CSGO pro jdm on 2020 goals and reinventing himself as a player

Isaac McIntyre
ESL / Turtle Entertainment

Former Team Liquid Counter-Strike star Josh ‘jdm64’ Marzano released a series of tweets about being ready to compete at the highest level in CS:GO again on September 11 – and he’s also willing to take on an all-new role.

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jdm, who most recently played for Team Envy, said that he’s “spent the last few months really grinding,” with aims to re-join a competitive team to “get the job done.”

“With the major just ending, I’ve spent these last few months really grinding behind the scenes on developing myself as a more all around player,” said the veteran player from North America. “I’ve seen so much improvement in myself which I know I’ll continue to grow.”

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Known throughout his career as a primary AWPer, jdm was criticized for a lack of versatility at times during his stints with the likes of CLG and Liquid. However, the 29-year-old has been working hard to develop into a more well rounded player and made it clear in his Twitter posts that he’s willing and able to try new roles.

“I’m looking to IGL and be whatever my next team needs me to be whether that being an IGL/hybrid or their awper,” he said, before revealing that he believes he can become one of the world’s best players. “It’s safe to say tho, I’ve never had this amount of potential and I know given the chance, come 2020 I will be on HLTV top 20 players list.

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“I could give a shit about that sort of accolade but that’s the sort of goal I’m setting for myself as I know I can reach it, my main goal obviously is to win championships. I’m tweeting this out because no one knows what I do behind the scenes and how hard I work.”

“When I say I will get the job done, trust me it will happen given time. I love challenges and I’m more than ready for any that is thrown my way” he said. “I’ve said this already, but I’m willing to play in EU or NA. I’m fucking hungry to play at a high level again, so get at me!”

Jdm concluded by saying that he is even willing to move to Europe if the opportunity arises to prove himself in the top flights of Counter-Strike once more: 

“When I say I will get the job done, trust me it will happen given time. I love challenges and I’m more than ready for any that is thrown my way. I’ve said this already but I’m willing to play in EU or NA. I’m fucking hungry to play at a high level again so get at me!”

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The first big break for jdm in CS:GO game in June of 2015 when he was picked up by the rapidly improving Counter Logic Gaming roster to be their main AWPer.

Playing alongside the likes of Tarik ‘tarik’ Celik and Pujan ‘FNS’ Mehta, jdm quickly established himself as one of North America’s best snipers and helped propel CLG up the rankings. However, the team eventually stagnated and struggled to find success internationally. 

In June of 2016 jdm was part of a swap that saw him move to Team Liquid in place of Kenneth ‘koosta’ Suen, who in turn took jdm’s spot on CLG. Team Liquid’s skilled roster included  Jonathan ‘EliGE’ Jablonowski, Nick ‘nitr0’ Cannella and veteran star Spencer ‘Hiko’ Martin. Also playing for the roster at the time, returning as a stand-in, was Ukrainian phenom Aleksandr ‘s1mple’ Kostyliev.

With Team Liquid, jdm achieved the best results of his career to date, including a second place finish at the ESL One: Cologne 2016 Major just a month after he joined the team. The team would continue to rack up solid placings throughout jdm’s two-year stint with them, but they could never get over the second place hump at international tournaments and, in June of 2018, jdm eventually departed.

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A few months later, jdm64 returned to activity with a new North American roster under the Team Envy banner. The team included a number of ex-Splyce players – such as Kory ‘SEMPHIS’ Friesen and jdm’s former CLG teammate Steven ‘reltuC’ Cutler – as well as former Renegades IGL Noah ‘Nifty’ Francis.

Unfortunately, the team never managed to produce solid results, despite a number of roster changes, and jdm announced his free agency on July 1 of 2019. With the Major cycle in full swing at the time, jdm had to watch from the sidelines until the roster lock period came to an end.

North America was well represented at the StarLadder Berlin Major – both Team Liquid and NRG advanced to the playoffs. Team Liquid is currently the number one ranked CS:GO team on the planet and NRG sits in third place, just behind the back-to-back-to-back Major champions, Astralis.

However, there are a number of other North American squads and international lineups that could be on the hunt for a new player now that the Major has concluded. With his wealth of experience and new-found versatility, jdm believes he can be a valuable asset to many of them.

This article has been updated. When this piece was first published it mistakenly attributed the first Tweet to Joshua ‘steel’ Nissan when JDM was in fact the originator. This has been corrected.