pronax: "I think we won the lottery when the chance to sign the SMASH lineup fell into our laps"

Following GODSENT's return to CS:GO, we talked with Markus "⁠pronax⁠" Wallsten about his role in the organization, the merger with The Final Tribe, and the decision to sign a non-Swedish team.

GODSENT officially returned to Counter-Strike on Thursday with the signing of the ex-SMASH roster, two months after the relaunch of the famed organisation following a merger with The Final Tribe.

pronax, who hung up his mouse in May, tells HLTV.org that he has found it hard to adjust to life after retirement but stresses that he feels that his personal success is now tied to that of GODSENT, which has become his sole focus.

pronax described the squad as "one of the hardest working groups" he has seen in esports

The three-time Major winner and former fnatic in-game leader will be keeping his distance from the CS:GO team for now, giving coach Jonatan "⁠Devilwalk⁠" Lundberg the freedom to operate, but he does not close the door on the possibility of helping out the players if they deem it necessary.

You officially hung up your mouse in May, announcing that you were "moving on to something bigger than yourself". Was that a hint at the GODSENT project? What have you been up to, what kind of work has been filling up your day-to-day since then?

It was indeed a hint that I was about to relaunch GODSENT, at the time I did not really know how I would do it but I knew I would not be able to do it alone, so my day-to-day for a very long time was just me talking to different people, having a few meetings and trying to find the correct people to relaunch GODSENT with. And lately, I had been in charge of finding us a CS:GO lineup that we could work on a long term project with.

GODSENT was merged with The Final Tribe, who were mostly known for their DOTA 2 team. You were mentioned as the second-largest shareholder of the new company. Can you tell us a bit more about how this came to happen and how the two brands will work together moving forward?

The Final Tribe heard the rumours about GODSENT relaunching, which made them contact us to set up a meeting. We realized very quickly while talking to them that we shared a lot when it comes to vision and we shared the same ambitions on where we wanted to take this company. They had a lot of the things that you need to be able to call yourself a tier 1 organization already up and running, like the bootcamp facility in Malmö. Moving forward, all of us are working under the same company, and we will work with the brand GODSENT, and in the future, we might do some legacy things with both the TFT brand and the Ancient.

How do you define the role you have in the organization right now? Have you found yourself in your new role, is stepping back from a player role to this one something that suits you?

My role within GODSENT right now is to be in charge of our CS:GO section. In the future, I definitely want to be more involved in the creative part of the organization when it comes to clothing, product development and stuff like that, but for the foreseeable future I will focus on the CS:GO section and myself. The transition from being a pro player has been a lot harder on me than I thought it would be since I was used to waking up every morning with a set goal on what to do. Right now I’m kind of figuring out stuff by myself in terms of the direction I want to take my life in the future, but GODSENT is obviously a big part of that, and in my eyes I succeed as long as GODSENT succeeds.

It seemingly took quite a bit of time for GODSENT to sign their CS:GO team. Why did it take so long, what was the process of finding and deciding on a team like?

It took a lot of time because we wanted to make sure we signed a team we could work with on a long-term project, and that did not seem possible with the way the Swedish CS:GO scene is today. But I think we won the lottery when the chance to sign the SMASH lineup fell into our laps, as this is a team that has been together for about 10 months, playing without salaries, and they have been able to bring themselves back after every setback they have faced. I think they are perfect to represent GODSENT.

There were some rumors about you targeting a Swedish team, but you ended up signing an international roster in SMASH. Was going international deliberate, or a consequence of the teams that were available at the moment?

I would say that it was a consequence of the teams/players who were available at the time, but also a realization from our side on how many doors open up when you have an international squad instead of a national roster.

How deeply and in what capacity will you personally be involved in the operations in the CS:GO team?

Right now I won't be super involved in the day-to-day operations of the CS:GO team, I will definitely have some oversight but I have full trust in Devilwalk as a coach and the team in general. They are one of the hardest working groups that I have seen in esports, and as long as they are progressing and getting better as a team I won't involve myself too much. As an organization, we want to provide them with tools and experts that can help them improve even more. But if they want my help I will definitely help them, and it’s not impossible for me to take a more hands-on approach in the future.

In an announcement following the merger with The Final Tribe, it is mentioned that the move was made with "the aim of becoming a Swedish world-class tier one esports powerhouse". How do you plan to catch up on the already established esports brands? What will differentiate GODSENT from the rest?

