G2 Esports’ campaign in CS:GO over the past year or so has been very up and down, and after trending down over the past few months, the team has opted to make a significant roster move. Justin “jks” Savage and new in-game leader Rasmus “HooXi” Nielsen have moved into the starting roster in place of the departing Audric “JACKZ” Jug and Aleksi “Aleksib” Virolainen.
Following the move, coach Rémy “XTQZZZ” Quoniam told HLTV in an interview that the community perception that superstar Nikola “NiKo” Kovač is partly to blame for the changes isn’t true.
“Since I joined G2, everything that is said [about NiKo] is groundless and far from the way we operate,” XTQZZZ told HLTV. “Nikola did not decide on the changes of the previous team, and the same applies to this one…He is a star player and it comes with a strong character, ambition and willingness to lift trophies. Is he easy to coach? Not always, but [that’s] like 95% of the players I have managed.”
In the interview, XTQZZZ also rebuffed the notion that NiKo is “looking to call the shots” or trying to “contradict the vision of his IGL.” XTQZZZ believes that the community’s perception toward NiKo is due to the frustrations he shows when he’s on camera at events and due to the incredible form that his former team FaZe is in, despite the fact that he’s been off FaZe for nearly two years now.
Coach XTQZZZ reiterated in the interview that it was the staff as a whole that decided on the moves. He said that the “structured approach” that Aleksib has didn’t mesh with the more expressive freestyle that XTQZZZ believes suits G2. As for JACZK, coach XTQZZZ said that the roles and positions they were playing him in didn’t fit his style and that was holding the team back. He believes that HooXi’s IGL style is more in line with what works for G2 and envisions jks as being a “strong anchor” player who can close rounds and be open-minded.
The latest version of the G2 roster will make its debut against Team Liquid on Aug. 20 at 7am CT in the BLAST Premier Fall groups.