Cloud9 at Worlds was often considered NA’s last hope. At the 2023 LoL World Championship, Cloud9 was the only NA team to win the first game in the Swiss Stage, as they triumphed over MAD Lions. Although they lost to T1 in round 2, they are still aiming to advance through the remaining games. After their win over MAD Lions, Jang “EMENES” Min-soo joined Inven Global for a chat.
You’ve been playing for C9 for a year now. You went to MSI and reached Worlds. How is it playing at your first World Championship?
Before the game, I just thought I should do whatever I needed to do, but once the game started, my hands and feet started to tremble and my heart pounded like crazy. Recently, the team relies more on me, and the coaches told me to keep the nervousness inside me. So I tried to make shotcalls more confidently.
Do you usually get nervous like that?
Whoever I face, whatever game I play, I get nervous. It was like that at MSI and the same during regular season matches too. I really hate losing, so I often get really nervous.
Didn’t playing at MSI help with your nervousness?
It did help, but I still get nervous. Some people tell me that it’s better to be nervous since it keeps me tense. Rather than being nervous, I should just keep the right amount of tension, but it always goes past that. [Laughs] I’ll need to put in more effort to do that.
It’s the first time you’re a full-time starter in a major region team. How do you think you improved over this year?
Whichever team I played for, I was always desperate, and I always wanted to become a better player, a better person. So I worked hard, and I believe I met great people, great coaches and teammates this time. I had weaknesses as a player and as a human being. Everyone on the team helped me become a better person and player.
Do you think you’ve become a good teammate?
Frankly, I don’t think I was. Even now, I feel my teammates are looking out for me. I'm the type of person who has to say what I have to say, so the way I say it is without thinking about the other person's point of view. I often say things straightforwardly, so that was hard at first, but now I've learned a lot about how to speak, and I feel like I'm a better teammate now.
I've been trying to change the way I talk, but my teammates understand me better. I think they realize what I say isn’t meant to attack anyone, and that I'm just a gaming nut and I hate to lose. I’m aware that I still need to work on that. I'm always grateful for my teammates.
I can see that you hate losing. How about when you play board games or other games with your teammates?
That's why I don't play other games at all. I'm always deep into whatever I do. That's why I don't have any hobbies. I don't play other games, and even when my teammates play board games, I sneak away to read novels and books. I'm afraid I'll get overwhelmed, so I restrain myself.
How do you feel about C9's accomplishments as a team this year?
Looking back on the year, I have no regrets yet. I can say that we could have done better, but I feel like it's already been a year I'm proud of.
In the past, you've moved around a lot, but you've been at C9 for a while now. Was there a moment when you were able to settle in?
This is the longest I've been on one team in my career. It's because I had good teammates, good people. I tried to do my best, but it doesn't happen by itself, so I had a lot of help around me.
Do you want to stay on one team for long now?
I think about that a lot now. I've bounced around a lot, so I want to stay with this team for a long time, and I don't want to have to adapt every time I move.
You've said before that your goal is to retire when you're satisfied with your career. It might seem silly to ask a rookie player this, but what kind of career do you need to achieve to be satisfied with your career?
When I look back on my career, I want to be remembered as a good person, and I want to hear from fans that I was a good player. I want them to say that they were my fans and that they loved watching me play. I want my teammates to say, "We had a lot of support with him, we could count on him," and I want to be able to retire satisfied with that kind of career.
To have no regrets is to be a person who is sincere in everything you do, who puts your heart and soul into everything you do, who works hard, who doesn't lie, who doesn't pretend, who really tries. It's a bit long-winded, but to put it simply, I just want to be perfect.
You don't have any specific goals in terms of achievements?
Not yet. In fact, I tell people that I’m going to win Worlds, but winning Worlds isn’t that meaningful a goal for me. I don't think I would feel that good if I got carried the whole ride and won. If I work really hard to win, and I cry a lot after winning a championship, that’ll be really satisfying. That happened in the spring.
Any last comments?
I hope everyone is happy all the time.