Our goal is to create the best possible atmosphere for our teams so that our players can develop their skills as gamers, but also give them tools and experts to improve themselves in life in general.

We will also put a lot of emphasis on interacting with our fans. But in general I don't think we will be doing anything super different from other organizations, but I do believe that if we continue doing what we are doing we will slowly but surely catch up with the more established organizations.

Talking about the CS:GO team specifically, what are your expectations from them? What goals were set at the start of your cooperation?

My own expectations for the CS:GO team is for them to be a stable top 20 team within six months, I think that's a reachable and very realistic goal, and from there another goal would be for the team to claim a Legend spot in a Major.

Sweden Jonatan 'Devilwalk' Lundberg
Jonatan 'Devilwalk' Lundberg
Age:
29
Team:
No team
Rating 1.0:
0.86
Maps played:
400
KPR:
0.58
DPR:
0.69
APR:
0.16
Sweden Markus 'pronax' Wallsten
Markus 'pronax' Wallsten
Age:
29
Team:
No team
Rating 1.0:
0.89
Maps played:
1199
KPR:
0.60
DPR:
0.67
APR:
0.14
#1
 | 
Finland neksu
GOD pronax
2019-11-14 23:00
You are so sexyy
2019-11-14 23:01
You are so sexyy
2019-11-14 23:02
Wanna Bang a fin
2019-11-14 23:37
LETSGOOO PRONAX 200 IQ GUY MAKE GODSENT GREAT AGAIN
2019-11-15 01:01
Sign Krystal = won lottery ok
2019-11-14 23:08
#32
 | 
United States Frotha
XD
2019-11-14 23:19
#50
dRiim | 
Finland dRiim
oooooh snap
2019-11-15 00:10
+1 At least they were a free team. Thats the main reason they signed them , imo. Hope to see -5 +5 soon.
2019-11-15 00:20
#86
STYKO | 
Norway AdNiB
Nah, STYKO, Zehn and Maden are all very good players, but if they underperform then i wouldn't be surpised if we saw - kRYSTAL and - Maikelele, and + 2 soon.
2019-11-15 08:20
Cr4zy +zehn +aleksib would be better imo. Even tho it wont happen , i definitely see potential.
2019-11-15 22:52
+1
2019-11-15 01:18
#85
Zero | 
Slovakia harek
I would said, the signing of Crystal haven't been made on the old grudge basis but more likely his current condition.
2019-11-15 08:00
yes
2019-11-14 23:00
+1
2019-11-14 23:00
#6
 | 
United Kingdom VOSSKi
pronax LUL
2019-11-14 23:01
still more majors than p1mple and you stupid australian overrated upcoming disband team
2019-11-15 06:10
#92
jks | 
Australia Reapz^
triggered
2019-11-15 08:29
#95
 | 
Germany I_Am_Jerm
I don't am a fan of triggered comments but here I think he is right - pronax is an absolute icon
2019-11-15 09:45
#7
 | 
Turkey hxlo
very cool
2019-11-14 23:01
Well yeah, it was a really really good move from Pronax
2019-11-14 23:01
Top20 is maximum for this team?
2019-11-14 23:02
#87
STYKO | 
Norway AdNiB
For this current roster? Most likely, they might go higher but then one of Maikelele or kRYSTAL needs to step up heavily in the fragging department. Edit: the core of STYKO, Zehn and Maden is definently good enough for top 20 though.
2019-11-15 08:28
I feel like maikelele still has potential, maybe he could get there.
2019-11-15 11:27
He does show flashes of potential from time to time, so it's possible.
2019-11-15 11:29
#13
 | 
Switzerland x676
What a non sense
2019-11-14 23:02
doubt
2019-11-14 23:02
#15
 | 
Thailand hahahoha
stop lying
2019-11-14 23:02
Kappa
2019-11-14 23:05
DEVILWALK COACH LMAOOOO
2019-11-14 23:06
Fnatic with devilwalk coach won most of their events. Devilwalk best , he bestest
2019-11-15 05:21
I believe in you pronax
2019-11-14 23:06
God pronax, you so sexy
2019-11-14 23:07
pronax_3_major_s1mple_0
2019-11-14 23:07
indeed
2019-11-15 00:16
Who?
2019-11-14 23:08
GOD
2019-11-14 23:09
Pronax will lead these guys to a major EZ
2019-11-14 23:09
pronax <3
2019-11-14 23:10
GOALS very high for this team. top 40 more accurate
2019-11-14 23:13
#98
 | 
Switzerland x676
Exactly. Top40 is the realistic scope
