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YEKINDAR: "Team Liquid members are more friendly with each other. In VP we were robots, teammates who had to win" Interview

Mareks "YEKINDAR" Gaļinskis discussed North American mentality, his contribution to Team Liquid's preparation, and desire to prove himself. The team talked with journalists at the IEM Cologne 2022 press conference.

YEKINDAR noticed a big difference in mentality between CIS teams and Team Liquid. While Virtus.pro had a more professional environment, members of TL are more laid back and relaxed when it comes to work relationships. And there are some differences in approach to the game.

There is a giant difference in mentality, yes. I felt that immediately, because people here rely more on their individual skill. <...> When I came here, I saw a different attitude to CS than the one I was used to. I had to share my experience and knowledge, and try to find common positive sides in each other. But they are more friendly with each other. I had a 'professional' environment in VP, we were robots, teammates who had to win. Here there are jokes all the time, some life stories, talks. Here I feel more relaxed and less pumped up.

Mareks "YEKINDAR" Gaļinskis
Hobbit hints at possible career end: "I'm not in my own country again, far from my family. It's been going on for seven or eight years now"

Gaļinskis also shared what he brought to the table when joining the team, even as a standin. In his eyes, North American teams were behind the curve, and he had to work on improving Liquid's game.

In terms of gameplay we have a different views, but that's not always a bad thing, and I learned a lot here. The CS:GO meta has changed, and during COVID era CIS teams grew incredibly well, while NA teams stagnated. They couldn't get to tournaments, and even when they were able to fly, they had a very limited time to practice with EU and CIS teams.

I can feel that they are behind the meta, some rounds are played in a wrong way, some tricks and new ideas are not implemented. We had to update all that. We didn't have much time, so me, together with nitr0 and daps, worked for 14 hours on improving our game. We have to play well now. If we play badly, I will be disappointed.

Mareks "YEKINDAR" Gaļinskis

YEKINDAR explained that he isn't afraid of decreasing his market value by performing badly as a standin. He wants to prove himself.

If that happens, that means I'm trash, and I shouldn't be playing this game. If I want to prove myself and I want to be one of the best players in the world, I need to be able to perform in any team. And I need to prove myself, that it's not VP structure that helped me get somewhere where I am now. I'm thankful to them, obviously, but I don't think they gave me something special, only experience, and it's time to move on. I'm ready to try myself in a different team and language. I believe in myself, I'm an ambitious guy, and if no, I'm going to go work at the market or something.

Mareks "YEKINDAR" Gaļinskis
Nafany: "Right now, we don't have a number one team in CS:GO"

Joshua "oSee" Ohm commented on the lack of snipers in North America. His only possible explanation for that was that people aren't putting enough work, but he couldn't give a definitive answer.

Honestly, I have no idea why there is a drought of NA snipers. It's not any news that there is literally noone to pickup for tier-1 teams at the moment, and I can't tell you why. But from myself, I feel like I did put in a good amount of work til I get to where I am at the moment. It is a possibility that they aren't putting in as much work to get that level, but I don't know the actual answer.

Joshua "oSee" Ohm
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IEM XVII Cologne IEM XVII Cologne

Liquid Liquid

oSee oSee

YEKINDAR YEKINDAR

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