DeKay Mailbag Part 3: smooya’s future in CS:GO, Who OpTic will replace, and Thoughts on Team Liquid - Dexerto

DeKay Mailbag Part 3: smooya’s future in CS:GO, Who OpTic will replace, and Thoughts on Team Liquid

Published: 31/May/2019 19:10 Updated: 20/Sep/2019 15:33

by Jarek "DeKay" Lewis


A significant point of discussion in Counter-Strike is Team Liquid and their trend of always finishing in second place, but how much of an issue is it?

MiBR have shown some promise, but they haven’t returned to their previous form just yet. How likely is it that they reclaim a top three world ranking? smooya still remains teamless, is anyone even interested in him?

The answer to those three questions and more are answered in this installment of the DeKay Mailbag.

What’s next for smooya?

Last I was told he didn’t have any real offers from a professional team. I find that quite odd because he is too impactful as a player and AWPer to remain teamless. I would point towards a buyout but his buyout is actually quite reasonable from what I know. Eventually BIG will be tired of paying him his benched salary (if he has one) and just let him free of his contract. 

Don’t forget that he also can’t play ESL events for another three months or so due to playing with Renegades, so any team attending Cologne is off the table. My guess is he joins a new team after Cologne or the Major.

ESLTeam Liquid finished the IEM Katowice Major with a 5-8th place showing.

How can Team Liquid improve as a team?

Time, more than anything else. This five-man lineup is still pretty fresh and they still need to iron out a few issues in my opinion. Making a roster move this early would be premature. 

I really wonder what they could have been able to do with more time to practice in between big events instead of playing smaller ones like BLAST Pro Series and cs_summit. My guess is they would look even better. 

People need to realize how good of a problem it is to have so many second-place finishes, many teams wish they could even reach a fraction of the finals that Liquid does. They aren’t far off from turning the corner completely, but they need time.

What’s going on with OpTic Gaming?

The only change I’m aware of right now is them benching Snappi for TeSeS. They are not in a position financially to buy players out right now with the whole Infinite situation. I think MSL will give this lineup a solid amount of time to mesh before making another move like that.

Anything new with BIG?

Nothing new to report with them. I assume they retain this lineup for the Major and then reassess afterward. I do think bringing smooya back wouldn’t be a bad idea though, if all parties are willing.

Could 3dmax be returning anytime soon?

Not that I know of.

MiBRCan MIBR return to prominence anytime soon?

Thoughts on MIBR’s current form? 

I think they are in a do or die position at the moment because they have shown flashes of resurgence but nothing super convincing. Additionally, FURIA is improving at an exponential rate and I feel like that will put pressure on them to get things going. 

Things will go downhill fast if they aren’t the best Brazilian team anymore. I don’t think they crack the top three, I expect Liquid, Na’Vi, and Astralis to hold those spots for the foreseeable future.

Does G2 Esports need to make a change? 

Given their recent performance I don’t think they need to make a change. They should ride this momentum into the Major and see what happens.

What will happen to FaZe Clan’s player if the team leaves CS:GO?

If that happened, I expect they’d go their separate ways. I don’t see all of the players being willing to sign brand new long term contracts with a new organization. I could be wrong though, that’s just my intuition.

Beyond The SummitAutimatic has been one of the staple members of Cloud9 since late 2016.

Where could Autimatic go next?

Any team in NA besides Liquid as well as some decent European teams. I don’t see him leaving C9 anytime soon though.

Will ESG Tours ever return? 

This is a good question but I honestly have no idea. I will look into it.


ForZe under fire for signing CSGO coach implicated in cheating scandal

Published: 24/Oct/2020 21:30

by Alan Bernal


Russian esports org forZe are facing backlash for signing former Hard Legion coach Aleksandr ‘zoneR⁠’ Bogatiryev, who was banned by ESL for abusing a coaching bug that was found to compromise competitive CS:GO matches.

After the initial wave of backlash, forZe clarified that zoneR was brought on for a “testing coach period” to the ‘forZe School,’ a project that teaches and develops emerging CSGO talent. They do not recognize the forZe School as an academy team and said its not affiliated with the main roster.

“Zoner has made a big shameful mistake but we’ve decided to give him a second chance as he’s still a well-experienced coach,” forZe wrote in a statement. His work with the school will be conducted under supervision with the team’s management.

Despite org CEO Sergey ‘MegioN’ Ignatko’s optimism for the signing, debacles within the CSGO competitive landscape in the last year created a perfect storm for doubt on the deal.

“Not the smartest brand development choice, forZe have a lot of lovable characters and their storyline is exciting,” esports host and commentator Alex ‘MACHINE’ Richardson said. “Would be a shame to see an ill-thought out decision damage their reputation or fan base.”

Moreover, people are concerned that the org would position young, impressionable players to work with a person who was found cheating.

“This has to be a joke, right?” FaZe Clan coach Janko ‘YNk’ Paunovic said. “The most blatant cheater in coaching is supposed to set an example for young players? My mind is blown, absolutely disgraceful from forZe.”

On September 1, Hard Legion announced they were parting ways with zoneR, who went by the in-game name ‘MechanoGun’ at the time, following ESL’s decision to ban him as well as two other coaches after an investigation found them guilty of using a coach’s spectating bug.

ESIC csgo coach bug ban
ZoneR, listed here as ‘MechanoGun,’ was given a 36-month ban after ESIC found 16 cases of using the coaching bug.

It was initially decided that zoneR would be banned for 24 months from playing or coaching in ESL or DreamHack events. ESL later upgraded his ban to 36 months after the Esports Integrity Commission (ESIC) concluded their investigation of the bug’s abuse.

Of the 37 CSGO coaches found cheating, zoneR’s three-year ban was the longest penalty issued by far. He was found of using the bug in 16 cases, and had “Tier 1 Aggravated” sanctions levied against him.

This comes at a sensitive time for the CSGO community, who have been anxiously awaiting any further reaction from Valve on the coaching scandal. Some are worried the publisher might create bigger consequences or tweak team structures to prevent it from happening again in the future.

“If Valve removes coaching it’ll be because of some BULL**** like this,” CSGO commentator and BOXR CEO, Mohan ‘launders’ Govindasamy, said.

A similar concern sprouted when CSGO teams whose coaches were implicated in ESIC’s findings were simply demoted from the position to an analyst role; thereby using a loophole to keep working with the team.

ForZe will monitor their partnership with zoneR for the time being, but said they could part ways with him after the testing phase for his position has concluded.