Welcome to DeKay Mailbag, a semi-regular feature in which Counter-Strike reporter and insider Jarek "DeKay" Lewis answers questions from readers on Twitter. Check out ​the previous editions.


Do you have a question for DeKay? Tweet him @NWDeKay or email dekaycs@gmail.com, and your question might end up in another edition of the mailbag. Now, onto the questions:

DeKay: As far as I know this discussion hasn’t taken place, but that doesn’t mean it didn’t happen of course.

DeKay: This worked out perfectly because we have 24 teams now following the weekend of Minor action. At first glance I’m really intrigued by TyLoo and their prospects after finally getting Mo back into the lineup. I think BnTeT has been a revelation in Counter-Strike; there isn’t a more perfect opportunity for them to practice up and do some damage. On the other end, I think you can count on Virtus.pro continuing to struggle and not making it into the final 16 teams. That team need a roster move as soon as possible for any chance to become revitalized prior to the event. 

DeKay: Because of the shock of this possible move, I think people have gone way too far with it. It wasn’t that close to happening and was more of an first choice for coldzera should MiBR not work out later in the year. Should things not improve with Tarik, I’m sure cold will consider it. Even then, it’s no guarantee to happen. 

​​DeKay: I’d put my money on them continuing this semi-dominance for another six months. I didn’t expect Na’Vi to beat them at Cologne, but it doesn’t make me feel any worse about Astralis moving forward. They are my favorite for the Major, as you’d expect. 

​​DeKay: I don’t think Mertz will return unless he doesn’t get an offer elsewhere. Additionally, that possibility hinges on North being able to find a suitable replacement, and there aren’t many options free of the Major/Minor roster lock. K0nfig didn’t want to leave; the team decided to bench him and let him explore options for leaving. As you’ll notice, players don’t like to hang around on the bench if they feel unwanted, even more so when the player is as good as k0nfig. He knew someone else would want him and got out as soon as he could. 

​​DeKay: As far as I know, C9 is bitter after the attempt to get NBK for so long, only to not to be able to come to an agreement. At the end of the day, C9’s future depends on how the organization feels about this five-player lineup it brought to ELEAGUE. If the org is extremely unhappy, I can see Cloud9 attempting to rekindle conversations with G2. I think C9 prefers NBK over Apex by a long shot, though. RUSH plays a similar role to Apex, meaning NBKs play style is more suitable. 

​​DeKay: Happy and RpK have continued a tryout with Tempo Storm. The LeftOut guys are simply weighing their options and don’t really know what the future holds. It seems there are enough players left to give another all-French lineup a go, so we’ll just have to see. There is a ton of time until after the Major.  

​​DeKay: For NA: elige, NAF, Nifty, autimatic, and twistzz. For Sweden: Dennis, Olof, Flusha, Lekr0, and Draken.

​​DeKay: We should all know more in the coming week. 

​​DeKay: I have not heard anything regarding Skadoodle leaving. He is on Cloud9 for as long as he personally sees fit, unless something changes. I don’t think Tarik or Stewie2k left because of disagreements with one player in particular, more so because they felt the opportunity presented to them would end up being more fruitful later in the year. 

DeKay: As far as I know, it was just convenient timing, not that he was going to get replaced. ​​

​​DeKay: Teams I expect in the playoffs that didn’t make it previously: Team Liquid, Astralis, TyLoo.

​​DeKay: I don’t know the status of Cromen at the moment. All I know is he did have some decent offers a couple weeks back.


As for your second question: Virtus.pro, North, and Mousesports 

DeKay: This has been asked in different ways on multiple occasions. The North American mentality prioritizes ego-driven decision making based on friendship politics and salary levels. Until a group of likeminded (and skilled) players comes together who can look past these things, it won’t improve. Many of them say the right things and promise to work as hard as they possibly can, but few ever actually do it. Team Liquid is as close to this as you can get at the moment, so hopefully they prove me wrong and take it to another level the second half of the year. 

DeKay: I don't plan to work as talent, no. I’ve been asked on a couple occasions to work as talent for online leagues and have declined. I enjoy what I do now and already struggle to fit time around my full time job to attend events. In a perfect world, I work in Counter-Strike only in the future in one form or another. Some sort of role to help players would be ideal. 

​​DeKay: As far as I’m aware, he wants to keep playing. 

​​DeKay: I can see him secondary calling or taking over duties on specific maps. I don’t expect him to take over entirely unless Fallen is really struggling. 

​​DeKay: We’ll know more soon.

DeKay: There is only one answer to this question. 100 Thieves. 

​​DeKay: Match two players who reinvigorate the remaining three to feel motivated and confident. I’m not sure yet if Golden and STYKO are those two players. We will see. 

​​DeKay: Last I was told, they were trying out some players I had never heard of. 

DeKay: I have heard a ton of rumors and haven’t gotten word on what will actually happen with them. I don’t think they’ll officially join SK Gaming, even though the players have been earning a salary and bootcamping at their headquarters for months. The door isn’t necessarily shut, but I’d say it’s unlikely. 

DeKay: See above for teams likely to make changes. I can’t say for sure that it’s likely or not. Of course it’s possible, but I’m not aware of the two parties discussing anything. This could definitely change if they aren’t happy with their performance at ELEAGUE. 

DeKay: Two reasons. First, I have a much more busy schedule lately. It’s not impossible to squeeze it in, but it would be very difficult. Second, I have been brainstorming some sort of new format. The previous one went down in views every single episode, which makes no sense given the information I discussed in them. They included things never revealed publicly, yet no one seemed to latch on to them. That’s my fault, though. I need to improve the format. 

DeKay: I don’t see them extending into 2019 together if they can’t make improvements moving forward. Coldzera has all the leverage because he will have a ton of teams knocking on his door. I’m not sure who he’d replace on Liquid.

DeKay: Not that I know of.

DeKay: I think he is next on the block there, but it likely hinges on how they perform. Should they place last, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him gone. 

DeKay: I expect Rogue to place better of the two, but seeing both of them in the final 16 is a stretch. I’m not sure either of them makes it. 

DeKay: If I had to guess, I would expect one of them to join a team. One option is Mousesports, in my opinion. I would also guess that one of them rejoins G2 for bodyy. That’s just my hunch. 

DeKay: Not currently, no.


Photo courtesy of Turner Sports/ELEAGUE