Q: CLG, TSM, and TL. What are the different cultures like?
CLG just had a lot of problems and it was really overarching, but there was always that talk of potential. And CLG is--like, the culture up until we came and won at Madison Square Garden in Season 5 was--it was like, "We've got to reclaim the throne," you know. “That was ours once, and we've fallen so far and we need to get back up there.” So a lot of pressure and a lot of fun too, because Aphro's a very fun guy. But kind of dysfunctional in my opinion, from Season 1 all the way to Season 5. And I was definitely a part of it. I'm not saying like, "oh, it was everyone else but me," but it was a dysfunctional environment. And then... but we ended up winning. Like, we ended up getting really good. All that pressure just mounted up, and we were just like, "We gotta do this. We got to, like--we got to get through it."
So then Season 6, I played on TSM and the environment's just extremely tryhard and, dude, any person--anyone--who plays with Bjergsen is going to be good. Like, I swear to god, like Hauntzer and Sven, when they first came in in Spring, they were really bad. And when I came in, I was like--I was, like, pretty good. Me and Bjerg would carry games and we'd be the primary carries, but he made me so much better. And you can see the effect he's had on Sven and Hauntzer too. And even Biofrost, like, I think Bjerg taught Bio a lot about mid control, and I taught Bio a lot about all the bot lane stuff and what I'm doing, how to work with me. So yeah, Bjerg is just a great teammate to have, I think, and... I'm not going to say he's the only reason why TSM is good, but I think he's the main reason why everyone is super passionate and really--they're down with the grind. I think TSM is down with the grind to a level that's insane. Like, the amount that we grinded last year was just like... it was just disgusting, and it was part of the reason why I ended up taking a break, because it's so unsustainable for me. It was unsustainable for me at the time, but now I think it's fine.
And then, TL... TL's just, like, TL's pretty cool. They're really relaxed, they're really agreeable, real nice. Everyone has a nice friendly environment and stuff, but I think what's missing is just that pressure from your teammates to improve. I think the coaches push you to improve and everyone pushes themselves to improve, but like, if you've got a teammate who's like, "Dude, you're doing this every game and it's fucking up our games," then you'll change it the next game. Like, it's not the same. It's not the same level.
Q: You mentored Biofrost. How has he developed since you started working with him?
Well, when he first came to competitive play, he was pretty much all mechanics and no brain at all, but he had a pretty good intuition, I guess. And he was always just really soft-spoken and really... he was really just diligent about doing things that people asked him to do and not really much else. So he didn't, like--he wasn't super creative and trying to come up with his own stuff. He was just very... "Oh god, my team expects me to do this. I got to do this to the tee and, like, perfectly every game." And in that sense, he's actually a really great teammate because he's super easy to get along with. And if you have teammates who can build him up and help him and give him advice and, like, bounce ideas off him, then he's great. But yeah, I did a piece with Riot--it was, like, Duos with him, and it was around the time of the C9 game--like, playoffs in the finals, and this was in his home place; like, he's in Canada and he's obviously super nervous. And I think working with him just really helped me a lot, because I had a person who was always there for me and I was there for him, and we had a great synergy.
Q: How has fame affected your relationships?
Well, I never had a family relationship, so no change there, really. Not really. And then, my friends... all my friends are relatively famous, like Travis and my other best friend Kelby. I don't really have that many friends other than my teammates, I guess, and Travis and Kelby. And my girlfriend, okay I will admit... excuse me, I will admit that I would never probably have met my girlfriend if I wasn't famous. And I feel pretty comfortable... I actually feel really comfortable that she doesn't like me because I'm famous. So it was just, like, a means to meet, and I think that would not exist without this fame.
Q: Is it possible to simultaneously make money streaming, play in the LCS, and have your own free time?
To be honest, I don't give a fuck about money anymore. It's just so... it's such a meaningless thing to me now. I actually want to win Worlds and I want to be the best, and I want to... I have so much ambition for my career now, and so much motivation. And having free time is cool too, but I'd sack it all to win Worlds, to be honest. I mean, I love my girlfriend. I wanna spend time with her and I want to spend time with my friends and have a fun life, but I just did that for five months and at the end of it, I was just like, "Cool, I'm richer now and that was fun," but I accomplished almost nothing. Like, cool, my YouTube subscribers went from like 70,000 to like 300,000, and I'm like, "That's nice, but where's the trophy, dude." Like, I don't have any accomplishments.
Once you get that trophy once, will you be okay, or do you need to have it multiple times?
It would be so insane if NA got a World Championship trophy. I think... I wouldn't know what to do with myself. Like, I would have... I think I would have, honestly, like an identity crisis. Like, who am I? I did it. I fucking... I chased it around for six or seven years and then I got it and then now... I don't know. That's my goal right now. I don't know what comes next.
Catch the car and then figure out what to do with it afterwards.
Q: Why are you loyal to TSM?
I'm loyal to TSM for a lot of reasons. I think the players are just... they're my closest friends from Season 6, and I don't know. We went through so much, and I miss those relationships that I had with them, but on top of that, the players are just extremely motivated and extremely good, and working with them was a really great time. Like honestly, the roster's just the best chance NA has of winning Worlds. And the owner, Andy, he's always been really transparent with me. He's always shared with me his vision. Like, when he first signed me... I never really talked about our conversations when I switched from CLG to TSM, but when he first signed me, I was like, "Dude, I'm serious; I actually want to win Worlds. That's my goal." And he's like, "Oh wow, me too," and everyone laughs. Like, everyone laughs at us when we say like, "Oh we're going to win Worlds one day" because it's so crazy. Like, NA never even made it to the semis. The farthest we've ever gone was Top 8.
So yeah, it's like we have the same vision and we want to do the same thing, and I know that Andy does everything possible to make it happen. Like, he'll hire crazy expensive coaches and analysts and do everything. Like, he'll do the six-man roster. He'll do everything he can. He'll even take time--he's the CEO, and he'll take time away from his actual job to come help coach the team because he cares that much. So I know that everyone cares about this thing, and to me, that's the most important.
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