Not long after the European League Championship Series regular season ended in late March, European outfit Roccat dropped head coach Titus “Ducky” Hafner.
Without a head coach for the LCS relegation tournament, Roccat enlisted the services of Jakob “YamatoCannon” Mebdi, who spent the Spring Split at the helm of last-place side Meet Your Makers.
“We needed a change, needed something new that can reset the mindset and help us improve more,” Roccat manager Thomas ‘Flyy’ Mihailov said about the move. “Both the team and Ducky were not seeing the partnership between continuing so we decided to part ways.”
The former Meet Your Makers coach has already moved in with the Roccat team, and will begin working with the them immediately. Mebdi has gained respect from many LCS players and staff as an effective coach, with many of Meet Your Makers’ problems being pinned on the controversy that occurred with the organization earlier in the season. In February, the organization came under fire after a voice recording revealed the team’s then-manager, Sebastian “Falli” Rotterdam, had threatened to take mid-laner Marcin ‘Kori’ Wolski’s mother’s house away over contract disputes.
Roccat finished the regular season in eighth position and will get first choice of which Challenger Team to face after the Challenger Series Playoffs are decided, with the first-place team gaining automatic promotion, while second and third must face off against either Roccat or Giants.
We got a chance to talk with and YamatoCannon about the move.
What made you decide that Roccat was the next step for you? Have you noticed any differences or similarities between them and MYM so far?
“I had a lot of different options, but what set my mind for the head coach role at ROCCAT was the fact that they have a great amount of potential in their roster already, seeing their results in the previous results was shocking, but the lacking elements were visible and easily identifiable. We have been working on those problems these past few weeks and I can already see progress.
The fact that the team is backed by a major company as ROCCAT pushed me to pursue the position simply because it would provide me with a lot security and confidence, knowing everything will be structured and well organized.”
Do you think this change will be enough to see you through relegations?
“I think the way we think and work right now is changing. We are working really hard to get back in the LCS and show that we can do a lot more than we showed last split. I think Yamato brings freshness in the team and helps us forget about the bad past and focus on the future. We are confident in our abilities to get back in to the LCS, but we will not underestimate CWA, and we will treat them as any other LCS team.”
How confident are you heading into the match against Copenhagen Wolves Academy?
“When there is a change within a team, coach or player the entire dynamic of the team changes. We have the same lineup, same names, but theres a certain aspect to it that is fresh and new. My goal will be to work together with the players to help them achieve the winners mindset and to help them become the best they can be. We have been sailing smooth for these past few weeks and we are confident coming into the match against CWA.
I am a man of simple principles, I like taking everything day by day and currently we are in a good state and working every wake hour to become even better coming into relegations. As a team we will be truly tested when we face problems, as any other team in the world. How we handle those problems will define us as a team.”
Photo via Riot Games/Flickr | Remix by Jacob Wolf