GG Ablazeolive is in a tight race with Flyquest for the 2021 LCS Summer Split.

Golden Guardians are in a tight race for the final playoff spot in the 2021 LCS Summer Split with Flyquest. This final week of the 2021 LCS Summer Split will make or break for the Golden Guardians. Their performance in week 9 will dictate if their season ends this weekend or moves forward. One game out of 8th place, Friday will be an important matchup for Flyquest and Golden Guardians. In this interview we spoke to GG Ablazeolive to talk about their upcoming matchup against Flyquest and his own personal growth from Challenger to LCS.

Ablazeolive on the analyst desk. Image via
Ablazeolive on the analyst desk. Image via

Originally, Golden Guardians made an announcement talking about this year being a year for development.You are currently in the playoff race with Flyquest for a playoff spot, did you expect yourself to be in this position at the start of 2021?

GG Ablazeolive: Yeah, I was pretty confident we would make the playoffs at the beginning of the year. Top 8 make the playoffs so you have a lot of leeway to make mistakes. You do not need a great record to make it into the postseason. 

When you got that offer for Golden Guardians, what was the process behind that. What expectations did you place on yourself for 2021?

GG Ablazeolive: I was trying to focus on improving as much as possible. When I go back to my academy trajectory, I was not a good player. I remained this way until my second year on Academy where I feel like I made gigantic strides as a player. I did not want to put too much pressure on myself to perform in the first. Definitely do not want to excuse my bad play, but I was not going to apply this pressure to be the best. My focus is on steady improvement throughout the year. That is what I strive for the most in my rookie season.

Why do you feel 2019 was a great year for you career wise?

GG Ablazeolive: 2019 is the year where I really started to see growth as a player. My coach at the time, Peter Zhang, taught me a lot about the game. He is a strict coach, but that is something I need so it really helped me a lot. There were bad habits I would have before and he made sure to iron them out for me. He would not allow me to continue making those mistakes. 2019 is where I feel I learned the most.

Ablazeolive won the 2019 LCS Academy Spring Split. Image via lolesports flickr.
Ablazeolive won the 2019 LCS Academy Spring Split. Image via lolesports flickr.

You have been striving for LCS for quite some time. I remember back in 2016 you were this young kid playing in NACS for Nova Esports. Prior to joining TSM, what was your mentality back then? Did you always have LCS as a goal or was this all just for fun?

GG Ablazeolive: I always thought I would reach the LCS. I honestly thought I would get into the LCS much faster. I didn't really try in League for a while until I was eligible to play pro. It would've been much better to get great at the game before I was eligible though. Still, I always felt LCS is a goal I would achieve. I always knew that gaming would be the ideal career I would enjoy best. 

I knew from a very young age, I always wanted to play video games professionally, I just did not know which game before League of Legends. Back in season 2 before LCS started, this goal to play League of Legends professionally became something I would work towards. 

Once you finally do reach the LCS, what is the growth process like now?

GG Ablazeolive: I definitely feel I am improving a lot playing in the LCS. In the spring split, things were not going well. I think there are a lot of things I am improving on individually and same for my team. It is hard to say any specifics, but I think we are doing a good job and people are starting to see our growth. This week was not good though. It is our first 0-3 week of the Summer Split, but overall, we are more consistent as a team. 

Ablazeolive and teammate Iconic after a victory against Dignitas in the 2021 LCS Summer Split. Image via
Ablazeolive and teammate Iconic after a victory against Dignitas in the 2021 LCS Summer Split. Image via

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There is one week before the LCS regular season ends. You have that really important game against Flyquest. In a make or break scenario, what is your mindset heading into that matchup?

GG Ablazeolive: I do not want to be overconfident. That is a primary reason we lost against CLG and we really needed that game. I do feel confident we can beat Flyquest though. We scrimmed them before and feel we usually win games against them. LCS stage is definitely different from scrims for sure, but I feel confident in our team. We will be able to adapt to the upcoming patch and play our best this week. 

What has that transition from stage back to online been like? Some players enjoy the stage, but others feel voice comms are more relaxed at home. What is your stance on the changes?

GG Ablazeolive: I think I play better when I am in the LCS stage. I think it is pretty clear where today and yesterday I made mistakes. I feel like if I were on the LCS stage, I would not make those mistakes. When I play LCS in the room I practice in everyday, a scrim mentality does creep in a little bit. It is easy to play more aggressively at home. The environment at home is not as serious either. It does not help me when I am trying to not make dumb plays. 

It is not a big deal, but that scrim mentality does enter my mind sometimes. The environment is very different and it does not help me.

Do you have any final words prior to your matchup against Flyquest?

GG Ablazeolive: This past weekend is not a great showing for Golden Guardians. That being said, we are definitely making the playoffs. I feel really confident going into next week's games. We will shape up for week 9 and get our first 3-0 week!

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