AFS Spirit: "With new players who have incredible mechanics and macro, I can’t help but think if I am becoming irrelevant. However, this just makes me want to work even harder."

On the 24th, Afreeca Freecs defeated Gen.G 2-1.

With the unfortunate losses that Afreeca has recently been experiencing, they decided it was time for a change. Right into the first game of the series, Kiin picked Vayne into mid Galio. Although the second game went to the side of Gen.G, Afreeca Freecs did not hesitate to implement their newfound strategy again and again.

The player who caught everyone’s eye was Spirit. Despite being the jungler for Afreeca, Spirit had displayed an incredibly large champion pool. Playing Morgana, Neeko, and Annie, Spirit gave free rein for his top and mid laners to indulge in diversity.

After the games, we interviewed Spirit. Let’s see what he has to say about grabbing his first win of the split.

¤ Today was a long series. How do you feel about your win?

It feels incredible to win after a full set. Because we were able to win using my strategy, it is a very meaningful accomplishment.

¤ You guys have been on a losing streak. How did you comfort your somewhat inexperienced teammates?

I felt a lot of shame after losing 2 games in the opening week. I was unable to fulfill my leadership role, and I was not able to trust them fully. However, after the losses, I quickly changed my mindset. I am trying my best to keep our team atmosphere in a good state.

¤ In game 2, you played Neeko. With the appearance of Neeko, fans everywhere were in awe. What made you pick her?

Since pro players have rarely played against Neeko, I knew it was going to be difficult to play against. For this exact reason, I practiced playing Neeko. It worked fairly well.

¤ If so, what about Annie?

Annie is the same concept. Back when I was an amateur, I was an Annie main before my jungle role. Trying to relive those moments, I urged my team that I wanted to play Annie. Although I died quite a lot, I think I performed pretty well.

¤ Afreeca Freecs utilized Marksman champions in different positions. Fans are saying that it is a rediscovery of roles. It must be weird seeing it from a jungler’s perspective…

Since I have played this game for so long, I can tell what exactly a role requires. The team has also been observing this and asked me to diversify. Hearing that from the fans, I really don’t know what to say (laughs). I want to be recognized for my jungle, but I feel like I still haven’t been able to… I am going to devote myself to get recognized as a good jungler.

¤ With Afreeca’s interesting picks&bans today, I have heard people calling you guys ‘The meta breakers’. LCK has been receiving backlash for not being able to break the meta. What are your thoughts on this compliment?

I know for a fact that the fans gave it to us straight. They told us “How long are you guys going to play an outdated meta?” To be honest, I believe we are a new team. We have a lot of newly amateur players on our team. Thanks to our new strategy and implementing it, we were able to win today. Since last year is completely different from this year, even if I tried to pull this strategy off before, I don’t think I would have succeeded. Right now, the mindset is that I have nothing to lose. I only have room to learn and grow. Because of this, new ideas come to fruition. My teammates also give me inspiration.

¤ If there any other unconventional picks you have prepared?

Today, I had 6 picks ready for disposal. I was unable to show my other 3.

¤ This season, a lot of the new teams have come out strong. As a veteran, what comes to mind when seeing this?

I think Ambition would have thought this last year. It's a bit emotional so it is hard to say. It feels bitter. There are a lot of young players who are better than me. With new players who have incredible mechanics and macro, I can’t help but think if I am becoming irrelevant. However, this just makes me want to work even harder.

¤ This is your first win. How will Afreeca improve for the long road ahead?

I think we are still slightly reluctant to change. Clinging onto what worked for us last year. We need to completely move on from the past and step head first into change.

¤ Lastly, is there anything you want to say?

Today, we got our first valuable win. I will try my best to win the remainder of our games. I hope you guys can continue to support us.

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