To nobody’s surprise, Evil Geniuses won its first Spring Split playoffs match against FlyQuest, 3-1.
This was a “hype win” for Tristan “Zeyzal” Stidam thanks to the back and forth nature of the match. But in the end, EG defeated FlyQuest once again. This brings the team one step closer to a potential showdown with Cloud9 in the finals.
How do you feel after your win today?
Zeyzal: It feels pretty good. A pretty hype win, the final game. That was a bit of the high today.
What made it so hype?
The game was slow-paced and really trading back and forth. No decisive win for either team. We talked about the idea of back dooring. We set up the plan and it went really well. Then we finally got the good fight, with Kumo, Bang and I killing them at Raptor Bush, all three of them. To finish it off, we got to run past their 1v9’ing Aatrox and win the game.
The match also had a super long pause. That must have been nervewracking.
It was my Flash key. It just greyed out, it wouldn’t work. And nobody could figure out how to fix it. When we first unpaused, we were trying to test it out and see if we fixed it. If it worked, I would have Flashed and that would have looked sort of weird. But it didn’t work.
There were a lot of issues. I was surprised. Normally you don’t have any when you scrim. Things just get weird when the game’s go on broadcast for whatever reason. It was a bit unlucky.
What do you think your team has improved upon since the start of the split?
I think we’ve improved individually and also improved working as a team, focusing on what our player strengths are. Understanding how we want to play, not only as players but through our coaching staff reinforcing our good habits and ensuring bad habits are hammered out. We were a lot more refined as a team and as individuals.
Your team, 100 Thieves, and FlyQuest all have the same record for the regular split. But all the analysts chose EG for a pretty easy win. Why do you think that is?
We did 2-0 FQ during the Split. That was a large part of it. Those two wins were pretty dominant. We’ve had a good latter half of the split, except losing to C9. The rest have been good performances.
Why do you think you’ve had such a good run against FlyQuest?
When teams look to punish us, they do it through mid or top. They think it will lead to easier games. But people often try to punish us through Kumo because he’s not put in the strongest matchups. But he just has a good matchup versus V1per and Solo.
Maybe their playstyle isn’t as aggressive, with diving and punishing solo laners. We can get our own advantages through what we do, which is those dives. They just play a bit slower is all.
What did you do to prepare for the match?
For me personally, I tried to visualize what champions I’d be playing and I knew what IgNar would be playing from research with my team. We know which way the draft will go. It was a lot more clear.
It makes it easier to visualize when I know what my role is, what my matchup will be and how the game will play out.
How have you been training due to the coronavirus? How has that been for you?
We’re all living in the same apartment complex, but in our own rooms. We try to avoid meeting up just to limit any risks possible. We only see our roommates.
It’s been weird. I miss seeing my teammates. Sometimes you just know things would be better if you were able to be with them and see their reactions or whatever. Everything’s just a bit worse when you’re not in person, but every team has the same issue.
How do you feel making it to the playoffs?
It feels good. We didn’t really know if we would make it early on in the split but I’m really glad we turned it around. Now, with our first playoffs win with EG…To come in and do well, it means a lot to our staff and a lot to us as players.
What does winning Spring Split mean to you?
I think a lot of people doubted me as an individual after my time with Cloud9. They’d say I was a good team player, but not a good player.
But I think it’s a chance to show that I’ve stepped up individually and that I’m not only a good team player, but I’m a good player overall. It’s a chance to redeem myself from the criticism I’ve been getting. It’s the best way to do it.
Which team do you think will win, Cloud9 or 100 Thieves?
I think Cloud9 will beat 100 Thieves. I’m not sure why they chose 100 Thieves because I think they’re a better team than FlyQuest. Maybe they know something I don’t, better matchups individually or something.
Which team do you want to play against?
It’s a really good opportunity with how the bracket was set up to play Cloud9 regardless of outcome. Regardless of who wins, in my opinon we will meet in again in the finals. Hopefully we’re getting an EG vs. Cloud9 series.