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C9 Smoothie on Reapered’s coaching method, watching foreign regions and international tournaments

Slingshot’s Andrew Kim briefly caught up with Cloud9’s Andy “Smoothie” Ta during Week 7 of the North American League of Legends Championship Series.

Andrew Kim: Do you watch VODs of other regions?

Andy “Smoothie” Ta: Yeah for sure. Watching VODs from other regions is always helpful.

AK: Of the other regions’ VODs is there a player that you pay more attention to?

AT: If I were to choose one I’d choose Wolf (Lee Jae-wan) or Mata (Cho Se-hyeong). One of those two because they’re in the top teams of the LCK, and the LCK is always the best. Usually I don’t really look at support players or anything, I just look at how teams plays their macro play, unless they play a new champion. For example, they played Vel’koz support in LCK one time and I looked at that and saw if it was good or not. If the champion’s good, then it’s worth watching.

AK: FlyQuest has tried the Mordekaiser bottom lane pick again against you guys (in Week 7). Do you think it’s a viable strategy or do you think it’s more of a cheese pick?

AT: I personally think it’s more of a cheese pick. I don’t think it’s that great. I could be wrong. We haven’t practiced it that much or seen it for a long time, so it’s something that no one’s actually used to. I think that’s the base strength of Mordekaiser. I think if they play well, whatever it could work.

AK: International tournaments are in an interesting spot right now because teams are declining invitations while some are saying that there needs to be more international competition. What are your thoughts on the matter?

AT: I think international competition is usually good. It’s pretty good to have. It’s just a really weird situation for IEM Katowice because I can’t say too much about it, but there were some complications with expenses and stuff, and just a lot of small stuff that made it not worth it for us to go. A lot of teams do want international tournaments but it’s like, I think it’s OK not to. It’ll be great, of course, because international competition is always good. I’m not sure what my thoughts are because our team specifically, we get jet lagged pretty easily. That really messes with us for the next couple of days. For a lot of the times when we go to Korea for bootcamp or coming back from Korea, we just like, completely shit the bed for the first couple of days, and then we go back to way we usually play. So I just think about our team, but I’m not sure about other teams honestly.

AK: I want to ask you about the topic of Reapered (Bok Han-gyu’s) coaching methods. Do you think the infrastructure in your coaching staff is good for you?

AT: I think for our team in specific it’s really ideal for us because of course (Zachary “Sneaky” Scuderi) is a big streamer, he live streams a lot and he doesn’t get bad from streaming. He’s still a really really good player. We value freedom a lot. It’s something that really brings us together. Reapered does that too. He’s been a player so he knows how to tend to players’ needs and stuff like that. He doesn’t really want to repeat the stuff he didn’t like (as a player) when he’s coaching. I think for other teams like TSM, they would have a different style because their players are committed 150% to League of Legends. I’m not saying we’re not committed, but I think that our team in specific needs some breaks, and I think it’s healthy for a team to have breaks in between scrim sets and days.

Cover photo courtesy of Riot Games