been reached before
2018-11-12 14:07
Best in the world
2018-11-12 08:37
#83
 | 
Hungary makszi 
<3 BEST PLAYER EVER LETS GO ASTRALIS TOTHESTARS
2018-11-12 12:24
#102
NiKo | 
Poland Jaruzel 
1. fnatic era 2. Astralis era 3. SK era 4. NIP era Imo
2018-11-12 16:54
#105
ZywOo | 
Denmark ullEREN 
device = best awper
2018-11-12 17:53
Login or register to add your comment to the discussion.