Following Dragon’s participation at epicLAN last week we decided to sit down with our AWPer James “jamesta” Granata and get some thoughts on everything from joining Dragon coming from IWT, the preparation for epicLAN and the event itself, and, of course, what the future holds for James and Dragon in CSGO. Enjoy!
1 – Tell us a bit about yourself.
Hi, my name’s James and I currently play for the CSGO division of Dragon. My position within the team is Main AWPer. I started playing Counterstrike back in 2008 and continued to play on and off when CSGO was released.
2 – How did you find the move from IWT to Dragon?
The transition from IWT to Dragon was smooth and the management team at Dragon really made us feel welcome! However, by joining Dragon our mentality as a team had to change rapidly and we put ourselves under more pressure than needed. Nevertheless, it has grounded us more as a team and has achieved more discipline within the ranks having that supportive network from the organisation.
However, by joining Dragon our mentality as a team had to change rapidly and we put ourselves under more pressure than needed.
3 – How was preparation for epicLAN?
Preparation went well. Due to our schedule and lack of time as a team we tried to get everything sorted and ready for LAN but it was hard at times to balance CSGO and our real-life commitments. We did our best to try to optimize our practice time whenever we could! Our online record is poor and that’s something we as a team have been trying to resolve quickly. Due to our poor performance online I think a lot of teams at epicLAN underestimated us and to be honest I don’t blame them as we certainly had something to prove at the event. We have always had the objective to use epicLAN as a bootcamp for i-series but like any team we want to win or atleast show our true potential every chance we can, and then follow it up with a solid performance at i60.
4 – What about your own goals?
Honestly, I just want to win an event. It might sounds farfetched but without setting a high goal its hard to get the right motivation to achieve your aspirations. Collectively, I think we all want the same thing (to win) – why else would you attend an event?
We always had the objective to use epicLAN as a bootcamp for i-series but like any team, we want to win or at least show our true potential at the event with a follow up of a better result at i60.
5 – Now that you’re back from epicLAN with a 9-12 placement, how did you rate the event and Dragon’s participation?
I think we did better than expected but we also underachieved at the event. Going off our online practice, we have been shocking and quite honestly going into the event we were not confident at all. Having said that when we started to win games against teams that had previously beaten us online, it gave us that boost when up against the better teams. Our lack of practice showed at the event when we threw a 13:6 lead against SKUM on dust2 and made silly mistakes against the Endpoint/exceL mix. It seemed through the whole event the mistakes we made caused devastating consequences which led to us to lose but ultimately it was a learning curve and has definitely given us an insight in how we should prepare for i60. Am I happy with 9th-12th at epicLAN? No. But I’m glad we made our seed.