Hey there everyone, welcome to our Worlds 2017 Interview Series. As you may know, we have partnered with Travis Gafford and supported his trip to China to cover the games and get insights from the players. We will be sharing the interviews here along with their transcriptions. Enjoy!
Travis: It is the second day of Worlds Groups with coverage presented by Mobalytics. I’m joined right now by Jensen from Cloud 9. Alright, so first off let’s talk about yesterday, the one year anniversary of the Clappening, and it kind of repeated itself again with a two-man dive mid, and then somehow Faker ends up killing somebody. When you you have to go up against SKT again, what is that experience like? Do you remember the past experiences? What was it like having to face off against them?
Jensen: I definitely remember the past experience. But I try to not think about it too much. I didn’t really see it as too big of a deal, going up against SKT and Faker again. They’re probably the best team, if not the second best team at Worlds. So I definitely knew it was going to be tough. I actually thought we had a pretty okay shot at beating them. I think the game was going well early until we overcommitted for that dive into mid lane.
I think it was right to go for the gank, I just think we overcommitted and that’s kind of why it went bad. It’s really weird, when you play against these Korean teams, if you make one mistake, it just feels like the game is over. It snowballs hard so it feels like for us to beat SKT, we kind of have to play more or less flawlessly, or just avoid making big mistakes. But obviously we had some pretty big mistakes and then we lost the game.
Travis: How did plans affect your ability to compete in Groups? Was this actually helpful for you? Or do you wish you had more time to bootcamp? What was planning’s effect on you?
Jensen: I’ll say it definitely affected our level of play because since we went to China we were not able to scrim teams that are in Korea. And I actually think that hurt us a lot because we were stuck scrimming Wildcard teams and Fnatic basically. And when all the World teams did come over here, we had a pretty hard time playing against them because their meta was very different from what we’re used to. Their play styles like level ones, everything felt like we had to like basically relearn what they were doing. I think it was definitely a disadvantage, although playing on stage you know is always a good experience but I think if we stayed in Korea, we would have come more prepared for the Group Stages and would have probably learned more.
Travis: I am interested because today we had NA go 3-0 so that’s great news for North American fans. The first two games were fricken ridiculous. Your AHQ game, while it certainly had its moments, felt a little bit more confident, is that more on you know, like you guys just have a bigger skill gap? Is it Cloud 9’s style of play? Why do you think we saw such a wildly different game?
Jensen: I think it just has to do with the level of the teams, or I think AHQ can definitely be a top team if they play the style they’re used to. I was a little confused, I didn’t actually expect Westdoor to play Cassio and I don’t think he knew how to play play too well in lane either. He wasn’t really playing the lane. It felt like I was playing against minions basically, there was there was no fighting. I don’t know it just felt pretty weird, I felt like I was just able to do whatever I wanted to in that game without really being pressured. So I think if AHQ plays a different play style with Westdoor which they usually do, I think it would be tougher. But I do think AHQ is probably not as strong as the other teams that NA played against today. But at the same time, they beat EDG who is number one seed in China, so it’s hard to say.
Travis: How do you feel about the Worlds meta? Basically, everyone I’ve talked to seems to have some variation of polite, “Oh I wish it was different”, to “I hate this Ardent Censer thing”. So for you guys, how do you feel about it?
Jensen: I kind of feel the same way, not too big a fan of Ardent Censer. I don’t know, I feel like generally, people will complain a little about the Worlds patch. It’s historically always happened I think, and I was the same way last year. I remember I was like, “I wish they didn’t nerf this champion, or that champion right before”, and you know this time around I was like, “I wish they didn’t like Cassio and Orianna right before the NA playoffs patch for example. So honestly I think it’s just about if you’re able to adapt and you’ll be fine with it. But at the same time it’s a little boring that the Support role is just about Ardent Censer because it’s not really playmaking and people want to see playmaking so at the same time, I think it makes sense to complain a little bit about it.
Travis: Jensen, I think a lot of Western fans are feeling a little nervous as we always do at Worlds, certainly today’s three NA victories probably help everybody feel good, but if you had to make kind of like a bold prediction or a statement or something that would help you feel a little bit better, or make the Western fans feel a little bit better, what would you say?
Jensen: We are going to beat SKT next week.
Travis: Okay, there we go. There we go. I promise I wasn’t fishing for a headline but certainly that’s probably going to be the headline. Anyway, thank you so much Jensen. Anything you want to say to the fans?
Jensen: Thanks for supporting us and I hope we can do well just like we did today.