2019-11-15 10:15
So they already reached it. That was quick
2019-11-16 13:56
That doesnt mean they will reach Pronax goal
2019-11-16 15:20
Miss pronax as player to be honest
2019-11-14 23:14
same bruh
2019-11-15 01:37
LOL, you think this is a good pickup? a team that will forever struggle to beat tier6?
2019-11-14 23:16
I still dont understand how a lineup consisting of 4 support players and one igl is working
2019-11-14 23:29
Its cause maden has really stepped up to be a star, zehn and styko have found great form and since they have more responsibility they are rising to the occasion. My only problem is maikelele while yes he seems to be less toxic he is still not a great awper like before. Krystal is fine as an IGL and has tons of experience. There are a few freee players that in wouldn't mind joining Oskar in place of maikelel Issaa in place of Zehn/Styko Aleksib in place of krystal
2019-11-14 23:48
ISSAA and Aleksib are already linked with OG (with Valde, NBK and Jamppi)
2019-11-15 00:11
issaa has a really bad work ethic, let's hope they don't sign him
2019-11-15 10:47
You question Maikeleles ability to hit shot and want to replace him with a player who has been even worse the last year?
2019-11-16 14:07
lmao u signed dead team how is that a lottery xD
2019-11-14 23:29
#35
 | 
World Tillt
sounds more like some sort of crappy secret santa when you sign krystal
2019-11-14 23:31
#36
IM | 
Czech Republic cortan
Pronax is owner?
2019-11-14 23:32
#38
 | 
Germany xkillua
yes, founder of GODSENT
2019-11-14 23:36
#40
 | 
Germany xkillua
what a bad lineup
2019-11-14 23:37
Lol
2019-11-14 23:37
#42
 | 
Brazil fuNNa
pronax OMEGALOL
2019-11-14 23:38
nt taco
2019-11-15 01:49
#45
 | 
Finland Smoonah
lmao won't even make it to any majors
2019-11-14 23:48
No it wasnt pronax.. This team was without an org for ages and there was a reason for it. Next to no potential.
2019-11-14 23:51
What are u talking about they always climbed the ranks
2019-11-15 08:28
current spot is their ceiling
2019-11-15 11:40
They can reach top 30 also because they will get some points from lan now
2019-11-15 11:53
#47
 | 
Sweden changrai
They Dont even quality for lans...
2019-11-14 23:51
Yeahhhh, no.
2019-11-14 23:53
#52
 | 
Brazil Gunzel
lol
2019-11-15 00:15
welcome back, legend!
2019-11-15 00:16
People in here are delusional AF. Godsents new team 100% got potential. Only player that plays kinda wack is kRYSTAL, but he is "excused" since hes the IGL. Maikelele puts up pretty decent scores against teams such as Mouz, CR4ZY, North, AVANGAR, Heroic, etc Maden came from nowhere and does a pretty damn good job, he literally came from T4-T5 scene up to T3-T2 (And sometimes T1 teams) and put up pretty good numbers. zehN was really bad before, but he also stepped up a bit, puts up pretty decent numbers for being a supportive player. STYKO i believe have switched from support to a more open role (correct me if i am wrong) and puts up decent stats against T2-T3 teams, i mean, hes not supposed to be the star of the team. Maybe what they could do is get rid of STYKO if needed and add a young talent. But like i said, the team is doing pretty well rn.
2019-11-15 00:17
#68
OK | 
Brazil DinooxP
This, but only would change aleksib(if EG not work) for Krystal and send Krystal to coach
2019-11-15 01:43
#75
 | 
Denmark ghostan11
Ye nt still tier 3 team
2019-11-15 02:09
Ok fan of team that kicked their IGL and went ultra sh*t.
2019-11-15 02:12
#77
 | 
Denmark ghostan11
Anyone can be better than this team even ence so nt
2019-11-15 02:13
+1
2019-11-15 06:07
#88
STYKO | 
Norway AdNiB
+1 but replacing STYKO is a really bad idea. He's currently competing with Maden as the best player on the team and even if he struggles to perform in the future then he could easily go back to being a support player. (As he was one of the best support players in the international scene before joining NoChance)
