Just before the BLAST Pro Series event in Moscow, the boys of MiBR sat down with Frankie Ward to discuss playing with coach Wilton 'zews' Prado for a few months, the process of acquiring Vito 'kNg' Giuseppe, and who they feel is the most dangerous CS:GO team at Moscow.
MiBR believe that they are on the road back to top form. The road they’ve taken through 2019 has not been the easiest, having ended last year and beginning this year by scrapping their Stewie2K/tarik experiment, as well as starting anew with an all-Brazilian lineup.
Despite a strong start to the year with a semifinals appearance at the Katowice major, the rest of the year was a struggle for a roster core that once was dominating Counter-Strike as SK Gaming just two years ago.
This year, MiBR was humiliated in front of their hometown fans at BLAST São Paulo, made two fruitless trips to China with WESG and StarSeries season 7, and had several less-than-stellar finishes before and after their best player asked to be benched.
But the Brazilian boys have stayed positive through all of it - even having to play alongside the man who usually stands behind them, their coach.
“Playing with our coach was a big challenge for us, and we survived,” Epitácio 'TACO' de Melo told Frankie. “We learned a lot of lessons. If we can take the best of a bad situation then I’m happy. I think we are mentally a stronger team.”
It takes a special kind of mental strength to withstand such a rough year, but Gabriel 'FalleN' Toledo took the time to acknowledge how hard it was for coach zews, and give him his due credit for hanging in there.
“It’s hard. He was having fun and learning a lot. He knew it’s very hard to become a player [again] after a number of years. He was a really good player.”
Zews stepped in to fill a player spot for the Berlin major, where MiBR went 1-3 and experienced one of the unluckier draws when it came to the toughness of their opponents. When Frankie brought up that they had to face ENCE, G2, and Na’Vi after they beat NiP, FalleN chuckled and said, “Now that you say that I’m starting to feel better about it.”
“Going towards the major we had some bad days and we had days that went well,” TACO continued. “We got a little sad after the competition. But we played some good opponents, and we have nothing to be ashamed of.”
MiBR are in good spirits after the acquisition of kNg, admitting that they’ve been after his services for quite some time.
“He’s a great player,” said TACO. “We’ve always wanted to play with him. Every time we thought about changing someone, we wanted Vito. It didn’t work out then, but this time it worked.”
BLAST Moscow will be the first event for kNg under the MiBR banner, and the team has high expectations for this tournament. They’ve identified ENCE and Na’Vi as the teams to be the most worried about, and will meet Na’Vi in the first round of what will be the sendoff tournament for Na'Vi's in-game leader Danylo ‘Zeus’ Teslenko.
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