NRG Victor: "If Marved ends up playing... we'll make sure to beat him down"

Pedro Romero
category_image Valorant
Reading time  ~7  mins

NRG opened their VCT Americas League season with a loss on the board as they fell to Latin American side Leviatán 2-0 in the last series of Week 1. Even after NRG executed a role swap in which Pujan "FNS" Mehta became more of an initiator and Victor "Victor" Wong played used Viper in Pearl, they couldn’t fend off their opponents in the long run.

A 13-4 drubbing at the hands of their LATAM counterparts, where they were outclassed in seemingly every department of the game, puts NRG in a position where they must respond with authority in their ensuing match rebound should they want to be a contender for the league, which was what people expected them to do prior to the season.

Following the series, BLIX spoke to Victor about their match against Leviatán, how Victor will prep for the team’s next match against Sentinels, his thoughts on Gekko so far, the return of Bind and more.

Facing Leviatan

Pedro Romero, BLIX.GG: First of all, commiserations on the series loss against Leviatán. I understand it must be a pretty tough result to swallow given how the second map played out but I just want to know your thoughts on how the series against them transpired in general.

Victor "Victor" Wong: Starting at the first map, we had a really good lead, at around 5-2 or something at one point, and we moved to the next half and then we ended up winning the pistol and bonus round, which made it 9-6. It was really on us to lose that map. We had all the advantages going at the later stages of the map. The thrifty round they had at 9-6 was really bad for us and I remember in another later round, we were retaking the A bomb site and they managed to win a 2v4. Those two rounds really messed us up on that map, which should have been our map win, to be honest. And then as far as Lotus goes, they played really well on their defense. We managed to get the spike down and then they just had really good retakes.

BLIX: In Pearl, NRG made those role swaps with their agent compositions between yourself and FNS. How did that idea come about while you guys were preparing for the Americas League following LOCK//IN?

Victor: We decided to make that change mainly because FNS is our caller and we just wanted him to be in more of the action and see more of what was going on so he can make an accurate call as opposed to playing Viper and being on one side of the map and relying on your teammates and having to guess what happens sometimes. We made that change just to let me be on the edges of the map and let him play in the pack so he can make better calls.

BLIX: Leviatán is a team you guys are very well familiar with. One of you guys talked about how the team regularly scrimmed with them during LOCK//IN. How did you guys approach this team, which you've been very familiar with throughout the early part of this year, in the lead-up to the start of the league?

Victor: We approached this game the same as we would any game. We watched, well, not we but Chet specifically, their LOCK//IN matches. It was pretty much the same as normal. We got some information on them before the game and then we made a game plan around the game.

Looking ahead to Sentinels

Group picture of the NRG lineup. Credit: Riot Games/Robert Paul NRG will need to rally against Sentinels. Credit: Riot Games/Robert Paul

BLIX: Following that defeat, you guys are going to go up against Sentinels, a team that is just as well known as you guys within North America. What are your thoughts about facing them following their display against 100 Thieves? What are your thoughts about their new roles following that series?

Victor: I think they're a strong team. I watched their game as it was happening. They play well together. They're running similar comps to LOUD, at least on the maps they played, so that shouldn't be any new to us as far as comps and how to approach the map. TenZ is looking like he's coming back to form from last year. Should be a good game.

BLIX: Sentinels is already a good team with their current lineup, but what do you think about the possibility of facing Marved?

Victor: If he ends up playing, I'm sure it'll be a fun game. There's no bad blood between any of us. We're all still really good friends outside of the game, but if he ends up playing, it will be a fun game, but we'll make sure to beat him down.

On Gekko, Bind and ardiis

BLIX: I want to get your thoughts on the arrival of Gekko, the game's newest agent. We've seen him appear in other regions specifically in EMEA. What do you think of the agent and do you see it show up often in the Americas League?

Victor: I think Gekko needs a little bit of buffing, to be honest, I don't think he's as strong as the other Initiators. At the moment he's just balanced. He's like an average agent in my opinion. The Dizzy, his flash ability, just gets broken so easily so I think that's one of the main things. I think he just needs to be buffed a little bit and then I think we'll see more of him.

BLIX: One thing that's going to make its way back into the game is the map Bind. What do you think about the new changes Riot made for the map and how do you see it play out in the future?

Victor: I think the changes are pretty cool. I glanced at the changes and I think it featured the teleport outside showers that were now closer to the entrance or something. That's the only change I can remember. I think it's cool. I think it'll make the map more attack-sided because previously, the defense used to use that teleporter to fight for showers control. But now that the teleporter is in the showers, the fights are not as good for them. But as for us, I think adding the map back will be good for us because that was our best map on OpTic and it wasn't even close. I always like these small changes to maps that are then re-added [to the map pool] but I really liked how quickly they added Bind back. It was a really quick turnover.

BLIX: And hopefully we'll be able to see that return of the old OpTic form in NRG. Within the lineup, ardiis is the only import that came into the league. I want to know your input as to how he has been playing with the rest of the team from when he joined up until now?

Victor: I think it only got better as time went on. At the start, sometimes we didn't even understand him because of his accent in the comms. As time went on, he was more comfortable with us and started giving his own input and having his own voice. He really likes to bring stuff from FPX that really worked for them and show it to us and it worked for us as well, so that's one of his really good qualities. I think it's only gotten better. We mesh with him very well inside and especially outside of the game which always helps. I think it flows well with him.

Be sure to keep following BLIX as we bring you more interviews and content from the VCT Americas League.

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CS Virtual Trade Ltd, reg. no. HE 389299 Registered address and the principal place of business: 705, Spyrou Araouzou & Koumantarias, Fayza House, 3036, Limassol, Cyprus
Copyright © 2024 BLIX.GG. All rights reserved.