In the third match on Day 2 of 2017 Rift Rivals: NA vs EU, TSM emerged victorious over Fnatic, continuing their 3-win streak so far in the tournament. Though FNC’s sOAZ on Gragas and Broxah on Lee Sin had an early edge on TSM, it was not enough to contain the raw firepower of Bjergsen and Doublelift. Riot’s Trevor Henry invited Dennis “Svenskeren” Johnsen for a post-match interview, in which the jungler revealed some interesting tendencies of EU.
When asked about their shaky performance in the beginning and gradual overtake in the middle, Svenskeren explained, “EU teams have good early games, and they play for kills. So, we had to slow down the game and play around the bottom lane, which had a lot of pressure.” In fact, Doublelift’s Crystal Arrow was generally on point for the game, shutting down key targets like Caps on Anivia and Rekkles on Kennen.
Svenskeren also expressed joy about coming back to EU to beat the old kings because when he was in his old teams, he never managed to beat FNC, the arguably the strongest team in EU. Since he’s on TSM now, he said, “I feel like I’m on a different level, so we have a chance against all the other good teams.”
Concerning many people’s widespread perception that EU will vastly outclass NA before Rift Rivals, Svenskeren admitted he didn’t fully grasp that notion but hazarded a guess anyway:
“Actually, I don’t know — Europeans love to talk a lot of shit, I guess. I don’t know about the other NA teams, but we had a positive win rate against EU teams at Worlds and MSI. I don’t understand why they think they’re better, but yeah — I don’t know.”
The interview concluded with a lighthearted question of “why do EU teams suck so much?” to which he responded by first acknowledging he doesn’t want to talk too much trash because he is European himself and said, “I don’t think [EU teams] play well around missions. NA teams put a lot of effort into perfecting their plays like not going into river alone.”