Here's How N0tail Views Scrims Versus Official Games
Scrims in esports are training games in which teams compete against each other to practice strategies before official games. Though scrims might appear to predict how a team will perform in an actual tournament, OG’s captain, Johan "N0tail" Sundstein, doesn't seem to think so. Former League of Legends player and current analyst, Marc Robert "Caedrel" Lamont, mentions having recently talked with N0tail about the comparison between scrims and official games. The discussion about their conversation came up on a recent episode of the “EUphoria” podcast. As Caedrel explained, N0tail said that at The International (TI), OG lost scrims to teams, but bounced back in official games as the opponents were overwhelmed by LAN pressure.
N0tail views that scrims’ results do not matter much in a LAN environment
During the LEC Summer S8 EP6 of the "EUphoria" podcast, League of Legends personalities discussed scrim results and whether or not they were relevant to official games. Caedrel, Elias "Upset" Lipp, and Daniel "Drakos" Drakos, the three present on the show, were of the opinion that scrims were a false indicator of what would happen in the official matches. Drakos mentioned that he had heard stories about teams crushing opponents in scrims but faltering on the first day of official tournaments.
Caedrel further said that Dota 2 player, N0tail also seems to share the same view. N0tail told Caedrel that, despite losing scrims at TI, they outperformed teams because of the external factors of the official games, such as the crowd, stage setups, and so on.
“When he was playing at TI, they would lose scrims to a team for example, but when they played against them on stage, he did not even have to do anything. The enemies get in their own heads by shaking or not knowing what to pick. The cameras, the audience does it all for him. He is just sitting there like - yeah, it’s the stage now, good luck” said Caedrel.
OG is also known for thriving in LAN settings and bringing out their A-game in high-stakes events such as TI8, TI9, and the recently concluded TI10 regional qualifiers. A major reason for such a trend in OG is the presence of N0tail, along with its offlaner Sébastien "Ceb" Debs. Throughout multiple interviews and TI True Sights, both have emphasized the importance of remaining positive and calm when encountering pressure situations.
An important point we would like to highlight here is that scrim data is private and is not allowed to be shared with anyone outside of the two teams participating in it. However, teams and players sometimes share the results of the scrims in post-match interviews while what actually occurred in these games is generally kept confidential.
As a further example of the significance of scrim results, Virtus.pro was considered a favorite to win the Dota 2 WePlay AniMajor going into the tournament. During the event, some English panelists mentioned that they had heard that Virtus.pro was destroying all opponents during scrims, which further boosted their chances.
Like the first Major of the season, Virtus.pro fell short of the community's expectations and what they had accomplished in scrims. In the upper bracket of the WePlay AniMajor, they lost to Team Nigma, followed by a loss to Vici Gaming in the lower bracket, resulting in their elimination.
Many reckoned that Virtus.pro, who had been incredibly dominant in online events, was crumbling under the pressure of the LAN environments and hence, required a coach. A few days later, Virtus.pro's offlaner, Dmitry "DM" Dorokhin, stated in a post-match interview that they were on the lookout for a Dota 2 coach.