Astralis is one of the best CS:GO teams in the world right now, still riding high after their victory from the ELEAGUE Major 2017.
The boys from Denmark ran into a speed bump recently, performing poorly in online play for ESL Pro League Season 5, but they look red hot going into the ECS Season 3 Finals after winning the Clash for Cash 2-1 over Virtus.pro.
Ahead of their games in London, Nicolai "dev1ce" Reedtz, Markus "Kjaerbye" Kjærbye and coach Danny "zonic" Sørensen took the time to answer a few questions from theScore esports during an ECS press conference.
Has Boomeo had any effect on the ways you guys train?
zonic: I think that Boomeo is a great tool. When you go to play a deathmatch, it's bad to get shot in the back and you don't play certain angles. But when you play Boomeo, you'll actually play real match making duels on different maps.
Playing on Dust II deathmatch, that's not so relevant in terms of how we play. So let's say dupreeh, if he wants to peek B on Mirage, he can actually play some of these duels that people would get in an official match. Then you have the Pre-Fire mode, which is really good.
We have an internal competition within the team, and dupreeh right now is still leading. It's a really good tool for us to warm up with and I know that some of the players, especially dupreeh, are really happy about it.
You will finally play G2 Esports on LAN, how much are you guys looking forward to that matchup?
Kjaerbye: We really hope that we play G2. We could have played them [at EPL], but we we're in our best shape. It's really different, especially when you become a top team, it seems, for everyone, harder to play in online matches.
But yeah, G2 versus Astralis will be a good matchup.
What do you think went wrong during ESL Pro League online play?
dev1ce: I think that online play right now is kind of dead. I think that, for the players and the audience, and I think the tournament organizers know it as well, it doesn't create good content. I don't think players can get as hyped for the game as they can when they're on a tournament and I think the viewers have the same excitement watching the game.
All in all it's just a mix of too much online play, between ECS and EPL right now and I think that there was too many other things to focus on, so it was hard to focus on the online games and being there 100 percent.
zonic, we last spoke at the ESL One Cologne 2016 Major about the difficulty of being away from your family. Has that situation improved at all?
zonic: It's actually worse because now I have a daughter as well.
Obviously it's tough for the family, but it's something that I love doing and I have a wonderful wife that supports me in that. It's a bit tough, but when I'm home I have some time to spend with the family.
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We have a whole new concept of Astralis only attending one event per month, we'll survive, because we do not want to attend too many events. We want to create the best possibility of us winning the event.
So I'm hanging in, it's alright. I'm looking forward to working with Astralis for many more years.
You guys have some of the best shoe game in CS:GO/esports, how did this start for you guys? How excited would you be if Adidas or Nike showed interest in an esports collab?
Kjaerbye: It would be really fun if Nike or Adidas got into esports, not just for sponsoring us but in general, for the whole scene, it would be great to start to get more of the non-endemics. It would be really good.
zonic: I don't have fancy shoes, so maybe dev1ce, who's actually the mastermind of Yeezy's. He can answer.
dev1ce: I don't know how it started. It started with money, I guess, I don't know.
But I think the same as Markus [Kjaerbye] said, if Nike or Adidas or any other big sports brands start cooperating with the teams, maybe tournaments, it would be really great. It would give a stamp of approval from the non-endemic industries, it would be a big step for esports and CS in general.
This interview has been edited for space and clarity.
Dennis "Tarmanydyn" Gonzales is a news editor for theScore esports who enjoys whiskey, D&D and first-picking
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