karrigan: "I don't want to put pressure on frozen, that we have to rely on him being the second star; right now I call him the joker"
As we talked with karrigan in the press room, the semi-final between Astralis and Vitality was going on, with the crowd roaring as clutches and big plays happened. Our conversation was focused on other things, though, such as karrigan's former team FaZe, and working with a completely new lineup in mousesports.
In the interview, the Danish in-game leader mentioned that the BO1 match they lost to Natus Vincere was the team's first disappointing loss, with another one following after this interview was conducted, as mousesports was eliminated from the ESL One New York qualifier by CR4ZY.
You lost to Natus Vincere twice, which got you eliminated. How did you see those game developing, especially with it going to Train, which looked like your best map but where you were beaten twice here?
Coming into the tournament, we knew when we had to play Na`Vi that the preparation for the opponent would be really hard, we had no idea about Na`Vi's map pool and they had a ton of information on our Train, for example. When you play your best map you are also prepared for what the enemies are doing, in this case, the only thing we could do was kind of anti-strat ourselves and try to guess what they would abuse and what we could abuse.
If you saw the game, it was obviously trying to hit B in the BO1 a lot, there were two afterplants we shouldn't have lost, especially the last one, 15-14, 4v2, miscommunication and missed shots cost us of going into overtime there. A few rounds before, 14-11, we had somehow lost a 5v3 afterplant. So that game was the first one I have had in mouz that was really disappointing, we didn't hit our shots, the communication was off and we couldn't finish the game. I said to the guys that it was one of those games which are always going to happen. In the end, the BO3 was different, but it still was really tough to play as well.
The FaZe match was also pretty interesting because it was against your former teammates, you had played them earlier at EPL as well, you had beaten them there and you beat them now again. Obviously, they are going through a rough period and I noticed that after the second game you didn't really go out and BM them on Twitter, you kept it classy, but how much did that mean to you overall?
It is quite funny, I knew, the second I did the last interview in which I said I want to meet them in an elimination game that it was probably going to happen in Cologne, and when I saw the groups, I knew it was somehow going to end there - and it obviously did. It had obviously been a different game in Montpellier because there was no pressure there, the team wasn't out of the tournament yet. I was a little bit more nervous this time. Obviously, they are going through a rough time and we are going towards a better time, I would say, when you look at the last results. So as you said, I didn't want to go out and do anything, I have great respect for them and I know that they are going through a tough period right now, so maybe another time when they are going through a better time and we are maybe at the top as well we can do a little bit more banter. Between me and them it is all fun, and I hope they see it the same way as well.
Before this tournament you broke into the top 10, the first time for this lineup, and you said something along of the lines of you being satisfied. But looking at the players you have: chrisJ and ropz were in the top 10 with their team for the whole year, you were in the top 10 for the whole of last year, woxic top20, frozen is the only guy that is kind of unknown and doesn't have experience. Is it really that impressive to get into the top 10 after four months?
I think the impressive thing is that normally, when you go really fast into the top 10, you have a lot of tournaments or you have one really deep run, going into a big final like FURIA did, suddenly they are in the top5 because of two deep runs. We had three tournaments, two big ones and one small one which will not give you a lot of points in the rankings. I said to myself when we made the lineup that I expected one big playoff before the break, and we have already done that twice, in Sydney and Montpellier, so I'm quite impressed by it.
The MIBR game in Sydney was a really tough one, the first time on the stage and they had a really good game. We lost to Liquid and Natus Vincere here in the group stage. Those are the three BO3s we've lost on LAN, and I think that is quite impressive when you see the teams we are beating. Going from day 1 we had nothing, no structure, no idea how people want to play, what role chrisJ would play, what role frozen would play... I think it is pretty impressive what we've done so far, but it doesn't stop here.
Talking about becoming an elite, established team, one of the things that is interesting about our team is that at the moment it is not really clear who the superstar of the team potentially is, if we compare it to the likes of Na`Vi and Vitality with s1mple and ZywOo, or even FaZe and Astralis, with NiKo and device. Who is going to be the player that is going to step up to the next level in your team?
Obviously, I think that ropz is the superstar of the team right now, but it is really hard to be that as the passive player he is, to be an enormous superstar and have big impact. If we all have a bad game, he will not have the impact because he is the passive guy, coming in, having to win 1v4s, 1v3s. You can do that sometimes, but you can't do it consistently. Right now that is the guy we rely on, and we are putting him into comfortable situations. When we made this team, I told myself that woxic is probably, with more experience on stage, going to turn into a superstar himself.
frozen was obviously a big question mark, but I think he has proved that he has the level to become a superstar player. How often he can reach that level is something we will have to help him with, put him into good situations. And I don't want to put pressure on a young guy like that, that we have to rely on him being the second star of the team. So right now I call him the joker. I also think we've seen that chrisJ has those games where he has superstar performances, so I'm really happy with the level of players we have and what we can achieve. And there is potential we have to switch around some roles and maybe there is another role frozen has to play, or a position. We started slowly doing that, changing things on certain maps, for example our Dust2 looked way better this tournament compared to the roles we had nearly two months ago when we played it in officials. So we are slowly getting there.