SicK on TenZ Supremacy, Sentinels’ Berlin Debut, the Bunny Bounce
Ahead of VCT Masters 3 Berlin, all eyes were on North America’s top team. The reigning champions of Reykjavík, Sentinels were expected to make it past their group with relative ease. With the absence of Bren Esports, their group was transformed into a double-round-robin stage, requiring them to play both G2 and F4Q twice. Their first match versus G2 was a hotly contested and highly anticipated three-map series, which saw Sentinels tested on the international stage for the first time, but succeed. Their win against F4Q was more dominant, capped off with an insane performance from TenZ on Breeze. While they would lose their rematch to G2 later on, Sentinels had done enough to make it to playoffs. After their first win over F4Q, Hunter “SicK” Mims sat down to discuss how the first two matches went, as well as how he feels about TenZ supremacy and returning to LAN.
Scott Robertson, Hotspawn Esports: I’m sure you’re sick of being asked about this by now, but what else can you say about playing with TenZ after a game like that [against F4Q]?
Hunter “SicK” Mims, Sentinels: I mean honestly, it’s indescribable. I’ve played with a lot of really good players in the past during Counter-Strike, but with TenZ it’s just different. Sometimes he’s just so good that you don’t even realize you’re winning, he’ll kill the whole team and you’ll just be sitting there. I feel like I was supporting him a lot of Skye. I mean, I’m not gonna say he got the kills because we were supporting him, but a lot of it is team play. We work so well together and he plays off our utility really well. But obviously, he’s just insanely skilled, the way he was Op-ing on attack was just insane.
Hotspawn: You guys had a couple of days off to start the tournament, was there anyone you watched that piqued your interest?
SicK: I think that Vision Strikers is one that’s standing out right now, especially after they just topped their group. They’re just so different the way they play. They have a lot of set plays, so there are ways to counter them, and you can actually see the utility that they pair together to do those kind of set plays. So for them in particular, we could actually do more anti-stratting because of how they play. We normally just [prepare] a little bit of notes and go into the game with a loose plan, but if we ever faced them we could have a more in-depth plan.
Hotspawn: Was there an extra feeling of confidence associated with coming back to LAN after doing so well the first time around?
SicK: Yeah, at least for me. In Iceland I’ll admit that I felt a little bit nervous, so for this one, we got into the groove and we’re more used to it now after we won. So coming into this I felt way more confident. In the first match, I felt super confident. I haven’t felt scared yet.
Hotspawn: How did you feel going into and coming out of the [first] G2 match?
SicK: I think the atmosphere for that match was way different, just because there was so much hype leading up to it. And that matters when for the energy of the team and communications. I feel like we were way more energetic for that match. I never thought they were going to out-skill us, I think we’re better skill-wise, but maybe they have some better tactics. We’ve always been confident in our aim, but worried we could get double-faked or triple-faked or something. But against G2 we always felt like we were on the right page for what they were gonna do.
Hotspawn: What was something F4Q was doing that caught you off guard at the beginning of that series?
SicK: I think F4Q is definitely the most unique team we played. It is similar to playing Vision Strikers based on scrims, but the way they were raising Raze on Split was something I’d never seen before. Like it looks dumb, but it’s really good how they’re doing it. [Bunny]’s double blast packing with a shotgun, killing one guy and then they have the entire site because he’s all the way in site and we can’t even rotate. The way they were combo-ing their utilities was really good, we just had to get used to it. I think we’ll be more ready for that kind of stuff.
Hotspawn: What specifically did you guys start doing to slow down the Bunny bounces?
SicK: I think we just started playing way more passive I guess, but even then on Split you can’t play that passive. Like he can just blast pack wherever he wants and be right where you’re holding. We just started trying to make more plays and using slows to interrupt everyone else coming with him; we had to separate him because he was just having so much impact.
Hotspawn: If North America comes out on top here in Berlin, that would secure a fourth team to come with you, 100T, and Envy to Champions. If the goal is NA supremacy, then who would you want with you?
SicK: I feel like I would vote for Cloud9. I feel like they play the game really well, especially since picking up vanity. Scrimming them, they have a really good understanding of how they play, so it might as well be them. It’s going to be really exciting to watch that qualifier.