Today we have a chance to present an exclusive interview with MYM]Nordahl, who is well known for his succesfull work in the Meet Your Makers WC3-team. He touches a lot of topics in that article: his own life, MYM team and players, lineup knowledge and plans for the futute. I hope you won't be dissapointed!
Proplay: Hi, Nordahl. Thanks for your time to make this interview. All of your players are well known for Russian community, but they probably haven't heard anything about you. Please, tell us, what man rules the MYM?
Nordahl: My name is Jesper "Nordahl" Henriksen, I am 25 years old and the team manager of the MYM WC3 team. Background wise I hold a degree in social education and also work with that fulltime.
You are the part of serious gaming organization. How did you manage to get into e-sports, maybe you were a player or you started as a manager from the very beginning? When and how did you come to MYM?
My history in gaming dates all the way back to the beginning of WC3. I spent a lot of time hosting for the WC3L and through that I got to know most of the danish top players of the time. One of which later took over the WC3 division of the biggest danish site at the time, and asked me to join him in making news, so I did. Through my extensive knowledge of how the WC3L was run and how the scene worked I could do a lot of indept news and interviews. At that time MYM was looking to build a strong team, Bjarke had just won the CPL and MYM were getting very ambitious. So Kepler from the upper management contacted me about joining as a team manager. At that time I wasn't really interested, I wanted to share my knowledge with the danish community and keep doing news, but as time passed I learned that my work wasn't really appreciated, other sites were copying it without even creditting me and the site I was working for was getting less and less hit, and since Lituch who had recruited me to do the news in the first place, had already ended his affiliation with WC3 all together, I saw no reason to continue, so I accepted Keplers offer. At this point MYM WC3 was undergoing some changes, and a more dedicated path in management was needed, I found this path together with my partner at the time Quinine, and quickly we were completely in charge of the WC3 team.
Well that was more than a full answer. Many people think that the players are the main part of the team and there is no need to have a good manager. Tell us about your duties and explain, why top team cannot exist without a professional manager?
Well the most obvious reason why a team needs a manager, is so the players can focus completely on what they do best, which is playing. The most recent example of this is 4K's struggle to find a manager that would stick to them, so the players wouldn't have to schedule their own matches. But scheduling matches is really only a small part of my job, I have a lot of functions, and of course experience about other teams that I can draw on. I also do research about opposing teams and I think I add the more scientific voice in our lineup discussion, or at least I try to.
Do you discuss the lineup with your players? Maybe they give you some advices?
We are all in on making the lineups. Usually I talk to Susiria who has gathered oppinions from the rest of the team, and we try to reach an agreement. It isn't always easy to see eye to eye about a lineup, but I think that can be a good thing, as it forces us to discuss the various options, until we can all agree.
Yea the truth lies in a discussion. Can you tell us about relationships inside the team? Obviously, that team will never get a great success without being a real family and friends. How do you cooperate with the players? Is this just a business or you are true teammates?
I think this is a hard question, and I think I have to walk a fine line. I can never be afraid of voicing my oppinion in fear that the players will get mad at me, but on the other hand, it is easier for all of us to work together if we all get along. I think it helps that we have been on the same team for such a long time, and have met each other several times, so we know each other, have fun togehter and so on. Recently we added Losemann to help out, and he seems to fit right in. He likes to joke around and we like to joke around, so that works out ok.
What functions lies on Losemann?
He is the assistant manager. He takes over when Im to busy, and he does a lot of practical stuff, and he never really tires, so that is great.
During WC3L and NGL Finals you always meet the players. How do you spend your free time? Do you have the same interests or their mentality differs from yours?
We dont really have that much free time at finals, there are point when we don't have matches, but usually we either spending on going to and from restaurents and following the other matches. When we get back to the hotel, we usually don't have that much time before we have to go to sleep, but in the time we do have, the players like to play poker, while I'd rather spend the time contemplating on the day that passed, and the day to come.
Do you have good friends among other team managers and players?
I get along really well with a couple of the other team managers, and there are of course also some I don't care to much about, like in all places of life.
I see. Let's talk about your team. Firstly, how can you rate the matches against Bet and Mouz? Were there any difficulties with lineup or something else?
The match vs. BeT came at a time which was really bad for us. Moon had to attend the Blizzcon and everybody knew he was going, so when we preponed a match it wasn't really hard to guess who it was, so we figured we'd just put him on TS and get the NE map out of the way. Then Susi's mouse broke and he didn't think he would be able to play with it. Unfortunately I was at work at the time, the match was played, or else I would have encouraged him to try, since it turned out he was able to play with it, and even won his 1on1 2-0. I think if he had been able to play 2on2 we could have won it.
The mouz match went pretty much smoothly, except the fact that Moon was still at Blizzcon so he couldn't play. We figured we would stand a decent chance at getting home some points with the maps we had, and Susi said he thought he would have a 50/50 chance vs. Fly if they were to met on SV, so we gambled that the marginals would be on his side, and indeed they were.
It seems that lineup-knowledge is a strategy even harder than WC3.
I guess it depends on how you look at it, I asked Susi what he thought his chance would be vs. Fly, because I figured he would have the best chances vs. everybody else from mouz, so Fly was the one to watch out for, so it is really all about playing the odds.
We have seen Yellow playing against Bet. Why does he appear in the lineup so rarely and do you have plans of putting him in the squad in the future?
Yellow has the disadvantage of having to deal with the really bad chinese Internet, and until recently he was also limited by opening hours at the computer cafe he was playing from. I can't really say if we will see him more in the near future, it depends on a lot of things.
Okay. MYM consists of very strong players, but nothing is perfect. Do you want to strengthen the lineup with new players, for example, chinese ones or you are completely satisified?
I always want to strengthen the lineup, but there are factors to consider. For example a player has to fit into the team and so on, so I can't really say anything specific about additions.
Can you briefly tell us about your players? Please, give us a little review about their current shape.
I think it is safe to say that all players show an increasing form curve. Especially Luci seems to be getting closer and closer to his old skill level, but also Susi has become more stable with the beginning of the new WC3L season, and Focus has really started to show some of the talent that made us recruit him in the first place. Moon, Eve and Yellow are at about the same level, but still rising a little. It is always hard to talk about Moon getting better when he is playing like he is at the moment, but I think the motivation he feels at the moment will constitue a rising form curve.
As known, WE has lost three good players, and two of them have already joined SK. How can you comment this sutuation? Does your team have a new strong opponent and does WE becomes more weaker now or something else?
Obviously WE is not a strong as they used to be losing the players that secured them a WC3L and NGL championship, but they are still a force to be reckoned with. SK took a huge leap from mediocre to top team by adding Remind and Lyn, no doubt about that, that puts them right back in the running for positions at offline finals.
There will be a hot battle for WC3L top 4 in this season. What is your prediction which teams have the best chanses to make it?
It is very hard to predict. On paper the strongest teams are perheps: MYM, 4K, BeT and SK, but a lot can happen during a season.
MYM will go to the NGL One finals soon. What result does your team want to achieve?
We always aim for #1, and we haven't been this hungry for a win in a long time, so hopefully we will be able to take home the title.
Do you know that there are very many fans of your team in Russia?
I didn't know that. Hello Russia, keep on cheering for us.
Haha. Thanks a lot, Nordahl, that was really great interview, we wish a best of luck to you and your players. Would you like to say something in the end?
I'd like to thank all of our sponsor who support us and everybody in the MYM organisation who is working really hard to keep the wheels running smothly, and of course I want to thank all the people out there who support us and believe in us, even when things aren't going our way.