LA Thieves AR star Sam ‘Octane’ Larew has revealed that he thought the team was going to drop him halfway through the season, just a couple of months before they earned their historic back-to-back victories at CDL Major 4 and the World Championships.
Octane has been recognized as one of the greatest AR players of all time, his individual skill almost never in doubt even when his teams were struggling.
That said, he found himself in a position at the beginning of the 2022 Vanguard season where his performances weren’t up to his usual standards, no longer able to completely shut down his opposition and go on the insane killstreaks he had become known for.
This is something Octane acknowledged and worked to address halfway through the Vanguard season — but he admitted that he thought he was going to get dropped before having the chance to turn things around and eventually become world champion.
Appearing on The Merk and Maven podcast, Octane spoke about how his season went, turning it around from being a middling team to world champions, and made the admission.
“I thought I was getting dropped,” he said when discussing the issues that plagued LA Thieves’ early season. “I spoke to Kap [Thieves coach Jordan ‘JKap’ Kaplan] about it after Champs. But I wholeheartedly thought I was going to get dropped after Major 2. I was playing really poorly, and maybe I was in my own head about it.
“I’ve really never been bad. I’ve never struggled individually … So when I was bad at the beginning of this game, it was unchartered territory for me.”
Octane explained that he also spoke extensively to a sports therapist at 100 Thieves to help him, and that it was a “wake-up call” for him not being dropped, realizing that he had been given the chance to step up.
Of course, things turned around for LA Thieves big time after Major 2. They came 2nd at the Pro-Am and, while Major 3 wasn’t massively fruitful, they went on an incredible run to place 1st at Major 4 and Champs, earning millions of dollars and etching their names in the CoD history books.
While Kenny ‘Kenny’ Williams was named Champs MVP, Octane’s abilities as a leader shone throughout the tournament and he’ll be delighted at how his season turned around.