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SK Treatz: “The worst feeling for me is that a lot of our lost games were completely winnable”

SK Gaming has had a rough run in summer so far but there remains a glimmer of hope. In Week 5, SK found their second win against Schalke 04 Esports but fell to Team Vitality, ending the week at 1-1. The win will still provide a much needed boost as they face LEC champions MAD Lions and Excel Esports in Week 6.

Support turned jungler Erik “Treatz” Wessén took time off his busy schedule and spoke about SK’s games in Week 5 and some thoughts on his roleswap.

First and foremost, thank you for accepting this interview. Congrats on going 1-1 this week and getting your second win, how was it like being back on the LEC stage, especially for Philipp Samuel “Lilipp” Englert?

Treatz: It’s definitely more exciting playing on stage than playing from home, right? I think in general playing next to your team on stage and playing next to the opposing team makes it ten times more exciting and way more fun.

And yeah, for a rookie like Lilipp it’s also his first time playing on the LEC stage and he had a blast as well. Even when we’re losing, it definitely feels better to lose on stage than it does at home… well, I guess it’s both better and worse. It’s worse because there’s more emotions involved but it’s also better because it feels like even though you lost, the enemy team defeats you on stage compared to playing it online at home, where it feels like a scrim.

Looking at your games last week, the first one against Schalke 04 Esports felt very close until around 25 minutes or so before you guys ran away with the lead. Tell me a little bit on what SK were working on the week before and what enabled you guys to pick up this win?

Treatz: I think in general we were confident in our draft for the late game against S04, so the early game plan was to neutralise them and make sure they don’t get any free advantages, which I think we did pretty well at. Most of our other games even though we had decent early games, we kind of randomly inted here and there and just threw as opposed to the opponents winning it.

The game against S04 was one of our games where we didn’t let them win the game in the early game, stabilized and did our thing late game. So yeah, I was happy with the way we won it.

Talk me through your game against Team Vitality, was it more of the same game plan? What are your thoughts on it?

Treatz: I would say the game plan was very similar with them having slightly better ganking and early pressure than us, so the game against S04 we wanted to try and neutralise them until level 6 and win from there on. However I think Vitality got way too many advantages in the early game, such as Oskar “Selfmade” Boderek getting something like three kills in that timeframe. It was difficult to play from there since they snowballed away with the game.

That did happen, indeed. I thought the biggest difference between both games was Troubleinc, since SK seems to win when she’s casting! Is she SK’s lucky charm?

Treatz: (laughs) It looks like that for sure, hopefully she casts all of our games from now!

I’ll be sure to let her know! I’d like to hear your thoughts on the new Dr. Mundo since SK picked it against Vitality. Do you think Mundo can be flexed to the jungle in this meta or he’ll remain in top lane?

Treatz: I think with the new 11.14 patch, Dr. Mundo jungle is way more viable than he was on the last patch, so right now I would say he is a viable flex pick since Riot buffed his jungle clear a bit. They also nerfed him a little bit on top lane which makes him more balanced in both roles, so I’d say he is definitely a flex option for teams right now.

On SK in general, it’s not been easy for the team so far. With another 1-1 week, is the team finally starting to click or are there still a lot of difficulties to iron out?

Treatz: I wouldn’t say we’ve taken a huge leap forward, the worst feeling for me is that a lot of our lost games were completely winnable or even won for us, but we threw those games. It’s more of us needing to keep up with being able to close games after having a solid early game.

When our early game goes well and we have a composition that we’re comfortable with, we can definitely take any opponent on. If we keep up good practice then our following weeks should also be better for us.

On the topic of closing games, this is something that is often talked about with SK. What have been SK’s difficulties in the mid to late game? Is it shot-calling issues perhaps or something else?

Treatz: I don’t think shot-calling wins late game fights. I think the biggest problem right now is the teamfights themselves and our individual decision making during those fights. At least for me, I feel the biggest difference between playing support and jungle, because supports usually have the ‘go’ button and are the hard engage.

In comparison, junglers right now are more farm heavy and act as the follow up on engages. At least for myself, that’s where I noticed the biggest difference. In general, our fights have been hit or miss with more misses despite our gold leads in some of our games.

As a newer jungler to the LEC since your roleswap, how has your jungle style been developing so far and how has it been working with Lilipp?

Treatz: Overall, I would not say I have a specific style and I think you can somewhat play most things in the jungle right now, though there are clear meta champions which a lot of teams pick. I have some special picks like Gwen jungle but it’s already been played elsewhere. In general, I just play whatever is strong and what wins us games.

Support and jungle synergy is something that can take a long time to develop and we haven’t had that much time yet, but I think it’s obviously been easier for me since I play both roles to give input and feedback and in general, take feedback as well. Since I can see from the perspective of both roles, I think it’s something that can definitely be our strength in the upcoming weeks but we need more time to gel.

As one of the roleswapped players this season: Should players be less afraid about roleswapping in the future? What are your thoughts on that?

Treatz: I think a lot of players would be scared to roleswap because they are bad at their main role and they will be even worse on their off-role. I think a lot of them will be exposed for their lack of knowledge but if you’re a good player you should easily be able to roleswap to another role and have solid performances.

I don’t think this will be ‘meta’ any time soon but maybe in the future where the better players become, the better they understand other roles other than their main role.

A fun question then: If you didn’t roleswap to jungle, what role would you have roleswapped to?

Treatz: Oh, that’s a tricky question! I would say my best roles in order would be support then jungle, then probably… bot laner, top and mid, I think. Mid is probably the hardest one due to matchup perspective and knowledge, where else top and bot laners are more like team roles like support/jungle. It would most likely be bot lane then since I think it’s a fairly easy role to play!

An easy role to play? I wonder what Jezu would say if he reads this…

Treatz: He has to agree!

SK Gaming face MAD Lions and Excel Esports next week, what are your thoughts and expectations going into those matches?

Treatz: MAD Lions have been somewhat up and down as well but they’re obviously still a top team. They’re a strong opponent that we respect but I think they also have clear weaknesses where they just randomly throw games for fun, similar to what we had done. I hope the coin lands on our side for that game!

As for Excel, they’re in a honeymoon phase with Mark “Markoon” van Woensel and Henk “Advienne” Reijenga. I respect Markoon because he just plays and he doesn’t give a fuck as opposed to some other junglers. He’s still a rookie and lacks that extra finesse but he’s had a good start since he and Advienne work well together on BT Excel.

Even though I think they’re upgrades, Excel still has the same problems as they had before. I look forward to this game and even though it will be slightly harder than last time, we should still pick up the win.

We’ve come to the end of the interview, is there anything else you’d like to add?

Treatz: Even though there has been a lot of roleswap shenanigans and a lot of crazy stuff, I’ve gotten a lot of support so thanks for that!

Thank you Treatz and good luck to SK!

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Image Credit: Riot Games (Michal Konkol)

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