2019-11-15 08:25
Like i said, no need to replace anyone, but IF they do then it should be -STYKO.
2019-11-15 13:05
Disagree with that, if you had to remove anyone then Maikelele, kRYSTAL and ZehN are all more logical cuts. STYKO has outperformed all of those 3 for a while now.
2019-11-15 13:42
" if you had to remove anyone then Maikelele, kRYSTAL and ZehN are all more logical cuts. STYKO has outperformed all of those 3 for a while now." Rofl, no he hasnt. And expected comment from someone that got "<3 STYKO" lol.
2019-11-15 13:50
Please tell me how STYKO hasn't outperformed those 3. He has way better stats than 2 of those, and has shown more consistency than ZehN.
2019-11-15 15:08
"He has way better stats than 2 of those" No he has not. Also, if you actually read my post i said that kRYSTAL obv got the worst but hes excused since hes the IGL. zehN vs STYKO: i.gyazo.com/a5d46fb81173262c801f47ded32f.. i.gyazo.com/203df307c13e8bc86a88a0635053.. Maikelele vs STYKO: i.gyazo.com/083615ccd6615c401baecd0a56f0.. i.gyazo.com/8b1b2df882a459a905d53e40553c.. (Please notice the map difference between Maikelele & STYKO)
2019-11-15 15:26
Why are you comparing Maikelele's career stats with STYKO's 2019? It's quite clear who has better stats regardless hltv.org/stats/players/compare/6904/STYK.. hltv.org/stats/players/compare/6904/STYK.. So as i said, he's been way better than 2 of those, which is true. And with Zehn their recent stats are similar hltv.org/stats/players/compare/6904/STYK.. So these Zehn stats doesn't prove me wrong exactly.
2019-11-15 15:38
AH my b, thought i switched it to 2019 obviously. Why are you comparing past 3 months & "all"? lol
2019-11-15 15:40
Which link? Didn't see any with un-even comparisons lul.
2019-11-15 15:43
hltv.org/stats/players/compare/6904/STYK.. Tbh you shouldnt compare "All" ever.
2019-11-15 15:46
Yeah i see that, there just wasn't many LAN matches between the 2 in 2019 so going for all was basically the best bet.
2019-11-15 15:49
#97
 | 
Japan Inlivino
They need star player.
2019-11-15 09:47
#56
roeJ | 
Germany L1lK1M
No buyout signing top30 team is quite a lottery for a company without that much capital...
2019-11-15 00:18
#59
flusha | 
Italy HeSY
The GoD is speaking
2019-11-15 00:26
pronax beck!
2019-11-15 00:44
#62
 | 
Brazil SecondKS
-maikelele +nukkye is this good??
2019-11-15 01:08
#70
OK | 
Brazil DinooxP
Nah m8, maikelele had be putting some good numbers vs the t2 and t1 teams they faced
2019-11-15 01:44
#63
 | 
Brazil goatzera
LUL
2019-11-15 01:12
#66
 | 
Brazil hugoooo
LOL pronax is so crazy nowadays... he believes o much in weak lineups. Once again, I feel that his organization will be nothing more than a meme.
2019-11-15 01:38
#104
 | 
Sweden flippig
+1 lol
2019-11-15 12:02
#67
 | 
South Africa @FyreCS
GOAT HAS SPOKEN!
2019-11-15 01:38
Ouuuf pronax
2019-11-15 01:43
pure yoy
2019-11-15 01:46
The community miss u pronax
2019-11-15 01:49
#74
kennyS | 
United States @rex
Pure yoy
2019-11-15 01:51
good move just like gob b, dsn and zeus
2019-11-15 07:28
We love you pronax <3
2019-11-15 07:35
#90
 | 
Other syrso
Really nice <3
2019-11-15 08:28
Win the minor for the best stickers pls
2019-11-15 08:44
#94
 | 
Japan Hentai_Guy
Tier 500 team
2019-11-15 09:15
#96
 | 
Japan Inlivino
Hope the team goes well, pureyoy.
2019-11-15 09:45
pretty obvious that they would get signed by godsent, styko was in malmö and their bootcamp place is there
2019-11-15 13:31
SMASH was a GODSENT
2019-11-15 13:46
GOD pronax
2019-11-15 15:11
Trying to delay the inevitable. Just get a fucking normal job you lazy fuck. It will only go downhill after pro career so might as well start doing some shit.
2019-11-15 17:02
#121
 | 
Finland ginbay
I'v seen Pronax many times in Brutal servers. Very fun to play against. Gl!
2019-11-15 20:14
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